Discarding things makes lawyers uncomfortable. There are good reasons to hold onto things, but eventually everything must go; forgetting is a part of memory.
But some things should not be forgotten. Consider the Statute Law Revision (Pre-1922) Act 2005.
Section 1 states âThe statutes of Ireland, England, Great Britain and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland mentioned in the Schedule to this Act are repealed.â?
What have we thown out? What have we lost?
Well, how will we manage without the Servants Act of 1715? Are there to be no more servants? Or is that issue settled with the repeal of the the Distress for services of 1297?
What of some statutes of uncertain date such as the Prerogativa Regis c. 11 entitled Lands of Idiots and the similarly titled Lands of Lunatics? Have we not lost something of great value here? Surely it is of value to know the places of origin of idiocy and lunacy?
Perhaps it is politically dangerous to repeal the Denial of subjection of England to Kings of France of 1340? What if the Kings of France make a comeback? Think of the effort of trimming and spinning required in that event.
We wonât even know how to address him now that we have repealed the Title of the King of 1485. Perhaps we will need the House of Lords Precedence of 1539 after all or be saved by the Legitimacy of the Queen of 1553? Yes, if we had not repealed them.
Why have we apparently endorsed a fraud with the repeal of the Adulteration of Coffee Act of 1718? Is adulteration a thing of the past in fact? Not likely: adulteration, perhaps, is cool and in?