Press release

Lord Chancellor welcomes promotion of new silks

Her Majesty The Queen has approved the appointment of 119 new Queen's Counsel.


Her Majesty The Queen has approved the appointment of 119 new Queen’s Counsel. Alongside the advocates being appointed QC, Her Majesty has also approved the appointment of seven new Queen’s Counsel Honoris Causa (listed below).

The Lord Chancellor will preside over the appointment ceremony, where the rank will be formally bestowed upon successful applicants, at Westminster Hall on 26 February 2018.

Lord Chancellor David Lidington said:

I commend each of the 119 barristers and solicitors, alongside the seven Honorary Queen’s Counsel, on their appointments. The award of the title of Queen’s Counsel is a recognition of depth of expertise and eminence in their fields. It is this expertise that gives the English legal system its world-leading reputation.

Notes to editors

  1. The list of 2017 to 2018 Queen’s Counsel appointments
  2. The 119 Queen’s Counsel (QC) (also known as silks) appointments includes:
    • 32 women applicants of the 50 that applied. Last year, 31 out of 56 female applicants were successful;
    • 18 applicants who declared an ethnic origin other than white of the 33 that applied. Last year 16 such applicants out of 37 were appointed;
    • 21 applicants aged over 50 were appointed. Last year 20 such applicants were appointed. The youngest successful applicant is 34-years-old and the oldest is 63; and
    • Five solicitor advocates of the 10 who applied. In the previous competition six solicitor advocates were appointed.
  3. QCs are appointed by The Queen, on the advice of the Lord Chancellor. He is in turn advised by an independent Selection Panel which receives and considers each application and makes recommendations as to appointment.
  4. For further information, please call the Ministry of Justice press office on 020 3334 5422. Follow us @MoJGovUK.

Honorary Queen’s Counsel biographies

Professor Michael Bridge

A leading academic and Fellow of the British Academy. Professor Bridge has made a major contribution to the law of England and Wales relating to the sale of goods, in particular as editor of the leading textbook in this area and writer of numerous important articles. He has also written major texts and articles on contract law, international sale, personal property law, credit and security, and private international law. He is also a Bencher of the Middle Temple; emeritus Cassel Professor of Commercial Law at the London School of Economics; Senior Research Fellow at Harris Manchester College, University of Oxford; Visiting Professor at Queen Mary University of London; and Professor of Law at the National University of Singapore.

Professor Louise Gullifer

Director of the Commercial Law Centre at Harris Manchester College, Oxford and also Director of the Secured Transaction Law Reform Project. As well as being Professor of Commercial Law at Oxford, she is Professor of International Commercial Law at Radboud University, Nijmegen. She is part of the UK delegation to UNCITRAL Working Group VI and the UNIDROIT committee of Governmental Experts on the MAC Protocol to the Cape Town Convention. She has made a major contribution to the law of England and Wales in terms of the breadth of her work both within academia and outside.

Dr Charles Harpum

A barrister and former academic who served as a Law Commissioner and made a major contribution to the law of England and Wales as a significant architect in the shaping of the Land Registration Act 2002.

Janet Legrand

A former Senior Partner and current interim Global Co-Chair of a major law firm, Janet Legrand is also a pioneer in enhancing the role of women in the law, promoting social mobility, diversity and inclusion within her firm and the wider profession through the board of PRIME. In her legal practice she represents Governments in international disputes. Beyond the law she is Chair of the Trustee Board of The Children’s Society, a member of Council of City University of London, a Trustee of its Students’ Union, a member of the Audit Committee of the University of Cambridge, a Marshall Aid Commemoration Commissioner and board member of the Leadership Foundation for Higher Education.

Professor Nigel Lowe

Professor Lowe has done a mixture of international work and family law and is particularly known for his work relating to the Hague Convention. He has authored a number of books, including some of “rare authority and timeless value”, and is considered a leading academic.

Professor Nicola Padfield

Professor of Criminal and Penal Justice at the University of Cambridge and Master of Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge. In addition to her academic work, she sat as a Recorder from 2002-2014. She is a Bencher of the Middle Temple, and is currently Vice-Chair of its Education and Training Committee. She has made a huge contribution to the criminal justice system in a practical capacity, in addition to her work in academia, where her research focuses on sentencing and parole.

Professor Maurice Sunkin

Professor of Public Law and Socio Legal Studies at the University of Essex, an Associate Member of Landmark Chambers, London, and General Editor of the journal Public Law. He has pioneered an empirical approach to the law and undertaken a number of leading studies of the use, operation and effects of judicial review in England and Wales. He has acted as Legal Adviser to the House of Lords Select Committee on the Constitution and is currently chair of the United Kingdom Administrative Justice Institute, a national research body based at the University of Essex, and Co Director of an ESRC funded project on the human rights implications of big data and new technologies, also based at Essex.

Published 21 December 2017