Opportunities for the Bar in Europe

Strasbourg might well benefit from developing the margin of appreciation to take greater account of practical differences which arise between Convention states [and] which takes much greater account of differences in the respective legal, social and political tradition of those states,” Lord Neuberger MR told a packed audience of barristers and other lawyers at the European Circuit’s inaugural Annual Lecture on 24 June.


In his speech entitled “The Incoming Tide: the Civil Law, the Common Law, Referees & Advocates”, the Master of the Rolls examined the “confluence” of the different legal traditions, and in particular the possible implications of an expanding EU on the developing legal landscape. Lord Neuberger foresaw a clear role for the Circuit in helping “the common law lay its own alluvial deposits on civilian fields, as throughout history our common law fields have been enriched by alluvial deposits left by continental waters” with European advocates developing “a robust process of communication between EU Member States, Convention States, Luxembourg and Strasbourg.”

Thanking Lord Neuberger for his insight, Fergus Randolph QC,  Circuit Leader said, “Clearly, as Europe continues to impact on UK law, there are opportunities for the Bar to influence Europe. The European Circuit plays a key role in promoting the Bar abroad through hosting regular events in European cities, enabling barristers to network with foreign advocates to exchange ideas, knowledge and experiences.”
One such event is the Circuit’s Annual Conference, which takes place in Paris on 19 and 20 November, featuring speakers from across the UK and Ireland, as well as members of the French Bar, and the American Counsel Association, an elite group of US attorneys with whom the Circuit has close ties.

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