Language, Address and Seating Arrangements (Lords)

An official report of proceedings – known as Hansard – is published on the morning following the end of proceedings. All speeches begin with the words, 'My Lords'. Language must be deemed 'Parliamentary' by the chair and peers are not supposed to refer to the Commons by name, using instead 'another place' or 'the other place'.

Peers must not refer to each other by name in the chamber. Instead, they must refer to each other as 'noble Lords' or 'the noble Lord, the Lord X'. Other rules apply for bishops and law lords.

Looking from the throne, the chamber is a arranged as two sets of tiered benches, each split by a gangway, facing each other across a series of benches that face the Woolsack (the cross-benches). The chair Woolsack is in front of the throne. To the right and nearest the throne are the Lords Spiritual and the Government benches and beyond those. To the left are the Official Opposition and other non-government parties. The cross-benchers occupy the benches from which they take their name as well as some seats on the right behind the Government.