Yes, I know it’s also ridiculous:
The Duke of Wellington, a hereditary peer whose father was stripped of the right to sit in the House of Lords 16 years ago, has been elected to the upper house under an arcane procedure invoked after the retirement of another peer.
Charles Wellesley, the ninth holder of the title, won a byelection that took place following the retirement of Lord Luke, a Conservative, in June.
Under the House of Lords Act 1999, Lords were permitted to elect 90 hereditary peers to remain sitting in the reformed second chamber, with 666 peers being stripped of their 800-year-old right to sit at Westminster.
When a hereditary peer dies or takes voluntary retirement a byelection is held. Peers who have a hereditary title are eligible to stand in a byelection and only sitting hereditary peers in the same party grouping as the departing peer can vote.
A total of 48 other hereditary Conservative peers voted in the election under the alternative vote system and, after four transfers of votes, the Duke ended up with 21 votes, beating the Marquess of Abergavenny and the Earl of Harrowby, who picked up six votes each.
48 people vote on which of roughly 700 people should join the upper legislative house of the country.
Quite mad, of course it is, but still rather wonderful. It’s not even one of those odd but wonderful hallowed by tradition things, it’s not even two decades old yet. And I’m sure it’s not logical nor perhaps even sensible. But I like it and so there.