Adjournment Debate

Concluding debate of the Parliamentary Day

In Short

A 30 minute debate at the end of the Parliamentary Day, and one of the few times backbenchers set the agenda for a Commons Chamber debate.

How are they allocated?

The Thursday debate topic is selected by the Speaker, the remaining days chosen by ballot. The backbencher tabling the debate and the relevant Minister will both speak. Topics are generally those of local or personal significance to the backbencher.

What happens?

The adjournment debate is proposed by a backbench MP, who opens the debate on the tabled issue. Other members may only speak with the permission of both the tabling MP, and the Minister responding. Opposition frontbenchers may not intervene or make speeches.

The debate is concluded by a speech from the Government Minister. No vote is taken at the conclusion of the debate.

Are they popular?

Occurring the end of the day and without a vote, adjournment debates are sparsely attended by MPs.

Further Resources

UK Parliament Glossary: Adjournment debates