Subscriber Elections

Elections for Bar Council of England and Wales

The Bar Council is the governing body of the Bar in England and Wales. It considers and implements general policy with regard to all matters affecting the Bar, and it represents and supports barristers and the Bar.

Its membership is made up of approximately 115 barristers who are elected or who represent the Inns, Circuits and other interest groups.

Annually in September, the nomination period will open, followed by the voting period in October. Successful candidates will join from 1 January for a three-year term, except where otherwise indicated. Those members who are due to retire from the Bar Council from the previous year on 31 December will be eligible to stand for re-election.

Why join the Bar Council 

Members of the Bar Council have the opportunity to represent the views of their peers and take part in essential work representing and championing the profession. Bar Council members usually also sit on Bar Council committees which undertake detailed consideration of a wide range of legal and professional issues.

The roles are voluntary, and the levels of commitment vary depending on whether you also serve on committees, working groups or panels. The Bar Council meets seven times a year and committees meet four or five times a year.

Positions on Bar Council

  • Self-employed King’s Counsel
  • Self-employed Junior Counsel over seven years in practice
  • Self-employed Junior Counsel under seven years in practice
  • Employed Junior Counsel over seven years in practice or King’s Counsel
  • Employed Junior Counsel under seven years in practice

Subscriber elections timetable 2024 

Nomination period: 09:00 7 September 2023 to 17:00 21 September 2023

Voting period:  5 October 2023 to 19 October 2023

Announcement: by 20 October 2023

Casual vacancies voting period (if required):  8 November 2023 to 15 November 2023

All successful candidates will take up their roles on the Bar Council from 1 January the following year.

During the nomination period, candidates will need to submit an application form and candidate statement. There will also be the opportunity to provide a candidate video answering the questions in the statement.  

For more information see Bar Council elections 2024


Officer elections

Officer positions

  1. Chair of the Bar
  2. Vice Chair of the Bar
  3. Treasurer of the Bar

Under the Bar Council Constitution, Officers shall be elected by the members of the Bar Council and shall, at the time of their proposal for election, each be a member of the Bar Council. Candidates for election as an Officer must be proposed and seconded by those who are members of the Bar Council at the time of their proposal for election.

The Chair and the Vice Chair shall be eligible for re-election for a second term after which they may not stand for re-election to the position again.

The Treasurer shall be eligible for re-election annually for a period not exceeding 4 years.

Officer elections timetable 

Timetable for the election of Officers for 2025:

Nomination period: 2 April to 26 April 2024

Voting period: 3 May to 10:00, 17 May 2024

Hustings: 17:30, 9 May 2024

Announcement: The outcome of the elections shall be communicated to the Bar Council no later than 21 May.