7 episodes

Have you ever wondered what the House of Lords does, how it works and who makes up its membership?
Subscribe to our new podcast and be the first to hear from members and staff of the House of Lords as we explore what is happening and what it is like to be a part of the UK Parliament.

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The House of Lords Podcast House of Lords

    • Government

Have you ever wondered what the House of Lords does, how it works and who makes up its membership?
Subscribe to our new podcast and be the first to hear from members and staff of the House of Lords as we explore what is happening and what it is like to be a part of the UK Parliament.

See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    State Opening of Parliament and Martha Lane Fox on COVID and the future of our on- and offline lives

    State Opening of Parliament and Martha Lane Fox on COVID and the future of our on- and offline lives

    This month, we hear from Martha Lane Fox, Baroness Lane Fox of Soho, about the work of the Lords COVID-19 Committee, which she chairs. She discusses the impact of the pandemic on the digital shift in our lives and what more the government needs to do to ensure nobody is left behind.

    ‘We heard so many examples of very, very difficult situations for children to be learning and when they were forced online at the beginning of the first lockdown. Families sharing one smartphone between multiple children, I mean, I just can't imagine how stressful that must have been for people and we know it was.’
    Martha also talks about her journey to the Lords and what surprised her when she first joined, plus her own experience of the rapid shift to online living over the last 15 months.

    ‘I have been amazed at the rapid process of acceleration through some of the trends of the last year.’
    Amy and Matt also discuss the upcoming State Opening of Parliament, its origins and how changes to the ceremony are not as unprecedented as you might think.
    Find out more about the Lords COVID-19 CommitteeFind out more about the State Opening of Parliament
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    • 30 min
    Fighting for change

    Fighting for change

    This month we speak to two members about what inspires them, how they fight for change from inside the House of Lords and mobilising support for changes to draft laws.
    ‘I believe that anyone who has the privilege of serving in our Parliament… has a duty, not just a privilege, but a duty to use that platform to speak for others, for whom no one else will speak.’We speak to Lord Alton of Liverpool about his work campaigning against human rights abuses around the world, including Tigray, Hong Kong, Xinjiang and North Korea, and why he proposed changes to the Trade Bill to prevent trade with countries accused of genocide. He also shares what he thinks the UK is doing well when it comes to human rights, and the incredible story about how Westminster inspired the defection of the most senior North Korean embassy official in the world to date. 
    ‘I've been so inspired by people from organizations, from individuals, from victims who have contacted me, who have gone through this.’We also speak to Baroness Newlove about her work to bring about protection from non-fatal strangulation during scrutiny of the Domestic Abuse Bill.
    Find out more about Lord Alton of Liverpool and follow him on Twitter
    Find out more about Baroness Newlove and follow her on Twitter
    Read about the progress of the Domestic Abuse Bill
    Read about the journey of the Trade Bill through the House of Lords
    Find out more about the election of the Lord Speaker

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    • 1 hr 3 min
    LGBT+ History Month with Lord Cashman and healthy ageing with Lord Patel

    LGBT+ History Month with Lord Cashman and healthy ageing with Lord Patel

    It's LGBT+ History Month in February and we are joined by actor, campaigner and politician Lord Cashman on the podcast. He talks about his life and journey to the Lords, fighting for equality and founding Stonewall with colleagues including Sir Ian McKellen, and how he works to make a difference as a member of the House of Lords. We also hear his thoughts on the new Channel 4 drama It's a Sin, written by Russell T Davies.
    We are also joined in this episode by Lord Patel, Chair of the Lords Science and Technology Committee. He talks to us about why the UK is missing its targets for health ageing and what more needs to be done to ensure we all live longer, healthier lives.
    Plus Amy and Matt explore what has been happening in the House of Lords since we last met, including the recall of both Houses on 30 December to pass a new law in a single day.

    Find out more about Lord Cashman and follow him on TwitterFind out more about Lord PatelRead more from the Lords Science and Technology Committee and follow the committee on Twitter
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    • 47 min
    Disability rights, the environment and the EU | December part 2

    Disability rights, the environment and the EU | December part 2

    Welcome back to our December episode.
    In part 2, we hear from Lord Teverson, chair of the EU Environment Sub-Committee, about what brought him to the Lords, his committee's work, plus why fisheries and chlorinated chicken have been big subjects in Brexit negotiations.
    We also continue our interviews for Disability History Month with Baroness Campbell of Surbiton. Jane Campbell is a lifelong disability rights campaigner and we hear about her journey from protesting on Westminster Bridge to the House of Lords, and what more can be done for disability rights today.
    Want to find out more about topics in this episode?
    - Read more about the EU Environment Sub-Committee
    - Read more from members of the House of Lords about Disability History Month

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    • 48 min
    Meet Baroness Grey-Thompson and the Legislation Office | December part 1

    Meet Baroness Grey-Thompson and the Legislation Office | December part 1

    We have so much to share with you this month that we are releasing this episode in two parts.
    In this episode, hear from Olivia about how the Lords Legislation Office works and what it feels like to take on a role that dates back hundreds of years.
    We also speak to Tanni Grey-Thompson, Baroness Grey-Thompson, about her career, her role in the Lords, campaigning for disability rights and getting people in the UK active.
    In part 2, coming next week, we’ll continue our Disability History Month theme with Baroness Campbell of Surbiton and also speak to Lord Teverson about the EU, the environment and fisheries.
    Want to find out more about topics in this episode?
    - Read about the process of changing the Agriculture Bill in the Lords
    - Read more from members about Disability History Month
    Read a transcript for this episode

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    • 36 min
    Responding to a pandemic

    Responding to a pandemic

    Like everyone, the House of Lords has needed to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. This has included doing things differently but also scrutinising the UK response to coronavirus and the lessons we need to learn.
    In this episode, Amy and Matt speak to the Lord Speaker, Lord Fowler about his role and the House of Lords. They also speak to Deputy Speaker Baroness McIntosh of Hudnall and Government Whip Baroness Penn about how work in the chamber of the Lords has changed, and to Baroness Armstrong of Hill Top about what work the committee she chairs, the Public Services Committee, is doing to investigate lessons learned from the pandemic.

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    • 54 min

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