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Louisa Gothard
Louisa Gothard
Senior Solicitor, Head of Family Law
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Judicial Family Policy
Date:7 NOV 2006

At the same conference, and in the same week as Mr Justice Munby gave his judgment in Re Webster (see 'Cases' below) Lord Justice Wall repeated his views on open family courts as expressed in the Hershman-Levy lecture in June 2006 and the September issue of Family Law at [2006] Fam Law 747. His position (in favour of giving the media and in practice the Press access to family proceedings, provided that there were clear ground rules about what they could and could not report) was in substantial agreement with the response to the Government consultation paper by the substantial majority of the High Court Judges of the Family Division, put forward by the President on their behalf. His Lordship did not however favour, indeed was opposed to, the admission of the public into family courts, even given the qualification that there would be a judicial discretion to exclude the public in certain circumstances. Lord Justice Wall then gave his opinion on some particular issues raised by the consultation paper. See December [2006] Fam Law for the full news item.

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