On Thursday 2nd July 2015 Lord Forsyth of Drumlean asked Her Majesty’s Government ‘whether they plan to establish a Constitutional Convention to consider the implications of devolution for each part of the United Kingdom; and whether they plan to publish a white paper setting out the consequences for the rest of the United Kingdom of fiscal autonomy for Scotland’. The Bishop of St Albans, Rt Revd Alan Smith, asked a supplementary question.
The Lord Bishop of St Albans: My Lords, the Minister would have picked up concern on every side of the House on this particular issues and I, along with a number of Members on this Bench, share that concern. In principle we would like to explore the possibility of a constitutional convention. The pastoral letter that the bishops issued earlier this year stated:
“The impatience of politicians or the desire for party advantage must not be the driver for constitutional change”.
If we are not going to have a constitutional convention, how do Her Majesty’s Government intend to involve as many as possible of those people who are passionate to be involved in this so that together we can think carefully about the vital question of the future governance of the UK?
Lord Dunlop: I am sure that noble Lords in this House and others outside it will come forward with proposals. The Government will engage with those proposals and will be happy to discuss them.