Hot stuff

Once again The Hot 100 celebrations last Tuesday (16 January) took its place high in the running for party of the year. The glittering Royal Exchange was the high-ceilinged venue and by 7pm the former trading floor was crammed with Hot 100 stars past and present.

Among the throng it was good to see SJ Berwin‘s Tim Beale and Kirkland & Ellis‘s Raymond McKeeve chatting away like old mates, which is exactly what they are. A brief interrogation revealed that McKeeve is godfather to one of Beale’s offspring. Good to know that even in these cut-throat times it takes more than the loss of a few partners to cool relations between friends.

That said, there was no love lost when two former ‘hotties’ met each other on Tuesday. Field Fisher Waterhouse‘s technology guru Michael Chissick, looking hale and hearty after a holiday in the East, bumped into Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloy’s legendary IT lawyer Lawrence Jacobs, whose working life for the past few years has been consumed by the Government’s mammoth reform of IT in the NHS.

Chissick has spoken at length recently about how dire Jacobs’ NHS contracts were, placing all the responsibility for project failures on the shoulders of technology suppliers.

While Chissick escaped a beating from the six-foot-quite-a-lot Jacobs, a hasty retreat was sensible. Chissick can expect his own contracts for the equally controversial ID cards scheme to come under a fair amount of scrutiny from IT lawyers up and down the land. Those assembled at the party were convinced Chissick’s contracts will ensure the Government accepts all liability for any disasters on the scandalous scheme. Or not.