Customer Newsletter No 24 June 2012

The Scottish Land Court is a unique institution; set up to resolve disputes between crofters and their landlords it 'owes its existence to riot, rebellion and incipient revolution.'
The court celebrated its centenary in April 2012 with a visit to Braes on Skye, site of the Battle of the Braes in 1882. The local crofters had refused to pay their rents until the landlord returned their grazing lands to them. Violence ensued and police had to be drafted in from Glasgow to keep the peace. The Battle of the Braes led to the setting up of the court's predecessor (the first Crofters Commission) as a judicial body to address disputes between crofters and their landlords.
The working life of the Scottish Land Court today is more peaceful but still unusual. It is a peripatetic court which travels to visit the land in dispute. Its hearings take place in community halls, croft houses, barns, hotels and schools as well as the more usual setting of the local court house. It is the only Scottish court where one member of the court must be a Gaelic speaker.

A volume of essays commemorating one hundred years of its work was published in May 2012:

No Ordinary Court is available for £16.95 (Avizandum Publishing).

Lord Macphail was a distinguished Scottish judge and legal scholar who wrote two of the definitive works on modern Scottish legal practice. His death in 2009 was a great loss to the Scottish legal world. He left an unfinished work on Scottish criminal evidence which has now been published for the benefit of scholars of the Scottish legal system.

Scottish Criminal Evidence: Procedure and Practice is available for £30.00 (Avizandum Publishing).