We live in strange times, very strange times. On both sides of the Atlantic the judiciary have been in the firing line. The publication of the latest judicial attitudes survey supports the anecdotal evidence I regularly hear.
However, the JAC advised on Friday that there has been an "unprecedented" number of applicants for the 100 family & criminal Recorder 2017 competition - almost 2,500.
Additionally, the MoJ have rowed back from their idea of making the initial fee paid posts 4 year fixed terms - Law Gazette artocle on same day here
There is a growing discontent in most sectors, many law firms and chambers are facing significant challenges - yet despite the gloom & doom - many would seem to gladly swap their current seat for one on the bench.
Most judges said they would discourage suitable applicants from applying to the judiciary - citing further likely pension cuts, constant policy changes and lack of administrative support. Overall, a majority of judges are most concerned by (in order of concern): staff cuts, judicial morale, increase in litigants in person, fiscal constraints, stressful working conditions, ability to attract the best people to the judiciary and loss of judicial independence. The 2016 survey attracted a near universal response rate of 99% among salaried judges in England and Wales courts and UK tribunals.