Clerk of the House of Commons
|Under Clerk of the Parliaments
To wait upon the Commons
|Office of the Clerk and Chief Executive|
|Residence||Outbuilding, Palace of Westminster|
|Inaugural holder||Robert de Melton|
first permanent appointment
The Clerk of the House is the principal constitutional adviser to the House, and adviser on all its procedure and business, including Parliamentary privilege, and frequently appears before Select and Joint Committees examining constitutional and Parliamentary matters. As with all the members of the House Service, he is politically entirely impartial and is not a civil servant. Until 1 January 2008, when the reforms to the House's governance proposed by the Tebbit Review of management and services of the House were implemented, the Clerk was the head of the Clerk's Department.
He sits at the Table of the House, in the right-hand chair (the left-hand chair, looking towards the Speaker’s Chair) for part of every sitting. The historic role of the Clerks at the Table is to record the decisions of the House (not what is said, which is recorded by Hansard), and this they (but not the Clerk) still do. The Clerks at the Table wear Court dress with wing collar and white tie, a “bob” (barrister’s) wig and a silk gown. For the State Opening of Parliament and other State occasions, the Clerk of the House wears full Court dress with breeches, and a lace jabot and cuffs.
The office is currently vacant, the previous Clerk of the House of Commons, Sir Robert Rogers KCB, having retired on 31 August 2014. On 16 October 2014 the House of Commons Commission agreed to the interim appointment, with immediate effect, of David Natzler, Clerk Assistant, as acting Clerk of the House. Recruitment for a new Clerk/Chief Executive was paused, for an initial (but extendable) period of up to six months, subject to the implementation of any decisions resulting from the work of the Select Committee on House of Commons Governance.  
- 1363 — Robert de Melton
- 1385 — John de Scardeburgh
- 1414 — Thomas Haseley
- 1440 — John Dale
- 1461 — Thomas Bayen
- 1504 — Thomas Hylton
- 1510 — William Underhill
- 1515 — Robert Ormeston
- 1547 — John Seymour
- 1570 — Fulk Onslow
- 1603 — Ralph Ewens
- 1611 — William Pinches
- 1612 — John Wright
- 1639 — Henry Elsyng the younger
- 1649 — Henry Scobell
- 1658 — John Smythe
- 1659 — John Phelips
- 1659 — Thomas St. Nicholas
- 1660 — William Jessop
- 1661 — William Goldsborough
- 1678 — William Goldsborough the Younger
- 1683 — Paul Jodrell
- 1727 — Edward Stables
- 1732 — Nicholas Hardinge
- 1748 — Jeremiah Dyson
- 1762 — Thomas Tyrwhitt
- 1768 — John Hatsell
- Parliamentary Corporate Bodies Act 1992, section 2(2): "The individual who for the time being is by letters patent appointed to the office of the Under Clerk of the Parliaments (and who is customarily referred to as the Clerk of the House of Commons) shall be the Corporate Officer of the Commons."
- "Clerk of the House and Chief Executive". Parliament.uk. 24 July 2014.
- "House of Commons Commission decisions, 16 October 2014". parliament.uk. 20 October 2014.
- "House of Commons Governance Committee". parliament.uk.
|Officers of the House of Commons and the House of Lords|
|House of Commons||House of Lords|
|Speaker||John Bercow||Lord Speaker||The Baroness D'Souza|
|Leader of the House of Commons||William Hague||Leader of the House of Lords||The Baroness Stowell of Beeston|
|Serjeant at Arms||Lawrence Ward||Gentleman Usher of the Black Rod||Lt-Gen. David Leakey|
|Clerk of the House and Chief Executive||David Natzler (acting)||Clerk of the Parliaments||David Beamish|