Lieutenancies Act 1997

The Lieutenancies Act 1997 (c. 23) is an Act of Parliament in the United Kingdom that defines areas that lord-lieutenants are appointed to in Great Britain. It came into force on 1 July 1997.

Lieutenancies Act 1997
Act of Parliament
Long titleAn Act to consolidate certain enactments relating to the lieutenancies in Great Britain.
Citation1997 c. 23
Introduced byLord Mackay of Clashfern, Lord Chancellor (Lords)
Territorial extent England, Wales, and Scotland
Royal assent19 March 1997
Commencement1 July 1997
Other legislation
Amended byS.I. 1997/1992, S.I. 2001/3500
Status: Current legislation
Text of statute as originally enacted
Revised text of statute as amended

Creation of modern local government edit

Prior to the Local Government Act 1888, a Lord-Lieutenant was appointed to each of the counties. However this Act redefined the areas to be combinations of the new administrative counties and county boroughs. In practice the effect was quite minor, with only a few border differences between the historic and new administrative counties.

These areas changed little until the 1965 creation of Greater London and Huntingdon and Peterborough, which resulted in the abolition of the offices of Lord Lieutenant of Middlesex, Lord Lieutenant of the County of London and Lord Lieutenant of Huntingdonshire and the creation of the Lord Lieutenant of Greater London and Lord Lieutenant of Huntingdon and Peterborough.

Local government re-organisation edit

England edit

In 1974 county boroughs and several administrative counties were rearranged in England and Wales. Lieutenancies were also redefined to use the new metropolitan and non-metropolitan counties directly.

Some of these Lieutenancies did not last long, however. By the mid-1990s, another local government reorganisation was underway and many of the non-metropolitan counties in England were re-organised, resulting in the creation of unitary authorities. Most such unitary authorities created from the mid 1990s onwards are legally a non-metropolitan district and a non-metropolitan county which cover the same area and have just one council. It was decided in 1995 that some of these new non-metropolitan counties should not have their own lieutenant, and so provision was made for defining the counties for the purposes of shrievalty and lieutenancy differently from the local government counties with effect from 1 April 1996. In particular, for the abolished counties of Avon, Cleveland and Humberside the lieutenancy areas were re-aligned to generally correspond to the pre-1974 counties.[1]

These provisions for defining counties for the purposes of lieutenancy differently from local government counties were consolidated into the Lieutenancies Act 1997. Although the term is not actually used in the Act, the areas it covers have come to be known as "ceremonial counties". Various amendments to the 1997 Act have been made since 1997 to update these ceremonial counties to be defined in terms of new unitary authorities.

Scotland edit

The Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973 redefined the Lieutenancies not to be based on the then new Scottish Regions but as an approximation of the traditional counties in some places and entirely new creations in others.

Local government in Scotland was further reformed on 1 April 1996 into single-tier authorities designated as "Councils", but the lieutenancies remain mostly matching the pre-1973 counties and cities.

Wales edit

Local government in Wales was reorganised into a single-tier system on 1 Apr 1996 with the authorities designated as "Principal Councils" but nominally described as Cities, Boroughs or Counties. The lieutenancy areas remain based on the system of local government existing from 1974 to 1996.

Passage through Parliament edit

The Lieutenancies Bill was introduced in the House of Lords by the Lord Chancellor in January 1997, as a consolidation bill, to simplify and replace earlier legislation.[2] It had its second reading soon afterwards.[3][4] As a consolidation bill it was not subject to debate in the Commons at the second and third readings.[5]

Lieutenancy areas edit

The current Lieutenancy areas as of 2017
  • In England the lieutenancy areas are defined in terms of local government areas created by the Local Government Act 1972 as amended.
  • In Scotland the lieutenancy areas as defined by statutory instrument. The current such one being the Lord-Lieutenants (Scotland) Order 1996, Statutory Instrument 1996 No. 731 (S.83)
  • In Wales the lieutenancy areas are defined as the "preserved counties" — currently defined as combinations of local government areas by the Preserved Counties (Amendment to Boundaries) (Wales) Order 2003, Statutory Instrument 2003 No. 974 (W.133).

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ "The Local Government Changes for England (Miscellaneous Provision) Regulations 1995",, The National Archives, SI 1995/1748, retrieved 6 March 2024
  2. ^ Parliamentary Debates (Hansard). House of Lords. 13 January 1997. col. 19. {{cite book}}: |chapter-url= missing title (help)
  3. ^ Parliamentary Debates (Hansard). House of Lords. 20 January 1997. col. 384–385. {{cite book}}: |chapter-url= missing title (help)
  4. ^ Parliamentary Debates (Hansard). 3 March 1997. col. 1503–1504. {{cite book}}: |chapter-url= missing title (help)
  5. ^ Parliament: Consolidation Bill[permanent dead link]

External links edit