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Clifford Chance’s former senior partner Stuart Popham has been made an honorary QC in this year’s silks appointments round.
A total of 118 barristers and two solicitor advoctaes have been appointed silk, Lord Chancellor and justice secretary Kenneth Clarke announced this morning.
The successful applicants include 3 Verulam Buildings’ Sonia Tolaney, previously tipped as a star in the making in The Lawyer’s Hot 100 2010.
Solicitor advocate David Price, who secured victory in the Supreme Court’s landmark ’honest comment’ decision in December 2010 (1 December 2010), was also made a QC.
The 120 new silks represent 48 per cent of the 251 who applied. A total of 41 women applied for silk and 27 were successful.
Selection panel chair Professor Dame Joan Higgins said “relatively few” women were putting themselves forward, but the high success rate sent a “positive signal” to all suitably qualified female advocates.
Twelve of the new silks said they were of an ethnic origin other than white. Although this is a smaller number than the 17 new black and minority ethnic silks appointed in 2010, the success rate of 60 per cent of applicants was higher than last year.
Five solicitor-advocates applied for silk, making the success rate 40 per cent compared to 10 per cent (one from 10 applicants) in 2010.
A total of six honorary silks have been appointed. Joining Popham are human rights lawyer Sir Geoffrey Bindman of Bindmans, Peters & Peters consultant Monty Raphael, First Parliamentary Counsel Sir Stephen Laws, Master Roger Venne, who is master of the Crown Office, and Edinburgh University academic and Cloisters Chambers member Professor Anthony Bradley.