It is possible for us to read the Bankruptcy list on a daily basis to see what is going on up at the Thomas More Building (pictured). As we do certain names become familiar. There are of course the debtor litigants, petitioners and so forth but there are also the judges. Who are these people and what is the role of a Registrar in Bankruptcy of the High Court?
The office of Bankruptcy Registrar has a fairly long heritage. Some heated debate occurred in the House of Lords on the jurisdiction on 3 July 1851. The Lord Brougham was discussing "a Bill abolishing patronage producing great emolument, and among other offices it abolished the office of Chief Registrar of the Court of Bankruptcy, which produced to its holder 1,200l. a year, and transferred the duties of it to the Lord Chancellor's Chief Secretary." The Lord Chancellor responded that, "he certainly now found that the Chief Registrar was an essential officer to give validity to most important proceedings in bankruptcy, and to establish titles acquired under bankruptcy." and, "he had not done more towards carrying into effect the recommendations contained in certain reports for the abolition of certain offices, as those of Secretary of Bankrupts, and Chaffwax and Sealer." The post survives to this day.
So what do the modern Registrars in Bankruptcy do? As at least one commentator has suggested their title is a little misleading as
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