Gray's Inn

News update from The Bar Council


The Bar Council provides a regular News Update on general legal issues that will be of interest to our members.

The most recent News Updates can be viewed below. If you would would like to sign up to receive this News Update by email, please contact The Bar Council.

Wednesday 26 April 2017

Court reporters

Counsel Magazine Chairman of the Bar, Andrew Langdon QC writes in Counsel regarding the decline in court reporters.

A recent survey published by The Justice Gap confirmed that court reporters, and especially court reporters from local newspapers, have been declining in number for years.

The Chairman writes: ‘’The vast majority of hearings and trials, whether criminal, family or other, there is no professional narrative available to the public of contemporaneous events unfolding in court. If we have no personal experience of it, our expectation of what happens there depends largely on what is served up in TV dramas, many of them anachronistic’’.

Following the recent attacks on judges, this illustrates the need to inform the public of how law works in practice.

‘’Visceral attacks via social media and mainstream press on judges and the way we deliver justice are beginning to shake us out of our complacency. For those who habituate the courts, the lack of public understanding of what actually happens and how law and procedure works in practice and the constant distortion of public perception set against our own experience of the reality, is becoming troublesome.’’

The Chairman points out: ‘’What is missing is an accessible account by a reporter of what happened at the trial; the allegation, the rebuttal, the dynamic, and the personal consequences for the parties or the witnesses or others affected by what is unfolding in court’’. 

Read more here.

Bar Council Tweets @thebarcouncil

Monday 24 April 2017 

Prisons and Courts Bill

Legal Futures – Further coverage appears of the news that the Prisons and Courts Bill has been dropped by Parliament.

The bill – which covered reforms to prisons, the courts and low-value personal injury cases – was set for the latest session in its committee stage this morning, but the debate did not happen after the government put forward a motion not to proceed with further consideration of the bill. Separately, spelling out the business of the House of Commons for next week, leader of the House David Lidington confirmed that the bill had fallen.

University of Law

Lawyer2b - The University of Law is launching a new Master’s degree for non-law students.

The nine-month MA Law degree will be available from September 2017, subject to regulatory approval, and will run initially at the University Birmingham and London Moorgate branches. It will do the same job as the Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) in that it will satisfy the requirements of the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) and Bar Standards Board (BSB) should students want to then take the LPC or BPTC.

Bar Council Tweets @thebarcouncil

Date posted: 24 April 2017