Where extra publicity might attach to proceedings because of the celebrity of the parents, it was wrong to attach extra restrictions on reporting without proper cause. There remains a need to balance the need for the freedom of speech and the child’s interests. That balance does not always fall one way.
Thorpe LJ said that the court: ‘has jurisdiction in personam to restrain any act by a parent that if unrestrained would or might adversely affect the welfare of the child the subject of the proceedings.’
He spoke also of the need to give proper weight to freedom of speech: ‘As Hoffmann LJ rightly said in his judgment in R v Central Independent Television there is an inevitable tendency for the Family Division judge at first instance to give too much weight to welfare and too little weight to freedom of speech. That reality is reflected in the number of appeals in this field which succeed. Beyond that, as this case illustrates, all the advocates and the draftsmen before the court are equally child centred. Those who are to be bound by contra mundum orders have no opportunity to make submissions as to where the boundary should be drawn nor to contribute their expertise to the drafting. In my opinion consideration should be given to establishing a procedure to meet this deficit.’
Gazette 04-Nov-1998, Times 28-Oct-1998,  1 FLR 409
England and Wales
Cited – R (Mrs) v Central Independent Television Plc CA 17-Feb-1994
The court did not have power to stop a TV program identifying a ward of court, but which was not about the care of the ward. The first instance court had granted an injunction in relation to a television programme dealing with the arrest and the . .
Cited – Kent County Council v The Mother, The Father, B (By Her Children’s Guardian); Re B (A Child) (Disclosure) FD 19-Mar-2004
The council had taken the applicant’s children into care alleging that the mother had harmed them. In the light of the subsequent cases casting doubt on such findings, the mother sought the return of her children. She applied now that the hearings . .
Cited – Pelling v Bruce-Williams, Secretary of State for Constitutional Affairs intervening CA 5-Jul-2004
The applicant sought an order that his application for a joint residence order should be held in public.
Held: Though there was some attractiveness in the applicant’s arguments, the issue had been fully canvassed by the ECHR. The time had come . .
Cited – Kelly (A Minor) v British Broadcasting Corporation FD 25-Jul-2000
K, aged 16, had left home to join what was said to be a religious sect. His whereabouts were unknown. He had been made a ward of court and the Official Solicitor was appointed to represent his interests. He had sent messages to say that he was well . .
Cited – H v A (No2) FD 17-Sep-2015
The court had previously published and then withdrawn its judgment after third parties had been able to identify those involved by pulling together media and internet reports with the judgment.
Held: The judgment case should be published in . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 10 May 2022; Ref: scu.81904