1 Introduction |
1. To supplement our ongoing inquiry
onMapping the path to codifyingor not codifyingthe
UK's constitution, we decided to consider how the judiciary'srole
might change if the UK were to adopt a codified constitution,
and the challenges that any changed role would present.In doing
so, we looked at other countries that already have codified constitutions
and examined what these examples told us about how codifying the
constitution could affect established constitutional and judicial
doctrines and practices in the UK.
2. The Centre for Political and Constitutional
Studies at King's College London has, since the early stages of
this Parliament, been providing research support to us in our
inquiry into Mapping the path to codifyingor not codifyingthe
UK's constitution.To date, the work of the Centre for the
Committee has included the production of two research papers:
a literature review and a consideration of the existing constitution.
A third paper, considering constitution-building processes, drawing
on a variety of case studies from within the UK and internationally,
has been completed in draft form. The Centre is now working on
three blueprints of a codified constitution, which it hopes to
deliver to us later in 2014.
3. In this report we are not considering
the merits or desirability of codifying, or not codifying, the
UK's constitution; we are simply looking at the potential changes
to the role of the judiciary should the UK ever have a codified
constitution.The full terms of reference for the inquiry can be
found at the end of this report.
4. During the inquiry, we visited the
Supreme Court and had the opportunity to watch the closing arguments
of a case.We also met informally with the President of the Supreme
Court, Rt Hon Lord Neuberger of Abbotsbury, to discuss the inquiry.We
received 16 pieces of written evidence and took oral evidence
on six occasions, from a variety of witnesses including two retired
Supreme Court Judges: Rt Hon Lord Phillips of Worth Matravers,
the former President of the Supreme Court, andRt Hon Lord Hope
of Craighead, former DeputyPresident of the Supreme Court.We are
grateful to all who contributed to our inquiry.