"A body of 500 men chosen at random from amongst the unemployed." Thus David Lloyd George's famous description of the House of Lords nearly 100 years back.

More amusingly accurate, of course, then than now. Today they number more than 700, many famously female, and although often retired certainly not unemployed. But the value of our Peers remains underrated. They exercise a key role in getting legislation right, and the need regularly to do so remains strong.

Take the fire control centres issue, now working its way across the political scene. Parliamentary Questions still abound because there are countrywide concerns from newly elected Members, even more than re-elected, taking account of them. …

Log in to your account to read this article – and millions more.