This week, we saw the State Opening of Parliament take place which marks the beginning of a new Parliamentary session.
This was the first time I had the of honour of taking part in the State Opening as your Member of Parliament.
It is a grand occasion with a lot of pomp, ceremony, and history, but at the heart of it, for the first time King Charles III set out the Government’s legislative agenda for the next Parliamentary session, which normally lasts for about a year. It is the only regular occasion on which all three of Parliament’s constituent elements – the Sovereign, the House of Lords, and the House of Commons – meet together.
The King’s Speech is written by the Government and provides them with an opportunity to outline their priorities. The next session of Parliament is almost certainly going to be the last before the general election, which must take place no later than January 28, 2025.
The speech outlined 21 different Bills which the Government hope to pass through Parliament in the weeks and months to come.
Some of the issues mentioned included investment in transport, laws to prevent children smoking, tougher sentences for serious offenders, football regulation and a focus on energy security.
A King’s Speech is also very much about what wasn’t mentioned as it is about what was. Personally, I would have liked to see more on dealing with the cost-of-living crisis, the housing crisis, mental health, the state of our rivers, and so much more.
I look forward to finding out the details of the announcements made this week and what they will mean for my constituents in Chester.
This week was also Parliament Week, an annual event that celebrates our Parliament and our democracy.
It is an opportunity for thousands of people up and down the county, including here in Chester, to learn more about what Parliament is, what it does, how you can get involved, and most importantly, how you can make a difference on the issues that matter to you. In fact, more than 1.4 million people are taking part this year in every corner of the country.
I know many schools and organisation across Chester are taking part this year. I’d like to thank them, and I hope they have enjoyed taking part. If you’d like to find out more about how you can get involved, please take a look here: https://www.ukparliamentweek.org/en/