House of Lords: Size - Motion to Resolve (Continued)

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 7:38 pm on 5th December 2016.

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Photo of Lord Higgins Lord Higgins Conservative 7:38 pm, 5th December 2016

My Lords, I join all those who have paid tribute to my noble friends Lord Cormack and Lord Norton and the work that the Campaign for an Effective Second Chamber has been doing and continues to do. They have set out the parameters within which reform ought to operate; in effect, a manifesto for further incremental change and reform, which to some extent has already been carried through over a number of years.

There seems general agreement that your Lordships’ House is presently too large. This does not result simply in public concern, and to some extent, perhaps, disdain; it has very real problems in terms of costs, the resources available to Members, and so on. One point that has not been made but which is very important is that it also tends to result in a limitation on the length of speeches. The effect of this is that it is virtually impossible to take an intervention. We are not a lecture theatre, we are a debating Chamber and therefore this is a considerable disadvantage.