The Scottish Council of Law Reporting

Macfadyen Lecture 2013

"The legal landscape before the Paisley snail: What an analysis of prior Scots law might have revealed"

was delivered by the

Rt Hon. Lord Hamilton
on 6 March 2013 at the Royal Society of Edinburgh

The text of the lecture is now available on this site at


The SCLR has commissioned a series of five linked short films about law reporting in Scotland and the place of law reports in Scottish legal practice. The celebrated case of Donoghue v. Stevenson provides a useful theme as the role of precedent in the work of lawyers and the courts is explained. The films are presented as a free educational resource, especially useful for those seeking to understand the role of law reports as a primary source of law.

The five films are:

The SCLR has published supplementary teaching materials in the form of three Working with Cases tutorials, to be used in conjunction with the films. These are in PDF and are free to download for printing and or adapatation and distribution to students. The SCLR has also produced Working with Cases: Comments and Solutions. These are also available free of charge and any law teacher requiring a copy should request them, giving some details as to their role and institution and how the films are being used in their teaching. To do so, please use the contact form.

Publishers of Session Cases®

“For the avoidance of doubt, the Court of Session requires that where a case has been reported in Session Cases it must be cited from that source. Other series of reports may only be used when a case is not reported in Session Cases.”

Court of Session Practice Note No. 5 of 2004

High Court of Justiciary Practice Note No. 2 of 2004 gives a similar direction in respect of cases cited before the High Court of Justiciary and Court of Criminal Appeal.

More about Session Cases in hard copy and online, including open access scottish law reports.

Session Cases is a registered Trade Mark of The Scottish Council of Law Reporting.