House of Lords: What's it all about
Lord Speaker: We have two Houses of Parliament: the House of Commons, and the House of Lords is the second chamber.
Member of the public: The two chambers of Parliament?
Member of the public: Well, the House of Commons is wholly elected;
Member of the public: And the House of Lords are appointed.
Member of the public: Is one them elected into, and one of it's in the family or something? I don't know.
Member of the public: Is one supposed to initiate policy, and the other's supposed to rubber-stamp it or object to it, as far as I know?
Member of the public: I thought it was the same thing.
Member of the public: The House of Commons is an elected body and the House of Lords isn't.
Member of the public: One is like a judiciary branch and one is like a legislative branch.
Lord Puttnam: The core function of the House of Lords is to scrutinise legislation as it comes through, to comment on it, criticise it where necessary, and from time-to-time to amend it.
Lord Adebowale: We can't have the final say - we don't have that power, only the elected chamber has that power - but we can revise law, and we can make law - we can suggest laws.
Baroness Williams of Crosby: Often what the House of Lords has to do is go through the absolute detail, little by little, of the bills that come up to it.
Baroness Massey of Darwen: Sometimes if a bill starts off in the House of Lords, like it has with the Children and Young People Bill, we try to make a good bill to go to the Commons for further revision.
Lord Wright of Richmond: Sometimes the House of Commons then send it back to us, not having accepted our amendments, and even, occasionally, we send it back to them again in a game that is known as 'ping-pong'. But I'm glad to say that doesn't happen very often!
Lord Fowler: The net result is that the acts that come out at the other end should be better as a result of that.
Member of the public: My impression of the House of Lords would be a big building where lots of men and women meet.
Member of the public: I know they're kind of there to stop the House of Commons doing what they want to do.
Member of the public: I haven't got a clue.
Member of the public: They review legislation.
Member of the public: A group of very knowledgeable people.
Member of the public: Well, they try to promote good things, and they try to change the world - the country - for the better.
Baroness Young of Old Scone: I think the great virtue of the House of Lords is the wide range of backgrounds that people come from.
Lord Desai: The House of Lords an amazing sort-of collection of independent experts, hack politicians, ex-Cabinet ministers, and bishops.
Baroness D'Souza: It has a very large amount of expertise in very many different fields, whether it be in science, or medicine, or in law, or the arts, or architecture, or prison, or child-studies, there are people who are at the absolute top of their profession.
Lord Speaker: Its membership tends to be part-time people who still have an interest in another field of activity.
Baroness Massey of Darwen: Outside the Chamber - as I said I chair the special health authority on drugs, which takes up quite a bit of time.
Lord Adebowale: I am currently Chair of the London Youth Crime Prevention Board, and I'm also Chair of the Stop and Search Advisory Community Panel. So there's a number of things I do, that perhaps I wouldn't do if I wasn't called 'Lord' Adebowale.
Lord Fowler: What do the House of Lords do for you, do for the public? I think it produces better legislation.
Lord Adebowale: It protects the public from laws that haven't been thought through sufficiently.
Lord Tyler: Our votes are absolutely critical. We defeat the government quite regularly - we make them think again.
Baroness Warsi: It's a check-and-balance; it's about ensuring that there are other people who are not just directly elected but who come to legislation with a sense of expertise, who can look at legislation and try and be a check-and-balance against where the government is going.
Baroness Scotland of Asthal: Helping people to know this is their House - it belongs to them, it's part of their heritage, and they need to come and see and enjoy what happens here.