After more than thirty years at the bench, the Rt Hon Sir Alan Ward has retired from the Court of Appeal.
He was called to the Bar in 1964 and took silk in 1984. In 1982 he was appointed an Assistant Recorder and a Recorder in 1985. Formerly an Attorney of the Supreme Court of South Africa; he was appointed a member of the Matrimonial Causes Procedure Committee from 1982 to 1985. He was appointed a Judge of the High Court, Family Division in 1988, Family Division Liaison Judge for the Midland and Oxford Circuit from 1990 to 1995 and a Lord Justice of Appeal in 1995.
Sir Alan will also be stepping down as Editor in Chief of Jordan Publishing's Hershman and McFarlane: Children Law and Practice, which he has been involved with since it was first published in the early 1990s. In its forthcoming update Lord Justice McFarlane pays tribute to Sir Alan:
"This Update marks the departure of Sir Alan Ward as the Editor-in-chief of Children Law and Practice, a post that he has held since the very earliest days when the idea of writing this book was still but a wishful thought in the minds of its two naive authors. Soon after his appointment to the High Court bench, Mr Justice Ward was persuaded by the then President, Sir Stephen Brown, to guide and assist two young barristers from Birmingham, whom Sir Alan had never met, in formulating the plans for a book about ‘care proceedings'.
"David Hershman and I were eternally grateful that Ward J accepted this unlooked-for task with charm and good humour. We greatly valued his wisdom in encouraging us to expand the scope of the work well beyond our original modest aim; a decision that became inevitable once it was clear that our publication would coincide with the implementation of the Children Act 1989.
"Throughout the ensuing 21 years, Alan has been a stalwart supporter and sage companion in this joint endeavour. It has, above all, been great fun to have had him as our team leader for all of this time. David, Madeleine and I, together with the whole team, have been most fortunate to have had such a star as our Editor-in-chief for so long. We all wish Sir Alan a long and very happy retirement."