In brief: Northern group sticks with men-only club

Manchester Law Society council has voted to continue using a gentlemen's club which does not admit women as members after a bitterly fought battle by women lawyers to boycott the conference and training venue. President John Potter, who personally wanted to discontinue using the St James's Club, said those who supported the club argued that its service and standards were impeccable. “But I don't think this argument was about the club as a venue, it was a principle thing,” he said. Carol Hepworth, a partner with Oldham personal injury specialist John Pickering & Partners, originally raised the issue. She said she was disgusted. “This decision gives the impression that the Manchester Law Society is a bastion of reaction,” said Hepworth. “I have nothing against men-only clubs, but they are inappropriate venues for meetings of professional organisations, half of whose members are women.”