Top judge hints that the Supreme Court could open into the night as it seeks fifth star
Lord Neuberger couldn’t resist trumpeting the Supreme Court’s 4.5 star rating on TripAdvisor late last week, during a speech about innovation in justice.
Addressing lawyers and legal academics in Belfast, Neuberger described how the Supreme Court was becoming one of the the most popular attractions in London.
Placing 226th out of 1,317 attractions in the capital, the highest court in the land sees off tourist hotspots such as the Royal Artillery Museum, The Shard and even shopping-mecca Harvey Nichols.
Putting innovation within the legal system to one side, Neuberger got down to the important stuff, explaining how some of his fellow judges had been left “embarrassed” by the TripAdvisor rating. Addressing a packed house, Neuberger said:
To our surprise and gratification and to some of my more traditional colleagues’ slight embarrassment, we learnt last year that the UK Supreme Court had been awarded four and half stars out of a maximum five by Trip Advisor.
Admitting that he had checked the rating prior to his attendance in Belfast, the president of the Supreme Court also couldn’t resist informing those gathered that the “traveller rating” was given as “excellent”, meaning Neuberger — and his fellow justices — “must be getting something right”.
Clearly keen on maintaing a high standard of visitor, Neuberger also noted the excellent feedback regarding the court’s “security screening”.
A quick glance of the courts TripAdvisor page (screenshotted below) reveals a host of satisfied visitors. Words such as “enjoyable”, “fascinating” and “must see” were employed by users of the ratings website to describe their visits. However “Paul D” from Concord, Massachusetts, was left slightly underwhelmed by the whole experience, telling users:
This is free. It is a courthouse and not much more. I did not catch any trials which might have been more interesting. It was free, though.
In his speech, Neuberger also revealed that the Supreme Court building could stay opening in evenings in future, so those of us with jobs could come visit after work. But the top judge accepted that it might be pushing it to ask court proceedings to continue into the night, adding:
I doubt that we will find the Justices or the lawyers to provide a night Supreme Court.
Neuberger also took the opportunity to plug the Supreme Court’s Twitter account. Casually mentioning its 180,000 plus followers, he described the vital role it now plays in connecting the court with the wider public. Just last month judicial assistants took control of social media account for the day, offering a candid view into the country’s top court.
And it would appear Neuberger is a reader of Legal Cheek — or at the very least the wider press.
We are regularly lambasted in the comments section for our liberal use of the word “top” — and Neuberger embraced the tabloid terminology during his speech. Referring to the supreme court as the “top UK court”, he even at one point referred to his fellow justices as “top judges”
If you’re reading Lord Neuberger, top work.
Read the speech in full below: