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Speaker's chair toilet idea raised after marathon nine-hour sitting

Speaker John Bercow's bladder were raised after he chaired key Commons debates for more than nine hours

Speaker John Bercow's bladder were raised after he chaired key Commons debates for more than nine hours

Concerns for House of Commons Speaker John Bercow's bladder were raised after he chaired key debates for more than nine hours.

Senior Conservative MP Julian Lewis jokingly asked whether a curtain and toilet system would be installed on the Speaker's chair to ensure Mr Bercow remained comfortable during lengthy stints without a break.

Mr Bercow started at 2.30pm on Monday, with a 190-minute statement on the UK government's military action in Syria and a three-hour emergency debate also on Syria among the business he chaired.

The Commons rose for the day at 11.46pm, with the Speaker still in position to see out proceedings and telling MPs he had felt "comfortable, privileged and exhilarated" during his nine and a quarter hours in the chair.

Three deputy speakers and Mr Bercow usually share the role of watching over debates, rotating throughout the day.

Mr Lewis, chairman of the Defence Select Committee, said: "On a point of order and with the blessing of the Government whip here present, may I ask whether any steps have been taken to reinstate the curtain and commode system that used to envelope the chair so that on those occasions, like today Mr Speaker, where you have sat there continuously since the House first met until the House adjourned this evening, you might be able to do so in a little more comfort."

Mr Bercow replied: "I'm not aware any such steps are planned.

"Insofar as my personal comfort is a matter of interest or concern to (Mr Lewis), which is very touching, and might conceivably be to other colleagues, I can assure him and them that I have not felt other than comfortable, privileged and exhilarated to be in the chair for the last nine and a quarter hours."

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