History of SSC

The Society of Solicitors in the Supreme Courts of Scotland, (SSC Society), which was formed in 1784 and is incorporated by Royal Charter has had, and continues to play a central role in the life and work of the Courts of Scotland and the legal profession generally. For over 200 years, it has endeavoured to represent the interests of its members and to assist in upholding the integrity of Scots Law.

The Society maintains a consistently progressive and enlightened attitude to the pursuit of legal practice and has attempted to avoid being viewed as an institution which, whilst imbued with a sense of history (and, it is hoped, of some accomplishment), remains firmly locked into the past.

On the contrary, it is seeking constantly to anticipate, adapt and improve its undoubted blend of tradition, sensitively and satisfactorily, with each and every development of present day law and legal procedure to assist with the many and various challenges that can, and do confront each practitioner.

James Dalrymple, First Viscount Stair 1619-1695 For over 100 years, the Society’s premises have been located in the heart of Parliament House, Edinburgh from where it continues to further its aims which include:

  • - participation, as Collegiate members of the College of Justice, in seeking to maintain the highest possible standards of professional conduct and expertise in the conduct of business before the Supreme and Inferior Courts.
  • - helping to strengthen and uphold the Law of Scotland and to encourage members both in public and professional life.

The Society is represented on the Court of Session Rules Council and on the Joint Committee of Legal Societies, and regularly sponsors members in seeking election to the Council of the Law Society of Scotland. For many years, it donated an annual prize, awarded to outstanding students in the Department of Scots Law at the University of Edinburgh. It now sponsors Diploma Students. It also sponsored a Biennial Lecture, which has attracted a variety of distinguished speakers and large and appreciative audiences. Speakers have included Lord MacKay, then Lord Chancellor, Lord President Hope of Craighead, Sheila MacLean, Professor of Medical Ethics at the University of Edinburgh, Sir Malcolm Rifkind, Mrs Eilish Angiolini, the Solicitor General for Scotland (later Lord Advocate) and Lord Steel of Aikwood.

SSC Constitution

The SSC has a formal constitution, originally created in 1784, under which all decisions regarding the society are made. Changes to the constitution can be made at a properly constituted meeting of the members, at which a quorum must be present for any changes to be valid.

Officebearers

The SSC elects officebearers to represent the members and they comprise a President, Vice-President, Treasurer, Secretary and Keeper of the Library. The current officebearers are:

  • Lynn Harrison President:
    Lynn Harrison
  • Vice-President:
    Robert Shiels
  • Treasurer:
    Donald Skinner-Reid
  • Secretary: David Lamb
  • Librarian: Pamela Loudon
  • Council Members: Robert Carr, Sarah Erskine, Raymond Fairgrieve, Duncan Hughes, Douglas Thomson, Sheriff George Way.

Staff

The staff at the SSC comprise Mrs Christine Wilcox, the head librarian who is available Tuesday to Thursday, Joanne Bennett, who works Mondays and Fridays, and Doreen Monteith the Library Assistant. Christine and her colleagues are here to help you obtain the best out of the facilities the SSC offers.

Christine has been with the SSC for several years and is an acknowledged expert in sourcing material to help you in your research.