Lord Justice Carnwath
The statutory office of Senior President of Tribunals is established, under the Tribunals, Courts and Enforcement (TCE) Act 2007. The Senior President is a free standing senior judicial officer, independent of the Executive Agency, and the Chief Justices responsible for the courts. The Senior President, Lord Justice Carnwath, is the apex of the Tribunals Judiciary giving focus and leadership to those covered by the TCE Act 2007.
The Senior President is also a Lord Justice of Appeal and divides his time between these two roles.
The Act gives the Senior President a number of statutory responsibilities which he will take on gradually as the Act is implemented. These include representing the views of Tribunal judiciary to parliament and ministers.
In concurrence (with the Lord Chancellor) he has responsibility in relation to the chamber structure for the First Tier and Upper Tribunal, the allocation of functions between chambers, and the making of orders prescribing the qualifications required for judicial appointments to the First–tier and Upper Tribunals.
Assigning judges and members to chambers, for which purpose he is required to publish a policy agreed with the Lord Chancellor.
Reporting to the Lord Chancellor in relation to tribunal cases on matters which the Senior President wishes to bring to the attention of the Lord Chancellor and matters which the Lord Chancellor has asked the him to cover.
Sir Robert Carnwath has been a Lord Justice of Appeal since September 2001, having been a Judge of the High Court, Chancery Division, from 1994. At the same time he became a Privy Counselor. In July 2004 he was appointed Senior President of Tribunals, under the Government´s proposals for reforming the Tribunal system.
Previously he was in practice as a barrister in the Chambers of the Right Hon. Geoffrey Rippon QC, MP. (now Landmark Chambers). His main areas of practice were Local Government, Planning and Environmental Law, and Administrative Law. Between 1980 and 1985 he was Junior Counsel to the Inland Revenue. He took silk in 1985. He served a period as Chairman of the Administrative Law Bar Association. Between 1988 and 1994 he was Attorney General to HRH the Prince of Wales (following which he was made a Companion of the Victorian Order). He was Chairman of the Law Commission for England and Wales from February 1999 until July 2002.
He has written extensively on administrative and environmental law. In 1989 he was the author of a report for the Department of the Environment on the Enforcement of Planning Control, the main recommendations of which were enacted in the Planning and Compensation Act 1991. He is a member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of Environmental Law.
Internationally, in 2004 he was a founding member, and first Secretary General, of the European Union Forum of Judges for the Environment (EUFJE). He has been joint-chairman of the judicial advisory committee for the UNEP handbook on environmental law; and a member of the UNECE taskforce on the Aarhus Convention.
Outside the law, his main interests are in music. He is Chairman of the Britten–Pears Foundation, a member of the Bach Choir, and a keen amateur viola player.