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Quarter Sessions (Chairmen And Deputy-Chairmen

Volume 393: debated on Wednesday 3 November 1943

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asked the Attorney-General whether he will consider making the possession of legal qualifications a condition of the appointment of all chairmen and deputy-chairmen of Quarter Sessions?

Such a requirement as my hon. Friend suggests could only be imposed by statute. During the passage through Parliament of the Administration of Justice (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 1938, the question whether such a requirement should be made statutory received careful consideration, and it was decided that the object in view would be obtained with greater expedition and with less friction by the method adopted in that Act. In fact I am glad to inform the House that out of 62 Courts of Quarter Sessions the Chairmen of 56 Courts, and the deputy-chairmen of 32 Courts possess such a statutory qualification as is required by the Act of 1938 and the four chairmen who do not possess such a qualification have great experience in the position in which they occupy and command general confidence.