A few years ago I had to visit a notary in Edinburgh. While we sorted out the business in hand we got to chatting about the impact of the Scottish Parliament upon the Scottish Legal System. She was very gloomy about what was happening to Scottish law. For centuries, she explained, when some Bill produced in Westminster was readied for Parliament it would be handed over to the Scottish lawyers. After the Union of 1707 the Scottish Legal System remained autonomous and distinct from the Legal systems of England (and post 1801 Ireland). The lawyers of Scotland would adapt Westminster legislation to ensure it fitted in seamlessly with the law of Scotland. Since devolution this system has collapsed. The devolved administrations, particularly the SNP, feel that their actions are ipso facto authentically Scottish and so take very little care to ensure they work in harmony with the logic of the Scottish legal tradition. Now there are reports that, under the SNP, Scotland’s education system is now going the same was as its legal system.
%d bloggers like this: