Journal and Information Office
(Clerk of the Journals: Brendan Keith)
The Journal and Information Office: provides procedural
advice; maintains records on membership and business of the House;
compiles the Journals of the House (the authoritative record of
proceedings). It provides an enquiry service to the public, the
press and Members. The Information Office produces publications
about the role and work of the House, and manages contacts with
the press and media. It also supports the activities of the Parliamentary
The Office consists of two sections, each with its
own management structure:-
(a) the Journal Office/Registry provides
a research and record-keeping service and advises on present and
past procedural developments. It has 7 staff, including one based
in the Minute Room to produce the daily Minutes of Proceedings,
one part-time secretary and a gap-year student.
(b) the Information Office aims to promote a
better understanding and knowledge of the role and work of the
House. Its staff consist of the Information Officer and her assistant
and two persons who work primarily on the public telephone and
e-mail answering service. In order to deal with a significantly
increased number of requests for information, additional staff
were appointed and began work in June 2001.
3 Activities and Financial Performance
Several of the activities in 2000-01 are described
in the Review of the Year (paragraphs 49 to 52). Other activities
- publishing volume 231 of the Journals (session
1997-98, 1,380 pages).
- providing the Clerk for the Procedure Committee
and for the Group appointed by the Leader of the House to consider
the recommendations of the Committee on Standards in Public Life
on standards of conduct in the House of Lords.
- improving the Registry database.
- handling nearly 20,000 calls to the Enquiry Service.
The number of e-mails (5,287) more than doubled (2,522 in the
- dealing with a significant increased demand (124%)
for information packs. Approximately 2,500 were distributed, including
a circulation (jointly with the Commons' Information Office) to
all UK public libraries.
- conducting a user-survey of the Weekly Agenda
for select committees.
Net expenditure was £591,607 compared with £567,006
4 Future Activities
These will include:
- planning an event in Westminster Hall to celebrate
the Queen's Golden Jubilee in 2002.
- producing an illustrated staff directory for
- maintaining the register of hereditary peers
who wish to stand in any by-election for membership of the House
to be held under Standing Order 10.
- procedural and research work in connection with
any further reform of the House.
- developing further the House's public information
strategy, including an action plan for House communications (print
and electronic), based on the results of commissioned research.