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Finding Official Publications

What is Hansard? Why might Hansard be useful?

Hansard is the official record of what has been said* in both Houses of Parliament. As such it carries a "substantially verbatim" report of proceedings. There are two separate sequences for the two houses. All bound volumes of Hansard are in the Research Reserve.

*Hansard also includes Written Answers, Written Ministerial Statements and the record of debates in Westminster Hall. 

House of Commons Official Report (Hansard) from 1988

House of Lords Official Report (Hansard) from 1995

Hansard 1803-2005
also in the House of Commons Parliamentary Papers which has much more detailed searching.

Reports of Debates of Public Bill Committees (previously known as Standing Committees)

These contain the record of the debates of Public Bill Committees of the House of Commons, which consider the  details of proposed amendments to a Bill.They are published as daily parts and later bound with an index.
Printed: per J 301.K2H31, 1975/76- in the Research Reserve
or online at

Note: the Lords’ equivalent of a Public Bill Committee is a “Committee of the Whole House”; these are reported in Lords Hansard.

The Hansard Corpus

The Hansard Corpus contains nearly every speech given in the British Parliament between 1803-2005.

You can search by speaker, look for the frequency of a word or phrase over time, investigate alterations in the usage and meaning of words and also limit and compare search terms by decade, house or party in power. Created as part of the SAMUELS project.


Journals of the Houses of Commons and Lords

These Journals report what was done in each House, rather than what was said, and are thus a more concise record than Hansard.

Journals of the House of Commons
Includes editions of the Commons Journal in web page format and associated PDFs from(1997 onwards) and scanned historic editions of the Commons Journals (1837 – 1997) in PDF only.

Journals of the House of Lords 1997-

Reports of Parliamentary debates pre-1803

Before Hansard started in 1803 there were several unofficial reports for example The Journals of All the Parliaments During the Reign of Queen Elizabeth / by Simonds d'Ewes which are available online via  the UK Parliament website,

A collection of the parliamentary debates in England, from the year M,DC,LXVIII. to the present time is available online via:

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