The commercial chancery set, established in 2000 by the merger of 7 Stone Buildings and 13 Old Square, recorded a turnover of £20.6m for the 2002 calendar year, compared with £14.5m in each of the two previous years.
One explanation is a dramatic rise in the number of overseas instructions, which now account for 10 per cent of the chambers' income. The set has also received a marked increase in the number of instructions from regional and medium-sized City firms, reducing its reliance on its top five clients, which have nevertheless maintained the same level of work.
The set came twelfth in The Lawyer's 2002 survey of leading chambers ranked by income – the same figure as the previous year. The set attributed its failure to boost income to the loss of Richard McCombe QC to the High Court Bench, Nigel Davis QC to the Bench and David Unwin QC to retirement.
Commercial chancery sets Wilber-force and Serle Court posted turnover increases of 6.25 and 9.3 per cent respectively.