Some of the Brexit-related debates yesterday were quite wild in the House of Commons. It seems like the Speaker of the House is rather necessary to keep the debate from derailing into a shouting match.

Have debates ever been rowdy also in the House of Lords and if so, how are they controlled there?

If they do not get as rowdy, what could be causing the difference?

  • 1
    Not a direct answer, but they have a speaker as well: en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lord_Speaker
    – user19831
    Commented Sep 5, 2019 at 10:55
  • 2
    @Orangesandlemons: though note that the Lord Speaker has far less power than his counterpart down the corridor. The House itself is responsible for maintaining order. Commented Sep 5, 2019 at 12:53

1 Answer 1


It is very common for a Commons debate to get as rowdy as it did yesterday, but it is very rare indeed in the Lords.

There is a Lord Speaker, but their role is more administrative and advisory in nature. Their Lordships have not had much of a need to give the Lord Speaker much more power than that, because Their Lordships have, as a whole, been able to regulate things as a collective.

  • Prior to 2005, of course, the effective "speaker" in the Lords was the Lord Chancellor, who sat on the Woolsack. At that time the LC was effectively a member of all three branches of government - exectuvive (as member of Cabinet), legislature (as speaker in the Lords) and head of HM Judiciary. But the reforms of the Blair government changed that.
    – WS2
    Commented May 17, 2021 at 8:37

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