Role of the Information Office

The House of Commons Information Office provides information about the House of Commons, its work, membership and history by dealing with enquiries. We can also help you find your MP and we also produce publications about Parliament.


The HCIO was set up in 1978 following a recommendation from the House of Commons Services Select Committee. Its Report of 20 July 1977, Services for the Public, stated that a small information office should be created to deal with enquiries from the public. On 1 June 1978 the Public Information Office was established and in April 1998 the office was renamed to the House of Commons Information Office.


A major function of the Office is to answer enquiries by telephone, email or letter. Enquiries put to the Office are wide-ranging and almost any aspect of the current work of the House of Commons and its committees, its membership, practices or traditions can be dealt with.

Similarly, the Office can deal with non-current or historical enquiries in all these fields. Unfortunately, we cannot undertake extended research on behalf of enquriers. 

The Information Office is open from: 

  • Monday to Friday from 9am-5pm
  • When Parliament is in session the office opens until 6pm between Monday and Thursday.

If you are unsure whether the Office can help, please telephone: if we cannot assist, we can try to refer you elsewhere.

If you require information about the implementation or interpretation of government policy, please contact the relevant Government Department.

Who is my MP?

We can advise you on who your MP is and can provide their contact details using our Find your MP service. To contact your MP, please ring the Houses of Parliament switchboard on 020 7219 3000 and ask for the MP by name.
Please note that enquiries about Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) should be directed to the European Parliament's Information Office on 020 7227 4300.

Image: iStockphoto

Find Your MP

Related information

Parliament is open to all UK residents. They can watch debates or book a tour of the Commons or Lords Chambers.

Related information

  • Telephone: 020 7219 4272
  • Email:
  • Text phone: dial 18001 followed by 020 7219 4272

The HCIO aims to answer promptly, courteously, accurately and efficiently all reference enquiries reaching the Office.

In 2010 the HCIO received

  • 39,879 phone calls, 83.4% of calls were answered within 20 seconds.
  • 8,628 emails
  • 191 written letters