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The House of Lords “could be reduced from 775 to 300” if moved north

Independent colleague John Mann said: “Any colleagues who just use it as their London dining club would resign.”

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The House of Lords could be reduced from 775 to 300 members if moved to the north of England, says an independent peer.

John Mann, Labor MP for Bassetlaw for 18 years, said: “Any colleagues who just use it as their London dining club would resign.

“And if you’re in your eighties, you won’t really want to traipse all the way north.”

The Lords bill the taxpayer £117m a year

Colleagues reacted furiously when Michael Gove told them last week they had to move miles away while Parliament was renovated.

They were hoping to shuffle 200 yards up the road to the QE2 conference center, where the Leveling Up secretary is a landlord.

But Mr Gove said he didn’t want them as tenants and suggested moving them to such places as Stoke-on-Trent, Sunderland or Burnley.

Cabinet Office Minister Lord True rebuked Mr Gove, telling him: “I am not in favor of this proposal. The decisions on how to proceed are a matter for Parliament.”







Independent MP John Mann
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Picture:

PA archive/PA images)

And Tory peer Lord Cormack accused Mr Gove of a “freelance exercise of an intellectual flibbertigibbet”.

Lord Mann prefers York, which is central and has buildings that could be secured.

He added: “And while we’re there we could have a proper debate on whether peers should be elected.

“It’s not so much about being fit for the 21st century as it is about connecting to the 20th century.”

Once colleagues return to Westminster, Lord Mann says they should share the dining rooms “which are now half empty” to cut costs”.

A report earlier this year said Parliament could take up to 76 years and cost £22bn to be restored if MPs and colleagues did not fully move out during the period.

But if they didn’t overload the place, the reconstruction work would take 12 to 20 years and cost between £7 billion and £13 billion.

MPs are still debating where to go after a plan to build a new Commons Chamber in Whitehall was rejected.

Meanwhile, the palace continues to crumble. Roofs and windows are leaking, old wiring is crackling alarmingly, and chunks of wall are falling, raising safety concerns.

Night time fire brigade patrols now tour the building to protect it.

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https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/house-lords-could-cut-775-27028777 The House of Lords "could be reduced from 775 to 300" if moved north

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