Acclaim For Paisley Snail Conference
News - date posted 01/06/12
The Paisley Snail Conference 2012, jointly organised by Renfrewshire Law Centre, University of the West of Scotland, and the Faculty of Advocates has been hailed as a success.
Last weekend's event attracted 141 delegates from 10 countries including a large contingent from Canada and a significant one from Australia, with delegates also from New Zealand, Malaysia, Macau, and the Philippines, as well as a large contingent from England.
The conference which marked the 80th anniversary of the landmark House of Lords decision in Donoghue v Stevenson which began in 1928 when what appeared to be the remains of a decomposing snail emerged from a bottle of ginger beer.
In what has been described as the most famous case of all time, shop worker May Donoghue sued the Paisley-based manufacturer of the ginger beer claiming that anyone who negligently produced harmful goods for public consumption owed a duty of care to consumers.
Lord Atkin, supported by Scottish Judges Lords McMillan and Thankerton, said: "The rule that you are to love your neighbour becomes in law, you must not injure your neighbour."
Advocate Joe Bryce, who played a key role in organising the conference, praised the "genial convenorship of Lord Kinclaven" and added: "Saint Mirren must have interceded with the higher authorities to arrange such superb weather."
Learned papers on a wide variety of subjects were presented at the conference and the historical aspects of Donoghue v Stevenson also received a good deal of attention.
The Steering Committee is meeting to press ahead with publication of the Conference papers.
"Stimulating, thought-provoking, and important as the papers themselves were, the Conference had a fun side too," added Joe Bryce.
"On the Thursday evening there was a Champagne Reception in the Brough Hall at the University, which has been redecorated in the style of the Wellmeadow Cafe for the occasion.
"On the Friday evening, pipers led a procession of Martin Taylor QC, Canadian judge, world renowned expert on the case, and prime mover of the last Paisley Pilgrimage 20 years earlier, followed by the delegates, to the newly refurbished site of the Wellmeadow Cafe, where he and Ellen Farmer of the Old Paisley Society jointly unveiled a newly erected plaque.
"After a visit to the historic Sma' Shot Cottages, there was an evening reception in Paisley Abbey, the sunshine pouring through the stained glass windows; for many that was an especially magical moment that will never be forgotten.
"The closing night of the Conference was a formal dinner in Paisley Town Hall.
"The flame has been kept alight and no doubt in 2032 a younger generation will again gather in Paisley Town Hall to mark the Centenary. Funds achieved in this year's event are earmarked for the groundbreaking Law Wise Law Clinic jointly managed by Renfrewshire Law Centre and the University of the West of Scotland."
Back to News