Forget all the tinkering around the edges – abolition of hereditary peerages etc. When it comes to reforming the House Of Lords, go for the real deal instead: a House of All-Sorts.
Picture all these sitting together on the red leather benches: a Girl Guide, an Imam, an angler, a plumber, a doctor, a footballer, a novelist, a taxi driver, a teacher, a chef, a cleaner, a chess nut, all sitting next to a …….. you can fill-in-the-blank(s). Currently there are 834 seats that we could fill in this imaginative, diverse and far more representative way. So come in from out of the cold all you twitchers and fell-runners and flower-arrangers.
Dozens and dozens of our country’s interest groups, trades, hobbyists, professions, sports, age groups, leisure pursuits and many other sub-sections of the wider community … all can be included to make a rich, diverse tapestry. We could create something that is far more interesting and reflective of actual society than an collection of ‘Lords’ (mostly male, white, bland and middle-aged or older) could ever be.
Each grouping could choose their own way of selecting a representative. Nurses might use a ballot, pagans could cast runes, the National Bingo Association might throw some dice, video-gamesters could stage a national Battlefield 4 shoot-out, and farmers might stage a biggest marrow contest.
A House of All-Sorts could even include a representative of actual hereditary Ladies or Lords. And if they wish they might choose their man/women via a jousting tournament.
Despite the scope for many weird and wonderful methods of choosing its members, a House of All-Sorts is a serious proposition. Spread the word and let a thousand flowers blossom … or eight hundred and eighty four at least!