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Career History « Sir Mathew Thorpe

Career History

1951-1956 Stowe (Classics)
1957-1959 Balliol College, Oxford (Law)
1961 Called to the Bar, Inner Temple
1963-1980 Junior Practice, 1 Mitre Court Buildings (now 1 Hare Court)
1980-1988 QC, 1 Mitre Court Buildings
1987 Counsel to the Cleveland Inquiry
1988-1995 High Court Judge, Family Division
1995-2013 Lord Justice of Appeal
2005-2013 Vice-President of the Family Division and Head of International Family Justice for England and Wales

Achievements

Sir Mathew has been particularly active in promoting judicial activism. He proposed the creation of the International Hague Network of Judges at the de Ruwenberg Conference in 1998 and successfully campaigned for its growth and development.  He initiated the Germanophone/Anglophone Family Law Conference in 1997, Commonwealth/Common Law Family Law Conferences in and after 2000 and Francophone/Anglophone Conference in 2003. In 2010 he launched the Association of International Judges at the Brussels Conference. He chaired the Expert Group on the European Judicial Network which has drafted and published the Best Practice Guide to Proceedings under the 1980 Hague Convention and Article II of Regulation Brussels II BiS.

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Sir Mathew handed down the majority of leading judgments in family appeals between 2000 and 2013, particularly those concerning international family law and matrimonial finance.

He travelled widely as the judicial representative of the UK, directing the Office of International Family Justice in London (which handled approximately 250 international family justice referrals per year).

ADR Accreditation
Sir Mathew led the judicial support for ADR in family litigation and the Court of Appeal Family ADR scheme. In November 2007, he qualified as a mediator (ADR Group and Family Mediators Association) and has a Certificate in Family Arbitration (Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, 2012).

Awards
In 2011, Sir Mathew won the International Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers ‘Jurist of the Year’ award.
Sir Mathew won the Cornwall Award for Outstanding Contribution at the Family Law Awards 2013.