David Lidington to be sworn in as lord chancellor
And a chance to tune in to talks on the Bar’s training reforms
Legal profession tradition kicks into gear today as David Lidington is sworn in as lord chancellor – the third such ceremony in as many years, after that of Michael Gove in 2015 and Liz Truss last year.
The role has been the subject of a lot of debate recently on The Brief. In the latest part of our video interview, filmed before the general election, Michael Mansfield, QC, called for Truss to be sacked because of her failure to defend the judiciary after attacks by the media over the rulings on parliament’s role in the Brexit process.
With Mansfield having seen his wish come good, our correspondent, Catherine Baksi, asked of Truss’s successor, “David who?”. Lidington is the fourth consecutive non-lawyer to hold the post, and while his pro-European stance has given some in the profession cause for hope, others are concerned about his record on human rights – he has voted in the Commons against equality measures and in favour of scrapping the human rights act.
Elsewhere, the Bar Standards Board is streaming a discussion on training reforms live on its Facebook page between 5.30pm and 7pm on Monday. The panel includes Richard Moorhead, professor of law and professional ethics at University College London (UCL), and Katherine Barnes, co-chairwoman of Young Legal Aid Lawyers, with topics including changes to ethics training, a review of pupillage and efforts to promote equality and diversity.
The Solicitors Regulation Authority is holding a free event entitled Trust and the Market: Building Confidence, with talks on subjects including Brexit and how to increase diversity in the workforce.
On Friday, the Law Society will hold a workshop to help solicitors in applications and interviews for judicial appointments. For those outside the capital, there will be a seminar in Manchester on Wednesday to help firms to work towards the society’s Lexcel quality standard.
And finally, lawyers will be swapping the Bar for the stage on Thursday for a battle of the bands competition. Law Rocks! will pit amateur rock musicians from Taylor Vinters, 2KBW, Kidd Rapinet, Brown Rudnick, and Stephens Scown against each other at the 100 Club in London. It will be quite a departure for the venue which, as the epicentre of the punk scene in the 1970s, is more familiar with spiked hair and safety pins than pin-striped suits, but it’s all for a good cause – Law Rocks! has raised more than £1 million for charity since it was founded in 2009.