Viewing guide: What's on Parliament in the coming week

Parliament semi-resumes with four days of rather humdrum Lords business while MPs are still free to cavort at the Conservative Party conference.

The legislation and debates scheduled for the coming week look unlikely to shake the nation, and some cynics are even suggesting that Noble Lords are being brought back from their holidays earlier as a punishment for the grief they have been giving the government, or alternatively as a Labour jape to keep Conservative ministers from enjoying their annual bacchanalia.

Whatever the reason Monday finds peers debating the Sovereign Grant Bill (which revamps the system of payments to the Royal Family). They will be asked to dispose of this bill - second reading and remaining stages in a single gulp and send it off to HM for signature. Then there's the second reading of the London Olympic Games and paralympic Games (Amendment) Bill, which tweaks the legal framework for the 2012 games.

There is an intriguing-looking question about prohibiting cash transactions by scrap metal dealers, from Labour's Lord Faulkner of Worcester. The underlying thought seems to be that insisting on recordable transactions by cheque or card would make life difficult for the looters who rip up church roofs and railway signal cables, and sell their spoils as scrap.

Tuesday is devoted to a report stage debate on the Armed Forces Bill - which renews the legal basis for the UK Armed Forces, and also builds in a new requirement for the Defence Secretary to report to Parliament on the welfare of service (and ex-service) personnel. This could attract some interesting thoughts from the legion of defence heavyweights on the red benches. Ulster Unionist Lord Empey has a question down about securing compensation from the new government of Libya for the victims of the weapons supplied to the IRA by the Gaddafi regime.

And as the hacking scandal continues to unfold, the Lords Communications Committee considers the future of "responsible investigative journalism" in a changing media landscape. Giving evidence, John Lloyd and David Levy from the Reuters Institute and John Mair, senior lecturer in broadcasting at Coventry University. Questions are expected to focus on how media organisations are adapting, whether new funding models for investigative journalism need to be found and whether the legal framework needs to change.

Wednesday sees the Second Reading of the Terrorism Prevention and Investigation Measures Bill, the measure designed to replace the previous Government's controversial Control Orders, which were used to limit the activities of terrorism suspects, even though they had not been convicted of an offence. The new TPIMs - as they are known - have been criticised as a fudge which does not represent an alternative approach to Control Orders and which still allows the home secretary to restrict the liberty of individuals on the basis of secret evidence. This is the kind of issue on which the Lords can make life very difficult for governments - as it did in the Labour years - although Labour did abstain on the Bill in the Commons.

Questions to ministers include one from Lady Turner of Camden on the future of Remploy factories and one from Plaid Cymru's Lord Wigley on the future of the Welsh language channel, S4C.

Thursday is devoted to two debates instigated by backbench peers - first on the worldwide incidence of non-communicable diseases and second on the Building Stability Overseas Strategy . There's also a question from Labour's Lord Soley on whether the Government is planning to change its programme of legislation - perhaps because peers have slowed so much of it down.

Neither House sits on Friday - but both Lords and Commons swing into action the following week.