With my postgraduate law program going to begin soon, I started delving into common law - especially the UK - and got across the issue of “private acts.” These are apparently Acts of Parliament which do not affect the general public, but only deal with one single person, like a company or even an individual. Researching this to more detail, I found this site listing private acts since 1539, and it mentions some very odd things - as a rather recent example, we get the George Donald Evans and Deborah Jane Evans (Marriage Enabling) Act of 1987, and a series of similar Marriage Enabling Acts. Unfortunaly, I wasn’t able to find the text of this statute, neither on the publicly available web nor in databases like Westlaw or LexisNexis.
Is this really what it sounds like - Parliament makes an act to enable Mr and Mrs Evans to marry, which otherwise would for some reason not have been possible? Why the heck does Parliament bother with this, and how do you get such an act passed if you need it for some reason - do you approach your local MP and ask him or her to rally support for your case among colleagues?