News Release: HAMILTON, Bermuda – Her Majesty the Queen has congratulated the people of Bermuda on the 400th anniversary of the Bermuda Parliament.
A statement from Queen Elizabeth II said, “On the occasion of celebrations to mark the 400th anniversary of the Bermuda Parliament, I have pleasure in sending my warm congratulations to the people of Bermuda.
“I have fond memories of my visits to the islands, including in 1953 when I opened Parliament on the first stop on my Commonwealth Tour and most recently in 2009. I send best wishes on this auspicious occasion and for the future.”
At a news conference earlier this week, Premier David Burt noted that the Legislature will be reconvened in St. George’s in recognition of a General Assembly being established in Bermuda in 1620.
“This is the 400th anniversary,” the Premier said: “For those who may not be aware, ours is one of the oldest Legislatures in the Commonwealth, and in the Western Hemisphere second only to the Palace of Westminster in London, home to Big Ben.
“In Bermuda, Members of the Colonial Parliament as it was called then, were holding meeting 150 years before the American war of Independence in 1776.
“Imagine there were arguments and debates in Bermuda’s Assembly, 150 years before the United States was even born; and for that we Bermudians should be especially proud.”