House of Lords

Peers' committee puts out call for rural comments

The challenges facing rural communities are being discussed by a new House of Lords select committee, which has asked people from areas like Cumbria to get involved..

It hopes to cover a wide range of subjects, including local services, broadband speeds, housing, transport, employment and demographic change, asking how the government is performing.

Members of the public can contribute using an online form, until 16:00 on Monday 10 September.

Powderham Castle owner elected to House of Lords

An Eton-educated aristocrat married to a former Baywatch actress has been elected to sit in the House of Lords in a hereditary peers by-election in which 26 valid votes were cast.

The Earl of Devon, formerly known as Charles Courtenay, beat Lord Ravensdale by 12 votes to five in the final round of voting.

A total of 19 candidates stood in the by-election.

The contest, which cost taxpayers more than £1,140 to run, was triggered by the retirement of independent crossbencher Earl Baldwin of Bewdley.

The Earl and Countess of Devon with Mary Berry
The Earl and Countess of Devon appeared on Mary Berry's Country House Secrets last year

Lord Devon, a 42-year-old barrister, is married to "AJ" Langer, now the Countess of Devon, who starred in several episodes of the popular 90s TV show Baywatch.

He owns the inherited family estate of Powderham Castle near Exeter, Devon.

Tories 'reasonably confident' about EU vote
The Housing Minister, Dominic Raab, said he was "reasonably confident" that Conservative MPs would back the government in this week's votes on the EU Withdrawal Bill.