Additional House of Lords seat for Cambridgeshire

CAMBRIDGE-SHIRE has an additional seat in the House of Lords, after the Bishop of Ely took his seat this afternoon (Monday). Dr Anthony Russell, who was supported at his maiden sitting by the Bishops of Norwich and Salisbury, will be entitled to vote and s

CAMBRIDGESHIRE has an additional seat in the House of Lords, after the Bishop of Ely took his seat this afternoon (Monday).

Dr Anthony Russell, who was supported at his maiden sitting by the Bishops of Norwich and Salisbury, will be entitled to vote and speak.

Other Cambridgeshire Peers include Lord Mawhinney, the former MP for North West Cambridgeshire, who lives in Keyston.

Dr Russell becomes one of 26 bishops and archbishops in the Lords. His duties include saying prayers before the House sits.

The bishop, who comes from a farming family, takes a keen interest in rural affairs and the farming community. He is the Church of England's spokesman on agriculture and countryside matters and maintains a particular interest in the socio-economic aspects of rural and farming communities. He has written extensively on the subject and is well known as a speaker and commentator.

As Bishop of Ely, he is involved in many aspects of the University of Cambridge and supports a scientific approach to modern farming.

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Only the Bishops of London, Winchester and Durham, plus the two Archbishops, Canterbury and York, sit in the Lords by right. The other episcopal seats are filled by seniority. Dr Russell became the 68th Bishop of Ely in 2000.