Andrew Walker QC becomes Chair of the Bar

3 January 2018

Andrew Walker QC has become Chair of the Bar, taking over from outgoing Chair, Andrew Langdon QC, to lead the Bar Council, the representative body for barristers in England & Wales. 

The new Chair, of Maitland Chambers, was called to the Bar in 1991 and took silk in 2011. His professional practice is focused on property, company and commercial disputes and professional negligence claims in a wide range of business sectors.  He was a directly-elected member of the Bar Council for 12 years, and before his election as Vice-Chair he was Chair of the Ethics Committee and Vice-Chair of the Law Reform Committee. He is a Bencher of Lincoln's Inn, and was awarded the Bar Pro Bono Award in 2009 for some of his work with the homelessness charity, Shelter.  

Richard Atkins QC, of St Philips Chambers, Birmingham, has become Vice Chair of the Bar for 2018. He was called to the Bar in 1989 and took silk in 2011. He practises predominantly in crime and regulatory law (Health and Safety and Trading Standards). He has been a Recorder since 2005, a Mental Health Tribunal Judge since 2014 and is a Legal Chair for the Financial Reporting Council Disciplinary Tribunal. He was Leader of the Midland Circuit from 2014 to 2017. Richard became a member of the Bar Council in 2003, was Chair of the Bar Council's Member Services Board from 2010 until 2016 and was co-Chair of the Bar Council's Bar Representation Board until the end of 2017. In 2014, Richard chaired the Annual Bar Conference. He is a Bencher of Gray's Inn. Outside the Bar, Richard was a Governor of the Coventry School Foundation (King Henry VIII and Bablake schools in Coventry) from 1999 until 2011, becoming Chair of the Governors from 2011-2014.  

Read Andrew Walker QC's inaugural speech here


Notes to Editors

  1. Further information is available from the Bar Council Press Office on 020 7222 2525 and

  2. The Bar Council represents barristers in England and Wales. It promotes: 

  • The Bar's high quality specialist advocacy and advisory services

  • Fair access to justice for all

  • The highest standards of ethics, equality and diversity across the profession, and

  • The development of business opportunities for barristers at home and abroad.

The General Council of the Bar is the Approved Regulator of the Bar of England and Wales. It discharges its regulatory functions through the independentBar Standards Board.