Got a TV Licence?

You need one to watch live TV on any channel or device, and BBC programmes on iPlayer. It’s the law.

Find out more
I don’t have a TV Licence.

Summary

  1. The State Opening of Parliament has taken place.
  2. This marks the formal start of the parliamentary year.
  3. The debate on the address took place from 2.30pm, when MPs discussed the government's proposals for the next session of Parliament.
  4. The Lords also debated the proposals in the Queen's Speech and the proposed legislation.
  5. The debate continues over several days, looking at different subject areas. The Queen's Speech is voted on by the Commons, but no vote is taken in the Lords.

Live Reporting

By Kate Whannel and Patrick Cowling

All times stated are UK

Get involved

What's in the Queen's speech?
The Prime Minister, David Cameron, told Members of Parliament on Wednesday that the Queen's Speech "combines economic security with extending life chances for all."

House adjourns

House of Commons

Parliament

The minister brings his remarks to a close and the House adjourns for the evening.

MPs will return at 9.30am tomorrow morning for the business statement from the Leader of the House followed by further debate on the Queen's Speech.

Until then, good night. 

'Striking a balance'

Adjournment debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Transport Minister Andrew Jones responds to the debate and says that the government recognises that noise is "a major environmental concern around airports" and also realises there are "issues of trust" between local communities and the aviation industry.

He says that the creation of an independent noise body was recommended by the commission on airport expansion in the south east and says such a body "could indeed help to facilitate a strengthening of relationships between airports and communities".

Mr Jones says that such a body would however have to strike "the right balance between community concerns and the legitimate needs of industry". 

He says the government will "carefully consider the arguments before making a decision".

Andrew Jones
BBC

Background to the debate

Adjournment debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Edinburgh Airport ran a trial of a new flight path from 25 June until 28 October 2015.

Edinburgh Airport has said its trial of a new flight path was a success, despite receiving complaints from residents.

Ms Bardell says that it is "unacceptable" that UK airports outside of Gatwick, Heathrow and Stanstead are able to set their own noise levels and flight paths.

Adjournment debate

House of Commons

Parliament

After Sammy Wilson's speech a government whip moves to adjourn the debate on the Queen's Speech until tomorrow.

With that Hannah Bardell of the SNP is leading the day's adjournment debate on the establishment of an independent aviation noise association due to noise complaints relating to Edinburgh airport.

Prison reforms require 'considerable expenditure'

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

The DUP's Sammy Wilson joins the ranks of Eurosceptics speaking in the debate and lambasts SNP members for bemoaning the lack of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland focused legislation, because "those powers have been devolved to the devolved administrations".

He also says of Labour MPs that their opposition to the loss of industry in the UK is "largely down to the EU".

On the issue of prison reform, Mr Wilson says the government have a "commendable aim" of helping those in prison but says the reforms talked about "will not be without considerable expenditure".

Sammy Wilson
bc

'A failed opportunity'

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Patrick Grady
BBC

Patrick Grady, the SNP MP for Glasgow North, congratulates two powerful women for taking a leading role in the constitutional future of the UK - but reveals at the last moment each time that he is not talking about the Queen. The first he mentions is Nicola Sturgeon in Scotland and the second is Leanne Wood in Wales.

Mr Grady does however congratulate the Queen for making "the shortest speech of the day".

He says that the speech was a "failed opportunity on so many levels" and proceeds to list many of them as he sees it, including on the intention to renew trident and on the proposed repeal of the Human Rights Act.

'Human rights not negotiable'

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

SNP member Deidre Brock says that the longer she spends in the chamber the longer she regrets Scotland's decision not to withdraw from the UK in 2014, and the more she worries about the "kind of shambles we might be tossed into if we are ripped out of the European Union in June".

Speaking about the proposed plans to repeal the Human Rights Act, Ms Brock says "human rights aren't always convenient for governments - bu they are not meant to be".

The MP for Edinburgh North and Leith says that MPs on the Conservative benches who think the human rights of prisoners and terrorists are too often protected are wrong because "unless the human rights of terrorists and criminals, of the weak and of the outsiders are protected - then no ones are".

"Human rights are not negotiable and they cannot be given to one human and not to another" she says.

Deidre Brock
BBC

'Vested interests' in EU debate

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Stewart Jackson
BBC

Stewart Jackson, the Conservative MP for Peterborough, gives a relatively brief speech on the EU referendum in which he warns Labour voters of the "vested interests" who want the UK to remain, arguing that they want "unlimited immigration to push down wages and reduce working conditions in this country".

Mr Jackson who admitted earlier in the debate that he has had a conversion to supporting reform of the House of Lords says that the current set up is "unacceptable in a modern mature democracy".

He also says that he is pleased with the government's reversal on compulsory academisation of schools, and praises the education secretary for listening to the misgivings of members.

'Less ceremony' in the state opening

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Labour MP David Winnick says that he hopes he will not be considered a radical by saying that he does not see why we cannot "somewhat reduce the ceremonial aspect of the state opening of parliament".

He says that his comments are not meant to be any form of disrespect to the Queen.

He joins other MPs in paying his respects to deceased Labour members Michael Meacher and Harry Harpham, saying about Michael Meacher that although people often accuse parliamentarians of changing with the times "there was no change in Michael Meacher".

In a wide ranging speech, Mr Winnick talks about the Conservative campaign in London which he calls "a disgraceful campaign".

New apps for Worcester

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

The Conservative MP for Worcester Robin Walker is dedicating a good part of his speech to the issue of transport, especially in his constituency.

He says that for it to take two and a half hours to get to London from his constituency is "an absurdity" and also tells MPs he would like to see similar real-time bus checking apps that are available in London to be available in Worcester.

'The traditional Plaid Cymru response'

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Plaid Cymru MP Hywel Williams says that the speech was "pretty thin fare" and says that he suspects "the prime minister and his friends might be preoccupied with something else".

Mr Williams says that he does not wish to disappoint the Welsh media and especially the BBC and so says he will repeat the traditional Plaid Cymru response to the Queen's Speech: "a bit of a slap in the face for Wales and not a lot in it for Wales".

He says that prison reforms do not address women prisoners in Wales and also points to the lack of any real increases in powers for the National Assembly for Wales.

Hywel Williams
BBC

A helping hand

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Sir David Amess
BBC

Sir David Amess is caught by a coughing fit mid-speech and is saved by his colleagues Robin Walker and Stewart Jackson who intervene in his speech while he receives a glass of water.

Sir David tells MPs they will be "disappointed to hear I wasn't about to choke - I have hay fever which I was told 50 years ago I would grow out of".

UK 'fortunate to have a monarchy'

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

The MP for Southend West Sir David Amess says that the Queen's Speech today shows "just how fortunate we are to have a monarchy rather than a presidency", saying that the Queen is above party politics "and we should celebrate the fact".

He also says that the state opening of parliament demonstrates "how hard fought our democracy is" and says it is therefore a shame that there is a low turnout in so many elections.

On the hot topic of prison reform, Sir David says that Conservatives are often accused of having a "hanging and flogging" attitude to punishing criminals.

He says that he is keen to see reform because "to send people to prison to learn more crime or to fuel drug addictions is crazy".

The Queen

The Queen unveils planned new laws including a shake-up of prisons in England and Wales and plans for driverless cars and a spaceport - but a British Bill of Rights is put on hold.

Read more

Defending western values

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

The Democratic Unionist Party's Westminster leader Nigel Dodds says that at "one of the most dangerous times in our history" he is pleased to see the government committed to meeting Nato defence spending targets of at least 2% of GDP.

Mr Dodds warns that "if we don't step up to the plate then we will fall further and further behind in protecting our citizens".

Picking up the anti-EU argument that several members have pushed this afternoon, Mr Dodds argues that many nations who "extol European integration" are often those who "fall down" when it comes to the defence of western values.

Nigel Dodds
BBC

Industrial disputes

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Conservative Sir Peter Bottomley begins his remarks by thanking Sir Brendan Barber and the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas) for their role in arbitrating an agreement between junior doctors and the government.

He says that he believes the new deal is "good and better for doctors, and good and better for patients".

The MP for Worthing West also speaks about current industrial disputes on Southern Rail - saying that he does not believe that strike action is justified as people who earn "far less than railway workers" are dependent on the service.

Sir Peter Bottomley
BBC

Farron: Speech should have 'looked to the future'

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Tim Farron
BBC

Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron is now speaking in the debate on the Queen's Speech.

Mr Farron says that he is "most excited" to learn that the modern transport bill will enable the development of the UK's first commercial space port - which he says will allow Conservative MP John Redwood "to go home more often".

He says that the prime minister's speech began with a false statement - arguing "there is no growing economy".

The Lib Dem leader says that instead of just looking at the difficult decision directly in front of them "ministers should have been looking to the future".

He calls the announcement "a speech devoid of vision".

'The four Es of the enterprising economy'

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Conservative David Rutley notes that life chances featured "very prominently" in the Queen's Speech.

He says he wants to ensure that more young people achieve "the four Es of the enterprising economy: entrepreneurs, employers, exporters and employees".

He continues by saying that he wants to help people achieve ambitions that have never before been achieved in their family.

David Rutley
HOC

'A comical and outrageous spectacle'

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Discussion turns to reform of the House of Lords as David Hanson refers to the election of a new Liberal Democrat hereditary peer.

Lib Dem leader Tim Farron agrees that the vote was "a comical and outrageous spectacle" but notes that Labour failed to back Lib Dem reform proposals in the last government.

Conservative Stewart Jackson chips in to tell MPs that he is "speeding on the road to Damascus" and that his worst vote in the last Parliament was to oppose Lords reform.

Stewart Jackson
HOC

Questions on prison reform

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Labour MP David Hanson is particularly interested in the proposals for prison reform and has a number of questions.

He wants to know if prison governors will have autonomy over staff pay, procurement, education and employment practices.

He also wants to know how governors will be monitored and judged. 

The key thing, he suggests, is to deal with prisoners' drug problems and help them into employment when they leave prison.

David Hanson
HOC
The Queen’s Speech: What next?
The Queen has set out the government's agenda for the year ahead at the State Opening of Parliament - Eleanor Garnier examines the key announcements.

Demented moths and dead horses

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Edward Garnier tells MPs that his life has enough excitement without getting apoplectic about the British Bill of Rights, but he does have concerns.

He likens the bill to a demented moth knocking around a lampshade and urges the government not to waste energy on reviving "this dead horse".

He acknowledges that the Strasbourg Court "can be rather annoying" but says the application of the law is to protect the interest of the people.

Edward Garnier
HOL

Remembering past efforts

BBC's political correspondent tweets

Speech 'short on detail'

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Meg Hillier
BBC

Labour MP Meg Hillier rises to say that she was not intending to speak about the EU but feels "goaded" by the comments of Mr Chope.

She says that studies have found that the net cost to the UK of EU membership "is the equivalent of 1.4% of total UK governmental department spending".

She says this is a "small price to pay for the benefits of being part of a wider community and the peace and security that brings".

Speaking about the Queen's Speech as a whole, she says "it is rather short on detail" and raises concerns about plans for devolved local mayors, building "the right kind" of houses, and on plans for prison reform.

Peers adjourn

House of Lords

Parliament

Baroness Stowell
HOL

Baroness Stowell continues by telling peers that their scrutiny improves every bill.

However, she warns members to be mindful of their limits and says the elected house must have the final say.

She concludes her speech by identifying three aims of the government: To secure the economy, to strengthen national defences and increasing opportunity for the most disadvantaged.

And with that debate is adjourned until tomorrow when peers will focus on business, culture, education, health and welfare. 

EU issues raised

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Tory backbench regular and arch-eurosceptic Christopher Chope is now using his time in the debate to discuss the upcoming referendum on the UK's membership of the European Union.

Mr Chope welcomes the SNP's call for home rule and says that the logical extension of that argument is for them to vote in favour of leaving the EU in the referendum.

Speaking about the remain campaign's "propaganda" claims and "scare-mongering", he says that if the prime minister believed that such "doom and gloom" would ensue from leaving the EU then why did he ever countenance leaving it under any circumstances.

Christopher Chope
BBC
A prison van heads into Wandsworth Prison, South London

New powers for prison governors to control budgets, services and the prison's regime are welcomed.

Read more

A crack team of doffing nobles

Humble Address

House of Lords

Parliament

Baroness Stowell
HOL

Leader of the House Baroness Stowell begins her speech by thanking the staff for making the state opening "a resounding success".

She suggests this would also be the verdict of last week's prorogation ceremony - "with its Norman French, about turns and synchronised doffing by a crack team of noble lords".

She says that doffing is not as easy as it looks and quotes the "glowing reviews" from TV commentators - "The best doffing we've seen in years, superb doffing and we've never seen doffing like this before."

However she is less keen on this comment from one description of prorogation: "All the camp of Eurovision with none of the songs."  

A 'ludicrous' situation

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

On defence, Mr Robertson says the UK has "suffered a squeeze" in many respects in conventional military capabilities in recent years.

He says that this includes the end of flying operations in two out of Scotland's three air bases.

"Crucial capability gaps have been exposed," he says, and goes on to say that the fact that there is now "not a single maritime patrol aircraft" operating in the UK "is ludicrous" for a maritime state. 

The primacy of the Commons

Humble address

House of Lords

Parliament

Lib Dem Leader in the House of Lords, Lord Wallace of Tankerness, welcomes the speech's mention of "the primacy of the Commons".

However he warns peers against confusing the issue of the primacy of the Commons with the issue of the legislature holding the executive to account.

This, he argues, is particularly important given the government was elected with less than 37% of the vote and a 50% turnout. 

Lord Wallace of Tankerness
HOL

An alternative view

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Angus Robertson
BBC

Angus Robertson says that the SNP are the only opposition party that has "bothered to produce an alternative" to the government's Queen Speech.

"It is the role of oppositions to hold the government to account but also to offer alternatives," he says.

Speaking about the government's priorities being described by the prime minister as "one nation", Mr Robertson says "we know which one nation the prime minister means".

Mr Robertson reiterated SNP issues and policies including reform of the House of Lords, the government accepting no SNP amendments to the Scotland Bill, and on reforming the voting system from first-past-the-post to proportional representation.

Buses or rockets?

House of Lords

Parliament

On the government's promise to improve broadband speeds, Baroness Smith tells peers that "there is no point promising broadband for all homes if many people haven't got one".

Concerning the government plans to establish a spaceport in Cornwall she suggests that most people would prefer "more buses than a rocket".

Turning to the government's altered plans to force schools to convert to academies, the Baroness praises the U-turn as "a handbrake turn any boy racer would be proud of".

A chance to leave

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

The prime minister takes his seat after commending the Queen's speech to the House and the SNP Westminster leader Angus Robertson is called upon to speak.

With the two main frontbenchers finished, many MPs take this opportunity to leave the chamber - prompting SNP members to say "stay and you might learn something" and "pathetic".

SNP MP Pete Wishart is heard to call "bye Tories" several times at the departing MPs from the government benches.

Exodus
BBC

Trident vote promised

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

One of the last issues addressed by David Cameron is that of Trident renewal to which he says that to disarm unilaterally would be "an act of supreme naivety" .

"It would be the ultimate false economy - an act of weakness not of wisdom," Mr Cameron says.

The prime minister promises a vote on the issue of Trident renewal in the House.

'Is there plan B?'

Humble address

House of Lords

Parliament

Shadow Leader of the House Baroness Smith of Basildon also dwells on the EU referendum.

In the event of a Brexit she asks "Is there a plan B or will the government carry on regardless?"

She notes that this Queen's Speech has been an attempt to implement the prime minister's "life chances strategy".

She tells peers that such aspirations need to be resourced  - "Just saying so doesn't make it happen".

Baroness Smith
HOL

'More with less'

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Green MP Caroline Lucas intervenes during the prime minister's speech regarding prison reform to ask how the government can be in favour of prison reform when "prison budgets have been slashed by a third since 2010 at exactly the same time as prison populations have increased".

David Cameron replies "we need to get away from the idea that you can only measure progress in public services by the amount you spend".

"The whole aim here is to try and do more with less," he says.

Caroline Lucas
BBC

Brexits and bad hair days

House of Lords

Parliament

Turning to referendums, Baroness Goldie tells peers that, in her experience, such votes have three certainties: "division, distraction and result".

She accuses the SNP of not respecting the result of the Scottish independence referendum. She says:"One thing after another can be a trigger for a second referendum - from a UK Brexit to having a bad hair day or the First Minister losing a stiletto heel."

Baroness Goldie
HOL

'A one nation Conservative government'

Queen's Speech debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Mr Cameron speaks about the issues covered by the Queen's Speech, including on prison reforms, apprenticeships, school reforms, and the NHS.

"These are the choices of a progressive one nation Conservative government," he says.

Gin, Dubonnet and corgis

House of Lords

Parliament

The Queen
AFP/ Getty Images
The Queen with her corgis

The seconder is Baroness Goldie - former leader of Scottish Conservatives. 

She begins her speech by proposing a new health policy based on the example set by the Queen.

Firstly she say all in-patients should be prescribed a lunchtime gin and Dubonnet.

Secondly they should be presented with a corgi on discharge.

She argues that this would encourage exercise, increase socialisation and add to general well-being.