Tulkinghorn: Bashes to ashes

Tulkinghorn would like to doff his cap, incline his head and metaphorically shake the virtual hand of Eversheds, for what turned out to be the serendipitous invitation of the summer.

But first, thanks are due to all the hosts of some splendid summer bashes this season, from Lovells’ traditional curtain raiser at the start, to Allen & Overy’s low-key affair at Inn the Park in St James’s Park, which went swimmingly.

But none can compete for sheer historic drama and magical timing with Eversheds and its ­invitation to the fourth day of the Ashes.

As all right-thinking Englishmen will be aware, the greatest test of sporting mettle on earth is a five-day affair, on paper at least. Equally, as most ­inhabitants of this sceptred isle will know, Sir Andrew Strauss and his boys ­managed to turn over the Aussies at the end of a ­gloriously baking August ­Sunday.

Eversheds litigation partner Ben Bruton was on hand to explain the rules to those of Tulkinghorn’s company who were ­wondering why the teams were so unevenly matched (“there’s loads more of England on the pitch, ­surely that can’t be fair? And their hitters are doing ­really well”).

Unfortunately there was nothing the charming ­Bruton could do when Tulkinghorn’s party missed the pivotal point in the match – Lord Freddie Flintoff’s monumental run-out of Punter Ponting – because they were counting up the number of law firms plastered all over the ­advertising hoardings around the ground. For the record there were five – Linklaters, Mayer Brown, Pinsent Masons, ­Pemberton Greenish and Wedlake Bell.

Don’t suppose anyone recorded it by any chance?

The write side of the law

Fans of Taggart will be ­disappointed to learn that the world of TV has missed out on the gritty televised tales of another ­Glaswegian crime hero – at least temporarily.

What’s more, the author of the story about a lawyer investigating a gruesome murder is… a lawyer!

Burness litigation ­partner Gary Moffat’s first book, Daisy Chain, was published to widespread acclaim (okay, the Daily Mail wrote: “If you read just one thriller this year, make it this one”.
Having just finished Murder on the Orient Express earlier in the year, Tulkinghorn is upset that this means he will not be able to read Moffat’s page-turner until 2010 but there
you are, the Mail has ­spoken).

So far Daisy Chain has sold around 10,000 copies, but with the paperback out early next year, bigger ­royalty cheques are surely set to start rolling Moffat’s way. But Burness is not about to lose one of its top disputes names – not yet at least.

“To maintain the same standard of living I’d have to be selling best-seller ­volumes, and very few books achieve that,” Moffat admitted to Tulkinghorn. “It might be possible to build a career as an author but it usually takes quite a few years.”

This week Moffat hopes to take another step towards that goal by ­signing a new two-book deal with his publisher. His second book, Fallout, is due for release next April and will pick up the threads of the characters in the first 18 months down the line. Meanwhile, a ­televised version remains tantalisingly out of reach.

“I did have a sniff from the Drama Department at ITV a month or so ago,” reveals Moffat. “But then they got another Glasgow-based thriller instead.”

Tulkinghorn is curious to know just many of these things are out there? And even more curious to learn the derivation of the lead character’s name, Logan Finch?

“It’s a combination of a couple of things,” revealed Moffat. “I took the name Finch from Atticus Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird, because I wanted a ­reference to a lawyer with pedigree.”
And Logan?

“It’s Wolverine’s real name.”

And it was all going so well.