Saturday, 27 October 2012


It was so kind of Matt Gibbon of Deans Court Chambers to invite me along. I was dismayed that i wasn't sitting at my usual awards table , equidistant between the toilets and the food recyling skip and but a short taxi ride to the stage.As it was i was in the front line , a heavy hint that someone in our midst was a winner and so it proved. Congratulations to Mark Turner QC.
The most poignant speech was delivered by Philip Monham of 11 KBW. He descibed his early days in Chambers , the smell of pipe smoke and polish.Alan Bennett would have been envious.
Clive Anderson was the greatest host . He exuded a love of the law and lawyers.
4 Pump Court won set of the year ; interestingly , for all that wisdom the members were incapable of lining up to have their photograph taken. They might as well have been blindfolded and chucked in a centrifuge.I exempt their senior clerk who exuded glamour.

Miss Sophie Jones

This wise young lady has chosen me to be her Godfather , a role i will take very seriously.I have already appointed a consigliore. If anyone knows where i can arrange to get horses decapitated (poor Khartoum ) drop me a ,line.

Sunday, 21 October 2012


It was kind of Cloisters to invite me to their birthday party at the Oxo Tower where i met Mark Skipp, a thoughtful young man who is plainly in the ascendency at those chambers.On leaving i bumped into Sajid Hussain of Outspire who, coincidentally, was dining at the Oxo Brasserie . He made me join him and insisted i pick good wine.Life is hard.He is saintly.
I am also indebted (again ) to the quiet but ever resourceful Matt Gibbons at Deans Court who has invited me to the Chambers awards on thursday. I can't wait.


The heavy papers today all agree that the Government has had a dire week. Well , unless it sees sense over law reform things will get worse.The 'Today' programme is seriously interested in the adverse impact of clinical negligence reform .Mindless portal extension will do more harm and the attempt to preclude claims for breach of statutory duty is risible. The employment law reform proposed by the Chancellor uniqely united everyone from the TUC to the CBI; it stinks.


If you see me at one of my talks this week ask me which Radio 1 DJ , later radio 2 , was involved in the prostitution scandal back in the 1970s.

Saturday, 20 October 2012


It is 25% off if you buy 6 bottles right now. At the cheap end their own label Pinot Noir is fine .If planning for Christmas their champagne is decent but Tesco , vintage and non - vintage , is superior.


The personal highlight was staying at Chez Jones QC where awesome 1998 Rioja was opened by my fine host. We did the Kensington Town Hall employment update together . I felt vile (nothing connected to wine ) and perhaps should have pulled out but did not.Anyway mad October is almost over although 2013 is already looking very busy .
The SRA are threatening to make an announcement about referral fees on Monday.

Saturday, 13 October 2012


The Court of Appeal is to deliver judgment on friday October 19th.

Monday, 8 October 2012


The man is back at work and sitting full -time as a very busy |Judge in the Court of Appeal . My clear perception is that he has done what wasc asked of him in constructing a package of proposals intended to secure Justice at proportionate cost and he will now get on with his real job.Nothing has changed since i interviewed him in the spring when he stood by all of his recommendations. Ramsey J has now taken over responsibility for implementation.

APRIL 2013.

Jackson is a go and the following will be with us in 6 months.
Budgeting in multi-track.
A drastic cut in the rta portal fee whilst the threshold goes up to £25,000.
A new EL/PL portal which will be a turkey (portal reforms against the advice of Sir Rupert).
Fixed costs in fast -track is back in thew frame.
A referral fee ban in injury.
The small claims limit doiubled to £10,000. Injury survives at £1,000 for now but a new consultation on lower value injury will review the limit.
Contingency fees cappped at 50% and 25% in injury.


It is definite .

Friday, 5 October 2012


John Foy QC tells me that the Court of Appeal decision is out next Wednesday. 

Wednesday, 3 October 2012


The MOJ is turning cartwheels and fixed costs  in fast track, previously abandoned , is back on the radar.I intend to write a definitive note here next week on the latest , revised thinking.


Lara McDonnell is based at 11 Bouverie St, London , EC4, at the offices of E G Arghyrakis and Co . She is ludicrously well qualified and charming.


He is back at work this week and i saw him in the Court of Appeal today.The only sign of vulnerability was a walking stick . He is as conscientious as ever and i felt sorry for the silk who asked if Sir Rupert had read any of the case papers. The skeletons , a European Court authority and background research which involved dictionaries, mainstream and medical , was the answer.It was a great case; both sides had appealed.


I have it from my most reliable source that the injury limit is not going up next year.