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This House of Lords Library briefing provides summary data on the size and composition of the House of Lords in preparation for the 5 December 2016 debate on the size of the House. As well as including figures on the size and composition of the House, it provides brief information on age, gender and those leaving or joining the House. The information in the briefing is correct as at 28 November 2016, and is taken from the House of Lords registry database. The briefing refers to ‘actual membership’ and ‘absolute membership’. The absolute membership of the House includes all Members that may, at a point, exercise their right to sit in the House (this includes those currently disqualified from sitting). Actual membership includes those Members who are currently eligible to sit (eg this does not include those on leave of absence or those disqualified due to holding certain offices).

As at 28 November 2016:

  • The absolute membership of the House was 845;
  • The actual membership was 810;
  • And the average daily attendance in the last full session, 2015–16, was 497.

The composition of the House, as at 28 November 2016, is set out in the following graph:

 Party Affiliation

 Further information on the size and composition of the House, including commentary and debates on the subject, can be found in the House of Lords Library briefing, Size of the House of Lords (29 January 2016). In addition, Members may be interested in the following Lords Library briefings on the House:


Documents to download

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