Policy team

The Bar Council's Policy team works to support the Bar, defend the rule of law and promote access to justice.

With a broad portfolio, typical tasks include:

  • Drafting a consultation response on a matter of law reform
  • Formulating policy positions to argue for criminal, civil and family legal aid to be enhanced
  • Working on practice management materials
  • Liaising with HMCTS on court recovery or court reform
  • Exploring new international opportunities for the Bar
  • Highlighting a rule of law issue at home or overseas
  • Staffing the Ethical Enquiries Service
  • Campaigning for sensible and proportionate regulation of the profession

The team works closely with our dedicated and enthusiastic committees, comprised of hundreds of barristers who provide their expertise pro bono both in the interests of the profession and the public interest.

The Bar Council's Policy team works to support, promote and represent the profession.

 

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Philip Robertson, Director of Policy

Phil joined the Bar Council in January 2015. He began his career qualifying as a Scots solicitor after studying Law at the University of Edinburgh. He then worked as a pensions solicitor in London at Slaughter and May and Eversheds LLP. Phil then spent four and a half years working in policy for a military charity in Cyprus, working with the chain of command to represent and promote the interests of Army families.

On returning to the UK Phil launched a new arm of the charity, with responsibility for representing all families on overseas postings, some 80 countries. Phil's work at the Bar Council covers policy analysis and development, stakeholder liaison and engagement, project and programme management, leadership and management.

 

Research

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Dr. Rose Holmes, Head of Research

Rose joined the Bar Council in October 2019 and leads the Bar Council’s research, data, and analysis work. She oversees all research projects and outputs including surveys (most significantly the Barristers’ Working Lives survey), consultancy, reports, and data analysis. This includes working with stakeholders to ensure we have a sound data-led evidence base for our policy and strategy.

Before joining the Bar Council, Rose worked for several years on university research projects at the universities of Sussex and Birkbeck, where she specialised in creating and using big data sets for historical, economic, and legal research. 

 

Diversity & Inclusion and Corporate Social Responsibility (including Young Bar and Employed Bar)

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Sam Mercer, Head of D&I and CSR                     

Sam joined the Bar Council in June 2013 and is responsible for the design and delivery of equality, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) support for the profession. This includes equality and diversity (E&D) training and good practice guidance, as well as the provision of direct advice and support to chambers and individuals (via helplines). Sam has been responsible for high-profile programmes, including the Wellbeing at the Bar website, the #IamtheBar campaign, the Bar Council’s Leadership Programme, and she co-authored the Race Report (2021). Sam has a keen interest in modernising working practices at the Bar. With a team of four, her remit extents to wider corporate social responsibility (CSR) issues including education and careers outreach; sustainability and pro bono/volunteering, and the Bar Council’s representation of the young and employed Bars.

Prior to joining the Bar Council, Sam setup and ran the leading diversity and inclusion charity on age and employment, and led the workplace division in Business in the Community. She is an award-winning communicator on diversity and inclusion issues and has worked on this agenda across a wide range of private and public sector organisations and charities (both in the UK and overseas). Sam has a Masters in Corporate Social Responsibility.

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Stuart McMillan, Policy & Programmes Manager: Young Bar & Employed Bar

Stuart joined the Bar Council in 2019 and has been in the legal sector since the beginning of his career. He has worked in research, events, policymaking, and stakeholder relations. Previously he worked for a publishing house specialising in legal reporting, where he developed and managed the company’s first team of Content Editors. He has produced and hosted events across the world in four continents.

Stuart’s work at the Bar Council focuses on policymaking and support for barristers who are starting out in their careers and barristers in employed practice. He leads on policy, campaigns, and events for these areas of the profession and is also engaged more widely on access to justice issues, the rule of law, and the sustainability of the Bar. Projects he has contributed to during his time at the Bar Council include a proposal for the recovery of the criminal justice system following the Covid-19 pandemic, campaigns for greater justice funding via submissions to HM Government, and information security compliance materials for barristers and solicitors. Stuart is also an Ethical Advisor on the Ethical Enquiries Service.
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Rachel Krys, Equality & Diversity Consultant

Rachel Krys has been a consultant to the Bar Council Equality Diversity and Inclusion team since 2019 supporting projects to improve the retention and progression of women and under-represented groups at the Bar. Rachel delivers equality, fair recruitment, mentoring and harassment training for the Bar Council and bespoke consultancy for chambers.

Rachel has been an equality and human rights campaigner for more than two decades and has worked with large and small employers to tackle discrimination, analyse, and improve equality outcomes and promote inclusion.

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Kian Goodsell, Policy Analyst: Education, Diversity & Inclusion and CSR

Kian joined the Bar Council in November 2022, having moved from the philanthropic sector within a maritime charity.

Prior to this, Kian completed an undergraduate degree in Ancient History with Politics with a semester in China and semester in Industry at the University of Liverpool. He is currently finishing a part-time Masters in Human Rights and Politics at the London School of Economics. Through these areas, Kian became particularly interested in educational rights and increasing access to adequate education.

As the Policy Analyst: Education and CSR, Kian supports the Pro Bono and Social Responsibility Committee, and the Education and Training Committee. His work also involves supporting the Bar Sustainability Network and the Climate Crisis Working Group.

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Mariam Diaby, Policy Analyst: Diversity & Inclusion and CSR

Mariam joined the Bar Council in November 2021 as a Policy Assistant, where she worked across the four policy teams in the research, development and implementation of policy initiatives and projects. She holds a first-class undergraduate law degree (LLB) and an LLM in Transnational Law from King’s College London.

She has previously worked as a research assistant at Royal Holloway, University of London’s Department of Law and Criminology and as a freelance legal researcher and writer. In May 2022, Mariam moved to the Regulatory Affairs, Law Reform and Ethics team as a Policy Analyst, where she focuses on Law Reform. In this role, she is the executive of the Law Reform Committee as well as lead on the Annual Law Reform Essay Competition and Annual Law Reform Lecture.

Mariam is also an Ethical Advisor on the Ethical Enquiries Service.

 

Regulatory Affairs, Law Reform and Ethics

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Sarah Richardson, Head of Policy; Regulatory Affairs, Law Reform and Ethics

Sarah Richardson joined the Bar Council’s international team in October 2007 where she managed international programmes. In this role she initiated the Bar Council’s immigration sponsorship scheme as well as the international grant programme and Bar Council Training Scheme for Chinese lawyers. After five years she moved to a new role to manage the policy areas of Regulation and Law Reform. Ethics was added to her remit in 2019. In this role she is the executive to the Law Reform and Ethics Committee as well as the Direct Access Panel. She leads on regulatory policy matters that impact the Bar, responding to consultations from legal regulators as well as the Competition and Markets Authority. She is also the manager of the Ethical Enquiries Service and an ethics adviser.  

Sarah studied Natural Science at Durham University before doing a Masters in Social Development Practice at University College London. During her time at the Bar Council she also completed a Graduate Diploma in Law with BPP and a short course in regulation at the London School of Economics. Her early career included working for a Commonwealth Education NGO where she managed programmes in Malawi, conducting research for an environmental NGO in Tanzania and teaching English for the British Council in Chile. She has also worked for the City of London Magistrates' Court and interned with international children’s and women’s rights NGOs.
                                            

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Eleanore Lamarque, Policy Analyst: Regulatory Affairs, Law Reform & Ethics

Eleanore joined the Bar Council in March 2019. Eleanore studied Law at Exeter University where she was awarded a scholarship to spend a year at the University of Connecticut School of Law. Eleanore subsequently completed the Bar Professional Training Course and was called to the Bar. Prior to joining the Bar Council, Eleanore’s roles included working in the legal department for HM Revenue & Customs, serving as a Parliamentary Assistant for a Member of Parliament in the House of Commons and working on a major corporate fraud investigation at the Serious Fraud Office. 

Eleanore’s work includes responding to regulatory developments which could impact the Bar and contributing to consultation papers commissioned by various regulatory and academic bodies. Eleanore is Executive to the Law Reform Committee and leads on the Annual Law Reform Essay Competition and Annual Law Reform Lecture projects.  She is also manager to the Policy Assistant team and an Ethical Adviser on the Ethical Enquiries Service.

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Caitlin Lamboo, Policy Analyst: Regulatory Issues, Law Reform & Ethics

Caitlin joined the Bar Council in December 2019. Her policy areas include ethics, regulation, direct access and anti-money laundering.

She is the Executive of the Money Laundering Working Group, liaising with external stakeholders and supervisors, and leading on responses to consultations on the regulation of barristers in this area. She is the joint Executive of the Ethics Committee and the Direct Access Panel, assisting in reviewing and producing new ethical guidance documents and promoting the interests of barristers accepting direct access instructions respectively. Caitlin is also the joint Executive of the Regulatory Review Working Group, advising on and researching regulatory policy which impacts the Bar.

Caitlin is one of the advisers on the Ethical Enquiries Service and helps to train new ethical advisers. She is also the interim manager of the Policy Assistant team.

Caitlin studied Law at the University of Sussex before completing the Bar Professional Training Course and being called to the Bar. Prior to joining the Policy Team, Caitlin worked for the Bar Council’s Records Office. Her previous professional experience includes working as both a junior associate in an international law firm and in business development for a local law firm in Shanghai.

 

Legal Practice and Remuneration

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Adrian Vincent, Head of Legal Practice and Remuneration
Adrian joined the Bar Council in May 2007. He began his career as a graduate trainee for an insurance company. Then, for 12 years he worked for the national institutions of the Church of England, during which time he also obtained an MA in Biblical Studies from King’s College London.
 
Throughout his time at the Bar Council, Adrian has worked in barristers’ remuneration, including legal aid fee schemes, private funding such as conditional fee agreements, and the taxation of self-employed barristers. From 2019 Adrian was given the additional responsibility of Legal Practice, including engagement with HM Courts & Tribunal Service on court reform. Adrian is the Executive of the Bar Council’s Remuneration Committee, and oversees the Executive of the Legal Services Committee.
 
Adrian is also an Ethical Advisor on the Ethical Enquiries Service.                           

 

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Rowan O'Neill, Policy Analyst: Legal Practice and Remuneration

Rowan joined the Bar Council in June 2022 and assists on a variety of projects across the Policy Team. She holds an LLB (Hons) in Law from Royal Holloway University of London and an LLM in Human Rights Law (Distinction) from Queen Mary University of London. During her undergraduate studies, she worked as a legal research assistant and carer. Prior to joining the Bar Council, Rowan volunteered with the human rights charity Prisoners of Conscience. She conducted research for the charity, assisting with events planning, and liaising with stakeholders.

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Enehuwa Adagu, Policy Analyst: Legal Practice and Remuneration

Enehuwa joined the Bar Council in October 2023. Enehuwa studied law at the University of Hertfordshire, where she received a First-Class Honours degree and was conferred the title Student of the Cohort in recognition of being the highest ranked student among her graduating class.

After obtaining her law degree, Enehuwa received an Advocacy Scholarship to complete a Postgraduate Diploma in Professional Training for the Bar and was subsequently Called to the Bar in 2022.

Prior to joining the Bar Council, Enehuwa worked as a Policy and External Affairs Officer at the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and worked in the public sector providing specialist educational support to vulnerable adults and children.

As a Policy Analyst, Enehuwa serves as the Executive for the Legal Services Committee and the Information and Technology Panel. She is also the Co-Chair of the Bar Council/Law Society Cyber Security Working Group. She works with key stakeholders active in legal practice and remuneration to make representations on behalf of the Bar.

 

International

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Haylie Page, International Project Officer

Haylie joined the Bar Council in April 2021 as a Policy Assistant before moving to the International Team as International Project Officer in October 2021, where she focuses exclusively on the International Market Access Project. Within the role, Haylie ensures the efficient day-to-day management of the project, liaises with all relevant internal and external stakeholders, and guarantees the timely delivery of project reports.

Prior to the Bar Council, she interned at the Money and Mental Health Policy Institute and the Corporate Justice Coalition.

Haylie previously studied Anthropology at Durham University and subsequently completed a Masters in Global Governance and Ethics at UCL. During her Masters, she was Coordinator of the Global Governance and Ethics Society and was regularly involved in the research and public debates of UCL’s Global Governance Institute.

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Evanna Fruithof, Consultant Director, Brussels office

The Bar Council’s Brussels office, run by member of the Bar Evanna Fruithof, has been the Bar Council's eyes, ears and mouthpiece in our relations with the EU institutions since 1999. 

Read more about Evanna's role and see her contact details.

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Melisha Charles, International Policy and Programme Officer

Melisha joined the Bar Council in February 2023.  She qualified in India as an advocate before completing a graduate degree in Public Policy and Global Affairs at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver.

Prior to joining the Bar Council, Melisha worked at the Commonwealth Secretariat’s Office of Civil and Criminal Justice Reform, where she supported member countries in strengthening their legal and institutional frameworks through the review of legislative and regulatory instruments, and the provision of legal assistance and capacity building tools. While in Vancouver, she worked as a Research Assistant focussing on resource governance and corporate accountability.

Over the years, she has worked with governments and corporations in Ethiopia, Uganda,  India, Canada, the Bahamas, Trinidad and Tobago and, most recently, the United Kingdom.

In her current role at the Bar Council, Melisha leads on developing and delivering key Bar Council policy and project work relating to the international interests of the Bar, as well as supporting other rule of law work across the Bar as appropriate. Melisha is currently also training to be an advisor on the Ethical Enquiries Service.

 

Policy assistants

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Evelyn Mataba, Policy Assistant

Evelyn joined the Bar Council in August 2023 and works on a wide range of projects across the Policy Team. She assists in managing the Ethical Enquires service, supporting our Wellbeing at the Bar work and assisting in organising law fairs. She holds an LLB (Hons) in Law and Criminology from the University of Kent.

Prior to joining the Bar Council, Evelyn worked as a policy research intern at Citizens Advice’s national office in London. She conducted policy research, data analysis and collection, events planning, and published a blog post.

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Hannan Abdi, Policy Assistant

In August 2023, Hannan joined the Bar Council as a Policy Assistant. She assists the Policy team with a range of projects, including the management of the Ethical Enquiries service, the development of international programmes for visit delegations, and various research assignments and reports. Prior to joining, she completed a BA (Hons) in History from Kings College London.

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Eleanor Baker, Policy Assistant

Eleanor joined the Bar Council in October 2023 and assists on a variety of projects spanning across the Policy Team. She holds a first-class LLB (Hons) law degree with a study year abroad at the University of Bergen, Norway.

Prior to joining the Bar Council, Eleanor completed the Charityworks programme where she worked as an Innovation Portfolio Officer at Motability Foundation. She conducted research, assisted with project management, and engaged with stakeholders.’