History of reform of the House of Lords

History Of Reform Of The House Of Lords

History of reform of the House of Lords

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For main article see: Reform of the House of Lords

Since 1997 the United Kingdom government has been engaged in reforming the House of Lords. The history of reform before 1997, is set out in sections below about reforms of composition and powers carried out in the past and of unsuccessful proposals and attempts at reform in the twentieth century.

Reforms of Composition

The House of Lords is composed of two major groups. The Lords Spiritual (who in modern times are the Archbishops and some of the Bishops of the Church of England) and the Lords Temporal (who are the peers who are members of the House of Lords). Although the basic distinction has existed since the origin of the House, the composition of both groups has changed over the centuries.

A second way of dividing members of the House of Lords was geographical. Before 1707 the Lords Temporal were all members of the Peerage of England (which for this purpose included Wales). All holders of those titles (who were not disqualified for some reason) continued to have seats until the reforms of composition after 1997. For the representation of other geographical peerages see below.

From the Reformation until 1801 the Lords Spiritual were all members of the Church of England, the Anglican church which operated in England and Wales in that period. For the changes in the geographical areas covered by the Lords Spiritual see...
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