Ecclesiastical Committee is a statutory Committee appointed
under the Church of England Assembly (Powers) Act 1919 (called
the Enabling Act).
The Committee has thirty members, half being Members of Parliament
appointed by the Speaker of the House and the other half being
members of the House of Lords, appointed by the Lord Chancellor.
Generally members are appointed early in the life of a new Parliament
and remain members for the full-term.
The Committee functions like a Joint Select Committee.
The Committee examines draft Measures presented to it by the
Legislative Committee of the General Synod. It prepares a report
for Parliament declaring whether it considers the measure to
be ‘expedient’ or not. Usually the Committee receives
direct input from members of Synod and may well ask for others
to assist. Where particular issues arise the Ecclesiastical Committee
and the Legislative Committee of Synod meet together to discuss
how matters can be resolved. If the Committee considers a measure
inexpedient they will not simply reject it (although Parliament
itself is perfectly entitled entitled to do so) but rather a
conference will be called in order that the Synod might be asked
to look afresh at the proposed legislation, as happened with
Since the General
Election in 2005 the members of the Ecclesiastical Committee
- Lord Davies of Coity
- Lord Elton
- Lord Judd
- Lord Laming
- Lord Lloyd of Berwick
- Lord Newby
- Lord Pilkington of Oxenford
- Lord Shaw of Northstead
- Lord Wallace of Saltaire
- Lord Walpole
- Lord Williams of Elvel
- Baroness Massey of Darwen
- Baroness Perry of Southwark
- Baroness Rendell of Babergh
- Baroness Wilcox
- Sir Stuart Bell M.P.
- Mr Peter Bottomley MP
- Mr Ben Chapman M.P.
- Sir Patrick Cormack, M.P.
- Mr David Drew M.P.
- Mrs Gwyneth Dunwoody M.P.
- The Rt. Hon. F. Field
- The Rt. Hon. G. Gummer
- Mrs Sharon Hodgson M.P.
- Mr Simon Hughes MP
- Mr Robert Key M.P.
- Mr Gordon Marsden
- Mr Desmond Swayne M.P.
- Mr David Taylor M.P.
- Mr Steve Webb