POLL: Should the Death Penalty be reinstated?

It is exactly 50 years since the Death Penalty was abolished
It is exactly 50 years since the Death Penalty was abolished
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It is now exactly 50 years since the Death Penalty for murder was abolished in the United Kingdom.

In 1965 the Labour MP Sydney Silverman, who had committed himself to the cause of abolition for more than 20 years, introduced a Private Member's Bill to suspend the death penalty, which was passed on afree vote in the House of Commons by 200 votes to 98. The bill was subsequently passed by the House of Lords by 204 votes to 104.

Since then, opinion polls on the subject of Capital Punishment have shown that the majority of the British public support the Death Penalty.

But the most recent poll revealed that for the first time more people were opposed to the Death Penalty than were for it.

After the abolition in 1965 there were a few select offences which for a time were still punishable by Death Penalty.

These were: causing a fire or explosion in a naval dockyard, ship, magazine or warehouse (abolished in 1971); espionage (abolished in 1981); piracy with violence (abolished in 1998); and treason (abolished in 1998).

However, no executions were carried out in the United Kingdom for any of these offences after the abolition of the death penalty for murder.

The last people to be executed in the UK were Peter Anthony Allen and Gwynne Owen Evans, who were executed for the murder of John Alan West.

They were executed on August 13 1964.

Do YOU think the Death Penalty should be brought back? Use our Comments section to have your say and click on the link below to vote in our poll.

POLL: Should the Death Penalty be reinstated?