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The Sovereign is silent on sovereignty


The Queen at Buckingham Palace, shortly after being crowned. She was beautiful and sovereign, and Britain was independent and hopeful. Image: Old UK Photos

A number of you have followed my exchange of letters with Buckingham Palace because they went to the heart of Britain's Constitution and to the strange new land where we find ourselves. Indeed, my letters to The Queen resembled the letters and petitions many of you have sent to The Queen. In the silence that concludes these letters, a new question has arisen.

I believe that Britain's Constitution calls for a constitutional parliament, courts under common law and an executive, the Sovereign, who makes a covenant with her people to defend their laws, liberties and customs. In order to protect them, the Sovereign has certain limited powers which include the power to refuse Royal Assent to bills passed by Parliament which she deems unconstitutional or onerous to her people. One of the bills which should have been refused Royal Assent was the Lisbon Treaty 2008, which cements European Union power over Britain.

In January 2009 The Queen asked the Ministry of Justice to respond to my constitutional questions, and I received a letter from Ms Eirian Walsh Atkins, Head of Constitutional Policy.

In her reply to me, Ms Atkins allowed that there was a written British Constitution and that it included the Bill of Rights 1689. However, she said nothing about the fact that the Bill of Rights specifically forbids foreign powers to rule Britain. Incredibly the entire political class seems to have forgotten this critical constitutional principle. (The Constitutional Policy letter appears in the file which contains all my exchanges with The Queen.)

In February 2009, I wrote again to The Queen. The Queen's response has been silence, with very serious implications for our country.

Kingsmere Meadow
Winchester S021 2BL
01962 714413

16 February 2009

Her Majesty The Queen
Buckingham Palace
London SW1A 1AA


I wrote to Your Majesty on 8 December about serious Constitutional issues.

At Your Majesty's request, Mrs Bonici forwarded my letter to the Ministry of Justice. The response of the Ministry of Justice concerns me greatly. It appears that the Ministry of Justice neither comprehends the British Constitution nor Your Majesty's Constitutional role.

Head of Constitutional Policy admits that parts of British Constitution are written

On 27 January 2009, I received a reply from Ms Eirian Walsh Atkins who is the Head of Constitutional Policy. She stated: "You are right to point out that parts of the British Constitution are written and we can confirm that statutes that you mention such as the Bill of Rights 1688/9 and Act of Settlement 1701 are some of the many statutes that make up our uncodified constitution".

Ms Atkins failed to mention either the Coronation Oath or Magna Carta as written parts of our Constitution. Some people have forgotten the significance of the Coronation Oath and Magna Carta, but we should not like to think that the Head of Constitutional Policy is one of them.

Your Majesty will understand that the Coronation Oath and Magna Carta were not originally parliamentary statutes, so Parliament may be inclined to overlook them. However, their Constitutional significance has been recognised for centuries.

Constitutional significance of the Coronation according to 2nd Baron Wakehurst

Your Majesty's Coronation was a momentous occasion for all your people. I can still vividly remember watching Your Majesty on television. Recently I was reminded of that day by the film Long to Reign Over Us, which is currently available on the Royal Channel. There John de Vere Loder, 2nd Baron Wakehurst, KG, GCMG, describes the constitutional importance of the Coronation:

"When She is anointed with the consecrated oil, when She takes into her hands the orb, the sceptre, and all the other symbols of royalty, such as the sword, the bracelets, the spurs, and when homage is paid in the form prescribed by the traditions of a thousand years, Her people are pledging themselves on their part to honour the Sovereignty of the nation in Her person and to work with Her in maintaining the Constitution that She has taken her oath to support".

Indispensable Magna Carta

The Constitution that Your Majesty swore to support before God in covenant with your people includes Magna Carta. Winston Churchill wrote about our Great Charter:

"In subsequent ages when the state swollen with its own authority has attempted to ride roughshod over the rights and liberties of the people it is to this doctrine that appeal has again and again been made and never as yet without success".

The Americans, who borrowed much from our own dear Constitution, call Magna Carta the foundation of the US Constitution and of their liberty. There are many reasons for this, but one reason in particular:

The right to trial by jury and the jury's right to return a not guilty verdict even if it runs counter to statute law is a bulwark against tyranny. The people have the power to decide that a law is unjust, as they did in the famous case of William Penn in 1670. Consequently the power of the state is limited and statute law cannot become despotic. This is one of the Constitutional mechanisms that have defended our liberty for nearly one thousand years.

EU's Corpus Juris eliminates our essential rights and protections

It is a grave concern that the European Union intends that all member states will follow Corpus Juris, a system that eliminates all the protections of Magna Carta. Retired magistrate David Rowlands writes that few people, in particular members of Parliament, have read this code (Corpus Juris, ISBN 27178/33447).

He has done his homework and points out:

"Your rights, held since Magna Carta, to be judged by your peers have been eliminated. Lay magistracy has been exterminated. The genius of our Common Law, which involves the community in administering criminal justice at first instance through the magistrates and later through the jury, has been deliberately destroyed."

Lisbon Treaty means 'whatever we want it to mean'

Corpus Juris and Magna Carta cannot be reconciled. The Lisbon Treaty is a treaty written to be "self-amending". It can be expanded. It can be changed to mean whatever governments in future would like it to mean.

The Lisbon Treaty cannot be reconciled with Bill of Rights

It cannot be reconciled with the Bill of Rights (1689), which Ms Atkins affirmed is a written part of our Constitution. The Bill of Rights declares:

"That no foreign prince, person, prelate, state, or potentate hath, or ought to have, any jurisdiction, power, superiority, pre-eminence, or authority, ecclesiastical or spiritual, within this realm."
In short, giving any foreign body authority over the British people is unconstitutional.

Ms Atkins wrote that ". . .rules made by external bodies, for example under international law, cannot override Acts of Parliament". But the European Union is an external body, and in future the Lisbon Treaty will allow the EU to override acts of Parliament.

How could this happen?

Your Majesty may well wonder how this is possible. How could such a conflict with our Constitution have been overlooked? One answer is suggested by the present financial crisis: Many critical things have been overlooked by Your Majesty's Ministers.

How was it that Royal Assent was given to an act that ought to have been rejected as incompatible with the British Constitution? Because ministers erroneously claimed that the Lisbon Treaty does not do what it says it will do; and falsely asserted that the Sovereign is obligated to give Royal Assent to everything that Parliament demands.

Parliament claims that the Sovereign's solemnly sworn duty to defend the laws and customs of Her people does not require Her to defend the people from unconstitutional acts of Parliament. But that is to hold the Sovereign’s sworn oath in contempt.

Refusing Royal Assent is a constitutional responsibility, as history shows

An assent implies the possibility of a refusal. Some monarchs have been fortunate because their Parliaments have not presented them with unconstitutional Acts. However, historians tell us that Edward VII threatened to withhold Royal Assent from [what became after his death] the 1911 Parliament Act and that in Canada Royal Assent was withheld in 1936 and in 1937 from bills of doubtful constitutionality.

The Crown in Parliament is sovereign. The necessity of an executive to balance the power of the legislature is clear in the British Constitution. Indeed, according to the BBC:

"The Act of Settlement, 1701, was introduced in the reign of William III, to provide for a stable executive branch to the British government". The executive to whom the BBC refers is the Sovereign.

The Act of Settlement is part of the British Constitution - The Sovereign must administer the Government according to the laws that are the birthright of the people

Ms Atkins agrees that the Act of Settlement is a written part of our Constitution. The Act specifically states:

"And whereas the Laws of England are the Birthright of the People thereof and all the Kings and Queens who shall ascend the Throne of this Realm ought to administer the Government of the same according to the said Laws and all their Officers and Ministers ought to serve them respectively according to the same, The said Lords Spirituall and Temporall and Commons do therefore further humbly pray That all the Laws and Statutes of this Realm for securing the established Religion and the Rights and Liberties of the People thereof and all other Laws and Statutes of the same now in Force may be ratified and confirmed."

The Sovereign's responsibility for the Constitutions of the Dominions

Under our Constitution the Sovereign has important administrative responsibilities to ensure that the Constitution is defended. Indeed Your Majesty has an important role in defending the Constitutions of the Dominions, as was evidenced in 1975 when Your Majesty’s Governor-General resolved what has been called the greatest political and constitutional crisis in Australia's history. Yet Ms Atkins wrote that Your Majesty's "executive role has inevitably diminished".

Who reduced the Sovereign's executive role?

I am astonished. On what date did Your Majesty's executive role diminish? Under what Constitutional articles?

These are the very questions that I asked in my letter of December 8th. I have yet to receive an answer from Your Majesty or from Your Majesty's Government.

Your Majesty is bound by oath sworn before God and people to defend British laws and liberties

I respectfully submit that the British Constitution is under threat and that Your Majesty is bound by oath sworn before God and people to defend it.

Will Your Majesty publicly advise Your Majesty's ministers that Parliament should repeal the Lisbon Treaty?

Such an action on your part would enjoy the strongest support of the great majority of your people.

Yours sincerely,

David F. Abbott

HRH The Prince of Wales
HRH The Princess Royal
HRH Prince William
HRH Prince Henry
The Most Rev. and the Rt Hon. The Lord Archbishop of Canterbury

The Queen's Silence

As of May 2009, I have received no reply from The Queen to my three questions - On what date did Your Majesty's executive role diminish? Under what Constitutional articles? And will Your Majesty publicly advise Your Majesty's ministers that Parliament should repeal the Lisbon Treaty?

However, I have received a possible explanation from a correspondent to the first two questions -

When The Queen came to the throne, she was sovereign. However, Parliament had been deliberately undermining the Sovereign and the Sovereign's covenant with the people for decades.

In 1972 there was a political coup in Parliament. The government told the people that their independence and Britain's sovereignty would not be destroyed if Britain entered the Common Market. This was false.

Over the years, in a series of treaties, the government has continued to stealthily hand over constitutional sovereignty (and the people's hard-earned tax dollars) to the European Union.

For years a number of sensible Brits have been attempting to point this out, but 'the incredulity factor has ruled'. Everything looked the same, but everything was changing.

The self-seekers and the exploiters are in charge.
The government has stated that the Queen no longer has any political or executive role in Parliament. This means that the Queen is no longer Constitutional Monarch, which in turn means that the Queen is no monarch at all, for under our system we have no other form of monarchy.
Our correspondent concludes that "Parliament?since 1972 has been a puppet political dictatorship without constitutional constraint. It now sits in waiting for the EU constitution, which is why the Queen signed up to it. With a politicised judiciary backed by a politicised police force we are denied redress constitutionally, legally and politically."

The Queen's silence has answered my third question. She is not prepared to repudiate the Lisbon Treaty and in refusing to do so, she has placed her country and her monarchy in jeopardy.

I am faced with a final question - if The Queen will not reply and will take no action, what must be done?

The first thing would be to attend the British Constitution Group's Lawful Rebellion on June 13th.

Comments (4)

A Betts:

The Minister of Justice is too busy to worry about British Constitutional matters.....
he is busy with matters of national priority .... like filling in his expense claims!


The silence is deafening. It would seem that the Queen, anxious to retain her position, is allowing the majority in Parliament free reign to do whatever it likes. Whatever the colorful prose of her coronation oath, it takes a back seat to pragmatic concerns over endangering the position of her family from what would clearly be a backlash by Labour, if not Tories also, perhaps going as far as to seek extinguishment of the monarchy. It would seem cowardice in the extreme on her part.

Ultimately, you and I share a similar position. We sit and watch nearly impotent as a corrupt political class proceeds extrajudicially to tear down hugely successful societies built over hundreds of years, in my case, over a millenium in yours. They seek to put in place dictatorial experiments in socialism that stand for everything our free societies historically stood against.

These people were voted into office, and it is only by electing true reformers, it would seem, can there be any change from within the corrupted system itself. That is easier on my side of the pond then on yours, unfortunately, and the UK's lack of an easilly recognizable written Constituion compounds the system immensely.

As an aside, I agree you have a Constitution, but it comes from so many disparate pieces that I doubt 1 in 100 on your side of the pond could identify them all off the top of their head. (Indeed probably the best pre-1783 single source reference for the British Constitution's disparate pieces is the U.S. Constitution) Further, in contravention of the documents, there is the long established tradition in the UK of Parliamentary Sovereignty defined by Blackstone as Parliament's "sovereign and uncontrollable authority in making, confirming, enlarging, restraining, abrogating, repealing, reviving, and expounding of laws, concerning matters of all possible denominations, ecclesiastical, or temporal, civil, military, maritime, or criminal … it can, in short, do every thing that is not naturally impossible." That doctrine has been the basis for striking from law many of the provisions of the Magna Carta and the 1689 Bill of Rights. Thus it is why I always think of the UK today as a tyranny of the majority. Parliament recognizes no realistic bounds on its authority and the Courts defer to Parliament.

Back to my original point. Our only option through the democratic process is to elect those who would actually reform the system. Yet our same corrupt political class, through a variety of means sufficiently long to write a book about, stacks the deck to make such an event difficult, bordering on impossible.

Nonetheless, that is our only option - unless and until the government crosses the Rubicon and goes from stacking the deck to using the law in such a manner as to criminalize political disagreements. The UK has certainly started down that road on the margins at least, with its hate speech laws. The U.S. seemed intent on directly criminalizing core political disagreements with Obama's original plan to allow for prosecution of members of the Bush administration over the Iraq War and waterboarding. If that were to happen, it would lead to true civil war on this side of the pond - the kind with blood in the streets. Obama has recently wisely backed off this plan.

At any rate, the problem of a corrupt political class is certainly not new on either side of the pond. On that note, it is appropriate to finish with Oliver Cromwell’s Speech on the Dissolution of the Long Parliament
Given to the House of Commons
20 April 1653

It is high time for me to put an end to your sitting in this place, which you have dishonored by your
contempt of all virtue, and defiled by your practice of every vice; ye are a factious crew, and enemies to all good government; ye are a pack of mercenary wretches, and would like Esau sell your country for a mess of pottage, and like Judas betray your God for a few pieces of money.

Is there a single virtue now remaining amongst you? Is there one vice you do not possess? Ye have no more religion than my horse; gold is your God; which of you have not barter’d your conscience for bribes? Is there a man amongst you that has the least care for the good of the Commonwealth?

Ye sordid prostitutes have you not defil’d this sacred place, and turn’d the Lord’s temple into a den of thieves, by your immoral principles and wicked practices? Ye are grown intolerably odious to the whole nation; you were deputed here by the people to get grievances redress’d, are yourselves gone!


I have learned of late a much greater appreciation for Mr. Cromwell. Indeed, his very presence in our historical record should be a glimmer of hope to both of us that indeed, problems of these ilk have occurred before and been answered by men and women equal to the task.

John Wrake:

I have submitted two petitions to Her Majesty, asking her to take action to prevent the ongoing theft of my birthright to be governed by the Queen in Parliament, which is inherent in this country's membership of the European Union.

In both cases, I have been informed that the Queen has no power to comment on such matters and my words have been passed to a Government Department.

I have not been told that my petition has been rejected. I have not been told anything.

Whether I can expect an answer to my charge of theft is questionable, given that the Minister for Justice has been questioned about his use of Parliamentary allowances and the Junior Minister for Justice has been suspended following accusations of fraud.

However, the English Constitution and that part of it in the Bill of Rights 1689 confers on me the right to petition the Monarch and to obtain redress from Her, not from some dodgy Department of Her Government.

Why has my petition not been answered? It is now eighteen months since I first wrote.

Any attempt to suggest that the Bill of Rights has been repealed is treason for any subsequent statute which makes such a claim is contrary to the English Constitution and therefore illegal.

Thank you, John.

Interested readers can find John Wrake's petitions to The Queen here.

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