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The Queen delivers her speech to Parliament

The Queen has delivered her yearly legislative speech at the State Opening of Parliament. The speech is the way in which the government sets out their legislative agenda for the coming year.

This year’s 10 minute speech was full of drama as it was announced that plans would be brought in to support economic growth, legislations to end slavery.

The introduction to the speech featured heavily on the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats supporting the economy’s growth and creating a fairer society.

This was the final State Opening of Parliament to happen before the next general election, meaning that economic policies and investment featured heavily on the text. Among the details announced were pension reforms, support for fracking and increasing the UK’s housing supply.

The coalition government also intends new legislation against modern slavery. In the speech, The Queen said “a bill will be introduced to strengthen the powers to prevent modern slavery and human trafficking, whilst improving support for victims of such crimes.”

For the euro-sceptics, there was some mention of the European Union and that the Government should “promote reform in the European Union, including a stronger role for member states and national parliaments.”

Other measures outlined were a new state funded childcare subsidy, a heroism legislation (where people are rewarded for good deeds), and plans to charge 5p for plastic carrier bags in England. Her  Majesty ended the speech with “My Lords and Members of the House of Commons. I pray that the blessing of Almighty God may rest upon your counsels”

There was added drama during the speech when a page-boy fainted during the speech; he is now said to be fine. Dennis Skinner, the MP for Bolsover also made his traditional quip announcing “coalitions last stand” when Black Rod summoned the House of Commons to the House of Lords.

You can read events as they happened by clicking here to view Royal Central’s archive of the day.

Featured photo credit: UK Parliament via photopin cc

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