Page last updated at 10:04 GMT, Wednesday, 1 October 2008 11:04 UK

Introductions - Lords

Introductions in the House of Lords are longer and much grander than those in the House of Commons.

Unlike MPs, members of the House of Lords are not elected, but enter by being nominated as a life peer by the prime minister or by recommendation from the House of Lords Appointments Commission.

New peers are introduced at the start of the day's business.

The new peer proceeds into the House, dressed in ceremonial robes, between two supporters - the senior in front and the junior behind.

A clerk reads out the "Letter Patent" granting the new peer access to Parliament, after which the peer repeats the oath or affirmation of allegiance to the Monarch.

The members of the procession walk to the Woolsack where the new peer is welcomed to the House with a handshake from the Lord Speaker.

In 1998 the House of Lords Select Committee on Ceremony of Introduction recommended changes which were accepted.

The modernisation meant that peers could be introduced without wearing hats and without having to kneel before the Lord Chancellor.

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