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The State Opening of Parliament 

The UK general election took place on Thursday 4 July 2024. The new Parliament met on Tuesday 9 July 2024 for the election of the Speaker and swearing-in of MPs and Lords. The State Opening of Parliament and The King’s Speech will take place on Wednesday 17 July 2024.

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View the 2024 general election results.

About Deposited Papers

Deposited papers are documents that are placed in the Library of either House, usually by a government minister. They can be a convenient way for the government to make information available to members of parliament, without publishing it formally. 

They are, then, different to and separate from those parliamentary papers that are formally 'laid before Parliament'.

The original series of deposited papers began in 1832. Members of the public can view recent deposited papers online or obtain copies of most older papers by contacting the House of Commons and House of Lords Enquiry Services.

Deposited Papers procedure

Items are often deposited in the library in response to a specific request for the information from an MP or Member of the Lords. The request may be made through a parliamentary question or in the course of a debate.

Depositing material in this way means that specific information can be made available - not just to the MP who requested it, but to all Members - in a timely manner or without the need for formal publication. Since 2007 they have also been made available digitally to the wider public.

Who can deposit a paper?

Government ministers, the Speaker of the House of Commons, the Lord Speaker and MPs acting on behalf of bodies such as the Church Commissioners or the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, may do so. Backbenchers cannot deposit items in this way.

Guidelines for Government departments

The following guidelines explain how government departments can deposit papers in the Commons Library and Lords Library.

Types of Deposited Papers

The type of information in deposited papers can include:

  • tables of data
  • correspondence
  • research findings
  • diagrams or maps

Deposited papers are held in a joint series by the libraries of both Houses as a set and are numbered chronologically within each calendar year.

Items deposited in relation to a particular bill can be found on the relevant bill's publications page in Bills before Parliament.

Public access to Deposited Papers

Digital copies of deposited papers from 2007 onwards can be found in the online Deposited Papers database. This service also contains entry records of earlier deposits back to 1987.

Deposits received before 2007 are in hardcopy only and can be requested by contacting the Enquiry Service of the House the paper was deposited in, or either Enquiry Service if no House is specified. 

New deposits

If you are seeking a document that a minister has recently said they will deposit, but this is yet to be processed, please contact one of the Enquiry Services.

Deposited papers requested by members of the public or the media will only be released once the document has been published online.

Contact the House of Commons Enquiry Service

The House of Commons Enquiry Service provides information on the work, history and membership of the House of Commons.

  • Telephone: 0800 112 4272 (Freephone) or 020 7219 4272
  • Email: hcenquiries@parliament.uk
  • Text relay:  Dial 18001 followed by our full number

Our telephone enquiry service is open between 10am-12 midday and 2pm-4pm (Monday to Friday, excluding bank holidays).

Publications

The House of Commons Enquiry Service produces a series of free publications which you can read online, or contact us to request copies.

House of Commons on Twitter

Follow @HouseofCommons for updates on the UK House of Commons Chamber.

Lords Enquiry Service and FAQs

House of Lords FAQs

The Lords Enquiry Service provides information on the role, work and membership of the House of Lords.

  • Telephone: 0800 223 0855 (Freephone) or 020 7219 3107
  • Email: hlinfo@parliament.uk
  • Text Relay: 18001 7219 3107

The telephone enquiry service is open from 10am - 5pm Monday to Thursday, and 10am - 4pm on Fridays. During recess, the hours are 10am - 1pm and 2pm - 4pm Monday to Friday.