close menu

10 unusual facts about the UK Budget Speech

by 1st Contact | Mar 10, 2014
  • From colourful drinks to tatty red briefcases, the UK Budget speech is not without its unusual anecdotes. We’ve picked 10 interesting facts about the Chancellor’s speech, which takes place on 19th March this year.
  • Budget

    1. The Chancellor is the only member of parliament who’s allowed to drink alcohol during the Budget speech.
    2. Chancellors have a history of choosing colourful alcoholic beverages: Winston Churchill drank brandy, Hugh Dalton downed milk and rum, Selwyn Lloyd chose whisky and water, while Hugh Gaitskell opted for orange juice and rum.
    3. Gordon Brown bucked the trend and chose 100% natural Scottish mineral water instead of alcohol.
    4. The longest ever Budget speech was delivered by William Gladstone in 1853, and lasted four hours and forty five minutes.
    5. Benjamin Disraeli holds the record for the shortest ever Budget speech, at forty five minutes in 1867.
    6. Gordon Brown came close to breaking Disraeli’s record in 2000, hammering out a speech that lasted a touch over 51 minutes.
    7. The Budget speech is historically delivered on a Tuesday.
    8. Seasoned parliamentary reporter Sir Alexander Mackintosh sat through 60 Budget speeches during 1881 and 1941. His famous line: “Speeches get shorter as figures get bigger.”
    9. William Gladstone’s tatty red briefcase was used from 1860 to 1997, when then Chancellor Gordon Brown finally insisted that a new one be made (the old one was virtually falling apart).
    10. The Chancellor’s red briefcase has contained the actual Budget speech since 1860.

    1st Contact Accounting will give you a full run-down of Chancellor George Osborne’s new Budget speech on the 19th March 2014.  

    • big-ben-london
      Start your life in the UK the stress-free way
      Aug 21, 2017  |  by Leanne Shrosbree
    • woman-alarm-clock-scream
      Applying for an emergency UK visa in South Africa
      Aug 17, 2017  |  by John Dunn
    • Three friends having breakfast
      Roommates, budget and location: Your guide to finding accommodation in the UK
      Aug 11, 2017  |  by Leanne Shrosbree
    • Group of friends having drinks
      5 ways to meet new people in London
      Aug 07, 2017  |  by Leanne Shrosbree
    • SA and UK flag
      How many South Africans were granted British citizenship last year?
      Aug 03, 2017  |  by 1st Contact
    • Puppy
      No pet left behind: Bring your furry friends with you to the UK
      Jul 28, 2017  |  by Leanne Shrosbree
    • Stoketoberfest
      Stoketoberfest is upon us
      Jul 28, 2017  |  by 1st Contact
    • heart calculator desk cash
      Stay on the right side of HMRC as a contractor
      Jul 24, 2017  |  by Kobus Van den Bergh
    • choosing worker
      How to get a job after you’ve arrived in the UK
      Jul 21, 2017  |  by Leanne Shrosbree
    • happy young couple
      Don’t do the long distance thing, extend your UK spouse visa
      Jul 20, 2017  |  by John Dunn

    Do you like cookies? We do, read why.