Brucey wrote:for it to be a 'definitive' statement, it will have to be explicit in the relevant regulation, and/or proven in case law. If either, someone will know.
If neither, no one will.
This is, of course, correct and it's easy to see these legal arguments as theoretical mind games between BOF's in fancy dress. The reason I've highlighted a bit in red is that to get to the point of a case becoming a legal precedent, some real live person has to be nicked and then have their case go up the legal escalator. Even if they are cleared at the magistrates' court, the prosecution can take a case by way of case stated through several appeal stages.
That can cut both ways of course. In the cyclist-walking-across-a-zebra case, the driver was cleared by magistrates of failing to give precedence to a foot passenger and the High Court sent it back to the magistrates telling them they had got the law wrong.
Talking of real live people, I've wondered aloud before on whether the cycling folk hero, "The Telford One" AKA Daniel Cadden would have preferred to be allowed to ride his bike in peace. (And his case never got beyond the Cown Court so it dets no legal precedent.)
It's also easy to see all this as a bit of a joke and lawyers love a bit of humour, but it's usually at somebody else's expense, in more than one sense.
Anybody getting beyond the mythical cattle engine in the Corkery v Carpenter report I've linked several times will know that the defendant was arrested for being drunk in chage of a carriage (viz, to wit, and hereinafter referred to as a bicycle) and while he was in the cell, smashed it up and so he was charged with malicious damage, a felony in those days. The appeal was based on the argument that a bicycle isn't a carriage (even though statute and case law says it is) so his arrest was unlawful. If he was unlawfully arrested, he was entitled to do what damage he liked to the place where he was unlawfully detained. When the case was heard in the King's Bench Division of the High Court, the legal humour was provided by the defence lawyers including the music hall song "Daisy, daisy" in their evidence. The report says that no reference was made to that in in the law reports. I suspect that when the defence team realised they had drwan the short straw in the form of Goddard, LCJ, probably with his black cap at the ready, they decided to leave the jokes out of their submissions. The phrase "short shrift" comes to mind, but I've never heard of a long one.
http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/a-c ... 69087.html
(Edit to correct this week's howler. Corrkey v Carpenter was decided by the King's Bench Division )