The House of Lords

The House of Lords is the second chamber of the UK Parliament. The role of the House of Lords is to help make laws, check on the work of government and investigate issues.

Most peers are appointed by the Queen on the advice of a prime minister in recognition of their expertise in a particular area eg business, law or science. Others are Church of England bishops and 92 are hereditary peers or people with titles (such as Barons or Viscounts) who inherited the right to sit in the Lords.

The Monarchy

Her Majesty delivers the Queen's Speech in the House of Lords
Her Majesty delivers the Queen's Speech in the House of Lords, but the speech is written by the Prime Minister

The UK's political system can be described as a constitutional monarchy with a king or queen as Head of State.

However, it is the Houses of Parliament that make our laws, not the monarch. The monarch only formally passes legislation - this is known as Royal Assent.

The monarch must remain politically neutral and does not interfere with the legislative process. No monarch has refused Parliament's wishes for over 300 years. Constitutionally, the UK Government is his/her Majesty's Government.