Category Archives: 20th century history

Big Ben and the British

With Big Ben – possibly – due to fall silent next week, our Director, Dr Paul Seaward, discusses the history of the famous bell… The reaction in some quarters to the news that Big Ben will cease to strike from … Continue reading

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50th anniversary of the Sexual Offences Act, 1957

On 12 July we brought together parliamentarians, activists and historians to mark 50 years since the passing of the 1967 Sexual Offences Act, which partially decriminalised homosexuality in England and Wales. Here we report back from the event… We were … Continue reading

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First steps in the chamber: making a maiden speech

For the one hundred or so new MPs who were elected in June, many have already achieved one of the major milestones of their Commons’ careers: the maiden speech. Here we share some of our oral history project interviewees’ memories … Continue reading

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The State Opening of Parliament: When dissident acts become established acts

Today, the new Parliament will be officially opened. In his guest blog Steven Franklin (Royal Holloway, University of London) discusses the origins and development of the pageantry involved… In 1863 Queen Victoria refused to open parliament, citing her ‘total inability…to … Continue reading

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MPs in World War I: William Hoey Kearney Redmond (1861-1917)

In the latest of our blogs on MPs killed in the First World War, Dr Kathryn Rix marks the centenary of the death of the Irish nationalist Willie Redmond… On 7 June 1917, William Hoey Kearney Redmond, the Irish Nationalist … Continue reading

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‘Not another one!’: going to the polls in historical perspective

With UK electors heading off to the national polls for the third time in as many years and as part of our Election 2017 series, Dr Philip Salmon, editor of the Victorian Commons, looks for similar levels of electioneering activity … Continue reading

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‘Absolutely our best officer’: Valentine Fleming (1882-1917)

In the latest of our blogs on MPs killed in the First World War, Dr Kathryn Rix marks the centenary of the death of Valentine Fleming on 20 May 1917… On 25 May 1917, the obituary of Valentine Fleming, Conservative … Continue reading

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