Bar Council opens up membership to chambers
Until now, chambers couldn’t be members of the Bar Council, but they are expanding membership beyond the traditional barrister-only membership.
The package brings together 10 new courses, two new forums for Heads of Chambers and Chambers management staff, in addition to services which the Bar Council delivers for the Bar. For the annual subscription, chambers gain access to value for money benefits and services, including training credit hours. This, the Bar Council anticipates, will encourage barristers’ chambers to make greater use of the specialist courses the Bar Council puts together.
Malcolm Cree CBE, Chief Executive of the Bar Council, said: “This is an exciting initiative for the Bar Council. The creation of a new package of benefits and bespoke services to chambers is part of the Bar Council’s drive to work more closely with chambers to strengthen and better support and promote the profession.”
The Bar Council’s Commercial Director, Dr Isabel DiVanna, said: “The Bar Council’s Training & Events team have listened carefully to feedback from members of the Bar and chambers’ staff who are often keen to take training courses but feel many on offer are simply not relevant to them. The Bar Council courses are all customised by trainers for the Bar; trainers themselves are often barristers or chambers directors, so we are confident that the content on offer is both pertinent and appropriate.”
The diversification of skills enables practitioners to expand their practice and try new approaches, while proactively developing their professional skills without the former constraints of CPD programmes. Any course is also available for booking by individual barristers whose chambers are not part of the membership package, or who work as sole practitioners.
The Annual Membership Package was developed in close collaboration with executive members of the LPMA (Legal Professionals Management Association). The Co-chairs of the LPMA, Catherine Calder and Robin Jackson said: “The LPMA is pleased to see this initiative being put into place: it has been developed through close consultation with the profession, including those who manage chambers, and brings greater currency and relevance to the services offered to individual barristers and now, importantly, to the chambers in which they practise. We strongly encourage chambers to examine the options available to best suit their needs.”
Further details about the new Bar Council Annual Chambers Membership can be found here