Parliament nursery

First nursery to be opened at Parliament  

The Commission has agreed to open a nursery on the parliamentary estate to care for the children of MPs and staff.

Nursery facilities - to be sited in 1 Parliament Street, in premises currently housing Bellamy's bar and the Astor Suite - will open in the early months of the new Parliament following the general election. It will cater for up to 40 children.

The service will be paid for by users who could also include members and staff of the House of Lords and other pass holders such as police officers working at the Palace of Westminster. Conversion work will be carried out by the House of Commons authorities within existing budgets.

The decision is a central element of the Commission's agenda to promote wider diversity in Parliament and better meet the needs of MPs and staff with caring responsibilities.

Speaker John Bercow said; "Our Parliament has sadly been behind the times in providing practical support to parents who work here. If Parliament is to be truly representative of the community it serves then it must do more to encourage parents to stand as MPs.

"Many other Parliaments around the world provide nursery facilities for members and staff. It is time one of the oldest Parliaments in the world caught up with the rest. I am delighted that the Commission has taken this historic decision."