State Opening of Parliament to be held on 18 November

July 16, 2009 at 3:56 pm Leave a comment

stateopening
Her Majesty the Queen will open Parliament on November 18th, the Leader of the House of Commons has confirmed.

Parliament will rise on Tuesday, subject to Royal Assent.

Harriet Harman confirmed the date of the state opening at Business Questions earlier today.

MPs and peers will have more than ten weeks away from Westminster – business will resume on October 12th.

However, this session of Parliament is not over.

The prorogation of Parliament, which brings a session to an end, is a prerogative act of the Crown.

Just before the new session Parliament is prorogued until a specific date by the Lords Commissioners acting in the Sovereign’s name.

At the State Opening the Queen’s Speech is delivered by the Queen from the Throne in the House of Lords, marking the start of the new session.

The speech, an outline of the government’s legislative programme, is written by the government and approved by the Cabinet.

The Queen reads it out in the presence of Members of both Houses.

Black Rod is sent to summon the House of Commons to the Lords chamber and the door of the lower chamber is slammed in his face as a sign of the primacy of the Commons.

He then uses his staff to bang on the door three times.

Black Rod summons MPs to the Lords, where they gather at the Bar of the House.

Following the State Opening the government’s programme, as presented in the Queen’s Speech, is debated by both Houses over several days.

photo: ukparliament@flickr.com

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Entry filed under: Commons, Lords, Procedure. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , .

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