Ecclesiastical Committee Contents

The Ecclesiastical Committee

The Ecclesiastical Committee is a statutory Committee appointed under the Church of England Assembly (Powers) Act 1919.

It comprises thirty members, fifteen of whom are Members of the House of Commons, appointed by the Speaker, and fifteen of whom are members of the House of Lords, appointed by the Lord Speaker. The quorum is twelve.

Appointments to the Committee are generally made early in a Parliament. Unless the Speaker or the Lord Speaker decide otherwise, members appointed by them remain on the Committee for the life of the Parliament.

While its powers are those laid down by the Act, the procedures it has adopted are those of a Joint Select Committee.

Current Membership
Lord Davies of Coity Sir Stuart Bell
Lord EltonPeter Bottomley
Lord JuddBen Chapman
Lord LamingSir Patrick Cormack
Lord Lloyd of Berwick (Chairman) Ann Cryer
Baroness Massey of Darwen Mr David Drew
Lord NewbyMr Frank Field
Baroness Perry of Southwark Mr John Gummer
Lord Pilkington of Oxenford Mrs Sharon Hodgson
Baroness Rendell of Babergh Simon Hughes
Lord Shaw of Northstead Robert Key
Lord Wallace of Saltaire Mr Gordon Marsden
Lord WalpoleMr Desmond Swayne
Baroness WilcoxDavid Taylor
Lord Williams of Elvel Steve Webb


The Ecclesiastical Committee examines draft Measures presented to it by the Legislative Committee of the General Synod of the Church of England. It reports to Parliament on whether or not it considers the measures to be expedient.

It generally asks members of the General Synod to assist it in its deliberations. In some circumstances a conference of the Ecclesiastical Committee and the Legislative Committee may be convened.

The Church of England Measure on which the Committee has reported is presented to both Houses in its final form at the same time as the Committee makes its report.

Before the Measure becomes law, both Houses must approve motions that the Measure should be presented to the Sovereign for Royal Assent in the form that it was laid before Parliament.

Once both Houses have passed the necessary approval motions, the Measure is presented for Royal Assent and becomes law.


The reports and proceedings of the Committee are published by The Stationery Office by Order of both Houses. All publications of the Committee are on the internet at


All correspondence should be addressed to the Secretary of the Ecclesiastical Committee, House of Lords, London, SW1A 0PW. The telephone number for general enquiries is 020 7219 3152.

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Prepared 21 December 2009