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Vol 21 No 9 Sept/Oct 2016

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The Independence of the Judiciary: The View from the Lord Chancellor's Office

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ISBN13: 9780198258155
ISBN: 0198258151
Published: November 1993
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Hardback
Price: Out of print
Paperback edition , ISBN13 9780198262633

This monograph contends that the concept of the independence of the judiciary has not been seriously analyzed in England and examines it through the perceptions of the Lord Chancellor's Office. The Lord Chancellor's Office was established in 1880 as the executive arm of the Lord Chancellor, who is the presiding judge of England, a member of the Cabinet, Speaker of the House of Lords and also head of an executive department - his own office. Working from the records of the Lord Chancellor's Office, the author takes the reader through a number of related areas: the appointment of judges and the attempt to remove them; the disciplining of judges; their role in the Courts; their executive responsibilities, particularly towards the commissions and committees they chair; relations with Parliament and the Civil Service; and the role of the English Judges in the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council. This work also examines the battles within and around the judiciary over the last 30 years, and places them in the broader context of the separation of powers, the legal system and the politics of the period.

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Constitutional and Administrative Law, General Interest
Part 1 The Lord Chancellor's Office and the age of Muir-Mackenzie: the founding of the Lord Chancellor's Office
the Muir-Mackenzie era
the imperial dimension
the changing concept of the judiciary.
Part 2 The Schuster era - high policy: the machinery of government and the long weekend
a little matter of constitutionalism
the Hewart explosion.
Part 3 Schuster and the judges: choosing the judges
county court salaries - the doctrine of unripeness
pay claims - the high court and high drama.
Part 4 Schuster and the end of empire: the judicial committee - the beginning of the end
a case study of Canada.
Part 5 The era of Napier and Coldstream - numbers, appointment and control of the judges: the number of judges
choosing the judges
controlling the judges
the executive and the judiciary.
Part 6 The end of Napier and Coldstream - the use of the judiciary: the uses of ignorance, impartiality and independence
the classic case - the restrictive practices court
restrictive practices - the public doubts
another spoke in the wheel - the Lord Chancellor's Office and committees.
Part 7 Judicial salaries from the 1940s to the 1980s: the Labour years 1945-1951
the Conservative administration 1951-1964
the later years.
Part 8 The later years - vignettes from the end of empire: Canada resiles - Sri Lanka pursues
and who, pray, shall sit?. Epilogue: the last decades
the perplexing problems of judicial independence
criticizing the judiciary
the judiciary reformed?
the Lord Chancellor's department and the future.