This year, the German Basic Law (Grundgesetz) celebrates its 70th birthday. It was introduced in 1949 as a provisional legal framework for post-War Germany. It has become a cornerstone of the Federal Republic.

There is no single British constitutional document. Constitutional customs have evolved over time in the UK without necessarily being written down.

What are the merits of constitutions generally, and what are the pros and cons of written constitutions? What factors account for the Basic Law’s enduring success, and what challenges, if any, does it now face? Is the UK’s unwritten constitution fit for purpose in a time of political and social division, and what role should judges play in interpreting it?

The BGA and BGJA are honoured to host two leading constitutional judges to discuss these and other questions.

Prof. Dr. Peter M. Huber is a Supreme Court Justice on the Bundesverfassungsgericht (German Federal Constitutional Court), the highest court in Germany for constitutional issues. From 2003-2004, he served as an expert member of the Commission on the Reform of the Federal System of Government established by the German Federal Legislature. In 2009-2010, he was Interior Minister in Thüringen. Born in 1959, Prof. Huber studied law at Ludwig-Maximilians University Munich and at the Université de Genève.

Jonathan, Lord Mance was Deputy President of the Supreme Court in 2017 and 2018, having become a Justice of the Supreme Court on its formation in 2009. Lord Mance sat on the Council of Europe’s Consultative Council of European Judges, becoming its first elected chair from 2000 to 2003. In the House of Lords, he chaired a sub-committee of the European Union Select Committee, scrutinising proposals concerning European law and institutions.

The event will be held in English.

Watch the event video below: