New Master of the Rolls sworn in as predecessor announces he’s going back to chambers

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By Katie King on

Will Sir Terence Etherton be as controversial as Lord Denning?


The new Master of the Rolls will be officially sworn in this morning, marking a historic moment in the strive for a diverse and socially representative legal profession.

Sir Terence Etherton was appointed to the prestigious position — which was once held by law student favourite Lord Denning — back in March, making him the first openly gay man to hold the post.

Former head of the Chancery Division Etherton, who was once a member of the British Olympic fencing team, will be officially sworn in as Master of the Rolls this morning, making him the most senior civil judge in England and Wales. He is expected to be on a salary of about £220,000.

It seems Etherton’s predecessor, Lord Dyson, won’t be spending his retirement soaking up the sun in Benidorm.

Having retired early from the position in February, it has been revealed this year Dyson will be returning to top commercial set 39 Essex Chambers, where he was once head of chambers. Labour peer Shami Chakrabarti — who caused a stir over the weekend for reportedly sending her 13-year-old son to a selective private school — also vowed to return to the same London-based chambers following her exit from human rights organisation Liberty.

Busy bee Dyson will also be sitting on an ad hoc basis on the Supreme Court bench.

He — along with Supreme Court retiree Lord Toulson and two Scottish judges — is part of a rotating roster of judges sitting part-time at the country’s highest court, filling Toulson’s place until a full-time replacement is found.