Attend debates

Prime Minister's Questions July 2016 © UK Parliament/Jessica Taylor

UK residents and overseas visitors are welcome to watch debates in both Houses by visiting the public galleries. There is no charge to watch debates, which can be on current issues or proposed new laws.

The galleries are open to the public from Monday to Thursday and occasionally on Fridays, when the Houses are sitting. Times differ for each House. The galleries are not open at the weekends and during parliamentary recesses.

Visitors wishing to watch debates should enter via the Cromwell Green entrance.

Debates in the Commons Chamber

For Prime Minister's Question Time (PMQs) in the Commons, tickets are necessary to gain entrance. Tickets are issued to UK residents only by arrangement through their Member of Parliament or a Member of the House of Lords and there is no charge.

Overseas visitors and UK residents can gain access to PMQs without a ticket if there is space in the gallery. There may be a 1 to 2 hour wait with no guarantee of seeing PMQs although entry to the debates after PMQs is likely.

Tickets are not required for other debates. At busy times, queues can be long and visitors should expect a wait of around 30 to 40 minutes.

Commons debates in Westminster Hall

House of Commons debates also take place in the Grand Committee Room just off Westminster Hall. These are known as Westminster Hall debates and visitors are welcome to attend.

Debates in the Lords Chamber

Image: Prime Minister's Questions 20 July 2016 © UK Parliament/Jessica Taylor


Sitting times

House of Commons - main Chamber

  • Monday: 2.30pm-10.30pm
  • Tuesday: 11.30am-7.30pm
  • Wednesday: 11.30am-7.30pm
  • Thursday: 9.30am-5.30pm
  • Sitting Friday: 9.30am-3.00pm

Westminster Hall

  • Monday (if sitting): 4.30pm-7.30pm
  • Tuesday: 9.30am-11.30am & 2.30pm-5.30pm
  • Wednesday: 9.30am-11.30am & 2.30pm-5.30pm
  • Thursday: 1.30pm-4.30pm

House of Lords

  • Monday: 2.30pm-10pm
  • Tuesday: 2.30pm-10pm
  • Wednesday: 3pm-10pm
  • Thursday: 11am-7.30pm
  • Sitting Friday: from 10am-close of business

NB: Please note that all finishing times are approximate. These times do not apply during recess, when neither House is sitting.

Related information

Question time

Find out more about Question Time and how Parliament works.

What's on

Find out what's going on in Parliament

Bills before Parliament

Browse a list of all Bills currently before Parliament and keep up to date with their progress. Also find amendment papers and other Bill documents, and sign up to an email alert or use our RSS feeds.

Watch Committees

Committees, made up of MPs or Lords, examine issues in detail such as new legislation or topics like the economy. Watch democracy in action by attending a public committee session.