665. The Gentleman or Lady Usher of the Black Rod.

'Black Rod' is the principal officer of the Order of the Garter and is appointed by the Crown by letters patent under the Garter Seal1. The formal title of the role is the 'Gentleman Usher of the Black Rod', or 'Lady Usher of the Black Rod' as appropriate.

Black Rod is present when the House of Lords sits, and acts as the messenger of the Queen whenever the attendance of the Commons is required. He is also present at the introduction of a new peer2. In addition, he supervises the admission of strangers and has duties connected with the carrying