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  1. ITV Report

Showdown between Lords and Commons in political pigeon race

One MP has billed it as "the biggest challenge between the Commons and the Lords".

But it's got nothing to do with Brexit - although you could argue that migration plays a part.

The traditional Lords vs Commons pigeon race started at Bletchley Park today, with 500 birds heading to Pontefract in West Yorkshire.

It's a contest that began decades ago - but the last event took place in 1928.

Now, MPs sponsor the birds to raise money for the Combat Stress charity.

"The Prime Minister very publicly said she'd sponsor a pigeon and in fact she's sponsored five so it's strong and stable commitment from the Prime Minister over pigeon racing as well as everything else."

– Chris Davies MP
The start of the race at Bletchley. Credit: ITV News Anglia

"I've sponsored one. I don't know the name of mine but I've got my five pounds in. Parliamentarians tend to get quite competitive, so there's a bit of money riding on this."

– Iain Stewart MP, Milton Keynes South