Queen's University Belfast | School of PoliticsContact Us
























WOMEN MEMBERS OF THE UK JUDICIARY

Although all judicial offices were opened to women in 1919, it was not until 1945 that a woman judge, Sybil Campbell, was appointed in England. Below are figures for current women judges in the United Kingdom. A comparison of the figures for England and Wales (validated by the Lord Chancellors' Department on 1 March 2003) with those of the past decade (from Karen Ross, Women at the top 2000: Cracking the public sector glass ceiling, Hansard Society (2000), p.10) shows that all areas have improved save that of High Court Judges. Looking specifically at Northern Ireland, according to research by the Law Centre NI, up to March 2005 women held 18% of judicial posts above tribunal level and made up 8% of Silk in Northern Ireland. Northern Ireland still has no female High Court judges and compares very unfavourably to England and Wales where 8% of their High Court judges are women. The County Courts do not fare much better with only nine women judges compared to thirty men. Resident Magistrates are similary disproportionately male with only three female full-time Resident Magistrates compared with fifteen men and five female deputy Resident Magistrates compared to thirteen men. Out of a total of 63 Queen's Counsel in the province, only five were women. The contrast between the UK as a whole and the international stage is also striking. The Law Centre report notes that women in Canada, Finland and France make up 26%, 46% and 54% respectively of the judiciary.

Table 1: Gender breakdown of UK judiciary, April 2010

Rank

Women

Men

% women

England & Wales

Supreme Court Justices

1

11

8

Heads of Division

0

..5

0

Lord Justices

3

34

8

High Court Judges

15

92

14

Circuit Judges

94.

548

14

District Judges (inc. Family Division)

104

340

23

District Judges (Magistrates)

19

.82

18.8

Recorders

153.

1023.

13

Scotland

Supreme Court

4

28

12.5

Principal Sheriffs

0

..6

0

Sheriffs (Part-time)

28 (19)

114 (59).

19.7 (24)..

Northern Ireland

High Court

0

..8

.0

County Court

5

12

29

District Court

2

..2

50

Resident Magistrates

5

16

23.8

.


Table 2: Senior women judges in the UK, April 2010

Name

Court

Date appointed

England & Wales

Dame Elizabeth Butler-Sloss

President, Family Division

1999

Baroness Brenda Hale

Justice of the Supreme Court

2009

Dame Mary Howarth

Lord Justice

2000

Dame Jane Hilary Smith

Lord Justice

2002

Dame Heather Carol Hallett

Lord Justice

2005

Dame Sonia Proudman

High Court (chanceryY

2001

Dame Anne Rafferty

High Court (Queen's Bench)

2000

Dame Laura Cox

High Court (Queen's Bench)

2002

Dame Elizabeth Glouster

High Court (Queen's Bench)

2004

Dame Linda Dobbs

High Court (Queen's Bench)

2004

Dame Caroline Jane Swift

High Court (Queen's Bench)

2005

Dame Elizabeth Slade

High Court (Queen's Bench)

2008

Dame Victoria Sharpe

High Court (Queen's Bench)

2009

Dame Nicola Velfor Davies

High Court (Queen's Bench)

2010

Dame Mary Hogg

High Court (Family Division)

1995

Dame Jill Black

High Court (Family Division)

1999

Dame Anna Hamilton Pauffley

High Court (Family Division)

2003

Dame Florence Baron

High Court (Family Division)

2003

Dame Julia Macur

High Court (Family Division)

2005

Dame Elanor Warwick King

High Court (Family Division)

2008

Dame Judith Parker

High Court (Family Division)

2008

Scotland

Ann, Lady Paton

Supreme Court

2000

Ann, Lady Smith

Supreme Court

2001

Lady Leeona Dorian

Supreme Court

2005

Lady Linda Clark

Supreme Court

2006

Lady Valerie Stacy

Supreme Court

2009

Northern Ireland

Corinne Philpott

County Court

1998

Denise Kennedy

County Court

2000

Loughran

County Court

2004

McReynolds

County Court

2004

Smyth

County Court

2010

Ruth Collins

District Court

2000

Isobel Brownlie

District Court

1997

Rosie Watters

Resident Magistrate

1998

Rosalie Prytherch

Resident Magistrate

2005

Patricia Kelly

Resident Magistrate

1997

Amanda Henderson

Resident Magistrate

2005

Fiona Bagnall

Resident Magistrate

2003


Home | Elections | Latest News | Observatory | Research | About Us | Links


Copyright © Centre for Advancement of Women in Politics 2002
19-21 University Square, Queen's University Belfast, N. Ireland, BT7 1PA