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Tynwald and UCM to host joint symposium marking House of Keys milestone

Tynwald and University College Isle of Man have joined forces to host a symposium on Saturday April 1 to mark the 150th anniversary of the first popularly elected House of Keys.

‘House of Keys: Power, Parliament and the People’ will bring together eminent Manx history experts to examine the social and economic context of Manx democratic reform in the 18th and 19th centuries.

The programme will begin at 10.15am with a welcome from the President of Tynwald, the Hon Steve Rodan MLC followed by presentations from guest speakers Dr Kit Gawne, Dr Robert Fyson, Dr Mike Hoy MBE, Mike J Southall MBE, William Cain CBE TH and Professor Peter Edge. 

The talks, followed by question and answer sessions, will be filmed and the morning will conclude with a tour of the Chambers led by Mr President and the Speaker of the House of Keys, the Hon Juan Watterson SHK.

The afternoon programme will focus on the Island’s legislative and constitutional history past and present, after which Mr Speaker will bring the symposium to a close at approximately 4pm.

Mr President said: ‘1867 was a date of pivotal significance in the advancement of Manx parliamentary democracy. This one-day symposium on April 1st will chart the fascinating progress of events that led to democratic reform in the Isle of Man and will provide an opportunity to recognise and celebrate those individuals who helped to bring about social change and shape the Tynwald of today.

‘Thanks to the distinguished speakers who have generously agreed to take part I am sure “House of Keys: Power, Parliament and the People” will prove to be a most edifying occasion.’

‘House of Keys: Power, Parliament and the People’ is a free event. Spaces are, however, limited. To register online for a place visit and search ‘House of Keys’.

Supplementing the symposium and building on the success of Tynwald’s participation in Manx National Heritage’s open day programme, two tours of the Chambers will be run on Saturday April 1: at 11am and 2pm. Tours are free but spaces are limited. To register online visit and search ‘House of Keys’.

For more information visit or contact the Tynwald Library, 685520,



For further information contact:

Jonathan King
Deputy Clerk of Tynwald
Legislative Buildings
Tel: 01624 686303


Published - 09/03/2017