Parliament’s Best Speeches

To mark the 750th anniversary of the first Parliament gathered by Simon de Montfort at the Palace of Westminster (now the Houses of Parliament) on 20 January 1265, the House of Commons, the House of Lords and the BBC have asked a panel of experts and MPs (note the distinction!) to say which they believe are the most important speeches that have been made in the two chambers.

Their top selection list is surprising more for its omissions than for the speeches included. No room for great orators such as Churchill or Disraeli. No room either for any of the speeches described by Anthony Trollope in his Political Novels so Phineas Finn, Plantagenet Palliser, Mr Daubeny et al are also sadly missing. And would Trollope himself have made the list had the result gone the other way in the Beverley by-election? We shall never know.


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