William Pitt the Younger speakingIn May 1803, after the crowds clamouring to hear Pitt speak on the Napoleonic wars forced reporters from their usual seats in the Commons Chamber, Speaker Abbot ruled that part of the Public Gallery in the Commons would be reserved in future for the Press.

Since then the Parliamentary Press Gallery has grown and now represents more than 300 newspaper, wire service, radio, television and internet journalists who work at Westminster.