The Bar Council marks the Opening of the Legal Year as it prepares to promote the Bar's services internationally

1 October 2013

The Bar Council, which represents barristers in England and Wales, this week marks the Opening of the Legal Year 2013 in London, leads a delegation of barristers to New York, and attends the International Bar Association's (IBA) Annual Conference taking place in Boston, Massachusetts.

To coincide with the Opening of the Legal Year, the Bar Council will play its part in the formal, ceremonial events and the Chairman of the Bar, Maura McGowan QC, will chair a discussion with international Bar leaders on justice in times of austerity.

In New York, the Bar Council will co-host a seminar with the New York County Lawyers' Association (NYCLA), which will build on the achievements of last year's delegation, to raise the profile and services of the Bar in the US. The Bar Council will also be attending and exhibiting the services of the Bar at the IBA Annual Conference in Boston, in the course of which it will co-host a networking reception with UKTI at the British Consulate General.

Maura McGowan QC, Chairman of the Bar, said:

"This will be an important and busy week for the Bar, as we welcome the arrival of Bar leaders from around the world who are attending the Opening the Legal Year 2013. Once again, their attendance demonstrates the strength of the relationships which our legal profession enjoys overseas and the values we share with our professional colleagues around the world.

"We can look forward to a busy schedule, both domestically and internationally, where there will be many opportunities to demonstrate the value and quality which the English Bar offers. Our meetings in London and in the US will enable us to promote the Bar's international work and to discuss the future of our profession and the challenges and opportunities we face, particularly with those who share our concerns about threats to access to justice, which actual and planned cuts in public funding of legal services have created. We need to remind each other about the importance of our role in supporting the Rule of Law. But we must go further. We need to explain to governments, and the wider public, the vital work lawyers do to enable people to uphold their legal rights and fulfil their legal duties and why that is crucial to the maintenance of the Rule of Law."     


Notes to Editors

1. For more information about the Bar Council's Seminar in New York, please click  here.

2. For more information on the International Bar Association Conference, please click  here.

3. The Bar Council will launch the third edition of its brochure 'Barristers in the International Legal Market' at the IBA exhibition. This brochure succinctly describes the services that the Bar provides and how clients can identify and instruct the right barristers for their particular needs.

4. For further information, please contact the  Bar Council Press Office on 020 7222 2525.

5. The  Bar Council represents barristers in England and Wales. It promotes: 

  • The Bar's high quality specialist advocacy and advisory services

  • Fair access to justice for all

  • The highest standards of ethics, equality and diversity across the profession, and

  • The development of business opportunities for barristers at home and abroad. 

The General Council of the Bar is the Approved Regulator of the Bar of England and Wales. It discharges its regulatory functions through the independent Bar Standards Board.