1st Edition

The House of Lords and Contemporary Politics 1911–1957

By P. A. Bromhead Copyright 1958
    300 Pages
    by Routledge

    Originally published in 1958, the essential purpose of this book was to present a picture of the unreformed House of Lords at work as part of the effective system of government in Britain at the time, going back to the passing of the Parliament Act of 1911. When the Parliament Act of 1911 was passed, both its advocates and its opponents expected that it would soon be replaced by a comprehensive reform both of the powers and of the composition of the House of Lords. The previous forty years had in fact seen innumerable proposals, modest and ambitious, in Parliament and Party Conferences, but all had been abortive. The powers of the House had been left unchanged until 1958, except by the new Parliament Act of 1949, which merely modified the provisions of the old by reducing from three sessions to two the Lords’ power to delay bills passed by the Commons. The Life Peerages Act, discussed in this book, which authorised the creation of life baronies with no numerical limits, was passed in 1958.

    Preface.  Part I: Background and Structure  1. The House of Lords and Constitutional Development  2. The Composition of the House of Lords  3. Active and Inactive Peers  4. Special Classes of Peers  Part II: The Organization of the House  5. Procedure and Organization of Business  6. The Representation of the Government in the House of Lords  7. Party Organization and Discipline in the House of Lords  Part III: The Lords at Work  8. Legislative Procedure in the Lords  9. The Parliament Act of 1911 and Its Effects  10. Conservative and National Government Bills, 1922–39  11. Labour Government Bills in 1924 and 1929–31  12. Labour Government Bills in 1945–51  13. Conservative Government Bills of 1951–6  14. Bills First Introduced in the Lords  15. The Lords and Private Members’ Bills  16. The Death Penalty Question  17. The House of Lords and General Debates  Part IV: The Movement for Reform  18. The Question of Reform of Powers  19. Proposals for Minor Modifications of Composition  20. Proposals for Wholesale Reconstruction of the House  21. Conclusion.  Bibliographical Note.  Index.


    P. A. Bromhead studied at the University of Berne, then went on to graduate from Exeter College, Oxford.