U.K. to stop printing laws on calf skin parchment

LONDON -- It's often said some laws aren't worth the paper they're printed on. Not in Britain, where for centuries laws have been printed not on paper but on calfskin parchment known as vellum.

See Full Article

Starting next month, however, official copies of laws will be printed on archival paper rather than animal skin, in a modernizing, cost-cutting move.

The House of Commons Administration Committee proposed the change last year, and the House of Lords -- which decides how legislation is recorded -- has approved a move that will save an estimated 80,000 pounds ($116,000) a year.

Two official copies of each new law will continue to be printed, with one stored in the Parliamentary Archives and the other in the National Archives. Modern laws also are stored digitally.

Parliamentary officials say the high-quality paper can last up to 500 years, but supporters of vellum say it is much more durable.

The oldest vellum law in parliament's archives dates from 1497, and even older vellum copies survive of documents, including the Magna Carta of 1215.

A previous attempt to end the practice in 1999 was defeated by lawmakers, and vellum-backers again plan to put up a fight.

Conservative lawmaker James Gray said Wednesday that the "retrograde decision" should be reversed. Speaker John Bercow said lawmakers who oppose the move can seek a debate in the House of Commons.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Prague hotel fire kills 2, injures 8

    World News CTV News
    PRAGUE, Czech Republic -- Czech officials say a hotel fire in downtown Prague has killed at least two people and injured dozens. Prague rescue service spokeswoman Jana Postova says that eight people have been rushed to hospitals with serious injuries after the blaze broke out in the hotel Saturday evening. Source
  • Gunmen storm Intercontinental Hotel in Afghan capital Kabul

    World News CTV News
    KABUL -- An Afghan official says that a group of gunmen have attacked the Intercontinental Hotel in the capital Kabul. Interior Ministry spokesman Najib Danish confirmed Saturday that the hotel came under attack at around 9 p.m. Source
  • U.S. cardinal calls pope's comments on abuse victims 'a source of great pain'

    World News CTV News
    LIMA, Peru -- Pope Francis' top adviser on clerical sex abuse implicitly rebuked the pontiff over his accusations of slander against Chilean abuse victims, saying Saturday that his words were "a source of great pain for survivors of sexual abuse. Source
  • Sherman family's private investigators believe couple was murdered: report

    Canada News CTV News
    Despite earlier information suggesting a possible murder-suicide, Toronto billionaire philanthropists Barry and Honey Sherman were murdered, according to the findings of a private team of investigators hired by the family, Toronto Star’s Chief Investigative Reporter Kevin Donovan tells CTV News. Source
  • Gunmen attack Kabul's Intercontinental Hotel

    World News CBC News
    A group of as many as four gunmen attacked the Intercontinental Hotel in the Afghan capital Kabul and were exchanging fire with security forces on Saturday as residents and staff fled. Hotel manager Ahmad Haris Nayab, who managed to escape unhurt, said the attackers had managed to get inside and people were fleeing amid bursts of gunfire on all sides, but he could say nothing about any casualties. Source
  • Men's Facebook group appears to re-emerge after being taken offline

    Canada News CTV News
    Despite being taken offline Friday night, a private, men-only Facebook group that was linked to trolling attacks on several B.C. businesses appears to have re-emerged.Scroll down or click here to vote in our poll of the day The ‘Official HimPower Backup Group’ Facebook group has garnered a slew of new members since the ‘HimPower’ group was shut down after CTV News revealed that some of its 44,000+ members were sharing intimate images of women without their consent and posting offensive online…
  • Junior hockey star charged in violent break-in at Calgary professor's home

    Canada News CBC News
    A Mount Royal University student and the former captain of its hockey team has been charged in a brutal attack on an MRU professor after a break-in at her Calgary home last weekend, CBC News has learned. Originally from Truro, N.S. Source
  • Mudslides take heavy toll on immigrants serving posh town

    World News CTV News
    Oprah Winfrey and Rob Lowe give Montecito its star power, but it's people like Antonio and Victor Benitez who keep the wealthy Southern California community running. The Mexican brothers are gardeners and part of the town's working-class immigrant population, which suffered outsized losses from the recent mudslides that killed at least 20, injured dozens and damaged or destroyed hundreds of homes. Source
  • Turkish jets bombard Kurdish-run city of Afrin in Syria

    World News CBC News
    Turkish jets bombed the Kurdish-controlled city of Afrin in northern Syria on Saturday, as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan promised to expand Turkey's military border operations against a Kurdish group that has been the U.S.'s key Syria ally in the war on the group Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Source
  • P.E.I. legion to apologize after Sikh man reportedly asked to remove headdress

    Canada News CTV News
    TIGNISH, P.E.I. - The president of a P.E.I. branch of the Royal Canadian Legion is expected to apologize after a Sikh man was reportedly asked to remove his religious head covering and heckled with racist remarks. Source