Nancy Astor: A Mother in the House

Last week we heard about the Father or ‘Grand Old Man’ of the Long Parliament, so this week we have a blog about the first mother in the House of Commons. Along with PhD student, Kate Meanwell, Dr Jacqui Turner from the University of Reading and Astor 100 project, discusses Nancy Astor’s role as a mother to her five children as well as a representative … Continue reading Nancy Astor: A Mother in the House

Tackling electoral corruption: how Victorian Britain reformed the trial of election petitions in 1868

Today marks the 150th anniversary of the passing of the Election Petitions and Corrupt Practices at Elections Act, an important part of the electoral reforms which had begun with the Second Reform Act of 1867. Dr. Kathryn Rix of our Victorian Commons project explains why and how Benjamin Disraeli’s ministry aimed to tackle the problem of bribery and corruption at mid-Victorian elections. On 31 July 1868 … Continue reading Tackling electoral corruption: how Victorian Britain reformed the trial of election petitions in 1868

The 1842 Chartist Petition – why over 3 million signatures translated into less than 50 votes

Today’s blog about the Chartist Petition of 1842 is part of our focus on wider electoral and political reform throughout this significant anniversary year in women’s political history – for more blogs in the series see here. The following blog has been written by year 10 work experience student, Layla Barwell from Dartford Grammar School for Girls. Layla spent the week with the public engagement … Continue reading The 1842 Chartist Petition – why over 3 million signatures translated into less than 50 votes

Voice and Vote: Celebrating 100 Years of Votes for Women – a guidebook

Dr Paul Seaward is one of the editors of the “Voice & Vote guidebook” to accompany the UK Parliament Vote 100 project‘s landmark exhibition in Westminster Hall. In today’s blog he explains the contents of the book, who contributed to it and where you can get one… Last week we were delighted to celebrate with the curators of the wonderful Voice and Vote exhibition in Westminster … Continue reading Voice and Vote: Celebrating 100 Years of Votes for Women – a guidebook

The 1868 Boundary Act: Disraeli’s attempt to control his ‘leap in the dark’?

This year marks the 150th anniversary of the 1868 Boundary Act. As Martin Spychal of the Commons 1832-68 Section discusses in today’s blog, the oft-neglected story of the Act provides several key insights into Britain’s second Reform Act and, in particular, the intentions of Benjamin Disraeli, the Conservative Prime Minister in 1868… It is often forgotten that Benjamin Disraeli intended to mitigate the democratising impact … Continue reading The 1868 Boundary Act: Disraeli’s attempt to control his ‘leap in the dark’?

Symbolising political change: space and the temporary House of Commons

Rebekah Moore is currently completing a PhD (Institute of Historical Research/History of Parliament) on the temporary Houses of Parliament and the new Palace of Westminster, 1830-1860. In this guest blog, she draws some parallels between the current proposals for Restoration and Renewal at Westminster and events in the nineteenth century. On 31 January 2018, the House of Commons approved plans for the restoration and renewal … Continue reading Symbolising political change: space and the temporary House of Commons

Bishops and Popular Opinion in the Era of Catholic Emancipation and the Reform Bill

Today’s post is a guest blog from PhD candidate Nicholas Dixon of Pembroke College, University of Cambridge. Nicholas shares this blog on the back of his paper from the ‘Parliaments and Popular Sovereignty: Political Representation in the British world, 1640-1886’ conference. The History of Parliament organised this event in partnership with Durham University History Department and the People’s History Museum in Manchester in November 2017. He discusses to what … Continue reading Bishops and Popular Opinion in the Era of Catholic Emancipation and the Reform Bill