It was, however, Charles Louis de Montesquieu who clearly defined the three branches of government and laid down the basics of the concept of separation of powers. Some countries being underpinned by the concept of separation of powers, like the United States, have written constitutions that clearly laid out and allocated the various powers and functions of the government to the different branches (Barnett pp. 105-106). This is not so in the United Kingdom. The UK Constitution does not consist of a single, written document but rather of various uncodified laws scattered in several documents like statutes, court decisions and treaties and unwritten ones like customs and conventions. A strict separation of powers normally divides separate powers and functions and allows them to the three branches government: the executive; Parliament, and; the judiciary. In the UK, the components of the three branches of governments usually share powers held by other branches in a mixed government fashion. Eric Barendt, however, author of the book Separation of Powers does not believe that the UK necessarily has a weaker constitution because of this disparity. He believes that “the separation of powers should not be explained in terms of a strict distribution of functions between the three branches of government, but in terms of a network of rules and principles which ensure that power is not concentrated in the hands of one branch.”
The UK government, like other democratic governments, has three major institutions, all exercising various functions and powers and sometimes sharing the powers of the other branches: the executive, the legislative and the judiciary.
The executive department is made up the Crown and the central government, the latter of which is composed of the Prime Minister and his/her Cabinet Ministers. The central government is accountable to Parliament, which can choose to dissolve it and force a new election of a new set of officials if it believes that circumstances warrant it.