§ Mr. Pollock
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he proposes to review the arrangements which were introduced in 1975 for administering sheriffdoms by full-time sheriffs principal.
§ Mr. Younger
Now that a few years' experience of the new arrangements have been gained I think it would be sensible to review the situation. I have accordingly decided to set up a small expert and prestigious committee with the following terms of referenceTo consider whether the present arrangements for the administration of Sheriffdoms by full-time Sheriffs Principal in terms of the Sheriff Courts (Scotland) Act 1971 are satisfactory; or whether any alternative arrangements are desirable and should be made; and to report".
Lord Grieve, a senator of the College of Justice and a former sheriff principal of Renfrew and Argyll, has kindly agreed to serve as chairman and he will be joined by Sir William Bryden, formerly sheriff principal for the Lothian and Borders, and Sir Ronald Johnson, formerly the secretary of the Scottish Home and Health Department.
I hope that the committee will be able to report by the end of the year or shortly thereafter.