Stop the press

The modern bar. Transparent, democratic and all the things a 21st century organisation should be. Or is it?`Well, Tulkinghorn was less than surprised to discover that the bar has yet to embrace the concept of freedom of information.`Following The Lawyer's exclusive that the North East circuit could be thrown out of Bar Council membership if it pressed ahead with plans to ban all employed barristers from joining its ranks (The Lawyer, 7 May, 2001), an email was circulated by the circuit.`This went to all the sets on the North East circuit, requesting that “chambers ask their barristers not to speak to the media about proposed changes to the constitution or any effect that changes may have to the employed bar.”`Unfortunately, it seems that some chambers do not share the circuit's views and showed the email to The Lawyer.`What Tulkinghorn really wants to know is why on earth would the circuit want to exclude employed barristers in the first place.`What with all the PR surrounding BarDirect, one would have thought that such a move would effectively be snubbing a vast array of potential clients.