Hillsborough: latest  

Pete Weatherby QC Mark George QC Kate Stone  and  Andrew Fitzpatrick  of GCN are instructed for 22 Hillsborough families, 20 represented by  Elkan Abrahamson of Broudie Jackson Canter , and 1 each by  Terry Wilcox of EAD Solicitors  and  Anthony Higham of Butcher and Barlow LLP Solicitors .

Ongoing coverage of the Hillsborough Inquests

The Hillsborough Inquests commenced on 31st March 2014.

Hillsborough Law drafted by Hillsborough families' legal teams  


The legal teams representing the the relatives of 96 people who died at Hillsborough have drafted a new law to compel public officials to tell the truth at inquiries.  GCN's Pete Weatherby QC , Mark George QC , Andy Fitzpatrick and Kate Stone represented 22 Hillsborough families and worked on drafting the new law.

Manchester residents, including GCN barristers, challenge UAE Human Rights record on anniversary of Peterloo Massacre  


Residents of Manchester, including a number of GCN barristers, highlight poor UAE Human Rights record on the anniversary of the Manchester Peterloo Massacre and call for release of pro-democracy detainees.

IPP prison sentences under renewed scrutiny from prison reform charities  


In an article which appeared in Solicitors Journal last week, leading prison reform charities including Prison Reform Trust and Howard League have renewed the pressure on Government to find a solution for the open-ended (IPP) sentence prisoners.  GCN's Pete Weatherby QC was also interviewed.

Landlords behaving badly - damages for dispossession (Begache v Noreen)  


An interesting housing hearing concerning damages for a dispossessed tenant, conducted by GCN's Tom Royston , has been reported in the July / August 2016 edition of Legal Action and also on the housing blog NearlyLegal .

3-Judge Upper Tribunal panel allows Tax Credit Appeals test case  


In an important test case brought by CPAG, it has been held that tax credit claimants have always been able to make a late appeal against decisions made by HMRC.

Bryan McGuire QC 1958-2016  


We at Garden Court North were saddened to hear of the death of Bryan McGuire QC on 17 th  July 2016.

Tenants and Borrowers Subjected to Unlawful Evictions?  


Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunal Service is investigating after a number of former tenants of social landlords with rent arrears may have been unlawfully evicted by the County Court at Oldham  following an administrative error by their social landlords that was not identified by the court.

Hillsborough families' legal teams, including GCN barristers, win outstanding achievement award at LALYs  


The Hillsborough legal teams, including GCN's Pete Weatherby QC , Mark George QC , Andy Fitzpatrick and Kate Stone , who acted for 22 families, all received a standing ovation at the Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year 2016 (LALY) awards yesterday evening as they were awarded the outstanding achievement award. 

Certifying asylum and human rights claims as “clearly unfounded”  


The Court of Appeal yesterday gave an important ruling as to the approach that needs to be followed by the Secretary of State for the Home Department in certifying asylum and human rights claims as “clearly unfounded”.

GCN immigration team response to Tribunal Fees Consultation  


The GCN Immigration Team has published their response to the MoJ Consultation on Tribunal Fees in the First-tier Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber) and the Upper Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chambers).

Joe Markus shortlisted for LALY 2016 Legal Aid Newcomer award  


GCN's Joe Markus has been shortlisted for the Legal Aid Newcomer category in the LALY 2016 Awards.

Hillsborough Inquests - articles and media coverage  


A round-up of articles and media coverage featuring the team of GCN counsel representing the 22 families: Pete Weatherby QC, Mark George QC, Kate Stone and Andy Fitzpatrick.

Hillsborough Inquests - 22 Families Press Conference  


The jury at the Hillsborough inquests have found that the 96 people who died were unlawfully killed and cleared Liverpool supporters of any blame for the disaster. 

The Hillsborough Inquests : 26 April 2016 Conclusions Day  


The jury at the Hillsborough inquests have found that the 96 people who died were unlawfully killed and cleared Liverpool supporters of any blame for the disaster. 

Recompense for the wrongfully convicted - judgment in Nealon and Hallam miscarriage of justice compensation test cases  


Judgment was today handed down in the miscarriage of justice test cases of Nealon and Hallam.  The test cases were again refused.  Victor Nealon's solicitor, Mark Newby of QS Jordans has written a strong opinion piece in Justice Gap:

Hillsborough Inquests - Coroner's summing up has concluded  


This week marked the final few days of the summing up by the coroner, Sir John Goldring at the new inquests into the deaths of the 96 Liverpool supporters who died at Hillsborough on April 15th 1989.  The summing up concluded today and the coroner set the jury out to consider its verdict at 14:05 on 6 April 2016.  

Supreme Court grants permission to appeal in Kiarie "deport first, appeal later"  


The Supreme Court has this week (22 March 2016) granted permission to appeal in the case of R (Kiarie) and Anr v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2015] EWCA Civ 1020.  We expect the hearing to be listed in the normal timeframe and this page will be updated with further details as they become available.

Not guilty verdict for Chetham Music School violin teacher  


Not guilty verdicts for Chetham Music School violin teacher as prosecution discontinues case 3 years after first arrest and 1 month before trial.

GCN Chambers win "Barristers' Chambers of the Year Award" at the Manchester Legal Awards 2016  


Garden Court North Chambers is delighted to have won "Barristers' Chambers of the Year" at the Manchester Legal Awards 2016.

Court of Appeal grants permission to appeal in relation to adult dependent relative rule  


Court of Appeal to consider whether judge’s reliance on the “very narrow” adult dependent relative rule was unlawful, and whether the judge acted unfairly by criticising the Appellant’s family and deciding what was “better” for the Appellant.

Considering Jogee: Joint Enterprise, Retrospective Effect, Fresh Appeals  


The Supreme Court has today handed down judgment in  R v Jogee  [2016] UKSC 8 finding that Joint Enterprise law has been wrongly interpreted for 30 years.

Court of Appeal allows appeal in “police officer on jury case” after reference by CCRC  


The judgment in R.v. Hanif and Bakish Allah Khan (No 2) has finally been published on .  Publication had been prohibited because when the Court of Appeal allowed the appeal on 31 st  July 2014 they ordered a re-trial. That has now taken place and the proceedings have therefore concluded. 

CART-style JR succeeds after lengthy substantive hearing  


Today the Administrative Court handed down judgment in the case of G and H v Upper Tribunal and SSHD [2016] EWHC 239 (Admin).  This is the first reported case of a successful substantive claim for judicial review against a decision of the Upper Tribunal and also deals with issues of procedural fairness, country guidance and expert evidence where an accepted victim of trafficking appeals against a refusal of asylum to the FTT.

Senior President of Tribunals grants permission in best interests immigration appeal  


Permission to appeal has been granted in a case which will consider the "critical issue" of what would happen if the first appellant (responsible for the care of her grandchild) were removed to China and the grandchild did not follow, along with the secondary appeal point of whether the First-tier Tribunal had jurisdiction to dismiss this appeal.

Securing repeated acquittals in historic abuse cases  


Two members of GCN's crime team,  Brigid Baillie along with door tenant Mark Barlow , have been instructed in a number of acquittals following allegations made as part of Operation Pallial, the North Wales Care Homes Cases.  The instructing solicitor has referred to the "outstanding advocacy" of both counsel in a recent article:

Council to review its housing allocation scheme in face of discrimination claim by Irish Traveller  


A Council has settled a judicial review claim which had argued it's housing allocations scheme was discriminatory against Gypsies and Travellers, in particular the "local connection" requirement.

Rutherford Bedroom Tax appeal allowed  


In the joined cases of Rutherford and A , the Court of Appeal has today held that Regulation B13 of the Housing Benefit Regulations 2006 – the ‘bedroom tax’ – discriminates unlawfully against (i) the families of disabled children who need a room in their house for overnight carers, and (ii) domestic violence sufferers who are part of a ‘sanctuary’ scheme.


UPDATE 28/1/16 - The Supreme Court has today confirmed that MA, Rutherford and A will all be heard together on 29th February 2016 - 2nd March 2016. 


SSHD failure to apply own policy guidance to Victim of Trafficking  


SSHD failure to apply own policy guidance when assessing credibility of Victim of Trafficking

Important statelessness ruling (Semeda)  


In a recent judicial review decision (handed down on 21 October 2015) the Upper Tribunal considered the stateless provisions under part 14 of the immigration rules for the first time and found the SSHD had both erred in law and breached policy.  The judgment in this case was was published on BAILII at the end of 2015.

CN members elected to BHRC Executive Committee  


GCN is delighted that our members Pete Weatherby QC and Lucy Mair  have been re-elected to serve on the Bar Human Rights Committee (BHRC) Executive Committee for the next 2 years.  The election results were announced on 14th December 2015.

Christmas opening hours 2015  


Christmas opening hours 2015

GCN remains totally committed to first class representation through legal aid work  


A reminder of GCN’s total commitment to legal aid work at a time when many others are turning their backs on it.

Permission granted in judicial review challenging negative Reasonable Grounds decision in a trafficking claim  


Sir Stephen Silber, sitting as a Judge of the High Court, has yesterday (16th December 2015) granted permission in a judicial review claim challenging a negative Reasonable Grounds decision in a trafficking claim.  GCN's Lucy Mair represented the claimant.

Family Rights seminars reported in Family Law journal (Dec 2015)  


In September and October 2015, GCN held a seminar series to accompany the official launch of its specialist  family rights team , which draws together members of chambers acting in cases which involve children and cases concerning violence and discrimination against women, particularly with an international, human rights or immigration law dimension.  In the December 2015 edition of Jordans Family Law , GCN's Natalie Wilkins   was commissioned to write a report of the seminar series.

Delay in obtaining Legal Aid "not complete answer" to failure to comply  


A recent Court of Appeal decision last week (11 December 2015) has ruled that "it [is] no longer appropriate to treat delay in obtaining Legal Aid as a complete answer to a failure to comply with procedural requirements".  GCN's Gary Willock has provided brief commentary below:

Court of Appeal Quashes Extended Sentence and Finding of Dangerousness  


In an appeal against sentence, the Court of Appeal on 10th December 2015 quashed a finding of dangerousness and extended sentence imposed for an offence of armed robbery.

JR permission granted to argue Middleton inquest point  


Permission has been granted today (26.11.15) for a public law challenge to whether the investigative duty under Article 2 ECHR should be applied in inquests following deaths in state custody.

Sentence reduced where the defendant’s serious health problems were further exacerbated by delays in the proceedings.  


In a sentence appeal referred directly to the full court by the Registrar, the Court of Appeal last week (17.11.15) granted leave and reduced the Appellant's sentence where their serious health problems were further exacerbated by delays in the proceedings.  

Bedroom Tax appeals in the Court of Appeal this week (4 - 5 Nov 2015)  


The Court of Appeal will begin hearing the two Bedroom Tax appeals today (4.11.15); Rutherford and 'A' [safe room].

Chambers and Partners 2016 recommendations  

Garden Court North has retained its ranking as a Band 1 set in both Civil Liberties & Human Rights and Administrative & Public Law in the 2016 edition published last week. We are pleased to have also been recommended under the new category of Inquests & Public Inquiries.  21 individual practitioner recommendations are also included covering the above specialist areas along with Crime, Employment, Immigration and Social Housing.

Tom Royston speaking at CPAG seminar on Genuine Prospect of Work  


GCN's Tom Royston will be speaking at a CPAG seminar next month taking place in Manchester on 30.11.15.  

Successful out of time appeal against unlawful extended sentence  


GCN's Nina Grahame (Crime Team and Appeals and Miscarriages of Justice Team) appeared in the Court of Appeal last week (22.10.15) for the Appellant, instructed by the Registrar, in a successful appeal against sentence out of time.  The Court of Appeal quashed an unlawful extended sentence and reduced custodial terms.

Prisoner Transfer Agreement between UK and Jamaica  


David Cameron announced this week a proposal to build a £25m prison in Jamaica, aiming to break a deadlock in negotiations over a prisoner transfer deal between the two countries.  GCN's Vijay Jagadesham spoke to LexisNexis Current Awareness about the challenges facing any proposals to return British prisoners of Jamaican heritage to Jamaica.

Acquittal in Operation Pallial (North Wales Enquiry) Case  


GCN's Brigid Baillie was counsel for Richard Dafydd Vevar who was yesterday acquitted of historical allegations of assault and inciting sexual offences.  Brigid was instructed by Mark Newby of Quality Solicitors Jordans . This acquittal of Mr Vevar is the 3rd consecutive acquittal in North Wales Enquiry cases for clients represented by Quality Solicitors Jordans .

Asylum appeal finds young Vietnamese man a victim of trafficking for the purposes of forced labour  


In a recent asylum appeal Lucy Mair of GCN represented a young Vietnamese man whose trafficking and asylum claims had been refused by the Home Office. Relying upon  AS (Afghanistan) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  [2013] EWCA Civ 1469 the applicant asked the tribunal to decide the trafficking for itself.

Immigration FTT relies on Trafficking JR and grants asylum to victim of trafficking  


The Immigration First Tier Tribunal yesterday relied expressly on a recent Trafficking JR in finding an Albanian woman a Victim of Trafficking "VOT", granting asylum

Legal 500 recommendations 2015  


The 2015 edition of the Legal 500 was published this week with Garden Court North continuing to be recommended as a Northern Circuit Leading Set. This year's rankings recommend chambers in each of our practice areas covered by the directory (crime, personal injury and public law), along with three QC and seven leading junior recommendations within these categories.  There is also a superb recommendation for our senior clerk Sarah Wright and the clerks  “Sarah Wright’s ‘ knowledgeable ’ clerking team ‘ always directs you to counsel best suited to the issue at hand ’. ‘ The clerks are consistently very helpful and available to discuss any concerns solicitors may have. "

Pete Weatherby QC speaking at Human Rights Conference 2015  


GCN's Pete Weatherby QC will be speaking at the forthcoming Sweet & Maxwell Human Rights Conference 2015 which takes place on 22nd October 2015.

Tom Royston speaking at Fundamental Rights Conference (London) on 10.10.15  


GCN's Tom Royston will be chairing a session on "The Fundamental Right to Housing and Welfare" at a forthcoming Fundamental Rights Conference in London next month.

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Now on Twitter  @gcnchambers  

8.9.16 Hillsborough Law launched

16/8/16 Manchester Peterloo Massacre anniversary - GCN and others challenge UAE Human Rights record

15/8/16 Landlords behaving badly - damages for dispossession

15/8/16 Pete Weatherby QC on renewed critique of IPP sentences

27/7/16 3-Judge Upper Tribunal panel allows Tax Credit Appeals test case

26/7/16 Tribute to Bryan McGuire QC 

20/7/16 Tenants and borrowers subjected to unlawful evictions (defective N325 forms)

8/7/16 LALY16 outstanding achievement award for GCN Hillsborough team

29/6/16 Tom Royston speaking at LAG Housing Law Conference

24/6/16 Certifying asylum and human rights claims as “clearly unfounded”  

17/6/16 GCN immigration team response to MoJ consultation on tribunal fees

GCN sponsors PLP JR North conference 14.7.16 Manchester

Immigration and EU law for housing lawyers - the new Immigration Act, Brexit and more | Housing seminar | 6.7.16

The Immigration Act 2016 | Immigration seminar | 1.7.16

GCN to host INQUEST Conference and fundraising quiz 16.6.16

Mark George QC speaking at YLAL North meeting 15.6.16

20/5/16 Joe Markus shortlisted for LALY Legal Aid Newcomer Award

GCN Criminal Law update May 2016

26/4/16 Truth Justice Accountability | Hillsborough 22 Families Press Conference

26/4/16 A landmark day in legal history - Hillsborough Inquests

11/4/16 Recompense for the wrongfully convicted (Nealon)

22/3/16 Supreme Court grants permission in Kiarie

18/3/16 Not guilty verdict for Chetham violin teacher

4/3/16 GCN wins Barristers' Chambers of the Year at MLA 2016

29/2/16 Permission to appeal in relation to adult dependent relative rule

17/3/16 GCN launches new Appeals and Miscarriages of Justice Team

18/2/16 Considering Jogee: Joint Enterprise, Retrospective Effect and Fresh Appeals - Mark George QC and Matt Stanbury

11/2/16 CART-style JR of Upper Tribunal succeeds  

9/2/16 Appeal allowed in "police officer on jury" case after CCRC referral  

8/2/16 Permission granted in best interests (grandchild) immigration appeal

5/2/16 Repeated acquittals in historic cases

3/2/16 Housing allocation scheme - discrimination challenge by Irish Traveller

27/1/16 Bedroom Tax victory

GCN barristers present PLP "How to JR"

Matt Stanbury presents "JR for criminal practitioners"

25/1/16 SSHD failure to apply own policy to Victim of Trafficking

5/1/16 Important statelessness JR (Semeda)

5/1/16 GCN members elected to BHRC Exec Committee

18/12/15 GCN remains totally committed to first class representation through legal aid

17/12/15 Permission granted in trafficking JR

16/12/15 Natalie Wilkins writes in  Family Law

15/12/15 Gary Willock on delay in obtaining Legal Aid

12/12/15 Extension of Workers Registration Scheme 2009 Appeal now listed for Feb 2017

11/12/15 Court of Appeal quashes extended sentence

23/11/15 Sentence reduced (serious health problems and delays)

12/11/15 GCN Housing Bulletin: disrepair and injunctions

3/11/15 Chambers UK Bar Guide ranks GCN in Band 1

Tom Royston speaking at CPAG seminar

30/10/15 Transgender prisoners

26/10/15 Successful out of time sentence appeal

Anti-Slavery Day event

30/9/15 Acquittal in Operation Pallial

28/9/15 Immigration FTT recognizes appellant as Victim of Trafficking (VOT)

24/9/15 Immigration FTT relies on Trafficking JR

17/9/15 Legal 500: Counsel "easy to work with and quickly engage"; Clerks "consistently very helpful"

11/9/15 FGM Protection Order to safeguard 13 year old taken to Sudan

9/9/15 Ben McCormack Court of Protection talk for YLAL North

14/7/15 GCN crime team support Rally to Save Criminal Legal Aid

30/6/15 GCN crime team "It's time we took action"

12/6/15 Mark George QC on IPCC Orgreave report

Kate Stone chairs PLP "Private Law for Public Law Practitioners"

4/6/15 Art 8 defences for Canal and River Trust  

Lucy Mair speaking at "Contemporary Issues in Refugee Law" 7.7.15 (Lancaster)

28/5/15 Lucy Mair discusses Eve Ensler's "Avocado" human trafficking monologue

27/5/15 Lucy Mair on trafficking JR (Free Movement)

13/5/15 Abuse of process argument succeeds

Pete Weatherby QC  at Haldane "Child Sex Abuse Inquiry" Lecture 

Pete Weatherby QC at Prisoners' Advice Service panel discussion

20/4/15 Matt Stanbury on Bad News for Good Character

20/3/15 Sex Offender Notification Reviews Guidance

4/3/15 Joe Markus appointed to EHRC Panel of Counsel

26/2/15 S222 injunction to restrain begging in Leeds City Centre

16/2/15 Extension of Workers Registration Scheme was unlawful

13/2/15 Rory O'Ryan appointed as Deputy Upper Tribunal Judge

27/1/15 Permission granted in homelessness affordability appeal

13/1/15 Kate Stone on Human Rights and Arms Trade Treaty

5/1/15 GCN move to Blackfriars House profiled in M.E.N

15/12/14 Gudanaviciene (exceptional funding)   

10/12/14 Landmark Supreme Court decision on ISP Prisoners

5/12/14 UT decision on Bereavement Benefits and telephone marriage

13/11/14 Permission to appeal granted in benefits case

10/10/14 Pete Weatherby QC wins Legal 500 Regional Silk Award 2014

3/10/14 Clerks  "first class " in Legal 500 2014