My visit with other members of ‘London Historians’ to was led by Colin Davey, a well-established London guide with previous experience as a city lawyer. Its most recent publicised ruling was sadly about baby Charlie Gard.
Downstairs we saw a display of memorabilia and started to feel the unusual characteristics and design of the building, then we sat in on a case where five of the Justices (there are twelve) was reviewing a VAT case that had lost on appeal but still offered sufficient grounds for a hearing. The two courts are modern and easily accessible for public view and Colin later explained that the barristers (usually Q.C.s) are given a specific maximum time and it’s normal for any of the judges to question and make points to quickly get to the centre of the dispute. This enables many of the cases heard to be dealt with in between half a day and one and a half days.
The Supreme Court is well worth a visit, whether individually or in a group and the staff do all they can to assist. I was most impressed and learned a great deal, though on a small point, as a Welshman I noted the symbols of the UK countries tastefully imprinted on the carpet throughout, though was surprised to see the Leek omitted from the Mural above the Judges Bench in both courts, nor was there mention of the monarchy.