But who shall tend the Manor of Northstead?

I’m sure when Sinn Fein set out to reshape the way the UK was governed, this wasn’t what they had in mind:

A Sinn Fein spokesman told Newsnight that Adams “wrote to the Speaker’s office on Friday and informed him of his resignation. It’s a non-issue from our perspective. He submitted his resignation and that’s it. He’s stepped down from that position. He certainly didn’t apply for the Stewardship of the Manor of Northstead.”

It seems Mr Adams has found some way of resigning from Parliament without going through these ancient procedures.

Is it just me who thinks Adams has missed a trick here? I can imagine him striding across the North Riding, declaring what he intended to do as Crown Steward and Bailiff of the Manor of Northstead and causing at least mild consternation amongst some people. And as Iris Robinson currently holds that other notable position of profit under the Crown – the Chiltern Hundreds – it would have provided an interesting political balance between the two.

But, if you are now to be able to simply resign from Parliament without taking up the posts and MPs will not be needed to perform these vitally important roles, I would like to inform the Speaker and the Queen that I will take on both or either of the titles to ensure that these parts of the British Constitution are not just swept under the carpet.

One thought on “But who shall tend the Manor of Northstead?”

  1. Doesn’t all this show up the archaic nature of British parliamentary procedures? ‘You can’t resign but we can sack you.’ This talk of ‘tradition’ is too often a refusal to modernise procedures and draw up a formal constitution. I’ve heard complaints that such a constitution would mean that the legislature would be hidebound. Haven’t they heard of the amendments to such as the US constitution?
    Who cares if Gerry Adams has to do this to vacate his seat? If he wants to go, then let him. It must have been a great embarrassment to have an Irish republican of such fame/notoriety as an MP, so I’d imagine there were great sighs of relief at the news that he was standing for Dáil Éireann.

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