As soon as we have confirmed details for the next Chapter meeting, this page will be updated.

Previous events

Reduction of Rights of UK Citizens after Brexit

Online, 16 January 2024

Despite the late hour, 38 participants gathered last night on screen for the third online event of the UK Chapter of Friends of ERA. An excellent panel of experts brought us together to listen to their perspectives on ‚The Reduction of Rights of UK Citizens after Brexit‚.

A big thank you to our guest speakers, David Jones (barrister at Garden Court Chambers) and Professor Elspeth Guild (Jean Monnet Professor ad personam) who talked about the implications of Brexit.

These were the key takeaways from the session:

  • One of the reasons given by those promoting that the UK leave the EU was to ‘get back control’ of the UK borders. In fact, the UK has lost the control it had as a Member State because immigration from 3rd countries has increased exponentially. Moreover, there has been a net departure of EU nationals.
  • As UK citizens have lost their EU citizenship their rights of free movement within Member States and fast-track EU border controls. The rise in asylum applications and “small boats crisis” has demonstrated the failure of Brexit to enable the taking back of control and the loss of the Dublin Regulations removed any credible system for returning asylum seekers to a safe third country in the EU.
  • The UK government’s handling of the crisis has led to its publication of two pieces of legislation, one of which has passed into law (Illegal Migration Act 2023 and the Safety of Rwanda Bill 2024) aspects of which it acknowledges are likely incompatible with the UK’s obligations under the ECHR.
  • Brexit contributed to Britain’s particularly high inflation by introducing friction into the country’s most important trading relationship and loss in value of sterling.
  • UK Citizens have also lost the benefit of the C-370/90 Surinder Singh arrangements.
  • On the date of the UK leaving the EU, EEA citizens derive their legal status to remain in the UK from the EU Settlement Scheme. The rules and guidance on implementing the Scheme have been complex and refusals given without reasons.
  • Rights under the Scheme are recorded electronically and not paper based. The quality in functionality of the data and availability of access to the Scheme has been problematic.

In case you missed this, the presentations and the recordings of the speakers are available at request.

Panel Discussion on the Retained EU Law Bill: Analysis and impact from different UK perspectives

Online, 27th March 2023

On 27th March 2023 we were happy to host the second meeting of the UK Chapter of the Friends of ERA, dedicated to the Retained EU Law (Revocation and Reform) Bill: Analysis and impact from different UK perspectives.

We would like to give special thanks to our panellists:
Schona Jolly KC (presenting on the Bill on EU law in England)
Shantha David (presenting on the Bill regarding the Labour Union)
Charles Whitmore (presenting on the Bill regarding EU law in Wales)
Michael Clancy OBE (presenting on the Bill regarding EU law in Scotland)
Christopher McCrudden (presenting on the Bill on EU law and Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland)

The speakers gave excellent synopses from the perspectives of the four nations of the UK, and of specific sectors, about the challenges and uncertainty of its uniform application throughout the four nations and constitutional effects on devolution. Since the Bill would automatically revoke, or ‘sunset’, most retained EU law by the end of 2023, a key issue noted was the overarching power it vested in the executive through statutory instrument to change significant and wide-reaching bodies of retained EU law.

Many thanks to our chair Edwin Parks and board member Vanessa Knapp OBE, who both contributed actively to the success of the discussion.

We were joined by 34 Friends from the UK and beyond for a stimulating discussion.

First meeting of UK Chapter of the Friends of ERA

with guest speaker Catherine Barnard

Online event, 16th March 2022 on Zoom

We were fortunate to welcome 22 new UK associates who joined us on 16 March 2022 for the first meeting of the Friends of ERA with Catherine Barnard.

Prof Barnard gave a presentation on the TCA and initiated a thought-provoking debate focusing on the UK’s approach to negotiating its new trading relationship. Later she engaged the participants in a lively discussion about the EU/UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement. We were delighted that there seems to be a strong view that EU law and the UK’s relationship to it is still important for UK lawyers.

As a small souvenir from this first UK Chapter event and especially for those who could not make it to our virtual UK-Chapter room that evening, Prof. Barnard has shared her presentation.

We hope that this first meeting will be the first of many opportunities for intensive exchange and will provide a platform for networking among our newly acquired UK members of Friends of ERA. The event has been mentioned on our social media networks including LinkedIn (link to post) so be sure to follow us for future updates.

We also thank our chairs Vanessa Knapp OBE and Edwin Parks, who contributed significantly to the success of the evening and the participants with their lively contributions to the debate.

To find more information about the Friends of ERA or to join the Association, please click here.