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Lord Reed sworn in as Supreme Court Deputy President

13 June 2018

Scottsh judge Lord Reed has been sworn in as Deputy President of the United Kingdom Supreme Court.

Lord Reed, whose appointment was announced last month (click here for report), is the fourth person, and the second Scot, to hold the office, and all three of his predecessors – Lord Hope, Lord Mance and the President herself, Lady Hale – were present at the swearing-in ceremony, along with Advocate General for Scotland Lord Keen of Elie QC, and Solicitor General for Scotland Alison di Rollo QC.

He became a member of the Faculty of Advocates in 1983, a Queen's Counsel in 1995, a Senator of the College of Justice in 1998, Principal Commercial Judge in 2006 and was appointed to the Inner House in 2008. He was sworn in as a Justiuce of the Supreme Court in February 2012.

Opening the proceedings, Lady Hale noted that Lord Reed was also the court's youngest member (he is 61), but declared that his appointment was "simply a mark of his extraordinary intellectual and judicial qualities". At the Supreme Court he had been the author of "some remarkable judgments", especially emphasising the importance of the common law and its capacity for principled development. 

She singled out last year's ruling in the UNISON appeal on employment tribunal fees, in which he emphasised the importance of access to justice and the rule of law, not only to users of the courts and tribunals but also the whole population. His integrity and independence of mind had also been demonstrated by his dissent in the Miller appeal, the article 50 litigation.

Lord Reed, as Lady Hale pointed out, took his judicial oath in the Scottish form, declaring his allegiance to "Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth, her heirs and successors according to law" – omitting the numeral as there has been no previous Queen Elizabeth of Scotland.

Click here to view the swearing-in ceremony.

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