The Shadow Cabinet reference article from the English Wikipedia on 24-Jul-2004
(provided by Fixed Reference: snapshots of Wikipedia from wikipedia.org)

Shadow Cabinet

Videos show Africa through the eyes of children
The Shadow Cabinet (also called the Opposition Front Bench) is a senior group of opposition spokespeople in the Westminster System of government who together under the leadership of the Leader of the Opposition (or the leader of other smaller opposition parties) form an alternative cabinet to the government's, whose members shadow or mark each individual member of the government. Members of a shadow cabinet are often but not always appointed to a Cabinet post if and when their party gets into government.

In the United Kingdom and Canada the major opposition party and specifically its shadow cabinet is often called Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition. The adjective "loyal" is used because while there are policy differences, everyone acknowledges the role of the opposition in the system. However in other countries that use the Westminster system (eg. Australia and New Zealand), the opposition is known simply as The Parliamentary Opposition.

List of Shadow Cabinets