Oscar Wilde once commented, a cynic is “a man who knows the price of everything, and the value of nothing”.

It is unlikely he had judicial review in mind at the time, yet his quip seems appropriate to aspects of the government’s current proposals for judicial review reform.

Some might express surprise that having commissioned and received the report from the Independent Review of Administrative Law, which suggested some relatively minor changes to current judicial review procedure, the government has decided to press on with more far-reaching changes.

It has certainly attracted criticism from professional bodies such as the Law Society and Bar Council.

The fact the government refused to publish t...

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