Earlier this month the Island’s new High Bailiff, His Worship Mr James Brooks, and Deputy High Bailiff, Her Worship Ms Rachael Braidwood, were sworn in during a short ceremony held at the Isle of Man Courts.
Mr Brooks took his Oath of Allegiance and the Oath of High Bailiff together with some introductory remarks from the His Honour the First Deemster.
Ms Braidwood, having been sworn in in a private ceremony during July, reconfirmed her oaths.
His Honour the Deemster Corlett said:
‘The office of High Bailiff has evolved since it was first established in 1777, from four positions split across the Island, to the single central function we have today with the supporting Deputy High Bailiff positions. The Deputy High Bailiff role was brought in almost exactly 200 years later – in recognition of the large judicial workload undertaken by the High Bailiff.’
‘The work of the Summary Courts is really quite remarkable in terms of breadth, volume and speed. I am pleased to welcome Mr Brooks and Ms Braidwood to their positions, which I have no doubt will continue to evolve as we tackle the variety of modern issues faced by the Courts.’
Prior to his appointment to the Island’s permanent judiciary, Mr Brooks was the legal advisor to the Magistrates. Before this he was Head of Courts and Tribunals Service in the Falkland Islands from 2016 to 2019, a position he assumed after over a decade as a legal advisor to Magistrates primarily in the north of England.
He was appointed a Deputy High Bailiff in August 2021.
On being sworn in he said:
‘It is the wide ranging nature of the role that makes it, to me at least, particularly interesting and fulfilling and it is without doubt a privilege to hold the post of High Bailiff and one that I hope to live up to.’
Ms Braidwood was called to the Manx Bar in October 2002, and following completion of a Masters Degree in Law, has been a Prosecuting Advocate within His Majesty’s Attorney General’s Chambers in the Isle of Man since August 2003. With 20 years’ experience she has prosecuted at every level including cases of a serious and complex nature before the Island’s Appeal Court.
On being sworn in she commented:
‘I am truly honoured to have been appointed as a Deputy High Bailiff and I will strive to live up to the faith placed in me by that appointment. To be seen as fair, effective, impartial and to act with integrity and authority.’