Memories of Thatcher’s fall

25 years ago this week the Conservative Party were in the process of electing a new leader after Margaret Thatcher, Prime Minister for over 11 years, stood down. The story of Thatcher’s resignation has long been a controversial one within the Conservative Party, seen by some as an ‘assassination’ and by many as high political drama. This is reflected in many of our oral history … Continue reading Memories of Thatcher’s fall

History of Parliament’s Dissertation Competition, 2014 and 2015

Every year the History of Parliament Trust holds a competition for the best undergraduate dissertation on British or Irish politics. 2014’s winner was Stuart Clark of Edinburgh University, with ‘“An Old Tory Dodge”, or “a Large and Liberal Project of Practical Benevolence”? The Congested Districts Board, Politics and the Press in Ireland, 1890-1914’. Our editors and editorial board judged the work to be interesting, well-written … Continue reading History of Parliament’s Dissertation Competition, 2014 and 2015

Parliaments, Politics and People seminar: Victoria Anker, ‘Parliament Ordinances and Remonstrances: legislative attacks on executive authority in the early 1640s’

At the second ‘Parliaments, Politics and People’ seminar of the term Victoria Anker, from the University of Edinburgh, spoke on ‘Parliament Ordinances and Remonstrances: legislative attacks on executive authority in the early 1640s.’ Here she gives us an overview of her paper… Whilst the language and rhetoric of speakers in the House of Commons in the Short Parliament demonstrated a level of continuity with Charles … Continue reading Parliaments, Politics and People seminar: Victoria Anker, ‘Parliament Ordinances and Remonstrances: legislative attacks on executive authority in the early 1640s’

The ‘Story of Parliament’: Civil War leaders

Earlier this year the History published ‘The Story of Parliament: Celebrating 750 years of parliament in Britain’ to mark the anniversary of Simon de Montfort’s parliament in 1265. The book is a brief introduction to the full 750 years of parliamentary history, aimed at the general reader, and available to purchase from the Houses of Parliament bookshop.  On this blog we are publishing some tasters … Continue reading The ‘Story of Parliament’: Civil War leaders

Two battles and a siege: Sheriffmuir and Preston, 12-14 November 1715

300 years ago the battles of Sheriffmuir and Preston signalled the effective end of the 1715 Jacobite rebellion. Dr Robin Eagles, Senior Research Fellow in the House of Lords 1660-1832 section, tells us more… The 1745 rebellion, replete with romantic tales of derring-do, may be the most famous of the various Jacobite insurrections but it was far from being the most likely to succeed. In … Continue reading Two battles and a siege: Sheriffmuir and Preston, 12-14 November 1715

The History of Parliament Annual Lecture 2015: Dr John Maddicott, ‘Parliament and the People in Medieval England’

Last week we had a large audience for our annual lecture in Portcullis House, Westminster. Dr John Maddicott FBA gave a fascinating talk on Parliament’s relationship with ordinary people between the twelfth and fifteenth centuries. Dr Maddicott began by defining both ‘parliament’ and ‘the people.’ In doing so he traced the development of parliament from a group of the monarch’s close advisors to a body … Continue reading The History of Parliament Annual Lecture 2015: Dr John Maddicott, ‘Parliament and the People in Medieval England’

Parliaments, Politics and People seminar: Patrick Little, ‘The dressing of a cucumber‘: the Scottish Union Bill of 1656-7

The ‘Parliaments, Politics and People’ seminar has returned for the new academic year. To start things off, the History of Parliament’s own Dr Patrick Little, Senior Research Fellow in the Commons 1640-60 section, reports back on his paper ‘‘The dressing of a cucumber’: the Scottish Union Bill of 1656-7’… The constitutional relationship between England and Scotland was as topical in the mid-seventeenth century as it … Continue reading Parliaments, Politics and People seminar: Patrick Little, ‘The dressing of a cucumber‘: the Scottish Union Bill of 1656-7