Alan Duncan – 2019 Tribute to the Speaker of the House of Commons

Below is the text of the speech made by Alan Duncan, the Conservative MP for Rutland and Melton, in the House of Commons on 31 October 2019.

Mr Speaker, may I echo the heartfelt comments that have been made about you from so many quarters over the past few days? May I do so by way of two confessions, which I have been needing to get off my chest? The first is that I was at a primary school—it is always there that you get the difficult questions—and I was asked, “What is the rudest thing that anyone has ever said to you in politics?” I thought for a bit and said, “Do you know what, it is when someone came up to me in the street and said, ‘Good morning, Mr Bercow.’” I hope that you will forgive me for that. The second confession is rather worse. I may well burn in the fiery flames of hell for ever having done this. I am known occasionally in the Tea Room to have referred to you as Mr Speaker Hobbit. I hope that you will forgive me this affectionate teasing and, in paying my own tribute to you, it gives me pleasure that my last words in this House are to wish you the best for the future.

Mr Speaker

I gently point out that a hobbit is a friendly creature.