Contract services

There is a range of services to help government organisations meet the required standards for parliamentary papers.

These production and distribution services are provided through Lot 1 of the Managed Print and Digital Solutions Framework RM3785 (framework), let to The APS Group.

The framework is managed on behalf of government by the Crown Commercial Service (CCS). Any queries regarding the framework should be sent to the CCS at ccsprintteam@crowncommercial.gov.uk.

Managed Print and Digital Solutions Framework (Lot 1)

The framework came into effect in December 2016, and has provided a central service for parliamentary papers since 1 August 2017.

All House of Commons and Command Papers must include publication furniture and an ISBN from the Lot 1 supplier, The APS Group. These apply regardless of what other services might be needed and are also an option for unnumbered parliamentary papers.

Let APS know about a paper through its online briefing form.

APS can also be contacted at commandandhousepublishing@theapsgroup.com or at 020 3957 5333.

Parliamentary format requirements

If you are producing a paper always check Parliament’s format requirements with the relevant parliamentary clerk’s team, which maybe in a parent department.

Parliament currently requires papers to be laid as print-ready PDFs, emailed from the relevant parliamentary clerk’s team. The Vote Office must be copied into the House of Commons laying emails. PDF laying does not, however, preclude Parliament’s need for print copies.

For papers to be laid in PDF also plan for Members of Parliament to have print copies immediately after laying. Copies for Members are not laying copies, but must be the same version as the laid copy. To facilitate copies for Members please ensure the Lot 1 supplier has either:

  1. A copy of the final approved PDF to be laid, provided in sufficient time to print and deliver copies to Parliament; or
  2. Print copies produced from the final approved PDF to be laid, as required by the supplier, for the supplier to deliver to Parliament.

An exception are annual reports and accounts from non-ministerial departments, agencies and other public bodies listed here. For these papers Parliament does not need print copies for Members. Instead, it is enough to ensure that the Vote Office is copied into the House of Commons laying email.

In addition to the standard copies, Parliament may also require a large print 20pt Arial version for Members, in either print or print-ready PDF. It is recommended that a 20pt Arial version is initially planned for and then confirmed by the relevant parliamentary clerk.

Production and distribution services

Lot 1 supplier services include:

  • Expert advice about papers’ production and distribution specifications and processes
  • Provision of quotations and timelines
  • Provision and assurance of publication furniture including an ISBN, CCS ID number and copyright statement
  • Publication furniture proofing
  • Managing proofing and sign-off of content
  • Demand management of print copy quantities
  • Print management
  • Provision of copies of print-ready PDFs and web-optimised PDFs
  • Facilitation of the delivery of print copies for Parliament (not laying copies)
  • Alternative formats, including large print
  • Bibliographic and information services
  • Access to other services, such as typesetting, design, proof reading, reprints and services to correct papers

Distribution Management option

Organisations not using the Lot 1 supplier for their own print copies, should use this option if Parliament needs the supplier to provide print copies. See points 1 and 2 under ‘Parliamentary format requirements’ above.

The option includes the relevant services above and ensures that print copies are available for Members immediately after laying.

Contact APS to:

  • Obtain an ISBN and CCS ID number, and check their inclusion on the copyright page
  • Check the inclusion of the most up to date copyright statement
  • Check that the printed in the UK line includes ‘Printed in the UK [by ‘name of printer’] on behalf of Her Majesty’s Stationery Office’ appears on the copyright page. Including the printer’s name is optional, if not the Lot 1 supplier
  • Confirm the date and time a final print-ready PDF or print copies should be delivered to the supplier
  • Confirm the number of print copies to be delivered to the supplier for the supplier to forward to Parliament (not laying copies)
  • Obtain labelling, packing and delivery instructions for printed copies
  • Deliver correctly labelled and packaged print copies to the supplier, ensuring parcels are marked FAO the supplier contact name/account manager

The Distribution Management option charge does not include services to create a print-ready PDF.