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State Opening of Parliament delayed by Great Fire of London

On Sunday 2 September 1666 a fire at Thomas Farriner's bakery in Pudding Lane, London, got out of control and led to four days of unprecedented destruction in the City of London.

As fires raged, King Charles II ordered that Westminster and his Whitehall Palace should be saved. Parliament had not been in session since April. Pictured above is the Manuscript Journal of the House of Commons dating from a few weeks after the fire. It includes a message from the King stating that the State Opening of Parliament will not take place until later in the month due to the ‘late calamity by fire'.


House of Commons Journal: Message from King Charles II to the House delaying the State Opening of Parliament due to the fire


18 September 1666

Catalogue number

Parliamentary Archives, HC/CL/JO/1/63