Display of articles to illustrate speeches

21.29The rules of the House of Commons forbid bringing certain articles, notably weapons, into the Chamber.1 Members have been permitted to display articles (but not weapons)2 to illustrate an argument in a speech,3 but the Speaker has said that all Members should be sufficiently articulate to express what they want to say without diagrams4 and the same principle applies to articles. It is relevant that an article or diagram cannot be effectively recorded in the Official Report.

Footnotes

  1. See HC Deb (1951–52) 498, cc 2749–52; ibid (1981–82) 15, c 170; ibid (1991–92) 199, cc 23–24; ibid (1992–93) 220, cc 295–96.
  2. HC Deb (1995–96) 270, c 592. A Member has displayed a firearm to illustrate a question to witnesses during a public meeting of a select committee, see Home Affairs Committee, Second Report of Session 1999–2000, Controls over Firearms, HC 95, Ev Q 313.
  3. See HC Deb (1951–52) 517, c 1963; ibid (1969–70) 792, c 1193; ibid (1971–72) 842, cc 563–64; ibid (1983–84) 54, c 1020; ibid (26 January 2009) 487, cc 18–19.
  4. HC Deb (1994–95) 251, c 22; ibid (11 January 2007) 455, c 485; ibid (8 December 2011) 537, c 389; Public Bill Committee, Groceries Code Adjudicator Bill, 13 December 2012, c 93.