Igor Judge, Baron Judge

Igor Judge, Baron Judge, PC (born 19 May 1941[1]) is an English former judge who served as the Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales, the head of the judiciary,[2] from 2008 to 2013. He was previously President of the Queen's Bench Division, at the time a newly created post assuming responsibilities transferred from the office of Lord Chief Justice. In 2019, he became Convenor of the Crossbench peers in the House of Lords.[3]

The Lord Judge
Official portrait of Lord Judge crop 2, 2019.jpg
Judge in 2019
Convenor of the Crossbench Peers
Assumed office
October 2019
Preceded byThe Lord Hope of Craighead
Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales
In office
1 October 2008 – 30 September 2013
MonarchElizabeth II
Preceded byThe Lord Phillips of Worth Matravers
Succeeded byThe Lord Thomas of Cwmgiedd
President of the Queen's Bench Division
In office
3 October 2005 – 1 October 2008
DeputySir Anthony May
Preceded byThe Lord Woolf
(as Lord Chief Justice)
Succeeded bySir Anthony May
Deputy Chief Justice of England and Wales
In office
Lord Chief JusticeThe Lord Woolf
Preceded bySir Tasker Watkins[a]
Succeeded byNone[a]
Personal details
Born (1941-05-19) 19 May 1941 (age 81)
RelationsRosa Judge (mother)
Alma materMagdalene College, Cambridge
OccupationBarrister, Jurist, Queen's Counsel, Judge, Privy Councillor, Peer of the (British) Realm, Crossbencher, Professor of Law [1]
a. ^ Office vacant from 1993 to 2003. Non-statutory position.

Early life and educationEdit

Judge was born in Malta to Raymond and Rosa Judge (née Micallef). Judge was educated at St. Edward's College, Malta, from 1947 to 1954 and The Oratory School in Woodcote in Oxfordshire from 1954 to 1959, where he was Captain of School and Captain of Cricket.[1] He was awarded an Open Exhibition to study History and Law at Magdalene College, Cambridge in 1959, and he graduated BA in 1962.

Legal careerEdit

He was called to the bar (Middle Temple) in 1963 and became a Recorder in 1976 and Queen's Counsel in 1979.[1] From 1980 to 1986, he served on the Professional Conduct Committee of the Bar Council. In 1987, he was elected Leader of the Midland Circuit. On 10 October 1988, Judge was appointed a Justice of the High Court,[4] assigned to the Queen's Bench Division, and awarded the customary knighthood.[1][5] He was appointed a Lord Justice of Appeal, a judge of the Court of Appeal, on 4 June 1996,[6] becoming a Privy Counsellor.[1]

He was the Senior Presiding Judge from 1998 to 2003,[1] when he became Deputy Chief Justice. He was not appointed as Lord Chief Justice following the retirement of Lord Woolf in 2005 despite having served as his deputy. The Lord Phillips of Worth Matravers, then Master of the Rolls, was appointed instead.

He was appointed as the first President of the Queen's Bench Division on 3 October 2005,[7] when that post was split from that of Lord Chief Justice. In addition to that role, Judge was appointed Head of Criminal Justice in January 2007.[8]

Judge replaced Lord Phillips as Lord Chief Justice on 1 October 2008.[9] The same day, he was created a life peer as Baron Judge, of Draycote in the county of Warwickshire,[10] and he was introduced in the House of Lords five days later,[11] where he sits as a crossbencher.

In 2007 Lord Judge was awarded an honorary doctorate from Nottingham Trent University,[12] and in 2010 was made an Honorary Fellow of Aberystwyth University as well as Kingston University. On 20 June 2012 he received an honorary doctorate from Cambridge.[13]

He retired as Lord Chief Justice at the end of September 2013.[14] He was Treasurer to the Middle Temple for the year 2014.[15]

As of November 2013, Lord Judge has served as a Distinguished Visitor to The Dickson Poon School of Law at King's College London.[16]


Judge speaks from the crossbenches in 2021

Judge succeeded Lord Hope of Craighead as Convenor of the Crossbench Peers in 2019.

Personal lifeEdit

Judge has a son and two daughters. Helen was born in 1966 and married Timothy Noble in 1991. She gave birth to daughters Lucinda (1994) and Amelia (1996). Alastair was born in 1968 and married Kate Holcroft in 1998. Their own children are Cecilia (2005) and Benedict (2006). Emma was born in 1970.[17]


Coat of arms of Igor Judge, Baron Judge
A bear sejant erect Gules grasping with both forepaws a sword erect Argent hilt pommel and quillons Or.
Quarterly Argent and Gules a cross couped nowy round pierced and parted counterchanged and enclosing a roundel Or.
On either side a heraldic dolphin Argent finned Or and holding in the beak a scroll Argent tied and sealed Gules.
Sine Amore Nihil[18]


  1. ^ a b c d e f "Senior Judiciary Biographies – Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales". Judiciary of England and Wales. Archived from the original on 20 November 2012. Retrieved 18 December 2008.
  2. ^ "President of the Courts of England and Wales". Constitutional Reform Act 2005, Part 2, section 7. Office of Public Sector Information. 2005. Archived from the original on 7 January 2010. Retrieved 3 January 2010.
  3. ^ "Lord Judge". UK Parliament. Archived from the original on 9 October 2019. Retrieved 9 October 2019.
  4. ^ "No. 51500". The London Gazette. 13 October 1988. p. 11473.
  5. ^ "No. 51565". The London Gazette. 20 December 1988. p. 14252.
  6. ^ "No. 54419". The London Gazette. 7 June 1996. p. 7803.
  7. ^ "No. 57779". The London Gazette. 7 October 2005. p. 12972.
  8. ^ "Head of Criminal Justice" (Press release). Judiciary of England and Wales. 31 January 2007. Archived from the original on 6 February 2008. Retrieved 14 April 2008.
  9. ^ "No. 58843". The London Gazette. 6 October 2008. p. 15221.
  10. ^ "No. 58845". The London Gazette. 7 October 2008. p. 15299.
  11. ^ House of Lords Minutes of Proceedings of Monday 6 October 2008 Archived 26 October 2016 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved 14 August 2012.
  12. ^ "Honorary graduates A-Z". Nottingham Trent University. Archived from the original on 22 July 2011. Retrieved 1 March 2010.
  13. ^ "Honorary Degrees 2012". University of Cambridge. 20 June 2012. Archived from the original on 22 November 2021. Retrieved 23 May 2020.
  14. ^ "Lord Judge, Lord Chief Justice, to Retire Next Summer" (Press release). Judiciary of England and Wales. 21 November 2012. Archived from the original on 2 December 2012. Retrieved 21 November 2012.
  15. ^ Middle Temple: Officers of the Inn Archived 20 February 2014 at the Wayback Machine (Retrieved 2 February 2014)
  16. ^ "King's College London - Dickson Poon School of Law welcomes Lord Judge". Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 11 January 2016.
  17. ^ Debrett's Peerage. 2019. p. 3184.
  18. ^ Debrett's Peerage. 2019. p. 3184.
Legal offices
Preceded by Lord Chief Justice
Succeeded by
Academic offices
Preceded by Commissary of the University of Cambridge
Other offices
Preceded by Convenor of the Crossbench Peers
Orders of precedence in the United Kingdom
Preceded by Gentlemen
Baron Judge
Followed by
The Lord Mandelson