Judges mark the start of the 2022 legal year

Monday, 3rd October 2022

Judges in red robes and legal wigs reading from hymn sheets

Judges and members of the legal profession gathered in Westminster Abbey on Monday 3rd October 2022 for a special service to mark the start of the legal year.

The annual service, which dates back to 1897, was conducted by the Dean of Westminster, the Very Reverend Dr David Hoyle, who said in his Bidding:

'At the beginning of the legal year, we gather in the presence of almighty God, who is the judge of all and who knows the secrets of our hearts, to renew our commitment to the service of the Crown and to all manner of people that we may, together, do right.
We acknowledge a shared high calling, a common commitment to a justice that all can recognise, done without fear or favour, affection or ill will. So we seek God’s strength and guidance that we might remain true to our calling; informed, wise, and just.'

The Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice, the Rt Hon Brandon Lewis CBE MP, read Ecclesiastes 3: 1–8, 14–15; and Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales, the Rt Hon The Lord Burnett of Maldon, read Colossians 1:15–20.

The Right Reverend Rachel Treweek, Bishop of Gloucester and Anglican Bishop to His Majesty’s Prisons, gave the Address.

The service was sung by the Choir of Westminster Abbey conducted by James O’Donnell, Organist and Master of the Choristers. The organ was played by Peter Holder, Sub-Organist.

Order of Service

Order of Service: A Service to mark the opening of the Legal Year in England and Wales (PDF, 332KB)