The ‘Interruption’ of Parliament and the quest for political settlement, October 1659

In the first of a new blog series charting the collapse of the British Republic, Dr Vivienne Larminie of the Commons 1640-1660 section discusses the military coup which temporarily suspended the Rump Parliament 360 years ago… On the morning of Thursday 13 October 1659 ‘at his usual time’, Speaker William Lenthall was making his way by coach from his London residence to preside over a … Continue reading The ‘Interruption’ of Parliament and the quest for political settlement, October 1659

Parliaments, Politics and People seminar – The ‘Gothic slum’: MPs and St Stephen’s Cloisters, 1852-2017

In May 2018, Dr Elizabeth Biggs and Dr Elizabeth Hallam Smith introduced the IHR Parliaments, Politics and People seminar to the early history of St Stephen’s cloister, Westminster, presenting recent findings from their research project (funded by the Leverhulme Trust, and conducted in association with the Houses of Parliament and the University of York). In June this year, we welcomed Elizabeth Hallam Smith back to … Continue reading Parliaments, Politics and People seminar – The ‘Gothic slum’: MPs and St Stephen’s Cloisters, 1852-2017

The House of Lords Outside Parliament Time, 1604-1629

Continuing our theme of alternative functions once served by the palace of Westminster, Dr Andrew Thrush of the Lords 1604-29 section considers activities at the southern end of the complex in the early seventeenth century… During the early modern period parliaments were neither regular nor particularly frequent but sat at the whim of the monarch. Consequently, for most of the time the old palace of … Continue reading The House of Lords Outside Parliament Time, 1604-1629

Top things to do in London: visiting the old palace of Westminster

With the Restoration and Renewal project in full swing in Westminster, offices are moving and buildings are being re-purposed to accommodate works, and the ever-changing jigsaw of scaffolding can be seen from street as well as inside the parliamentary estate. Here, at the History of Parliament Trust we thought it pertinent to explore the development of parliamentary buildings and their historic over the centuries uses … Continue reading Top things to do in London: visiting the old palace of Westminster

Alternative uses for the palace of Westminster: the early 17th-century picture

With the palace of Westminster requiring a major restoration programme, and some people suggesting that Parliament should permanently relocate to a new home, Dr Paul Hunneyball of the Lords 1604-29 section considers some of the uses to which the old Palace was put 400 years ago… Since the 19th century, the palace of Westminster has been synonymous with Parliament – but that wasn’t always the … Continue reading Alternative uses for the palace of Westminster: the early 17th-century picture

Keeping up appearances: make do and mend in the old Palace of Westminster

Ahead of the first Parliaments, Politics and People seminar of the New Year at the IHR this evening, Dr Robin Eagles, Editor of the House of Lords 1715-1790 Section gives us a taster of his seminar paper from our last meeting before Christmas – interior design and the eighteenth century Palace of Westminster… In October 1834 the old palace of Westminster suffered a devastating fire … Continue reading Keeping up appearances: make do and mend in the old Palace of Westminster

Parliaments, Politics and People seminar – The Victorian Palace of Science: scientific knowledge and the building of Britain’s Houses of Parliament

Today’s blog ahead of our Parliaments, Politics and People seminar at the Institute of Historical Research this evening, is from Dr Edward J. Gillin. Edward is a postdoctoral research fellow at the University of Cambridge, working in the history of the science of sound in the nineteenth century. He gave his paper at our previous PPP seminar on the Houses of Parliament and their significance in the emerging … Continue reading Parliaments, Politics and People seminar – The Victorian Palace of Science: scientific knowledge and the building of Britain’s Houses of Parliament

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

Parliaments, Politics & People Seminar: Priscilla Baines, ‘House of Commons governance: a suitable case for treatment?’

In today’s blog Dr Paul Hunneyball reports back from our recent Parliament, Politics & People seminar – where former House of Commons Librarian (2000-2004) and our Honorary Research Fellow Priscilla Baines spoke about her work on the House of Commons commission… For the first seminar of the summer term, we welcomed Priscilla Baines, a former House of Commons Librarian, and now an honorary research fellow … Continue reading Parliaments, Politics & People Seminar: Priscilla Baines, ‘House of Commons governance: a suitable case for treatment?’

Restored, Renewed, Relocated: Parliament and its buildings

Before Christmas Rebekah Moore, holder of an AHRC collaborative doctoral award with the History of Parliament and Institute of Historical Research, organised a seminar in Westminster to discuss Parliament’s accomodation. Here she reports back… In December, Mark Egan (the HPT’s former Secretary) and I organised a seminar at Westminster Hall. The aims of the seminar were to think about how parliament was housed in temporary … Continue reading Restored, Renewed, Relocated: Parliament and its buildings