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Scotland Act 1998

Section B12: Lieutenancies
Purpose and Effect

This Section reserves the subject-matter of the Lieutenancies Act 1997.


The Office of the King’s Lieutenant now known as Lord-Lieutenant stems back to the middle ages.  Until comparatively recent times the office holders were principally concerned with the operation of the Militia Acts.  The functions of Lord-Lieutenants are now largely ceremonial and include representing the Crown in various capacities e.g. attending visits, attending upon visiting Heads of State, presenting medals and colours.  It is usual for the Lord-Lieutenant to chair and advise on the membership of the local advisory committee on justices of the peace, which makes recommendations about who should be appointed JPs.

Details of Provisions

The subject-matter of the Lieutenancies Act 1997 is reserved.  That Act makes provision for the division of Scotland into areas for lieutenancy purposes, for the appointment and removal of Lord-Lieutenants, Lieutenants, deputy Lieutenants, vice Lord-Lieutenants and clerks of lieutenancies and about the functions and privileges of each office.

Executive Devolution

The following functions have been included in the Scotland Act 1998 (Transfer of Functions to the Scottish Ministers etc.) Order 1999 (S.I. 1999/1750).

The Lieutenancies Act 1997 (c.23), section 2(4).

The function of the Secretary of State of informing a Lord Lieutenant that Her Majesty does not approve of the granting of a commission of a Deputy Lieutenant to the person whom he proposed for appointment.
Advice to The Queen

Special arrangements for giving advice to The Queen were described in a Prime Ministerial answer on 30 June 1999 (WA col 215) and an associated paper deposited in the House of Commons Library.  Part of that answer was as follows:

There are some matters in respect of which the Prime Minister gives advice to Her Majesty on the exercise of Her functions and on which it is appropriate for the Prime Minister to consult or to take advice from the First Minister. These matters include recommendations of Scottish candidates for honours and dignities, which are a reserved matter, and advice on the appointment of Lord Lieutenants in Scotland, the Lord High Commissioner to the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland and members of the Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution and the Forestry Commission.

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