Archive for February 2011
In the book I make the rather throwaway remark that I could not imagine a programme being aired on British TV similar to the programme on US tv about their Supreme Court. How wrong I was! Within the last two weeks there have been two really good programmes on the new (UK) Supreme Court.
The first, on BBC, is regrettably no longer available on the BBC i-player service.
The second, and in my view better film, aired by More 4 is still available (at least in the UK) on More 4.
I very much hope that, in due course, they will both become available on a more permanent basis, as they are a really important source of information not readily available to the public.
The More 4 programme is available at http://www.channel4.com/programmes/britains-supreme-court/4od#3161268.
To follow up my interview with Mike Napier on pro bono lawyering, I have recently received a copy of the latest Annual Report on the Pro Bono activities promoted by the College of Law. It is a remarkable account of the variety of activities undertaken by students at the college.
More generally, law schools have in recent years developed a number of activities designed to make law and legal awareness more available to the general public. This is a tangible public benefit contributed by higher education without the recognition it deserves.
The College of Law report is found at http://www.college-of-law.co.uk/About-the-College/Social-responsibility/#Pioneers_in_pro_bono
The Parliamentary Voting System and Constituencies Bill, which is designed to enable a referendum on Alternative Voting to be held in May 2011 – and to reduce the number of seats in the House of Commons from 650 to 600 – has been held up in the House of Lords for the last few weeks. It looks as though a deal has been done to enable the Committee Stage of the Bill to be completed by 2 February, which it turn opens the way for the Bill to be passed by the middle of February – essential if the referendum is to be held in May.
However, Labour peers continue to hint that there may still be further delays. My own guess is that it will get through – but watch this space!