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United Kingdom judges and European integration

Birkinshaw, Patrick


Patrick Birkinshaw


The British, specifically the English, are widely regarded as awkward partners in the European project. Much of the criticism has come from anti-European integration politicians. Now that the outcome of the 2015 general election for the United Kingdom Parliament is known the United Kingdom will face a referendum by 2017 on exit (Brexit) from the European Union. The Conservative Party is also anxious to withdraw from the European Convention on Human Rights. Criticism of European influence on our law has also surfaced among senior judges but in a far more principled way than among politicians. In this article the author analyses the attitude of senior judges towards European law and integration. The judicial desire to establish UK constitutional space in the relationship with EU law has accompanied the emergence of a constitutional jurisprudence shaping the UK’s modern unwritten constitution. Our constitution has become far more judicialised. Despite the criticism witnessed in recent case law, the UK judges are constructive and cooperative in our legal relationship with Europe.


Birkinshaw, P. (2015). United Kingdom judges and European integration. Rivista italiana di diritto pubblico comunitario, 25(2), 363-386

Publication Date 2015
Deposit Date Oct 19, 2015
Publicly Available Date Nov 23, 2017
Journal Rivista Italiana di diritto pubblico comunitario
Print ISSN 1593-6538
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 25
Issue 2
Pages 363-386
Keywords European public law
Public URL
Additional Information This is a description of an article which will be published in: Rivista Italiana di diritto pubblico comunitario, 2015, v.25, issue 2.


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