In the United Kingdom, what is colloquial for House of Commons? Would you say a member addressed the House, addressed Commons, or would you also say he or she addressed the House of Commons?


Where it is obvious which house is being referenced you could just say the House - with a capital H.

Where distinction is necessary one normally sees the Commons - but remember it always takes the definite article.

You can of course give it its full moniker the House of Commons.

If you are needing to stress that something actually happened in the Chamber, as opposed to somewhere around the members' lobby, offices etc - you could say either in the Chamber or on the Floor of the House.

All of the above applies equally in the case of the House of Lords. Together they constitute Parliament.

  • Thank you. Would you capitalize "members." As in "The members walked to across the yard." (I've already used MPs elsewhere and want to change it up a bit.) – Bill Sep 11 '15 at 19:59
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    Given it is the House of Commons I think I would capitalise Members. If it was my local golf club, I wouldn't. Others may disagree. – WS2 Sep 11 '15 at 20:07
  • As you've mentioned crossing a yard, it's worth pointing out that 'crossing the House (of Commons)' has a particular symbolic meaning. You should only use that if someone is dramatically changing their political allegiance, not if they are simply walking across the Chamber. – JHCL Sep 12 '15 at 16:31
  • @JHCL It isn't a 'yard' which the members cross - it is the floor of the house. The Government and Opposition benches face one another. If someone 'crosses the floor' they transfer their allegiance from one to the other. In the Post-War Labour Government of 1945, one of their ministers was Sir Hartley Shawcross. So close to the Opposition did he begin to appear that he was dubbed Sir Shortly Floorcross by elements of the media. – WS2 Sep 12 '15 at 18:08
  • The "yard" was arbitrary. I didn't mean to allude to anything! – Bill Sep 12 '15 at 19:35

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