The review panel, on which Lord Neuberger of Abbotsbury and Geoffrey Vos QC will serve, has been set up alongside a government White Paper, New Opportunities—Fair Chances for the Future, published in January.
Lord Neuberger’s 2007 inquiry into the social background of barristers made 57 recommendations, which the Bar Council is currently implementing, and these will play a key role in Milburn’s review. Lord Neuberger found familiarity with the professions and lack of finance remained a significant barrier to entry.

Bar Council chair, Desmond Browne QC, said there were no “quick fixes”, and the process of ensuring diversity at the Bar should start at school and continue all the way to the Bench. “No one should ever be deterred from a career at the Bar by the thought that ‘it is just not for me’. Misconceptions of that sort too easily become self-fulfilling prophecies.”

See also Parliamentary Brief, this issue, p 8.