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London boroughs name 31 sets to £10.4m barristers framework agreement

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Southwark and Lambeth Councils have appointed 31 sets of chambers to their £10.4m, four-year framework agreement for barristers’ services.

The agreement, which will come into operation in April 2012 and is one of the largest of its kind to date, covers a range of practice areas. These include planning, housing litigation, childcare, adult community care, employment, general litigation and corporate.

Between four and ten chambers have been appointed to each panel. A full list of the successful chambers is set out at the bottom of this article. Clarendon Chambers had been given first place in both childcare and housing litigation, and second place in general litigation (civil), but will dissolve at the end of the year. The panels were adjusted accordingly.

Southwark and Lambeth said they would in due course open the framework agreement up to other authorities, although a fee will be charged for access.

The two councils believe they will each save £100,000 a year as a result of the move away from instructing barristers on a case-by-case basis.

Southwark expects to spend £1.5m on instructing barristers over the next financial year, while Lambeth has budgeted for an outlay of £1.3m.

The councils said the procurement exercise was also part of a programme aimed at “empowering in-house lawyers at the councils to provide greater development opportunities, through the training offered by chambers as part of the agreement, to build on their legal expertise and provide a better service”.

Cllr Richard Livingstone, Southwark Council's cabinet member for finance and resources, said: "Sharp falls in central government funding mean we are having to radically change the way we work as a council and come up with innovative and radical solutions to cut back office and administrative costs and deliver savings to local taxpayers.

"By sharing the procurement costs for barristers' services with our neighbours in Lambeth we hope to secure more competitive rates and save £100,000 a year in legal fees. Through collaborating with other councils we can work together to meet the challenges of delivering higher quality services with scarcer resources."

Cllr Paul McGlone, Lambeth Council’s cabinet member for finance and resources, said:  “We are looking at ways to cut back office costs and deliver savings for taxpayers across every council department, and it’s efficiency ideas like this one that can have a real impact.

“This new arrangement will save thousands of pounds which will help protect front line services for residents in both Lambeth and Southwark.”

THE PANELS

Childcare

  1. Renaissance Chambers
  2. 9 Gough Square (chambers of Grahame Aldous QC)
  3. Field Court Chambers
  4. Garden Court Chambers
  5. 42 Bedford Row (chambers of Frank Feehan QC)
  6. 4 Brick Court
  7. 5 Pump Court Chambers
  8. Coram Chambers
  9. 4 Paper Buildings (chambers of Jonathan Cohen QC)

Housing litigation

  1. Staple Inn Chambers
  2. Field Court Chambers
  3. Arden Chambers
  4. 2-3 Grays Inn Square
  5. 42 Bedford Row (chambers of Frank Feehan QC)
  6. Five Paper
  7. Landmark Chambers
  8. Hardwicke

Property

  1. 1 Gray’s Inn Square (chambers of David Malone)
  2. Arden Chambers
  3. 2-3 Gray’s Inn Square
  4. Hardwicke
  5. Ely Place

Planning

  1. 2-3 Gray’s Inn Square
  2. 4-5 Grays Inn Square
  3. Landmark Chambers
  4. 6 Pump Court (chambers of Stephen Hockman QC)
  5. FTB

Adult Community Care

  1. Field Court Chambers
  2. 2-3 Gray’s Inn Square
  3. Hardwicke
  4. 39 Essex Street

General Litigation (Crime)

  1. Old Bailey Chambers
  2. 6 KBW
  3. 5 Pump Court Chambers
  4. Dyers Chambers and 9-12 Bell Yard (joint fourth position)

General Litigation (Civil)

  1. Staple Inn Chambers
  2. Field Court Chambers
  3. Arden Chambers
  4. 2-3 Gray’s Inn Square

Employment

  1. Pump Court Chambers
  2. 9 Gough Square (chambers of Grahame Aldous QC)
  3. Field Court Chambers
  4. Hardwicke
  5. Tanfield Chambers
  6. 4-5 Grays Inn Square
  7. 12 KBW
  8. Blackstone Chambers

Corporate

  1. 2-3 Gray’s Inn Square
  2. Hardwicke
  3. 4-5 Grays Inn Square
  4. Landmark
  5. 1 Chancery Lane (education)
  6. FTB
  7. Arden Chambers
  8. 39 Essex Street
  9. Blackstone Chambers
  10. Monckton (procurement only).