The Lawyer Inquiry: The Lawyer Inquiry

Patricia Ewen was born in Liverpool in 1948. She is a practice development partner with Silverbeck Rymer.

What subjects did you fail at school?


What was your first job?

Clerical officer, Department of Employment (Benefits Agency).

What was your first ever salary as a lawyer?

#4,750 pa

What would you have done if you hadn't been a lawyer?

I have been a civil servant, sold advertising space for a paper and set up a sandwich delivery business when raising my children. Long term, either a PR "luvvie" or retail management.

What was your most satisfying professional moment?

Passing my Law Society finals after six years' slog of study and full-time work while bringing up a family.

What was your most embarrassing professional moment?

Greeting a client at The British Open Golf Tournament and not realising he was there because he was on our guest list.

What do you least like about being a lawyer?

Long hours.

And the best thing about being a lawyer?

Being a successful lawyer; client satisfaction; increased market share of business; law firm management; good bottom line.

What annoys you most about clients?

Annoy is not the right word, but losing to them at our own sponsored sporting events can sometimes be hard to swallow.

Who do you most admire, and why?

Lord Denning – he was not afraid of controversy but more concerned with equitable justice.

Which famous person or historical figure would be your ideal client, and why?

Henry VIII – he would have made me rich.

What is your most annoying habit?

You need to ask others – maybe I'm too tidy at home and work.

What's your biggest fear?

I don't really know, I don't think about it. Maybe unhappiness.

How do you relax?

Reading, retail therapy, yoga, cooking and sleeping.

What is your most precious possession?

I do not think possessions per se are precious. In my life I most value my partner, my children and my mother.

Where would you most like to be right now?

Travelling on Concorde or the Orient Express – something different and exciting.

In 10 years' time, where do you see yourself?


To take part in the Inquiry call Jemma Pearson on 0171 970 4614