This website uses cookies

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience. By using our website, you agree to our Privacy Policy

Chaynee Hodgetts

Features and Opinion Editor & Barrister, Solicitors Journal & Libertas Chambers

Quotation Marks
As Anthony Bourdain once said: “As you move through this life and this world, you change things slightly – you leave marks behind, however small.”

Keeping Counsel

Keeping Counsel


In our August 2022 Foreword, Chaynee Hodgetts considers changing times…

As the Summer of 2022 makes legal history, both politically, and for the unprecedented direct action by counsel (and others) across the country, welcome to the August 2022 issue of Solicitors Journal. This month, we’ll be reflecting on this – and as wide a range of topics as ever – as temperatures, and tensions, rise across the country.

I write this from a train – the first direct train to London I’ve managed to get in two years – on my way to a (CBA action exempt) Magistrates’ Court trial, having been delayed overnight due to cancellations from our ‘mini-heatwave.’ Travel delays are becoming our new normal, with disruption becoming the rule rather than the exception. This doesn’t just apply to the railways, be it due to weather or industrial action – but, to a greater or lesser extent, to the whole country.

As we emerged into the brave new world post-covid 19, blinking and bewildered, the world seems to have turned on its axis a little – but the direction of travel remains, as of yet, unclear. One thing is for definite – this train will be delayed… 

As Anthony Bourdain once said: “As you move through this life and this world, you change things slightly – you leave marks behind, however small.” With change comes confrontation of existing uncomfortable truths –  and one of these is the markedly increasing awareness of the poverty in which so many of the population - and publicly-providing practitioners and professionals – are living. 

Sarah Day of Libertas Chambers shares with a personal perspective on why the CBA action has occurred – and what we can do, in an increasing ‘brain drain’ from criminal practice, to keep counsel.

This issue, we have a focus on change – from the Criminal Bar Association (CBA) Days of Action to airline industrial action – and drastic changes introduced by precedent and statute in both criminal and family law. 

In our cover story, Cathál MacPartholán highlights the changes coming in with the new Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Act 2022 (PCSCA 2022) – and Maia Cohen-Lask and Nick Barnard consider the position of publicity and uncharged suspects, in the Supreme Court’s recent
decision in Bloomberg LP v ZXC [2022] UKSC 5. On corporate crime, Aziz Rahman reviews challenges currently faced by the SFO - and Caroline Day contemplates the Law Commission’s paper on economic crime offences.

On the family and civil side, Sacha Lee considers Re Ms L and Re Ms M (declaration of parentage) [2022] EWFC 38, a landmark judgment confirming people who have been adopted may also have their birth parents formally recognised. In addition, Dana Denis-Smith highlights how, even now, the gender pay gap still exists – and asks what we can do about it. On the note of equality, Joanna Abrahams also reviews the inequities in establishing nullity in same sex marriage.

In the Practice section, Alec Samuels looks at how we can better protect holidaymakers while travelling abroad – and, in the Business section, we cover airline industrial action and cancellations by a range of major airlines, including EasyJet and British Airways – and how the travel industry globally is also turning on a different axis to the pre-covid 19 era. As school’s out for Summer, so, it would seem, are so many people who have simply had enough of the struggles of the past few years – and want to make their voices heard in a changing world.

On the theme of speaking up in changing times, this month’s SJ interview is with Nicola Pearson, Legal Counsel of Lovehoney, sharing her contemplations on life and a career in in-house practice for large brands – and how the sexual wellness sector could be more diverse and inclusive for all. 

Overall, however you choose to spend your August 2022, we hope this issue offers you food for thought – and I sincerely hope all of us in criminal practice (both solicitors and counsel) can continue to survive, and perhaps one day even thrive, after the Summer of 2022. On that note, to conclude, as Bourdain also once remarked – perhaps now, with bittersweet irony: “I’m not going anywhere. I hope. It’s been an adventure. We took some casualties over the years. Things got broken. Things got lost. But I wouldn’t have missed it for the world…”

Chaynee Hodgetts is features & opinion editor and barrister with Libertas Chambers: