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Houses of Parliament: Police Arrest

Volume 706: debated on Thursday 11 December 2008


Asked by

To ask the Chairman of Committees on what grounds and by whose authority the police may arrest a Peer in the Palace of Westminster, or remove papers and property from a Peer's office. [HL57]

On 3 December the Lord President informed the House (Official Report, House of Lords, col. 20) that she had asked the House authorities to prepare a report setting out the current position on this matter. In the mean time, it is clear that, before the police were permitted to enter the House of Lords’ part of the Palace of Westminster to arrest a Member or search a Member’s office, Black Rod would need to establish their authority so to do. Black Rod would consult other House authorities, including in particular the Lord Speaker and the Clerk of the Parliaments. In the absence of Black Rod, the Yeoman Usher may act in his place (Standing Order 13(4)).