Sarah Clarke: First ever woman appointed as Parliamentary Black Rod

First ever woman appointed as Parliamentary Black Rod

Sarah Clarke will be the Black Rod

Friday, November 17, 2017

A woman has been appointed as the Black Rod in Parliament for the first time.

Sarah Clarke has been given the job which she will start next year, according to the BBC. Her official title will be The Lady Usher of the Black Rod.

The Black Rod is in charge of 30 staff members who run the House of Lords, organises ceremonies and can earn up to £93,000 per year.

The most well-known job of the Black Rod is knocking on the House of Commons door during the State Opening of Parliament. This is to call the MPs to the Queen's Speech.

Clarke's current job is organising the Wimbledon tennis championships and she has previously worked in high positions for the London Marathon and four Olympic Games.

After being given the role she said: "I am both deeply honoured and delighted to be invited to take up the role of Black Rod."

She also added that in the House of Lords it is "a place where the smallest detail is as important as the big picture and the depth of heritage and tradition is second to none. I am truly looking forward to starting work."

Speaker of the House of Lords, Lord Fowler, has said this is a "historic moment" and Clarke has a "fantastic record at Wimbledon and elsewhere [which] shows she is the right person for the task."