Preview: Parliament Week

Parliament Week is next week, so we’re putting out an alert for all news nerds. The official reason is to “raise awareness of Parliament’s role and encourage people of all ages to engage with the UK’s democratic system and its institutions” but frankly, that sounds incredibly tedious and doesn’t reflect some of the interesting stuff going on.

Charles Dickens’s greatx3 granddaughter Lucinda Hawksley is one of the speakers at Hansard’s event exploring Dickens’s time as a Parliamentary reporter (probably where he got the idea for all his villains, eh? Is probably not what they’ll be talking about). Other speakers at this free talk on 21 November are Guardian Political Correspondent Andrew Sparrow, Dr Caroline Shelton and Professor John Drew.

The Cartoon Museum has an exhibition of political cartoons on 22 November (£5 / £4), including a massive drawing of Robert Walpole’s backside and a talk by Kenneth (now Lord) Baker about the real politicians behind the satire.

If you’re up for building something out of data you should join the second Parliament Hack organised by Rewired State. There’ll be a tour of the Houses of Parliament (hopefully, they say, with stuff not on the usual tours) then it’s a development free-for-all. Take a sleeping bag if you want to stay overnight.

Parliament Week runs 19-25 November at various venues around London and the UK. Check out the website for more information.

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