IN THE COURT OF APPEAL (CIVIL DIVISION)
ON APPEAL FROM HALIFAX COUNTY COURT
(HER HONOUR JUDGE FINNERTY)
B e f o r e :
LADY JUSTICE ARDEN
LORD JUSTICE NEUBERGER
|S (A CHILD)|
Smith Bernal Wordwave Limited
190 Fleet Street, London EC4A 2AG
Tel No: 020 7404 1400 Fax No: 020 7831 8838
Official Shorthand Writers to the Court)
MS SALLY TERRIS (instructed by Messrs Armitage Sykes, Huddersfield) appeared on behalf of the Appellant
MR ROGER BICKERDYKE (instructed by Messrs Khan, Bradford B11 2AA) appeared on behalf of the Respondent
Crown Copyright ©
Wednesday, 1 December 2004
"'Fuck the judge. I do not give a shit about what she says.' The defendant then walked off with a grin on her face."
The mother did not file evidence denying that conversation, and Miss Terris has said today that she has no instruction to admit that those were her client's defiant words, but equally she has no instruction which would enable her to deny the statement. That was a factor that bore with the judge. She said, particularly in paragraph 1 of her brief judgment:
"I am very concerned at the depressing pattern of this mother failing to obtained Court. According to father's statement, Miss R has even taken to expressing her views of the Court in obscenities."
In all the circumstances, it seems to me manifest that the judge's discretionary disposal was well within the wide ambit open to her. Faced with such defiance the judge would have been failing in her duty had she not upheld the authority of the court. For all those reasons, I regard this appeal as hopeless and only fit for dismissal.
(Appeal dismissed; detailed assessment on both sides).