Select Committee on Administration First Report

5  The Longer Term

35. In this report we recommend to the House new entry arrangements for visitors. In endorsing such plans for the short- to medium-term, we recognise that our solution is only an initial and partial one. We believe our proposal would provide better access for visitors; specific facilities for their reception, searching and welcome; and allow the provision of information on Parliament's work and its buildings.

36. Yet, within the limitations of the historic building, and without undue disruption of current users, we cannot identify a space that would offer other facilities that we judge desirable:

·  an exhibition space explaining the work and role of Parliament;

·  accommodation for school parties and their reception;

·  a bookshop/retail facility;

·  a ticket office for tours of Parliament;

·  a display area for pictures and artefacts from Parliament's collection;

These facilities await a fuller study, and a further report.

37. We believe that, in the meantime, the House, in association with the House of Lords, needs to move ahead with constructing the proposed building and the new access route for the public. This would result in significant improvements in the facilities for visitors and enhance the security of the Palace of Westminster.

38. Our visitors are the electors of the present and the future, or those who come from abroad to visit one of the most important and historic sites in the United Kingdom. They deserve a positive approach to their access and welcome. With our proposals, we believe we have begun to demonstrate such a policy, which we hope the House will endorse.

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