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UNITED KINGDOM

Upper chamber of Parliament overflowing

LONDON | Squeeze in, Sir; excuse me, Earl. Lawmakers say the red leather benches of Britain’s House of Lords are packed to bursting - with Parliament’s upper chamber straining to cope with the needs of almost 800 members.

Legislators complain the overcrowding means a scramble for seats, office space and slots to speak. Some grumble that an influx of new members has ushered in a bad-tempered atmosphere.

The House of Lords currently has 792 active members, a mix of appointed, hereditary and religious peers.

A University College London report published Wednesday warned that the chamber had become “bloated and dysfunctional,” and demanded an immediate halt to any new appointments.

From wire dispatches and staff reports