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Duchess of Gloucester attends a Service to Mark the 40th Anniversary of the Chronically Sick and Disabled Persons Act

Wednesday, 30th March 2011

Duchess of Gloucester attends a Service to Mark the 40th Anniversary of the Chronically Sick and Disabled Persons Act

Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Gloucester attended a Service at Westminster Abbey on Wednesday 30th March 2011 to mark the 40th anniversary of the coming into effect of the Chronically Sick and Disabled Persons Act (1970).

The Act was brought in through a Private Member's Bill by the Rt Hon Lord Morris of Manchester (then Alf Morris MP for Wythenshawe) on 5 December 1969. It became an Act of Parliament in 1970.

The Act had a major impact on the lives of disabled people and provided a springboard for much of the legislation in force today.

In his Bidding the Dean of Westminster, the Very Reverend Dr John Hall, said:

Acts of Parliament have not always been celebrated in this place, nor have they always had any great significance. Four years ago, the last time we celebrated an Act of Parliament in a service here was the bicentenary of the Abolition of the Slave Trade Act. The much younger Act of Parliament we celebrate today has also brought freedom, dignity and respect to many people whose prospects would otherwise have been severely blighted.

The Address was given by the Rt Hon Lord Lloyd of Berwick.

Lord Morris read from the close of his Second Reading speech in the House of Commons on 5 December 1969.

The Rt Hon Sir George Young, Leader of the House of Commons and Lord Privy Seal, read Isaiah 49: 8-10; 13-16a and the Rt Hon Baroness Royall of Blaisdon read 1 Corinthians 12: 12-23, 26.

A Tribute was delivered by His Royal Highness Prince Raad bin Zeid, President of the High Council for Affairs of Persons with Disabilities of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.

Testimonies were read by Baroness Grey-Thompson of Eaglescliffe, Lance Corporal Craig Lundberg and Matthew Hampson.

The Seashell Trust performed Can You Hear Me?

Prayers were led by the Reverend Dr James Hawkey, Minor Canon and Sacrist of Westminster.

The service was sung by the Westminster Abbey Special Service Choir conducted by James O’Donnell, Organist and Master of the Choristers. The organ was played during the service by Robert Quinney, Sub Organist and before it by James McVinnie, Assistant Organist.

The London Charity Orchestra played before and during the service.

The Order of Service (PDF, 161 KB)

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