Posted by Kate on July 09, 1997 at 09:35:23:
In reply to Titles and Parlaiment posted by Mary on July 09, 1997 at 08:23:42
] How was it determined who would have a seat in the House of Lords? How low on the title hierarchy could one's title be and still have a seat in the House? Also were new seats in the House created when a person was given a newly-created title of Lord or Viscount etc.?
Anyone who was ranked higher than a baronet (ie earl, viscount, marquis, duke) is entitled to sit in the House of Lords, as are bishops of the Church of England. They don't physically put a new chair in when a new title is created - there's always room for one more, although if everyone who was entitled to sit went on the same day they wouldn't fit. Many hereditary lords these days never go near the place or just drop in occasionally. Today the new lords that are created are "life peers" and most of them are created because of their interest/career in politics, that they will be expected to continue as a lord (eg Lady Thatcher).
And I can't give chapter and verse for this except that I have studied constitutional law for years and a knowledge of the H of L has been a part of all this.
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