It is a pleasure to have been asked to deliver this year’s Lord Slynn Memorial Lecture at this time of significant civil justice reform. You might ask when are we not. Since the 1990s there has been one reform after another. From Woolf to Jackson to Briggs, to Briggs again, and then once more to Jackson. Civil justice reform is a subject that never rests. It is fair to say though that the present reform programme is the most far-reaching that we have had since the 1870s. The civil reforms, together with the contemporaneous reforms to criminal justice, are a £1 billion six year plan, which I believe to be the most far reaching in any country in the world. This lecture is exclusively about civil reform.