When it comes to legal issues, I have to admit I’m a long way short of being an expert. I do however regularly follow the UK Human Rights Blog, which covers a whole range of legal topics, some of which are directly relevant to what I write about. I tend not to quote from them or link to the articles a great deal, mainly because the site is aimed primarily at legal professionals and it can be hard for a layman such as myself to make sense of the language at times. I was therefore very pleased to discover the Law & Religion UK blog when it was launched in the summer of 2012. It tackles many of the same legal cases but with a clear focus on the relationship between religion and the law (hence the title!) It also provides helpful summaries and comments that are a lot easier to get you head round even if you have a limited background knowledge.
Mainly posts relate to the Christian faith and in the last week they’ve tackled conscientious objection to Sunday working, the succession to the crown bill, gay bishops and civil partnerships as well as publishing their perennially informative weekly round-up. Not bad for one week’s work.
The site is run by Frank Cranmer and David Pocklington. Frank Cranmer (not to be confused with Archbishop Cranmer) is a Quaker who used to be an Anglican. He is parliamentary and synod editor of the Ecclesiastical Law Journal and also the Secretary of the Churches’ Legislation Advisory Service, the primary purpose of which is to keep the Churches informed of what is going on in the secular policy sphere and to let Government know the Churches’ views on legislation and policy proposals that might affect them. David Pocklington’s interests include the dynamics of the involvement of faith groups in the development and application of new legislation, particularly in relation to the environment. They certainly know their stuff.
Between them and their guest writers they produce a great deal of valuable work on their blog that is difficult to find elsewhere in a single place. I’ve got to know Frank a little bit on Twitter and he is very friendly and engaging.
I’m giving their site a plug at this time as Frank and David have promised to keep a close eye on the Chaplin, Eweida, McFarlane and Ladele freedom of religion judgements at the European Court of Human Rights, which will be getting a lot of press but are also likely to be complicated. If you’re interested in some informed and reliable dissemination of the facts, I would suggest you keep a close eye on their blog over the next few days.