MPs to begin taking their seats

19 May 2010

Following the election of the Speaker of the House of Commons MPs began swearing on 19 May.

The beginning of a new Parliament

Members of both Houses of Parliament are required by law to take an oath of allegiance to the Crown before they can take their seat in Parliament.

A solemn affirmation can be made instead if any MP or Member of the House of Lords objects to swearing an oath. This process is known as swearing in.

The Speaker from the previous Parliament, John Bercow, was re-elected, so the Commons met at 3.10pm on Wednesday 19 May and the Speaker-elect went with Black Rod to the Lords.

On returning from the Lords the Speaker took the oath of allegiance and MPs will began swearing in.

The initial period of swearing in lasts about two hours and most MPs are sworn in on the first day. 

The House will also meet for swearing in on Thursday 20 May and on Monday 24 May. The swearing in is televised and members of the public may watch from the public galleries.

Members of the House of Lords began swearing in for the new Parliament on Tuesday 18 May.

State Opening of Parliament

The House of Commons will meet on Tuesday 25 May for the State Opening of Parliament.

Image: Parliamentary copyright

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