The UK Government

The party or parties that win the election form the government. In 2015 this was the Conservatives as there were more Conservative MPs than all the other parties put together. This is known as a majority government.

In 2010, no one party won the election, so the Conservatives (largest party) agreed to work with the Liberal Democrats to run the country. When two parties work together in government this is called a coalition.

The leader of the UK government is the Prime Minister or PM. The PM is usually the leader of the party which wins the election.

Each department of the UK government is led by a minister who is responsible to the UK Parliament for the work of their department. Each minister is supported by a number of junior ministers who, in turn, are supported by civil servants or government employees.

The Prime Minister

The Prime Minister is the head of the UK government. They represent the UK at home and abroad and set the priorities of government. The Prime Minister also selects MPs to be government ministers and chairs cabinet meetings.

The Prime Minister usually appears in the House of Commons chamber each week to answer questions from MPs. Prime Minister's Questions (PMQs) takes place on a Wednesday at midday.

UK Parliament committees

The UK Parliament has a number of different committees for example, the Transport Select Committee or the Education Select Committee. Committees must have a minimum of eleven MPs.

In committees, MPs discuss bills (new laws in making) in detail or review the work of the UK government. Committees are very important in ensuring laws are carefully drafted and that government operates effectively.