Westminster Hall debates
On Tuesdays and Wednesdays there are two one and a half hour debates and three half hour debates. The longer debates are intended for broader subjects where a number of MPs will want to speak. The shorter debates may focus on an issue that an MP may want to raise about their constituency.
Two ballots are held on the Wednesday of the previous week for each type of debate; MPs may enter into both ballots but can only be successful in one.
Each government department responds to the debates every other week according to a rota.
The Chair is taken by a member of the Panel of Chairs, with the same duties and powers conferred on Deputy Speakers.
Westminster Hall debates: 7 March 2012
Five debates were held in Westminster Hall. Watch and read the views expressed by MPs during the debates via the links to Parliament TV and Commons Hansard. Also, find more information about current parliamentary material in the Topics section on the Parliament website.
9.30-11.00am Fire service in metropolitan areas
Yasmin Qureshi, Labour MP for Bolton South East, moved a debate on the funding of the fire service in metropolitan areas which received an answer from the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Robert Neill.
11.00-11.30am DVLA closures in Scotland
Frank Doran, Labour MP for Aberdeen North, moved a debate on the effect of Driver Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) closure in Scotland which received an answer from the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport, Mike Penning.
2.30-4.00pm Veterans' mental health
Julian Sturdy, Conservative MP for Outer York, moved a debate on raising awareness of veterans' mental health which received an answer from the Minister of State for Health, Simon Burns.
4.00-4.30pm Export of Typhoon aircraft
Mark Menzies, Conservative MP for Fylde, moved a debate on support for export of Typhoon aircraft which received an answer from the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Defence, Gerald Howarth.
4.30-5.00pm Syria and Lebanon
Andrew Love, Labour/Co-operative MP for Edmonton, moved a debate on the effect of the situation in Syria on Lebanon which received an answer from the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foriegn and Commonwealth Affairs, Henry Bellingham.
Westminster Hall debates
Westminster Hall adjournment debates allow MPs to discuss issues of local or personal interest which rarely have time to be debated in the main Chamber of the House of Commons. MPs can discuss a variety of issues and receive a response from a government Minister.