The Putney Debates 2018

Powers to the Peoples: Electoral Reform and a Federal UK?

2 February 2018

St Mary's Church, Putney



As the UK questions its post-Brexit future, the Oxford Foundation for Law, Justice and Society has revived the historic Putney Debates for the modern-day.

The third of the New Putney Debates will be held early in 2019.

Be a part of this constitutional convention for the 21st Century.


Michael Dougan
Michael Dougan
Professor of European Law, Liverpool University, and Jean Monnet Chair in EU Law
Robert Hazell CBE
Robert Hazell CBE
Founder, The Constitution Unit, University College London
Sionaidh Douglas-Scott
Sionaidh Douglas-Scott
Anniversary Chair in Law, Queen Mary University London
St Mary's Church, Putney
The Putney Debates 2017
Join us at historic St Mary's Church Putney

St Mary's Church is the site of the original Putney Debates, the first debates about the nature of democracy in England. Here, 370 years ago, with England in the throes of civil war, civilians and ordinary soldiers in the New Model Army met to discuss the constitution and the future of the country.


Tony Benn
Every generation has to fight the same battle again & again: there is no destination called democracy. That’s the interest of the Putney Debates.
Watch Tony Benn on why the Putney Debates matter today

Stained Glass Window

St Mary's Church is next to the river at the southern end of Putney Bridge. It is in a controlled parking zone, so we recommend you come by public transport.

Putney is very well-served by buses, tubes, and the rail network.

Map: St Mary's Church, Putney High Street, London SW15 1SN

Find out more about this historic venue and how to get here

The Putney Debates
Britain's constitutional origins
What were the Putney Debates?

Discover how a group of liberal radicals challenged the existing order through an extraordinary series of debates that paved the way for many of the civil liberties we value today.

Thomas Rainsborough
I think that the poorest he that is in England has a life to live as the greatest he.