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Naming & Shaming

The City of Derry wants to change its name. Actually the Derry City Council wants to change the name of the city, but the courts have ruled that they can’t do that because Charles II of England changed the name of the city from Derry to Londonderry by charter in 1652. (Note that the Council had changed its own name). The court went on to advance a questionable proposition; that the name could be changed by a change in the law, or by the Queen of England on receipt of a petition to that end.

At risk of contradiction by experts in the British constitution (has that been located yet?) it is most unlikely that the Queen would claim such a role or welcome the delivery of the petition regardless of her views on the two competing names, or her predecessor, Charles II.

A change in the law is a better suggestion.

The Law Society of Ireland had its name changed under Section 4 of the Solicitors (Amendment) Act 1994. The Society was formerly known as the Incorporated Law Society of Ireland. Like the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, it is an incorporated body under charter (in the case of the Law Society, a charter from Queen Victoria in 1854). These two chartered bodies are unusual in Ireland in not being semi-state bodies; not being subject to the provisions of the Companies Acts 1963-2003 and not being subject to oversight by the Oireachtas or, effectively, the Competition Authority (as currently operating).
Changing your name is normally charged with meaning. The trick is to find the meaning.

Kristian von Hornsleth made a general offer to the residents of a village in Uganda to gift them each a pig or a sheep if they adopt his name. Edith Hornsleth Babirye defended this arrangement (relationship?) following receipt of her pig, which she plans to use to pay school fees.

If you are in Illinois and want to be a judge – change your name. (To “Oâ€?Brienâ€? it seems). Fred Rhine, look at this.

Minister of State Tony Killeen TD did not change his name but he has pleaded, effectively, a nomenclature malfunction. He denies responsibility for appeals in his name to Michael McDowell SC TD, for the early release of a murderer and, separately, a child rapist. The appeals were generated by a system established by Mr. Killeen; calculated to benefit him; written on his notepaper; purporting to be signed by him. A court would, on evidence like that, in a suitable case, convict him of conspiracy at least.

If he wants to change his name he needs to lodge a Deed Poll to that effect in the Central Office of the High Court.

The Law Society of Ireland didn’t have it that easy, it seems.