Business of the House

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 1:56 pm on 24th March 2005.

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Photo of Andrew MacKinlay Andrew MacKinlay Labour, Thurrock 1:56 pm, 24th March 2005

May I take the Leader of the House back two weeks? On 3 March, I asked him, as is recorded in column 1110 of Hansard, if we could have a debate on the monarchy, and he replied that he had "absolutely no intention" of having such a debate. He went on to say that the Secretary of State for Constitutional Affairs had made a statement in which he explained the position on the royal wedding in two weeks' time. Can I draw to my right hon. Friend's attention the fact that it has since become quite clear that Clarence House did not understand the Government's position. Indeed, the spin doctors at Clarence House are, wrongly, blaming the Government for giving the wrong impression. We know from the reply to a parliamentary question this week that when Charles becomes king Camilla will become queen. As a consequence, in two weeks' time, when Camilla marries the Prince of Wales she will become the Princess of Wales. There is a genuine need for a statement. On 9 December 1992, John Major made a statement to the House at the time of the separation of Diana and Charles, and in December 1936, Stanley Baldwin