Master of the Rolls receives honorary doctorate

BU Chancellor, Lord Phillips, with new Honorary Doctorate, Lord Neuberger

Lord Neuberger of Abbotsbury is made an Honorary Doctor of Laws by BU.

One of the UK’s leading judges, Lord Neuberger of Abbotsbury, has received an Honorary Doctorate from BournemouthUniversity.

Lord Neuberger, Master of the Rolls, was made an Honorary Doctor of Laws. He received the award from Lord Phillips of Worth Matravers, President of the UK’s Supreme Court and Chancellor of the University, during annual award ceremonies for BU’s BusinessSchool held at the Bournemouth International Centre.

Lord Neuberger, who holds the second most senior office in the judiciary of England and Wales, is President of the Civil Division of the Court of Appeal and Head of Civil Justice. Previously, he was a Lord of Appeal and, before that, a High Court Judge and then a member of the court of Appeal. He is also a Privy Councillor.

In accepting the award, Lord Neuberger quoted Groucho Mark who famously said that he would not want to join any club that would have him as a member. “But then, [Groucho] was never asked to join a club that had Bill Bryson, Martin Clunes and Alex James as members,” said Lord Neuberger after joining the list of other luminaries who have previously received Honorary Doctorates from Bournemouth University. 

“I cannot pretend to be as prolific and witty as Bill Bryson ?? if I wrote as many judgements as he’s written books I would be doing well,” Lord Neuberger continued. “I cannot behave as badly as Martin Clunes used to behave ?? or, at least as a judge I certainly shouldn’t do so. Nor can I make award-winning cheeses like Alex James does now. But I suppose that the rolls of which I am master could, in one sense, go rather well with his cheeses!”

Lord Neuberger also encouraged this year’s graduates to ‘grab the moment’ before going on to recall his own graduation of 40 years ago and the initial time it took him to get his career off the ground.

“It took me a false start or two before almost by accident I found myself as a barrister,” he said. “The lesson I learned was that preparation, perseverance, experience and luck all play their part as I’m sure they will for you. University helps you prepare and Bournemouth University strikes me as an unusually good institution for the purpose of preparation.

“Bournemouth with its excellent and innovative degree courses and its links to the professional and business world beyond the university is an excellent place to prepare for the stage of life that follows from today,” Lord Neuberger concluded.

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