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FOUR Brick Court Chambers has taken the decision to split in order to specialise exclusively on its established family practice.
Although no departures have yet been announced, The Lawyer understands the split could mean as many as half of the chambers' 46 tenants are looking to leave the set.
The set, headed by Antony Shaw QC, covers a broad range of practice areas ranging from commercial and chancery work to immigration and personal injury work.
The set also has a large criminal practice, with 15 specialists, and it is believed that some of the tenants are looking to make block moves to other sets.
One senior clerk from a nearby set says the fate of the clerks and other administrative staff has yet to be decided.
"What is significant is that chambers are taking business decisions, working out what their core practice areas are and focusing on them," comments another senior clerk. "This sort of strategic decision could never have been made two years ago."
The BDO Stoy Hayward survey of barristers' chambers released two weeks ago indicated that success is centred in the small specialist sets or the huge one-stop-shop chambers.
Senior clerk at 4 Brick Court Paul Sampson refused to comment.