The Story of Mennard/Barristerblog

The Story of Mennard – The edited highlights from the life of a northern barrister – is unlike any other law weblog I know. It is like a worm’s-eye view of life as a barrister, with a strong literary quality and imperfect spelling.

What is there to say :self deprecating Lawyer who cant spell.Thinks he has a sense of humour

There is a gap between the eclectic town house hotel in Manchester where he is staying during a trial and his description of it.

It describes itself as an eclectic hotel which no doubt explains the bath in the corner of the room and the milk that’s gone off in the fridge, the hot tub on the roof terrace that along with the DVD player in my room, is not working .

As News 24 gives way to what passes on the BBC for breakfast TV I draw the curtains to allow some daylight in .

The drawing of the curtains is a feat in itself given the size of the windows and the thickness of material .However it reveals a set of dirty net curtains with a grime reminiscent of permanent smog making it easy to picture young children in the neighbourhood being sent up chimneys to either earn money for their family or search for a Lancastrian Dick Van Dyke dancing on the roof top.

A description of the court too – Manchester Civil Justice Centre.

And the constant nagging irritation that the instructing solicitor, ‘My Best Friend’, is annoyed about Mennard’s fees, while the chambers clerks think the two of them are having an affair.

I ring my clerk. We exchange pleasantries. I ask after him and the Liverpool Fan Clerk who I am pleased to avoid after another glorious weekend of footballing triumph. I try to be witty maintaining my banter even though I’m on another circuit .I need a friend to chat to my wife is at work , my children at school ,My Best Friend frosty.

I ask about My Best Friend

‘Are we doing anything wrong’.

‘No she’s beginning to annoy me as well’ says my clerk ‘ She keeps querying your fee and I’ve double checked everything ‘Its the amount of money and because you are so close’

I knew it and it dismays me not only that but clearly chambers think we are having an affair and we aren’t. I will ,after all ,be bathing in the cast iron bath on my own tonight .

3 thoughts on “The Story of Mennard/Barristerblog

  1. Out of cash and in Holland I briefly toyed with the idea of murdering some deserving soul in order to gain admission to a Dutch prison cell, which at the time was single occupancy, large and well-equipped. There, I thought, I could read and write for the rest of my life without worrying about fame, fortune or food. Unfortunately the sentences weren’t long enough, and now they’re four to a room, just like everywhere else.

    I’ve only been into British prisons on visits, but the thought of the inmates pig-farming is quite terrifying–although many of the former would be able to drop out on religious objections.

    British reformers have a tendency to belabour their domestic critics with little-known, and therefore difficult to refute, foreign comparisons, and I wonder if this isn’t one of those.

    • It is indeed a bit worrying to consider how healthy German prisoners are said to be in contrast to the UK ones affected by generations of poverty. Presumably she is referring to Caucasians?

  2. Yes a great work and, 40 years ago, somewhat aptly for the author’s name, the Gospel or Bible for us UK German law students who, in that era, were in London only (Battersea College of Technology turned Surrey Uni. and King’s College London). I wonder whether the two slim volumes are still un-nicked and in the libraries of Surrey and the Goethe Institute on Exhibition Road.

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