Project BritainProject Britain

British Life and Culture

by Mandy Barrow

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British life and culture - England, Scotland and Wales
How are laws made in the UK?

Laws are rules that everyone in the country must obey. In a democracy, like the UK, nobody is above the law. About one hundred new laws are passed each year.

How does Parliament make new laws?

A proposed new law is called a bill. Bills must be agreed by both Houses of Parliament and receive Royal Assent from the Queen before they can become Acts of Parliament which make our law.

The Bill is introduced by a First Reading. This is simply an official notice that a Bill is going to be proposed and what it's about. It gives MPs time to prepare and discuss it.

Shortly afterwards comes the Second Reading. At this point the principles are considered on the floor of the House. The Bill is then sent to be looked at by small groups of MPs who examine the Bill in detail.

At the Third Reading the Bill is debated and there is a vote. If the Government has a majority, the Bill is then passed to the House of Lords.

Once a Bill has passed through both Houses, it is sent to the Queen for the Royal Assent. Once it has Royal Assent the Bill becomes an Act of Parliament. It is the law of the land.

Since 1952, The Queen has given Royal Assent to 3135 Acts of Parliament.

Interesting Fact:
Up until the end of the 17th century, British monarchs were executive monarchs. This means they had the right to make and pass laws. Since the beginning of the eighteenth century, the monarch has become a constitutional monarch.

How Britain is Governed | Parliament

House of Parliament | Elections | Government

Prime Minister | House of Commons

Making and Passing Laws

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All the materials on these pages are free for homework and classroom use only. You may not redistribute, sell or place the content of this page on any other website or blog without written permission from the Mandy Barrow.

© Copyright Mandy Barrow 2013

Mandy is the creator of the Woodlands Resources section of the Woodlands Junior website. 
The two websites and are the new homes for the Woodlands Resources.

Mandy left Woodlands in 2003 to work in Kent schools as an ICT Consulatant. 
She now teaches computers at The Granville School and St. John's Primary School in Sevenoaks Kent.

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