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Business of the House: State Opening

Volume 684: debated on Thursday 20 July 2006

My Lords, with the permission of the House, I should like to make a brief statement about this year’s State Opening of Parliament. My right honourable friend Jack Straw, the Leader of the House of Commons, has made a similar statement earlier today. The State Opening is scheduled for Wednesday 15 November. I remind the House that that does not tell us when we shall complete our deliberations because Prorogation depends on the progress of business. One would expect it normally to be in the week prior to 15 November. We will be in some difficulty if it is not.

The House will know that I am very keen to announce Recess dates as far as possible in advance. I will certainly do that as soon as it is clear when the next Session’s Recess dates will be. I guess that it will be possible to make a statement some time in November. I remind the House that I announced on 10 November 2005 this Summer Recess date for completion of business on 25 July. That was a high-risk strategy, but I can confirm that the House will rise at the completion of business on 25 July, next Tuesday. That that date has been met is due 10 per cent to skill and 90 per cent to luck, but that is what we are achieving.