At the legal aid coalface

AS PART of our house training programme, our managing partner, Ann Alexander, arranged for our trainee solicitors and legal executives to attend an open day at the Legal Aid Board's area office in Manchester on 12 March.

Members of staff at the board gave short talks on all aspects of their operations, from the legal decision making process to their latest computer systems.

Applications for legal aid are not pored over all day by a team of lawyers with white beards. Did anyone ever imagine they were? It was perhaps sobering to discover, though, that the board spends on average only four-to-five minutes per application before allowing it to live or die.

Adam Copeland

Alexander Harris