The Chair and Executive Committee of the BGIPU invited members of the House of Commons and the House of Lords to attend a diplomatic reception in Speaker’s House on 25 June 2019 to celebrate the 130th anniversary of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU). Members of the Diplomatic Corps and key stakeholders in UK Parliament were also invited along with a visiting delegation from the Italian Parliament (Italy was one of the nine original member countries of the IPU along with Great Britain and France who were its founders).

The Chair of the BGIPU, Rt Hon John Whittingdale OBE MP welcomed guests with a tribute to the legacy of the IPU’s UK co-founder, Sir William Randall Cremer MP, and remarks on how the IPU’s work remained as relevant today as when it was first founded on 30 June 1889.

This was followed by remarks from the Speaker of the House of Commons, Rt Hon John Bercow MP, on the value of the IPU’s work and his engagement with the BGIPU over the years as a member and, later, in his capacity as Honorary President of the Group as Speaker.

The Leader of the Opposition, Rt Hon Jeremy Corbyn MP, closed the formal remarks with a recollection of his very active engagement in the BGIPU Executive Committee in previous years when he had attended IPU Assemblies and led bilateral delegations, highlighting the importance of inter-parliamentary dialogue and cooperation in the uncertain times we face across the globe.