The first speech made by a member of the House of Lords is known as a maiden speech. The second section of this Library briefing includes the full text of a selection of recent maiden speeches, made by a cross-section of members from different parties and affiliations, to illustrate the range of styles and subjects covered by new members in their first contribution to the proceedings of the House of Lords. A list of all members’ maiden speeches made in the House of Lords during the first two sessions of the current parliament can be found in the appendices.

The House of Lords Reform Act 2014 enabled members to retire from the House of Lords. It was agreed that members should be given the opportunity to make a valedictory speech to mark their retirement. During the first two sessions of this parliament six members chose to take up this opportunity. The third section of this briefing includes the full text of some of these speeches.

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