Laws on vellum - level 3

Laws on vellum - level 3

24-02-2016 07:00

This is where Parliament's laws are stored. Not on a database, not even on paper – written on vellum which is animal skin. The House of Lords thinks paper could be a cheaper option, but there are some that take a more traditional stance.

“Laws ought to have a permanency to them. They’re important, they’re powerful, they’re how we have to live our lives, and therefore they ought to be recorded in such a way that will last for as long as possible.”

“What we're doing, we’re getting the skin to rot, effectively. We want to get the skin to a stage of rot that allows us to work where we can take the hair from the the grain side, the remnants of the flesh from the other side…”

The company that makes the vellum says that while it is a messy business, it can last 5,000 years.

“The Magna Carta, in real terms, it’s cost us six pound sa century. I don't believe there's  another format, another medium where you get secure data storage for six pound a century.”

At an extra 80,000 pounds a year, it’s is not a cheap option, but the question is, will tradition win out over cost cost in the vellum dispute?

Difficult words: permanency (ability to exist for a long time), grain side (the side of a skin on which the hair was), remnant (a little piece of something that is left), flesh (the muscle), dispute (an argument).


What would you write the laws on?

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