TULKINGHORN: Defining moment

Taylor Wessing has an enhanced name. Henceforth, the firm shall be known as ‘The Taylor Wessing’.

The definite article comes courtesy of National Portrait Gallery director Sandy Nairne, who sang the firm’s praises recently at the launch of this year’s Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize.

Managing partner Tim Eyles rarely misses a chance to big up his firm, so naturally the chance to underline Taylor Wessing’s unique attitude was unlikely to be passed up.

Sadly, the word unique could hardly, according to some critics, be applied to the winner of the prize. This year the top gong was snared by a snap of a ginger-haired girl cradling an animal, which, it was pointed out by several art lovers, is uncannily similar to last year’s winner.

Maybe more Nairne-style differentiation is needed here? At any rate, Tulkinghorn is planning to enter a pic of Mrs T next year and has already purchased a rabbit.

Warriors come astray

Forget the 300-plus ­meetings. Forget the 700 partners and 500 spouses attending. Forget the ­strategy sessions. The real work at Baker & McKenzie’s recent week-long annual partner conference summit in Beijing didn’t begin until the end.

That was when teams from across the firm went up against each other on the football pitch in Big Law’s very own version of the World Cup.

Teams such as Americas Antelopes and Latin Lions did battle with London’s finest – and last year’s champions – the London Warriors.

However, although the Warriors went into the tournament as favourites, there was ­little evidence of the ­bruising performances that proved so successful on their way to lifting the ­trophy in Chicago last year.

A general lack of fitness, a missed penalty, vomiting, the Beijing smog, the poor playing surface and any other excuse the team could dream up conspired against them as they crashed out in only their second match to a silky Swedish-led team.

Not that that stopped the Warriors winning the post-match drinking session, with team manager and midfield dynamo Paul Rawlinson getting the entire bar, including the in-house band at the Shangri-La Hotel, to accompany him in singing Bohemian Rhapsody. (Rawlo has form here, ­having previously led around 3,000 rugby fans at Twickenham in a six-minute rendition of the entire Queen masterpiece.)

Presumably, Three Lions/Vindaloo is not as universally well-known, but Rawlinson could always start practising the choruses for next year.

Flad out

Tulkinghorn is ­occasionally mystified by technology, but a recent visit to the Fladgate ­website took the biscuit.

The firm’s site was blocked by the great man’s own firewall. The stated reason? “Philosophy and political advocacy.”

Who knew?

Mad for it

If, by some unlikely fluke of circumstance, you were to find yourself in JMW’s Spinningfields offices without realising you were in Manchester, you would not be left in doubt for too long. Some proud local in the office has only gone and given each of the firm’s meeting rooms
a theme celebrating a ­different aspect of the Rainy City.

There’s the Lowry Room, celebrating the stick-figure-obsessed artist, the Red Room, with pictures of Old Trafford, the Blue Room, with a ­picture of the Sky Blues’ Etihad Stadium, and even an Oasis Room, for which the firm is looking for a decorative gold record from everybody’s favourite ­Beatles rip-offs.

What next? A Curry Mile room littered with naan? A Hacienda room complete with pictures of saucer-eyed ravers? ­Suggestions to the usual address please.