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The Case of N.

Francis FitzGibbon: The strange world of asylum law, 21 July 2005

... come here for medical treatment, but as a refugee. She had been kidnapped and held captive by the Lord’s Resistance Army for two years, then by another rebel group, the National Resistance Movement. She had been severely mistreated and repeatedly raped. This woman, who is known as ‘N.’, applied for asylum on two independent grounds: first, under the ...

Waspish Civilities

Stephen Sedley: The Case for a Supreme Court, 21 May 2020

High Principle, Low Politics and the Emergence of the Supreme Court 
by Frederic Reynold.
Wildy, Simmonds and Hill, 154 pp., £14.95, September 2019, 978 0 85490 283 5
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... peerage and handed to a committee composed of legally qualified life peers appointed by the lord chancellor. Then in 2009 the House of Lords was replaced by a Supreme Court, separately housed, financed and administered, its proceedings livestreamed, its judges appointed by a non-governmental commission. To lawyers it looked very much like the end of ...
The Due Process of Law 
by Lord Denning.
Butterworth, 263 pp., £8.95, February 1980, 0 406 17607 8
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... This, the companion volume to The Discipline of Law, completes Lord Denning’s current legal testament – his witness, until his next book, to the cause of justice. He writes on difficult questions of law for the pleasure of ordinary folk: and he succeeds. Yet, for all his racy style (its brevity and bravura could serve as a model for journalists), and notwithstanding his sense of mischief and love of fun, he has produced a serious contribution to the legal study, critical in our time, of the role of the judge in the public life of a common law country ...

Trying to Make Decolonisation Look Good

Bernard Porter: The End of Empire, 2 August 2007

Britain’s Declining Empire: The Road to Decolonisation, 1918-68 
by Ronald Hyam.
Cambridge, 464 pp., £17.99, February 2007, 978 0 521 68555 9
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The Last Thousand Days of the British Empire 
by Peter Clarke.
Allen Lane, 559 pp., August 2007, 978 0 7139 9830 6
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Forgotten Wars: The End of Britain’s Asian Empire 
by Christopher Bayly and Tim Harper.
Allen Lane, 673 pp., £30, January 2007, 978 0 7139 9782 8
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... it pretty chuffed, too. They must have been encouraged in this feeling by the crowds that cheered Lord Mountbatten on India’s Independence night, 14-15 August 1947, and unharnessed the horses from his vice-regal coach to drag it around New Delhi themselves, to the amazement of one journalist: it was as if ‘this nation had become more pro-British than it ...

In Letchworth

Gillian Darley: Pevsner's Hertfordshire, 2 January 2020

... It belonged to the Lamb family, forebears of Queen Victoria’s first prime minister, Lord Melbourne and was bought in the 1920s by a Liverpool brewer, soon ennobled as Lord Brocket. Then it became a hotel and conference centre. The lake, a dammed section of the River Lea, attracts the attention of guests and ...

A Misreading of the Law

Conor Gearty: Why didn’t Campbell sue?, 19 February 2004

Report of the Inquiry into the Circumstances Surrounding the Death of Dr David Kelly CMG 
by Lord Hutton.
Stationery Office, 740 pp., £70, January 2004, 0 10 292715 4
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... Blair’s intuitive political genius. It was extraordinary to have reaped from the appointment of Lord Hutton a set of findings which transformed a crisis that threatened to be overwhelming into a vindication of every aspect of the government’s conduct, and of the prime minister’s moral probity in particular. But when the full implications of the report ...

When judges sleep

Stephen Sedley, 10 June 1993

In the Highest Degree Odious: Detention without Trial in Wartime Britain 
by A.W.B. Simpson.
Oxford, 453 pp., £35, December 1992, 0 19 825775 9
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... land in breach of bye-laws which, it turned out, had been illegally made. It also gave the new Lord Chief Justice an example, for his Dimbleby Lecture, of the law’s ability to play a straight bat. A book may be lurking there, as it must in many other corners of the legal attic. Brian Simpson himself embarked on such an enterprise some years ago with the ...

Judicial Politics

Stephen Sedley, 23 February 2012

... Among the last, now more than half a century ago, were James Reid QC, a Scottish Tory MP who, as Lord Reid, became one of the best judges of the postwar years, and Cyril Radcliffe QC, a distinguished public servant and barrister. The legislation which in 2009 took final appeal in the UK out of the legislature and into its own space, and which populated it ...

Becoming homeless is easily done

David Renton, 7 May 2020

... going to lose loved ones before their time.’ ‘Emergency legislation is being drafted,’ the lord chief justice announced on 17 March, ‘which is likely to contain clauses that expand the powers in criminal courts to use technology in a wider range of hearings.’ The Bar Council argued that all jury trials should be stayed until after the ...

Hooked Trout

Geoffrey Best: Appeasement please, 2 June 2005

Making Friends with Hitler: Lord Londonderry and Britain’s Road to War 
by Ian Kershaw.
Allen Lane, 488 pp., £20, October 2004, 0 7139 9717 6
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... his trouble that he had too high an estimation of himself. He could never forget his descent from Lord Castlereagh, the great foreign secretary of the post-Napoleonic years and the exemplary peacemaker at Vienna in 1814. His case was exactly the opposite of Hilaire Belloc’s fictional peer, whose ducal grand-sire berated him: ‘We had intended you to ...

That sh—te Creech

James Buchan: The Scottish Enlightenment, 5 April 2007

The Enlightenment and the Book: Scottish Authors and Their Publishers in 18th-Century Britain, Ireland and America 
by Richard Sher.
Chicago, 815 pp., £25.50, February 2007, 978 0 226 75252 5
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... in London, while keeping up a crapulous small-arms fight against the literary magistrates at home.We also learn that the decline in Scottishliterature for half a generation after Adam Smith’s death in 1790 – ‘nothing in the way of literature is going on here,’ William Smellie claimed – had less to do with the Edinburgh sedition trials than with ...

Godmother of the Salmon

John Bayley, 9 July 1992

‘Rain-Charm for the Duchy’ and other Laureate Poems 
by Ted Hughes.
Faber, 64 pp., £12.99, June 1992, 0 571 16605 9
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... from Ireland, and it seemed a good idea to knock off a little ‘Horatian Ode’ to welcome the Lord Protector home. Larkin had his own wholly characteristic way of dealing with a royal occasion. In times when nothing stood but worsened, or grew strange, there was one constant good:         she did not ...

Weathering the storm

Robert Blake, 18 October 1984

Lord Liverpool: The Life and Political Career of Robert Banks Jenkinson, Second Earl of Liverpool 1770-1828 
by Norman Gash.
Weidenfeld, 265 pp., £16.95, August 1984, 0 297 78453 6
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... later in December 1828. By then his successor, Canning, was also dead. Canning’s successor, Lord Goderich, had resigned without even meeting Parliament, and the Duke of Wellington was well into the first year of a premiership which led to the triumph of two causes anathema to Lord Liverpool – Catholic Emancipation ...

From Old Adam to New Eve

Peter Pulzer, 6 June 1985

The Conservative Party from Peel to Thatcher 
by Robert Blake.
Methuen/Fontana, 401 pp., £19.95, May 1985, 0 413 58140 3
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Westminster Blues 
by Julian Critchley.
Hamish Hamilton, 134 pp., £7.95, May 1985, 0 241 11387 3
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... Younger Pitt and Charles James Fox, or with the battle over Parliamentary Reform in the 1830s – Lord Blake prefers the second of these – it is evident that the two parties arose simultaneously. They have not shown equal powers of survival. Whiggery has long disappeared, though 20th-century Conservatives have included a few Whiggish eccentrics. The Liberal ...

Judges and Ministers

Anthony Lester, 18 April 1996

... by ministers. These attacks have been concerted, populist and unfair. They have been led by the Home Secretary, Michael Howard (a frequent and bad loser in the courts), and the Chairman of his Party, Brian Mawhinney, who has urged Tory hangers and floggers to write in and complain about lenient sentencing on the part of judges, and has put out as party ...

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