Westminster ‘should be tourist attraction’, MP says

The SNP's Pete Wishart suggested Parliament should relocate to a '21st century' building.

Westminster: Refurbishment could cost £13bn.
Westminster: Refurbishment could cost £13bn.

The Palace of Westminster should be converted into a tourist attraction, according to an SNP MP.

Pete Wishart made the suggestion as the Commons heard arguments for relocating Parliament away from the palace.

He told MPs: “I have a very elegant solution for the difficulties and travails of this House.

“And that is to consider to make this beautiful building a tourist attraction for people from all around the world.

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“There are immense development opportunities in this Unesco heritage building.

“Let’s design and create a Parliament for the 21st century.

“One that would be useful for 21st century parliamentarians, not try and shoehorn all this activity into a mock-Gothic Victorian tourist attraction.”

He added it was no surprise that estimates for the costs of the refurbishment project had reached in the region of £13bn.

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Mr Wishart said the condition of the building was some sort of “sad metaphor for Brexitised Britain, dilapidated, falling to bits around our ears, generally unloved and in need of a lot of attention and support”.

He also voiced his support for electronic voting and called for an end to the “useless tradition that actively eats into our productivity as MPs”.

An amendment tabled by the SNP calling for the Government to examine relocating Parliament was supported by 47 MPs including members of Labour and the Conservatives and Lib Dem leader Sir Vince Cable.


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