Campaigners have called for an inquiry into the use of the Royal Consent rule, which allows the Queen and Prince Charles to insist on personal exemptions from the law.

The call comes after fresh revelations about the use of the rule in Scotland, where the Queen successfully lobbied the government for exemption from new environmental legislation.

The Guardian reported that the Scottish government exempted the Queen from laws passed as recently as this year.

Graham Smith, speaking for campaign group Republic, said today:

"There is absolutely no justification for the Queen and Prince Charles to have this power to demand exemptions from the law."

"This represents a systematic abuse of power by the royals that goes back decades, using a little-known parliamentary rule to ensure that laws the rest of us must abide by don't apply to them."

"Because of this consent rule senior royals are exempt from race discrimination laws, environmental protection laws, planning laws and much, much more."

"In a democracy we must all be equal in law. Clearly that's not the case in the UK."

"The Duchies of Cornwall and Lancaster, and the Queen's private estates, all benefit from these exemptions. That will have an impact on local communities up and down the country."

"Parliament needs to hold an open and rigorous inquiry into the use and abuse of the royal consent rule, and must publish all documents relating to its use over the past several decades and the impact that might have on communities up and down the country."


The Guardian article is at