09:55, July 14 39 0 theguardian.com

2017-07-14 09:55:04
Sir Ian Burnett appointed lord chief justice

The new lord chief justice will be the appeal court judge Sir Ian Burnett, Downing Street has announced. He will take up the most senior judicial position in England and Wales at the beginning of October after his appointment was formally approved by the Queen.

Lord Justice Burnett, 59, was educated at a grammar school in Sussex and Oxford University before practising as a barrister.

He has specialised in common law, personal injury and health and safety regulations, acting as junior counsel to the King’s Cross fire inquiry and the inquiry into the convictions of the Guildford Four and Maguire family.

Burnett was leading counsel to the inquiry into the Southall rail crash and into train protection systems following the Paddington train crash. His last case at the bar was as counsel to the inquests into the deaths of Diana, Princess of Wales and Dodi Fayed.

He became a high court judge in 2008 and was promoted to the court of appeal in 2014 where he has responsibility for extradition cases. He was vice-chairman of the Judicial Appointments Commission from November 2015 until March 2017, when he decided to step down to apply for the post of lord chief justice.

Burnett lives in Essex with his wife and children.