Wanted: Twenty-five new High Court judges

The Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC) will begin placing advertisements in the press in its search for 25 new High Court judges.

The JAC has released details of its selection process, which has been taken out of the hands of the Lord Chancellor for the first time in 900 years.

JAC chairman Baroness Usha Prashar said: “The days of ‘secret soundings’ and ‘taps on the shoulder’ are long gone. Today’s judicial applicants will be assessed on who they are, not who they know.”

All candidates must first apply in writing, with the 20 page application form has been cut to nine-pages to encourage more applicants. An interview process follows the vetting of application forms, which will test for five key qualities of a good judge.

Those qualities are intellectual capacity, decisiveness, fairness, good communication and efficiency.

The JAC was set up in April under the Constitutional Reform Act 2005 to run the judicial selection process. It is made up of 15 commissioners including judges, lawyers and lay people.