Last week’s Supreme Court hearing in Coventry v Lawrence – the speedway nuisance case – was a Dickensian reminder of how a private dispute can turn into an epic litigation adventure. There were moments of light relief, however.
As you would expect, the seven sitting justices were on the ball throughout. When the Law Society’s counsel pointed out that solicitors like to be paid, Lady Hale quickly reminded him that barristers are no different.
The hearing also drifted into literary criticism. Lord Neuberger picked up on counsel Robert McCracken’s allusions to research by Oxford Professor Adrian Zuckerman.
Was there no other source of expertise on costs? wondered Neuberger. Perhaps, he suggested, the estimable Cook on Costs series?
McCracken’s response will almost certainly not make it as the cover quote: ‘Cook on Costs is impossible to navigate, although it is a very interesting stream of consciousness.’
If the BBC’s Late Review ever focuses on weighty legal journals, they know who to call.