Lindsay Hoyle hits back at Parliament’s demands to close bars ‘We’re working strange hours!’ | Politics | News


The Speaker of the House of Commons has rejected calls for bars to close in Parliament after a series of liquor scandals on the Westminster estate. There have been increased calls for a cultural overhaul at Westminster.

Last month, Mr Wallace said MPs should ‘avoid bars’ on parliamentary property.

He said alcohol after long hours in high-pressure work could be a “toxic” mixture.

The Minister said: ‘My advice to any MP is actually to avoid bars – finish a day’s work and go home.’

But hitting back, Sir Lindsay pointed to the fact that the armed forces have bars on their premises.

READ MORE: PMQ farce as Sir Lindsay Hoyle warned to become like John Bercow

Several MPs have even been suspended from using the facilities because of their behavior.

Sir Lindsay admitted there was a need for ‘responsible drinking’ in Parliament, but he would not be closing bars on the estate.

He said: “We’re working strange hours, we’re working in a strange place, people are away from home and so it’s not a normal place to work, the same way you might say if you are in the army forces of course you also have bars on the camp.

“MPs are bringing visitors maybe from abroad and from their constituencies and so they will take them to the terrace for a drink.

“And I think it’s about social drinking, responsible drinking and I think everyone will find that acceptable.”

He added ‘I can’t ban people from all pubs in London’ as he pointed out that the Houses of Parliament is just 100 yards from a pub on the corner of Westminster.

In 2018, Parliament’s sports and social bar was renamed The Woolsack in a bid to improve its image.

It came after a House of Commons staff member was arrested for freezing a man in the face during a furious brawl at the establishment in 2017.


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