Jolyon’s Donors Become Cash Cow for Government After Year of Consecutive Court Defeats mdi-fullscreen

On January 1st Jolyon posted a Twitter thread claiming “We had a pretty extraordinary year at Good Law Project in 2022″. That’s certainly true, 2022 was extraordinarily poor for the GLP and Jolyon. The LabourPainsBlog – a seminal source for keeping track of Jolyon’s courtroom losses – shows the Good Law Project saw eight legal defeats in court; crowdfunding income down a whopping 70%; and over £700,000 of legal costs awarded by the GLP to the government. Extraordinary…

According to the GLP’s own sums, total income from crowdfunders has slumped from £1.144 million in 2020/21 and £1.863 million in 2021/22 to just £580,000 in 2022/23. And 45% of that £580,000 came from crowdfunders launched in previous years…

LabourPainsBlog’s month-by-month Spotify-style round-up of Jolyon’s defeats doesn’t make for upbeat reading either:


  • High Court ordered the GLP to pay £250,000 of the government’s legal costs over the PPE VIP lane trial
  • Court of Appeal allowed the government’s appeal against the GLP’s earlier High Court win on the Public First case


  • The High Court dismissed “in its entirety” the GLP’s judicial review claim alleging cronyism by the government when appointing Dido Harding, ordering the GLP to pay 80% of the government’s legal costs


  • Court of Appeal refused the GLP permission to appeal the VIP lane case from January
  • The High Court dismissed the GLP’s attempt to challenge ministers’ use of personal emails and apps like Whatsapp to conduct government business. GLP ordered to pay £125,000 of the government’s legal costs


  • High court dismissed the GLP’s attempt to challenge the award of contracts for Covid antibody tests to Abingdon Health
  • Same High Court case rules that the GLP lacks the standing to bring in such claims at all


  • Court of Appeal dismissed the GLP’s appeal in the ministerial Whatsapps and emails case
  • Supreme Court refused the GLP permission to appeal the Court of Appeal’s January ruling on Public First

Guido can also reveal the result of a successful FoI request sent to the Government Legal Department (GLD), asking how much the government had paid out to the GLP in 2022, and how much they had received during the same period. The answer? A net revenue for the government of £371,106.19.

“I can confirm the following information on behalf of the GLD in response to your request.

In answer to part 1 of your request, as at 1st November 2022, £40,000 has been paid out to firms representing the Good Law Project in litigation by the Government Legal Department (on behalf of HM Government).

In regards to part 2, up to the 1st November 2022, £411,106.19 has been received from the Good Law Project (and/or firms representing the Good Law Project in litigation) by the Government Legal Department.”

Here’s to 2023, Jolyon…

Big hat-tip to LabourPainsBlog

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