Former Speaker of the House of Commons Baroness Boothroyd yesterday called for urgent action over the "worsening structural condition" of the Palace of Westminster before "it is too late to prevent irreparable loss".

She is demanding a debate in the House of Lords to consider this crisis and "the threat to the iconic status as Britain's most famous World Heritage site". A decision has already been drafted to place the Westminster site on Unesco's list of World Heritage Sites in Danger.

Unesco will debate it in Qatar next week, where attention will be focused on British accusations of football corruption over the World Cup. The site, listed for its "outstanding universal value" includes both Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey and St ­Margaret's Church.

Loading article content