Pro bono and the public good

In his article about the Lord Chancellor's pledge that county court summonses be made freely available to the public, John Malpas said that Nicholas Purnell QC acted "on a pro bono basis" for the four named barristers in opposing the right of The Lawyer to see a copy of the summons in the case in question.

Pro bono is an abbreviation of the Latin phrase "pro bono publico", which means "for the public good". If, for example, a solicitor or barrister acts free of charge for a charity or for a client with limited means, he may be said to have acted pro bono. However, acting free of charge for a friend or colleague does not mean that the solicitor or barrister is acting on a pro bono basis, merely that he or she is not charging.

Indeed, by blocking the right of the public to see the county court summons, acting for the public good is precisely the opposite of what Mr Purnell was doing!

Cliona O'Tuama, London ECSpoils of sport unmentioned

We were very surprised to see that there was no mention of Nabarro Nathanson in the feature "Tackling Sports Law" in The Lawyer (1 September 1998).

We have had a very strong performance in the area of sports law.

Earlier this year, we successfully acted for flanker Simon Fenn and London Scottish Rugby Club on its high-profile action against Kevin Yates and Bath rugby club, in the notorious ear-biting incident.

We have just been suing Daily Mail and Nigel Dempster for libel regarding damaging comments made by the diarist about former tennis champion Ivan Lendl and his family and, at the same time, acted for formula one motor racing ace Ralf Schumacher on his legal action against the Jordan Grand Prix team.

We have had a lot of experience in advising sports associations. We also worked with the receivers of Millwall Football and Athletic Company and for the consortium which acquired Watford Football Club, and for Silver Shield Group on its acquisition of Swansea Football Club.

As you can see, all of this is top quality and high-profile work and undoubtedly puts us at the top of the table for sports law and work.

Chris Hinze, head of corporate communications, Nabarro Nathanson