If the second of these diagrams which is

If you read the article on Florence Nightingale in “The Children’s Book of Famous Lives”1 you will not learn that she had to battle with her parents to be allowed to study Mathematics. If you read the Ladybird book “Florence Nightingale”2 you will not discover that she was the first woman to be elected as a Fellow of the Royal Statistical Society. In looking around for an area of research I was intrigued to discover that Florence Nightingale, who I always thought of as the “lady with the lamp”, was a competent Mathematician who created her own type of statistical diagram which she used to save thousands of soldiers from needless death. Florence Nightingale headed a group of 38 nurses who went to clean up the hospitals for the British soldiers in the Crimea in 1854. She found that most of the deaths were due to diseases which could be prevented by basic hygiene, such as typhus and cholera. Her improvements were simple but they had an enormous effect: “She and her nurses washed and bathed the soldiers, laundered their linens, gave them clean beds to lie in, and fed them”3. When she returned to Britain she made a detailed report to the Government setting out what conditions were like and what needed to be done to reduce deaths in the hospitals. Nothing was done, so she tried again, making another statistical report and included in it three new statistical diagrams to make data collated by William Farr more accessible to people who could not get their minds around tables of figures. These were her polar area diagrams or rose diagrams, sometimes also known as ‘coxcombs’. The first showed how many men had died over the two years 1854-5, the second showed what proportions of men had died from wounds in battle, from disease, and from other causes, the third showed how the number of deaths had decreased once “sanitary improvements”4 had been introduced. I decided I would try to recreate the second of these diagrams which is the most complicated and the most shocking. It is called “Diagram of the causes of mortality in the army in the east”. A copy of it is below:

Nevertheless, any information thought to be inappropriate. Evans

Nevertheless, R (On the
Application of Evans) v Attorney General1
considered the nature of the link between the sovereignty of Parliament and the
rule of law. The Evans case concerned a request put forward under the Freedom
of Information Act2
by Evans, a journalist, for letters written by Prince Charles to several
government departments. It was stated that the letters established persuading efforts
by the Prince, disobeying the rule that the monarch and their heirs would persist
political neutrality. Although it was ruled by the Upper Tribunal that the
letters should be publicised, the government, via the Attorney General, had an
opposing point of view, and issued a certificate under S53(2) of the Freedom of
Information Act. This resulted in a veto effect on the Upper Tribunal’s decision,
establishing an attempt by a court to release any information thought to be
inappropriate. Evans applied for a review by the judiciary of the certificate’s
insurance, however the Higher Court denied the application – the Court of Appeal
overturned this decision, and quashed the Attorney General’s certificate. The
ruling was that the Attorney General did not have “reasonable grounds” to come
to this decision. This case highlights that the courts are capable of behaving
in a well-developed and strong manner with regards to the enforcement of the
boundaries of the separation of powers, regardless of the words used by
parliament. Through this, Parliament have proven that they are prepared to take
a position that could potentially be controversial on the meaning behind
Parliament’s words. In this instance, the court is claimed to have ignored the statutory
intentions of Parliament.

2015 UKSC 21

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Freedom of Information Act 2000


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