Longest parliamentary session in history to end tonight

Parliament has been sitting for a record 839 days

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

The longest parliamentary session in the United Kingdom’s history is to come to an end as Parliament is prorogued tonight after more than two years.

Boris Johnson initially tried to suspend parliament on September 10 for five weeks ahead of a Queen’s speech on October 14.

However, the Supreme Court ruled the move to be unlawful – which meant the session had never technically ended - and MPs returned to the House of Commons on September 25.

Now a more modest one week suspension is taking place so that the Queen’s speech can take place on the same date that it was originally planned.

Prorogation is a process by which Parliament stops sitting ahead of a state opening and Queen’s speech, when new government policy is outlined.

The current session formally began on June 21, 2017, following Theresa May’s snap general election.

When it is prorogued tonight, a total of 839 calendar days will have passed, making it the longest continuous parliamentary session since the UK was established by the Acts of Union in 1800.

Parliament is typically suspended once a year, but in 2017 the government said the session would last for two years to pass legislation in order to deliver Brexit.

Almost two-and-a-half years later, the parliamentary session will end, with the UK still a member of the European Union.

The previous record-holder for the longest session was that of 2010-12, which lasted 707 calendar days from the state opening on May 25, 2010, to prorogation on May 1, 2012.

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