Date set for Queen's Speech


The Queen's Speech will be on Wednesday May 8, Commons Leader Andrew Lansley said today.

In a written ministerial statement, Mr Lansley said: "Her Majesty the Queen will open a new session of this Parliament on Wednesday May 8 2013."

During her speech in the House of Lords, she will detail the Government's business for the forthcoming session of this parliament.

The speech could possibly include plans for a minimum price for alcohol and plain packets for cigarettes.

The State Opening of Parliament also promises pomp and ceremony. The Queen will arrive at the Sovereign's Entrance, before a procession takes her to the Robing Room, where she puts on the Imperial State Crown and parliamentary robe. She is then led through to the House of Lords where she takes the throne.

Under parliamentary rules, the Queen is not allowed in to the Commons so instead, as tradition dictates, she sends her official Black Rod, who as part of the ceremony has the door to theCommons slammed in his face as a symbol of MPs' independence from the monarch.

The MPs then file through to the Lords, where the Queen will then deliver her speech in front of both MPs and peers.

There will then be a debate in both the Commons and the Lords on the Government's plans which were announced in the speech.