Senior clerk quits Bridewell following loss of panel place

Bridewell Chambers has lost its senior clerk, Norman Brooks, after being axed from the Crown Prosecution Service's “preferred sets” panel.

The CPS's cull in April of 11 chambers from its list of preferred sets, which handle 80 per cent of all criminal prosecutions in London, meant the loss of an important source of instructions for Bridewell Chambers.

The set has also suffered a number of defections in recent months, including Patricia Roberts to 14 Gray's Inn Square and Mark Graffius to 1 Middle Temple Lane.

Bridewell's head of chambers, Colin Challenger, downplays the importance of criminal prosecution work, instead choosing to highlight the sets' commercial, personal injury, housing and family practices.

Brooks, who had been with the set since 1976, has been replaced by his former second-in-command Lee Hughes-Gage but Challenger says the set is currently looking at changing the clerking structure.

There is a positive note, however, for another member of chambers, tenant Andrew Slaughter, who is waiting to see if his colleagues at Hammersmith and Fulham council vote through a massive 67 per cent pay rise. If they do, it will see his salary as mayor of the borough jump from u22,500 to a princely u37,575.