‘London’s Latest Ordeal’: the Blitz and rebuilding of the House of Commons Chamber

On the evening of the 10/11 May 1941 the House of Commons Chamber was destroyed during the Blitz. In today’s blog, 80 years on, our Public Engagement Assistant Connie Jeffery explores the event and how Parliament rebuilt and recovered from the destruction… Like much of the United Kingdom’s home front, Westminster was no stranger to the effects of the Second World War. Parliament’s recognisable home … Continue reading ‘London’s Latest Ordeal’: the Blitz and rebuilding of the House of Commons Chamber

A New Dawn? The accession of Edward IV on 4 March 1461

On 4 March 1461 Edward duke of York was proclaimed King in Westminster Hall. But the authority of this new regime was not universally accepted. Dr Hannes Kleineke, editor of our Commons 1461-1504 project, continues our look at what some call the ‘first’ war of the roses, 1459-1461 and the parliamentary rulings behind it… On 4 March 1461 a piece of political theatre was played … Continue reading A New Dawn? The accession of Edward IV on 4 March 1461

Plague, prorogation and the suspension of the courts in fifteenth-century England

In another timely blog from our History of Parliament researchers, today Dr Simon Payling, senior research fellow for the Commons 1461-1504 project, discusses Parliament’s response to another plague outbreak as the courts of justice were suspended in June 1464. On Wednesday 6 June 1464, at the beginning of Trinity term, a small piece of theatre was played out in Westminster Hall. Three justices of the … Continue reading Plague, prorogation and the suspension of the courts in fifteenth-century England

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

Remembering Peterloo: protest, satire and reform

On 11 July 2019 the History of Parliament Trust, the Parliamentary Archives and the Citizens Project hosted Professor Robert Poole, Professor Ian Haywood and Dr Katrina Navickas at an event in the Palace of Westminster. This panel of three leading scholars offered intriguing new insights into the latest research on the Peterloo Massacre. The event accompanied the launch of the ‘Parliament & Peterloo’ exhibition, which … Continue reading Remembering Peterloo: protest, satire and reform

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

Delivering justice: the sovereignty of the people, God’s judgement and the trial of Charles I

As twists and turns in the Brexit debates at Westminster continue, in the third in our series on the momentous events of the winter of 1648-1649 Dr Vivienne Larminie of the House of Commons 1640-1660 section looks at the contentious background to the setting up of judicial proceedings against Charles I, including a unilateral assertion of sovereignty by the Commons On 8 January 1649, in … Continue reading Delivering justice: the sovereignty of the people, God’s judgement and the trial of Charles I

Gerald Arbuthnot MP and the Parliamentary War Memorial

Since 2014 Dr. Kathryn Rix, Assistant Editor of our House of Commons, 1832-1945 project, has been blogging about the 24 MPs and former MPs who died on military service during the First World War. We have published her posts to mark the centenary of the death of each of these parliamentarians, one of whom was in the Lords by the time of his death. We’re … Continue reading Gerald Arbuthnot MP and the Parliamentary War Memorial

A night in Parliament: Militant Suffragettes and Parliament

We are delighted to post this guest blog in our Women and Parliament series from one of the public historians who has been at the forefront of activities to commemorate the centenary of the first women winning the right to vote in this country. Vicky Iglikowski-Broad, Diverse Histories Records Specialist at The National Archives (TNA) gives us an account, based on the collections at TNA, … Continue reading A night in Parliament: Militant Suffragettes and Parliament