On 15th July, tributes were offered to the out-going Leader of the House of Lords, the Lord Hill of Oareford, following his nomination as the United Kingdom’s candidate to the European Commission. The Bishop of Carlisle, the Rt Revd James Newcome, led the tributes on behalf of the Lords Spiritual.
The Lord Bishop of Carlisle: My Lords, I associate those of us on these Benches with the generous comments from around the House about the noble Lord, Lord Hill. My colleagues have been grateful for the support, the wisdom and the guidance of the noble Lord and his office for the Lords spiritual to enable our contribution to the work of the House to match the high levels of all other parts of the House. He also did a wonderful job as Education Minister and he has been a good friend to the Church and to the Lords Spiritual.
On these Benches he will forever be remembered for the slight confusion in the Pass Office that his and the right reverend Prelate the Bishop of Guildford’s introduction caused. The right reverend Prelate—Christopher Hill—and the noble Lord, Lord Hill, introduced on the same day, briefly shared a wife due to clerical confusion over their surname. This was thought by all to be a step too far towards liberal inclusivity, even with the news yesterday of the imminent arrival of women to the episcopate.
We also extend our warmest welcome to the noble Baroness, Lady Stowell. As we have heard, she had the imposing task in the previous Session of introducing changes to the marriage law and we were very grateful for her willingness to engage constructively with all sides of the debate. We are sure that this will continue in her new role and we greatly look forward to further engagement with her in the years to come. So we welcome the noble Baroness, Lady Stowell, and we say thank you very much to the noble Lord, Lord Hill, wishing him well in his new endeavour of representing the complex interests of the United Kingdom with our European partners in the Commission.