Tulkinghorn: Young at (Brave) heart

John Young is co-chair of Hogan Lovells. Or was. Last month saw legendary party lover Young’s swan song.

Young: hopefully didn’t stick to kilt-wearing tradition
Young: hopefully didn’t stick to kilt-wearing tradition

But despite his job title there was no need for sitting down when the perennial dresser-upper donned a kilt to make one hell of a brave entrance at his leaving do.

Young has previously favoured fictional superheroes for his costume of choice, but this time it was to history he turned, appearing as Scottish icon William Wallace.

How appropriate that Young, a man who thinks nothing of wild skiing across the Alps, rock climbing up hefty mountains and zip wiring into law firm parties, chose Braveheart as his final incarnation.

He’s Tulkinghorn’s kind of guy.

Price fighters

Which usually mild-mannered magic circle litigator unleashed fury on a senior silk over his mammoth brief fee?

Enraged at being quoted the multimillion-pound fee, this partner summoned the silk, his esteemed head of chambers and the senior clerk for a crisis summit.

The expletives turned the air blue as the partner allegedly threatened to cut the chambers off for good unless the set capitulated. It didn’t, and the instruction went elsewhere.

The set, meanwhile, has since picked up an instruction to act on a £100m-plus claim against the aforementioned firm.

All’s fair in love and law.


The tie-up between Linklaters and Australia’s Allens Arthur Robinson (AAR) must have had a ring of fate for the latter’s marketing director David McClune.

In 2008 McClune was offered the role of global marketing director at Linklaters, which he duly accepted. All was done and dusted on the deal, and it was even reported in the legal press, but then it appears McClune developed cold feet, because he never actually left AAR.

Linklaters managing partner Simon Davies was apparently none too pleased by McClune’s change of heart, but he got his man in the end (well, sort of: we’ll haveto wait for the full merger before that box is properly ticked).

By hook or by crook, eh?

Blue-arsed high-flier

After hearing that Dewey & LeBoeuf’s former chairman Steve Davis had earned himself the excellent nickname ’the Sicilian Enforcer’, Tulkinghorn was tickled to hear of another law firm bigwig’s moniker.

SJ Berwin managing partner Rob Day is apparently known in certain circles as ’May Day’. Why? Because he always seems to be dealing with an emergency.

Lawyers are getting quite creative with their nicknames these days, clearly. Any others out there?

Coo coo ca-choo Mr Robertson

Tulkinghorn was spot on to describe Collyer Bristow “closing ranks” and creating a “seige mentality” in the wake of allegations over the firm’s role in the Rangers administration.

As 30 April’s edition of The Lawyer hit the streets with a front page-led in-depth City analysis into the case, Tulkinghorn contacted Collyer Bristow partner Rhory Robertson to ask for his expertise about Twitter and the law for a forthcoming article.

Robertson, a specialist in defamation and reputation management, stopped Tulkinghorn in his tracks, accusing him of writing a highly critical article on his firm, ending the conversation to take advice from his colleagues.

The heavy-hitter’s online blurb describes him as “tenacious, punchy and fearless [and] a lawyer you want on your side”. Quite.

Tulkinghorn hasn’t heard back.