Devolution: From One Parliament to Four

  • Barry K. Winetrobe


With the exception of the half-century of Stormont devolution in the mid-twentieth century, the UK has operated for the last 200 years with just one parliament. Now, because of the policy of devolution instituted by the Labour Government, there are four ‘parliaments’2 within the state. Two are called ‘assemblies’ and one of those (the National Assembly for Wales) also comprises the ‘executive’ as well as the ‘parliamentary’ arms of governance,3 but that does not detract from the fact that the number of parliamentary-type institutions has quadrupled in the last five years. If we add the Greater London Assembly – serving a population not all that much less than that of the three devolved nations combined – and the possibility4 of one or more English regional assemblies in the near future, it is clear that the idea in the UK of a parliament is no longer a Westminster monopoly.


Legislative Process Select Committee Legislative Power Constitutional Change Affair Committee 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 3.
    Changes to this arrangement are currently being debated. See R. Rawlings, Delineating Wales. 2004.Google Scholar
  2. 8.
    House of Lords Constitution Committee, Parliament and the legislative process. HL 173, 2003–04, October 2004Google Scholar
  3. A. Brazier (ed.), Parliament, politics and law-making. Hansard Society, Dec 2004, esp chap. 7.Google Scholar
  4. 11.
    Constitution Committee, Devolution: Inter-Institutional Relations in the United Kingdom. HL 28, 2002–03.Google Scholar
  5. 23.
    Welsh Affairs Committee, Fourth Report of the Session 2002–3, The Primary Legislative Process as it Affects Wales, Evidence taken on 21 October 2002, Q2, HC 580, 2 April 2003.Google Scholar
  6. 26.
    G. Lodge et al, ‘The impact of devolution on Westminster: if not now, when?’ chap. 8 of A. Trench (ed.), Has devolution made a difference; the state of the nations. 2004, p. 193.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Barry K. Winetrobe

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations