Thursday, 21 June 2007

Time flies...

Dear me, has it really been over a month? Sorry to be gone so long. I was away on holiday for a couple of weeks (very decadent, I know) and in the three weeks I've been back I've been sent all over the place and never seem to get round to updating my blog. I suspect that this is how clerks pay barristers back for taking time off - booking us into work miles away.

So what's new? Again, we're being reminded of the crisis in our prisons, which are now so over-crowded that court cells are on standby to house people in custody. All this week, the courts I've been in have been delayed by prisoners being brought from the other side of the country and arriving late. Mind you, there's never been a better time to be facing sentence!

One of the things keeping me busy lately is my newly-started civil practice, which is a mixed bag and now accounts for about 10-15% of my work. As many people warned me, it is a steep learning curve. At times I feel like a pupil again but I've got a couple of unofficial mentors in chambers who are a great help and, by and large, I'm enjoying it. Not as much as I enjoy anything involving sex, drugs and violence, but it's early days yet. One of the things I really like about civil work is that the briefs tend to be better prepared (sorry to any criminal solicitors - I know you don't have the funding you need) and there is no doubt that the money's far better. Nothing like selling your soul...


Anonymous said...

Hi LB,

Welcome back to blogworld!
Do you really think you are selling your soul by building a mixed practice? Surely you've got to do what you've got to do to get on and get known....

future_barrister said...


How could you sell your soul for civil work? Shameful! Just kidding. Good luck with everything :)

When things get bad just remember that I have experience in 3 different tribunals in 10 different areas of law and I'm still unable to get a pupillage! My friends and I also have bailiffs coming over on a regular basis thanks to the ominious BVC (maybe it's no different for you if you work in crime.)

I envy you for actually having a tenancy, as the competition at the Bar is mad nowadays. 90% of the people I have met at the Bar will not get a pupillage despite amazing efforts to try, so count yourself lucky! hehe

By the way, I loved reading your blog on when you were before the Judges in the Court of Appeal, classic!

Take care


Mr Beagle said...

I missed you when you were away. Welcome back. x

Legal Beagle said...

Thanks for the comments!

LM - I wasn't being entirely serious when I said I was selling my soul but there is a certain feeling of defeatism about the whole thing. I've always advised people who want to be criminal barristers to go for it and stick to their guns if it's what they really want to do, so I do feel a bit wimpy for putting my bank balance above my ambition. That said, a beagle has to make ends meet somehow and unfortunately my mortgage won't pay itself.

FB - It took me while to get pupillage too (though luckily once I did I was kept on for tenancy). Best of luck in your endeavours - just go for it and stick to your guns if it's what you really, erm... well, thank you for your kind words!

Mr B - I missed you too

All the best,


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