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Parliament visit whets pupils’ political appetite

Fourteen fourth year and sixth form pupils travelled to London to visit the Houses of Parliament and the Supreme Court with the aim of developing their understanding and interest in Law, Politics and International Relations.

After an early start, the first stop saw the group meet Marcus Natale, Parliamentary Assistant to Mary Robinson MP. In Westminster Hall he gave the pupils a brief insight into his role supporting Mary in her work; both in London and Cheadle. The pupils then embarked on a tour of the Palace of Westminster, taking up positions in the Commons benches and replicating the archaic voting process followed in the Division Lobby.

In the Supreme Court the pupils were put in the position of the Justices (literally!) and asked to consider the decisions they would have made in a number of recent topical cases. Both during the tour of the courtrooms and in the interactive exhibition, the pupils gained the opportunity to learn more about the role of the Supreme Court and the issues that led to its creation; such as the fusion of powers, judicial independence and neutrality, representation and impartiality.

In between, our enterprising cohort managed to secure important information from the BBC’s Political Editor, Laura Kuenssberg, which led to us spotting the Chief Whip, Gavin Williamson MP, and other prominent Tories en route to 10 Downing Street for a crucial meeting ahead of Theresa May’s appointment with the 1922 Committee; which also saw the group make it onto the evening’s news!

The pupils engaged very positively throughout the productive and enjoyable day, visiting important national sites at a hugely pertinent time.