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The Supreme Court Annual Report and Accounts 2015–2016

annual-report-2015-16

39 Since its

39 Since its establishment in 2009, the UKSC has placed considerable emphasis on making its proceedings as accessible as possible and nurturing effective relationships with a wide range of stakeholders across the UK and beyond. The 800th anniversary of the sealing of Magna Carta provided a particular focus for much of our educational and public engagement work during the year. Maintaining effective relationships with all jurisdictions in the United Kingdom We have continued to build constructive relationships with legislatures across the UK. The Court hosted a visit by the House of Lords Constitution Committee on 24 June, and Lord Neuberger and Lady Hale made their annual appearance before the House of Lords Constitution Committee on 8 July (the transcript of their appearance can be found on the Committee’s website). A number of members of the House of Lords, led by the Lord Speaker, visited the UKSC on 27 October as one of the regular breakfast meetings recently established between the senior judiciary and the House of Lords. The President and Deputy President invited the new Chair of the House of Commons Justice Committee for an introductory meeting which was held on 22 February. The context within which the Court operates, particularly in relation to the developing devolution settlements in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, underlines the importance of building and maintaining relationships with judges, lawyers, the devolved administrations and other bodies throughout the United Kingdom. It is an expectation that Justices who originate from either Scotland or Northern Ireland will keep in touch with judges and lawyers in those jurisdictions. Lord Reed and Lord Hodge have done this for Scotland; and Lord Kerr plays a similar role in relation to Northern Ireland. Additionally, Lord Hughes has begun occasional meetings with the Counsel-General for Wales. We have also benefited from the contribution of judges drawn from across the United Kingdom sitting either as Acting Judges of the UKSC or in the JCPC. The following Judges have sat in this financial year: Lord Collins, the Lord Chief Justice (England and Wales), the Master of the Rolls, the then Lord President of the Court of Session, Lord Justice Briggs, and Sir Bernard Rix. We are grateful to all of them for the contribution they have made. Scotland Lord Neuberger hosted an informal dinner for the new Lord President, Lord Carloway, in London on 23 February. Lord Reed attended a meeting of the Judicial Council for Scotland in Edinburgh in May. Lord Reed and Lord Hodge met with the Lord Advocate and the Solicitor General for Scotland on 4 June and 10 December, and the new Advocate General on 11 June and 29 October. Lord Reed was a member of the selection panel for the Lord President of the Court of Session, and participated in a number of meetings in relation to this appointment. Lord Reed was introduced as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh on 25 May. He gave the Scrymgeour Lecture at the Supreme Court Annual Report 2015–2016

40 Section three Performance Report: Communication and external relations University of Dundee in October, on the relationship between historians, academics and judges. In November, he spoke at the Grampian, Highlands and Islands Sheriffdom Conference in Inverness. He chaired a book launch in Edinburgh for Professor Alan Page’s ‘Constitutional Law of Scotland’ in October, and in February gave a lecture to Edinburgh Tax Network. Lord Hodge attended the Law Society of Scotland’s Conference in Edinburgh in October. He was one of a number of Justices who attended the Commonwealth Law Conference held in Glasgow in April 2015. Lord Hodge chaired dialogues for Justice (Scotland) in November 2015 and January 2016 (between General Sir Mike Jackson and Lord (Menzies) Campbell; and Shami Chakrabarti and Derek Ogg QC respectively). Lord Hodge also gave a lecture at the Law Society of Scotland, on pleading in the Supreme Court, in February 2016. Additionally, Lady Hale gave the inaugural lecture at the Institute for Legal and Constitutional Research, University of St Andrews, in October. Lord Clarke gave the William Miller Commercial Law Annual Lecture at Edinburgh Law School in November, on fraudulent claims. Lord Sumption gave the James Wood Lecture, on Article 6 of the ECHR, at the University of Glasgow in November, and gave the Stair Society Annual Lecture, on the Beginnings of International Law, at the Faculty of Advocates in November. Mark Ormerod visited Scotland on 19 November as part of what will be a regular pattern of visits to different parts of the United Kingdom. He met Steve Humphreys, Executive Director of the Judicial Office; Paul Gilmour, Lord President’s Office; James Wolffe, Dean of the Faculty of Advocates, and Lorna Jack, Chief Executive of the Law Society of Scotland. Northern Ireland The following Judges have sat in this financial year: Lord Collins; Lord Thomas, the Lord Chief Justice (England and Wales); Lord Dyson, the Master of the Rolls; Lord Gill, the then Lord President of the Court of Session; Lord Justice Briggs; and Sir Bernard Rix. Lord Kerr hosted a seminar at the UKSC for a delegation led by Mr Justice Deeny and Mr Justice Horner on 12 February. The visitors were briefed on how the UKSC increasingly uses information technology in case presentation, and took part in a demonstration of a system used at the court whereby counsel can take Justices to passages in an electronic bundle via screens set up at each place on the judicial bench, typically saving both time and paper during hearings. Lord Kerr also spoke at the Irish Legal History Society’s Spring Discourse in Belfast in February, on the development of the Supreme Court from the Appellate Committee of the House of Lords. Additionally, Lord Neuberger addressed the Northern Ireland Assembly Committee for Justice in March 2016, delivering a lecture on how technology can improve access to the courts. Mark Ormerod was in Northern Ireland on the first day of his appointment as Chief Executive, for the opening of the legal year. Supreme Court Annual Report 2015–2016

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