‘Matters far beyond their reach or capacity’: Parliament and foreign policy in 1621

As Parliament continues to debate Brexit, Dr Paul Hunneyball of the Lords 1604-29 section examines how the House of Commons first won the right to influence policy towards Europe… The scenario might seem familiar: a government deeply divided over the future direction of Britain’s relations with the rest of Europe; and an anxious Parliament, eager to have its say, but sucked into confrontation with the government … Continue reading ‘Matters far beyond their reach or capacity’: Parliament and foreign policy in 1621

Defection, by-elections and Europe…in the 1970s.

In tomorrow’s by-election in Clacton, former Conservative MP Douglas Carswell will contest his previous seat after defection to UKIP. Carswell’s strong difference of opinion with his party over the issue of Europe has echoes of a different by-election – Lincoln in 1973 – but the parties and positions were reversed. When Britain was applying to join the then European Economic Community (EEC) in the 1960s … Continue reading Defection, by-elections and Europe…in the 1970s.