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Modern Written Constitution for the UK competition - under 18s web forum

Political and Constitutional Reform Committee

The Political and Constitutional Reform Committee ran an open public competition to find who can write the best Preamble - or introductory statement - for a modern Written Constitution for the UK.

The Committee is very grateful to all those who submitted entries to the competition.

Winners of the competition are Harrison Engler and Jake Kennedy:

Entry by Harrison Engler:

We, the citizens of the sovereign state of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, henceforth hold this Constitution to be the written embodiment of the previously un-codified Constitution, made up of ancient common law, ordinary statutes, conventions and traditions.

For reasons to be explained, we now feel it necessary to entrench and codify our constitutional principles and protections, so they are amended only by the special constitutional process afforded to higher law, which will hereby be made judiciable by the state.

The constitution shall determine the nature of elections to a representative House of Commons and the makeup of the House of Lords, as well as the practice by which constitutional sovereignty can be exercised through the Supreme Court in order to challenge authority and protect the citizens of this liberal, free democracy.

The Constitution beneath will confirm the basic principle of the rule of law, strengthen the legitimate rights of the people represented by an effective Parliament and strongly defined devolved institutions.

The constitution will limit the extent to which citizens' rights are threatened by other citizens or by Parliament's power, which is limited by this Constitution, and subject to the Supreme Court's judicial interpretations, in order to protect the human rights laid out within this document, which shall have superior authority over all other priorities of state- the people's parliament must aim to protect individual freedoms and privileges, as far as possible without threatening the collective and individual rights of citizens.

Furthermore, the constitution shall lay out the functions, limits of, and relationship between, different state bodies defined within, including the sovereign, judiciary, government and the bodies associated, and finally, our representative parliament, which shall continue to function and be fully committed to the advancement of the people of this nation, who make up the aforementioned parliament, in all forms.

The words above define the fundamental values and principles of the citizens for whom this charter is written and shall be enshrined within this document, and given authority through royal assent, and the necessary super-majorities of Parliament and citizens, through a legally binding plebiscite.

Entry by Jake Kennedy:

We the citizens of Her Majesty's United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, hereby declare this document legally binding, which outlines the rights of us citizens, and the power of government.

This document will protect and enshrine in law the following principles, key to our modern democratic nation:

  1. A system of checks and balances, through a system of separation of powers between the various branches of government, whereby each branch is accountable to the others, but also to the citizens through the election process, which would grant suffrage to all over 18, all with the goal of protecting the citizens from tyranny.
  2. The protection of the natural rights of any and all citizens, without discrimination.
  3. That each and every citizen is entitled to protection from harm, provided by the state, and where the state fails, a due process of law to resolve it.
  4. To ensure this, that the principle of the rule of law is upheld, in order to give fair protection to all citizens, without discrimination.
  5. The establishment of the three branches of government in a way that benefits the citizens. The executive and legislature being set up in respect of one another in their sharing of powers, and that the judiciary is wholly independent so as to check the other branches of government effectively.
  6. The principle of devolution and the continued existence of the devolved bodies that currently exist within the United Kingdom, in Northern Ireland, Wales, Scotland and Greater London.

With these key principles upheld and enshrined, the Constitution that follows will achieve the goal of upholding our modern democratic nation's key values, and ensuring that society will continue to flourish, and all citizens without discrimination have the ability to do so also.

As such we the citizens of the United Kingdom do declare that the following document and any future amendments will form the constitution that will govern our nation and us the citizens.

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40 Contributions (since 04 August 2014)
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Total results 40 (page 1 of 4)

Kieran Bailey

01 January 2015 at 22:51

Whereas this our beloved United Kingdom has hitherto been constitutionally governed by divers instruments, statues and other customs and conventions written or unwritten and whereas we have previously forsaken the opportunity of establishing a single document to outline, declare and affirm our national framework of government and common principles, it is now that; We the People of the islands of Great Britain and Northern Ireland so to form a single national constitutional framework for generations to proceed, to promote greater common awareness of the rights of individual citizenship; For the purposes of enshrining our commitments to democracy, freedom, liberty, equality, the rule of law, justice, domestic tranquillity, national sovereignty and strong union, and to further our commitment to supporting general welfare, the advancement of culture and education and the strengthening of commerce; And to enshrine that our national institutions of government who are in this constitution defined, do derive their authority from the peoples of this kingdom; and that it is under one sovereign who reigns by common consent that our Parliament and representatives there assembled do have authority to govern; Through the administration of our said representatives and the government from our said Parliament derived through appointment by our said sovereign and having allegiance to the same, have created and approved this our sole national constitution. It is through our creation and approval of this constitution that our nation represented by one flag as the symbol of our collective national identity, does provide and ensure fundamental rights guaranteed unto each citizen; Never having regard to gender, colour, race, faith, ethnicity, disability or age and that within those rights upholds the freedom for all citizens from the tyranny of those who possess authority over them. We do outline mechanisms through which those who possess powers deriving from or related to this constitution, are held accountable to the citizenry and are subject to the democratic will of the same; In order to seek the blessings of great governance under a permanently revered national constitution.

Alice Dermody-Palmer

01 January 2015 at 12:53

The people of this great nation,Great Britain and Northen Ireland here by state their agreement to this Constitution. Their own Constitution that henceforth is the binding princple that holds their establishment to account for their actions and governance. This Constitution shall benefit people from all accepts of society, guide and support them and let everybody flourish. The people that make this nation great have spoken their words and from this day forth it must be adhere to.

Dolapo Okunuga

31 December 2014 at 19:48

We, people of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Do hereby declare that this document of the people, by the people, for the people, shall become the constitution of our great nation, In which every citizen shall be protected under the name of Justice and freedom. The separation of power between the House of Commons and the House of Lords is to ensure the balance of the power from the interests of the citizens of our great nation. This constitution has been enacted through royal assent by her majesty, To protect this great nation and to secure it's future and the future of it's people. The Judiciary system has been put in place to assert the law, rights, privileges of the citizens and to defend for the good of the people and for the citizens to abide by the law of the land. All citizens shall be of individual equality before the judiciary. Our constitution crucially serve our citizens and for succeeding generations and always preserve the fair, democratic and Peaceful state.

Richard Teng

31 December 2014 at 18:08

Whereas all Citizens and Subjects of the United Kingdom deserve Protection from all Oppressions, Whereas essential Liberties are best safeguarded through a common Understanding of fundamental Freedoms, Whereas the Unity of the People and their Desire for Justice and Equality is manifested in a fair and right Charter, We, the People of the United Kingdom, in the Name of our most august Nation, in Order to establish a united Defense for the People against all Threats to Life and Liberty, whether foreign or domestic; ensure fair Justice and Equality are apportioned to every individual Person; guarantee fundamental Rights are upheld to preserve the Freedom and Dignity of all People, so that they might live full Lives of with Hope and Happiness; do solemnly and forevermore proclaim and protect this Constitution for the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

Harry Smith

31 December 2014 at 16:49

Insofar as it is of importance that a constitution is indicative of the high regard and veneration in which a nation is held and seen, and that its citizens appreciate the worth thereof, Insofar as it is with significance that we, the people of this United Kingdom, recognise the previously uncodified, dispersed, and largely inaccessible statutes and instruments by which this sovereign state was bound, Insofar as it is of especial aptness that in this year, the eight hundredth since the formation of the original Magna Carta, we admire the virtuous history of this realm, and use this as a basis from which to proceed, Insofar as it is necessary for clearly-defined laws, the distribution of authority, and the rights and privileges of the people to be known, We, the citizens of this realm, unify these aforementioned instruments, which have existed hitherto as the principles and conventions by which our nation was led. We, with our elected parliamentary representatives, have created this Constitution which unites us, in order for the beliefs by which we are rightfully governed to be wholly understood, endorsed, and defended by all. Through this Constitution, we Collectively declare the purposes, the aims, and the justifications of our Constitution, accessible by and accountable to the citizens of this United Kingdom, Affirm the abilities of our elected government, whose concomitant and just powers derive exclusively from the people of this realm, Retain the inalienable and intrinsic rights of each individual, delivering them from danger in all forms, Aver that each person is equal, and entitled to the freedom of speech, of assembly, of opportunity, of security, of justice, Promote the continued excellence, prosperity, and development of education, culture, arts, sport, science, technology, economic and general welfare, State the capacity of the fair and neutral judiciary, Clarify the devolved powers of certain institutions, who, along with Parliament, are committed to the progressive efficacy of the pursuit and advancement of national welfare. This Constitution exists as an entrenched statement of our values, our governance, and our democracy.

Shanita Jetha

31 December 2014 at 15:21

We, the citizens of the United Kingdom call upon a written constitution to establish our rights and liberties, along with the powers and limitations of Her Majesty’s Government, Taking into consideration, the United Kingdom formerly held a wholly uncodified constitution derived from various sources, which was held in a high level of regard, We, through democratic means, agree this will add value to our democracy through uniting our conventions, statues and traditions in a single document, whilst, Providing eternal protection and continuing to honour the voice of the People of the United Kingdom, This Charter will thus lay out the fundamental principles of our nation: Accepting that the rule of law shall safeguard our people from tyranny through ensuring equality, justice and liberty amongst all, Stating the functions of each branch of the nation; the executive, the judiciary and the legislature, Defining the system of checks and balances, which shall be used to ensure the government is held accountable to the people, Affirms that free and fair elections shall take place to elect the government of the day, ensuring a popular mandate, whilst outlining the duration of a parliamentary term and the age of universal suffrage, Highlighting the nation’s role worldwide through outlining our roles and responsibilities in regard to foreign policy and international treaties, Bringing to attention that the people continue to hold the power to ensure their voice is heard through direct democracy and any other methods deemed beneficial, Declaring the process of amendment to this entrenched document, to be carried out in a democratic manner to protect the people against legislative infringement, With these doctrines, this charter shall inspire a prosperous nation through preserving our constitutional rights and civil liberties, and, Through recognising that the common interest of the people is to be protected as well as the freedom of speech to be upheld, Hence, the people of this sovereign state can live without fear of bias, harm and prejudice as well as without the normative nature of an uncodified constitution, We, the People of the United Kingdom declare the document succeeding this preamble our constitution.

Charles Bruce

31 December 2014 at 13:50

Our nation and its people have lived and died on these glorious British Isles for thousands of years. In the face of tyranny, in the face of adversity and discrimination, in the face of chaos and turmoil our people have stood defiant and strong for the values that our society not only adheres to but tirelessly promotes around the world. Yet, throughout this rich history we have lived without a written constitution. We have thrived as a nation on the existence of what is an unwritten constitution. This unwritten constitution is a testimony to the integrity and solidarity our nation possesses. And the writing of this constitution is by no means a symbol of regression but of progression. We write this document in the knowledge that the British people will feel safer and stronger because of it and for the rest of the world it shall be a declaration that these historic British Isles are proud to put forth their values. This constitution written by and for the people of the United Kingdom states that. All citizens are created and judged equally so that all have the right to strive and achieve without discrimination. There is freedom to speak freely without fear of censorship or punishment. The people shall be protected by the rule of law and the justice system, whose sole responsibility is to serve and protect. Democracy shall be upheld and through it the voice of the people shall be represented. The institutions of government shall protect the inherent rights of all its citizens, to defend them from the scourges of tyranny and Kleptocracy. The governing body shall always promote the general welfare of the people, the continuation and diversification of culture and the creation of opportunities for all. Modern and just, we the people write this document with the knowledge that it shall provide amenity to all and secure us the eternal freedoms that we and our noble ancestors before us have enjoyed.

Ellie Corner

31 December 2014 at 12:13

This is the United Kingdom’s Constitution produced for the people and by the people. Having there been no written constitution previously, this document principally wants to tie together all aspects of law, order, traditions and conventions therefore having one single document that can act as a point of reference to all ensuring that the government and the people are able to be held accountable for their actions. This written document: shall define how power is used and disbursed both through parliament, the monarchy and society itself; it shall address how this power is and can be treated in a way which will ensure that individuals rights are protected, ensure that citizens are aware of their rights to prevent exploitation of both the individual and groups within society and that each citizen is aware that there is no one who is above the law irrespective of background, race, gender or sexuality, establish a way in which all from every part of the United Kingdom can live in harmony with each other by abiding by the law allowing society to advance and improve as one being, outlines how governing bodies shall be formed such as Her Majesty's Government to thereby be protected from tyrannical powers. We, the people of the United Kingdom, do approve this established document for our country.

Thomas Stewart Laing

30 December 2014 at 20:14

We The People of the Regions and Nations of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland acting upon the consent of her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II hereby codify this Constitution to uphold the rule of law and to ensure a stable, secure, prosperous and sovereign union. This Constitution will be defended and protected for the good of the all the people, regardless of status, gender, race or religion.

Shakil Karim

14 December 2014 at 17:27

This Written Constitution was created by the people, for the people. It has been created to be revered and respected by all, so that each and every citizen of the United Kingdom may enjoy the privileges and rights that this constitution bestows upon them. The most clear and accessible guideline as to how our realm is and should be governed, this document is the first single written constitution. It is a coherent amalgamation of the myriad statutes which uphold, promote and protect the values of freedom, equality, justice and democracy throughout the United Kingdom. Modern and fair, this Written Constitution proudly asserts the laws, rights and privileges of the citizen, to be defended and furthered for the good of the people, for now and forever.

Total results 40 (page 1 of 4)