My experience visiting The Supreme Court in London during my English Plus Law course
Kings London student América García Romero had the opportunity to visit The Supreme Court with her English Plus Law class. Educational visits are a key aspect of the English Plus courses in London and take place regularly at institutions in and around the city. Educational visits help to reinforce classroom learning within a real-life context. Here, América reports back on her experience.
"I grew up watching movies where I could see the law being enforced by the judges, and in some cases being enforced by the Justices of The Supreme Court. I have always wanted to be in the same room as the experts of justice, until I finally got the opportunity to see a case in The Supreme Court of the United Kingdom with my law class from Kings London.
We went to The Supreme Court which is located just in front of the Houses of Parliament where it used to be settled until 2009, when they needed to move as a new entity because of conflicts of interests between the Lords that make the law and the ones that have the responsibility for adjudicating on points of law.
As soon as I got there, I got a completely different feeling from the one that I expected. I felt very welcomed by the staff at the entrance and at the reception, where they gave us information about The Supreme Court itself and about the cases that were to be heard that day. My class and I decided to go into the Court 3 where we had the chance to witness a civil case being discussed about the possible liability of a company for a breach of contract.
The court felt very friendly and welcoming by a lot of factors such as the way the court is designed in terms of the impression of a round table of discussion that it gives. We got the opportunity to see the Justices questioning the defendant barrister about the points of law of the case he was presenting. Personally, as a woman, I was really pleased to see that there are three women Justices, although I could only see Lady Arden that day."
"In conclusion, the whole experience was amazing, from the beginning to the end! I'm really grateful with Kings for taking us to such an important place and to the teacher for explaining us every doubt that we had during the visit. I was impressed by the welcoming feeling that the place had and I'll definitely go back to witness more cases being discussed in the future."
Earlier this year, in January, English Plus Law students also had the opportunity to attend the hearing of a case at the Supreme Court, the final court of appeal for UK Civil Law. Teacher Sue Brice explains the proceedings.
"With a strong cohort of Law students interested in Civil Law and Procedure, our first law trip of 2019 took us to Court 1 of the Supreme Court to observe Vedanta Resources PLC and Another v Lungowe and Others, an appeal case turning on the legal issue of whether a parent company has liability alongside its UK subsidiary for adverse human rights impacts occurring abroad.
During our hour-long observation of the case, our law students focused on the parties, the facts and the legal issues, using key legal vocabulary studied in the previous week to assist them in following the legal arguments.
The court room was packed with interested parties and the press, and the next day, our students were able to compare the details they had noted with the Reuters report on this landmark issue."