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'Question Time' to air from St Paul's Cathedral for first time

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Question Time will be broadcast from St Paul's Cathedral for the first time in the programme's history.

The show will air from the historic building in the City of London on Thursday, February 21, featuring a panel including Liberal Democrat business secretary Vince Cable, Conservative politician and former deputy prime minister Lord Michael Heseltine and Diane Abbott, Labour MP for Hackney North and Stoke Newington.

Question Time host David Dimbleby at St Paul's Cathedral

© PA Images / Mentorn Media / BBC Scotland



"We're delighted to be producing the programme from St Paul's, and I am sure the quality and passion of the debate will match the sublime setting," said Question Time editor Nicolai Gentchev.

"The site of the Cathedral is one of London's oldest places of debate, and we hope it will inspire our audience and panel."

Gentchev also promised that "other new locations" for Question Time would be announced later in the year.

Vince Cable, Secretary of State for Business and Liberal Democrat MP for Twickenham - January 2013

© PA Images / Anthony Devlin / PA Wire

Diane Abbott, shadow minister for public health and Labour MP for Hackney North and Stoke Newington - February 2010

© PA Images / Katie Collins / PA Archive


[Left: Vince Cable / Right: Diane Abbott]

The Very Reverend David Ison, dean of St Paul's Cathedral, added: "Question Time is not only an immediately recognisable contemporary institution. It represents what's at the heart of this country: a commitment to free debate and to the questioning of policies and opinions, whether of those with power and influence or of those who challenge them."

The broadcast, which will be chaired by regular Question Time host David Dimbleby, will take place directly underneath the dome at St Paul's.

Members of the public can apply to be in the audience by registering a question at www.bbc.co.uk/questiontime.

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