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British Parliamentary Papers

Debates and Proceedings


Debates are the records of parliamentary speeches. Until the early 20th Century the published debates were unofficial and often based on secondary reports such as newspaper articles. Beginning in 1909 the House of Commons and Lords Debates were separated. Prior to 1909 the two houses of Parliament jointly published their debates.

Locating Parliamentary Debates: 

After 1908 the Debates of the House of Commons and Lords are published separately under the title Parliamentary Debates:


Journals are the official and permanent record of the proceedings of Parliament. They include motions passed, amended, withdrawn, committee memberships, and lists of papers laid before each House. A journal usually covers one complete Parliamentary session. The Journals report on the activities of Parliament, they are not a record of what was said. The Journals do not typically include the text of debates or speeches.

House of Commons Journal (1837-)

Contains PDF scans of the published Journals from 1837-1997, and web pages with associated PDFs for journals after 1997.

House of Commons Journals for 1688-1834 can be found in the House of Commons Parliamentary Papers database.

British History Online has many House of Commons Journals for the years prior to 1835

House of Lords