Tulkinghorn: For those about to rock

On the evenings of those two days the cream of the UK’s legal muso fraternity will compete for the chance to be crowned LawRocks Champion 2010.

Once again the ­competition, which last year raised more than £5,000 for a variety of charities, is being ­organised by Keating Chambers senior clerk Nick Child and backed by The Lawyer.
Yes, the quick-witted among you will have noticed that unlike last year, when the event was a one-off at London’s 100 Club, there are now heats. Why is this, you ask? ­Simply that 2009’s event was such a rip-snorting, fret-scorching success that the demand for places was overwhelming.

So, for the first time, bands will literally battle for the right to appear on the 100 Club’s famous stage and The Lawyer is proud to unveil the ­competitors in LawRocks 2010: Addleshaw ­Goddard, Berwin Leighton Paisner, Bird & Bird, Blake Lapthorn, CMS Cameron McKenna, Davies Arnold Cooper, DLA Piper, ­Keating Chambers, Lovells, Nabarro, Pinsent Masons and Reed Smith.

Good luck to all learning the chords, all over again, to Stairway to Heaven.

New Year ­disillusions

January comes around and everyone gets divorced. That’s what you’d believe if you read all the releases from law firms ­following the Christmas holidays.

Take Charles Lucas & Marshall. The Newbury firm issued a press release last week ­plugging its divorce services with the headline: “Forget the house, cars and ­pension… it’s the Christmas ­decorations that bring out the worst in divorcing ­couples.”

According to the firm’s research, the ­household items or goods that are most likely to cause ­friction between divorcing couples are the Christmas baubles and ­tinsel.

“The only explanation I can think of is that by that stage couples have divided most of the spoils and probably overlooked ­’custody’ of the Christmas tree,” says Sue Mason, a lawyer in the Charles Lucas family team. “It becomes the one family asset they’re not prepared to compromise over.”

At least there was no mention of ‘Divorce D-Day’. For the past three years, numerous surveys have been spouting the stale line that January ­heralds ‘D-Day’ – the busiest day of the year for divorce lawyers.

This year, The Sun, The Daily Mirror, The Daily ­Telegraph, The Daily Mail, Reuters and even ­Scotland’s The Daily Record snapped at the chance of a ­ghoulish ­headline and easy copy during the holiday period by publishing ‘D-Day’ ­stories.

The lazy hack biscuit was taken by the Sunday Express and Daily Express, which followed each other, with the ­Sunday version proclaiming “Tomorrow is divorce D-Day”, quoting research by Divorce-online.co.uk. The next day its cousin revealed “New Year sees record number of divorces” and quoted a ­different survey, this time by Take LegalAdvice.com.

Tulkinghorn can’t wait for February’s headlines about Valentine’s Day being the busiest time for personal injury lawyers handling accidents caused by kissing. It never ends.

Up the ­Junction

What a joy it was for ­Tulkinghorn to read this year’s Hot 100, published last week, and remind himself just how much ­talent there is residing in the UK legal market.

Indeed, he was also reminded of this fact by a phone call last week from an irate reader pointing out the ad from 39 Essex Street on the inside cover.

Said ad features a bright red London double-decker bus, a 39, with its destination of Tower Hill clearly marked. The ad’s strapline reads: “What’s in a number?”

“What’s in a number?” spluttered the chap on the other end of the line. “The 39 doesn’t go to Tower Hill. It goes to Clapham Junction. I’ve checked. Surely this sends a signal that this set of barristers cannot be trusted. Oyster card users are up in arms.”

Singing for your supper

It’s the toughest ­employment market for a generation. You’re a ­vacation student among many. How do you stand out among your co-interns?

One Travers Smith vac schemer hit upon the best possible strategy: sing at the firm’s Christmas carol service at St Bartholomew the Great. And not just turn up for the choir, but volunteer for the big ­soprano solo in Once In Royal David’s City.

That should strike the right note with all those potential employers.