The Guardian reports that United Kingdom Supreme Court justices are to receive courtesy titles in future. A row had developed over Sir John Dyson’s recent appointment – the first justice to be appointed without a peerage. The Supreme Court has now been separated geographically and constitutionally from The House of Lords and is no longer the Judicial Committee of The House of Lords – ergo, no peerages.
The Queen will be granting courtesy titles to all future Supreme Court justices. The Guardian continues with a rather dull debate on the unfairness inherent in the male and female versions of the courtesy title.
As Sir Geoffrey Bindman, founder of Bindmans law firm said. “But if you are going to call them lord, why not give them a peerage. It seems a bit anomalous not to do so.”
For my part, this is a missed opportunity to place the United Kingdom Supreme Court apart from the geegaws and baubles of a bygone age; to set it apart politically, philosophically and morally from the patronage of parliament, government, executive or monarch. I rather suspect that the justices would have been able to carry out their task at the pinnacle of the appellate judiciary without titles of any sort – save for the most important title of all – ‘Justice’ – before their name.
I don’t suppose it matters that much…. The House of Lords isn’t what it was……. although it does seem to have quite a few brigands, thugs, and thieves, perjurers and expense fiddlers… rather as of the days of old… as members still.