The Bar Council went back to school to explain how, by
applying the Rule of Law, the Judiciary can help citizens to hold
Government to account and challenge the arbitrary use of power.
Joining forces with Citizenship Foundation, the Bar Council reached
out to secondary schools in UK to provide them with access to
classroom resources which explain the importance of judicial
independence in upholding our democratic way of life.
Chairman of the Bar, Andrew Langdon QC raised the alarm about politicians bashing judges in the US and UK,
in an opinion piece published by Huffington Post.
Restricting the free movement of lawyers post-Brexit would
damage Britain's £26bn legal services industry, warned the Chairman
of the Bar in evidence to the House of Commons Justice Committee.
The Chairman said the issue was important not just for lawyers and
highlighted the importance for small businesses and individuals to
be able to use British lawyers in courts in the EU.
The Bar Council launched a new debt recovery service, to help barristers
obtain money owed to them by professional clients. Two law firms,
Thrings and Veale Wasbrough Vizards are the first to join a panel.
Media interest in the service came from theGazette, Legal Futures
andNew Law Journal.
The Bar Council opened nominations for the first Bar Council
Employed Bar Awards. These recognise the vital contribution of
barristers working in-house in the public, private and third
sectors. The brainchild of the Bar Council's Employed Barristers'
Committee, the awards will be announced at a gala dinner to be held
at the Tower of London on 30 June 2017.
Chairman of the Bar Council's Legal Services Committee, Derek
Sweeting QC highlighted the risks of using McKenzie Friends on
BBC's Victoria LIVE programme. This followed a BBC documentary on the problems of using
McKenzie friends instead of properly trained and regulated lawyers.
Andrew Langdon QC, Chairman of the Bar, responded to the publication of the Prisons and
Courts Bill by the Ministry of Justice: "While the Prisons and
Courts Bill indicates the Government clearly sees our justice
system as a priority, we must ensure proposals in the Bill do not
in any way hinder or reduce access to justice for our
The Bar Council has backed proposals by the Bar Standards Board,
to amend rules on shared parental leave, to enable more women to
remain in practice at the Bar. The Gazette reported that while the Bar
Council acknowledged there could be short-term challenges for
chambers and cost implications, implementation of the proposals
would place the Bar at the "forefront of advocating full equality
for all its members."
In a hard-hitting Chairman's column in Counselmagazine, Andrew
Langdon QC, added weight to a chorus of criticism about the intolerable state of immigration detention: no
judicial scrutiny; no time limits; and scant access to justice.
Vice Chairman of the Bar, Andrew Walker QC, has emphasised the importance of high ethical
standards at the Bar as part of the profession's responsibility
to society in support of the Rule of Law. In an article
forCounselmagazine, the Vice Chairman said high ethical standards
are integral to what it means to be a professional lawyer. He
stressed that they are a crucial part of what society expects of
the Bar in return for being allowed to conduct activities that
others cannot, particularly exercising rights of