The Lord Chief Justice spoke specifically on the question of diversity within the judiciary and was frank about the fact that there is a problem with the judiciary. “If you are truly qualified then you should not rule out a judicial career,” he said.

The conference demonstrated just how global the legal industry has become. Whether it is Islamic finance and arbitration in the Middle East, cross-border allegations of terrorism, or international assets in family proceedings, increasingly English law is now becoming a global business and more importantly, providing a new opportunity to practice on an international level.

This was recognised by the Attorney General: “What does this mean in terms of diversity? As we all know, in law context is everything. The context for our legal profession is now international; it knows no geographical boundaries ... Not only are the clients we might find in our own country now more diverse, we may also have international clients, operating beyond our borders and equally diverse. These clients want lawyers whose talents match or complement their own. They want lawyers skilled in different languages. They want lawyers skilled in cultural understanding and awareness.”

The Attorney General then invoked the “General” part of her title, announcing: “I am issuing a call for action. I go further; this is my Call to Arms. I call each and every one of you to ‘report to me’ for active duty in improving the diversity of the legal profession. I want to see evidence that we are taking appropriate steps and that this work is succeeding.”