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THE LAW Society has lost its platform at the Bar's annual conference after this year's organisers revamped the programme and eliminated the official luncheon.
Traditionally, the Law Society president had addressed colleagues on the other side of the profession during the conference lunch.
But the 1995 programme, which devotes the morning to discussion of Lord Woolf's report on civil justice, is missing an official address from the solicitor's profession and Martin Mears has not been included in other scheduled sessions.
Former society presidential candidate Henry Hodge will speak on a platform with others, but conference chair Edwin Glasgow QC said Hodge, invited a year ago, was included as co-author of the Heilbron-Hodge report.
"It would be wholly improper for the Bar to seek to interfere in any way in Law Society politics," said Glasgow. "Henry Hodge was invited a year ago. It was thought then, and it is still thought now, that his contribution to the whole Woolf debate was particularly relevant."
"The president of the Law Society will be invited, as a guest, as always," said Glasgow, adding that the lunch had been dropped in favour of an informal buffet. Mears said he would attend as a guest.