21 September 2019

Blog: Monthly message from our Chair, Baroness Blackstone

Baroness Blackstone

I am delighted to introduce my first edition of the BSB's monthly Regulatory Update email as the new Chair of your regulator.

It is a great honour and privilege to take over from Sir Andrew Burns as the lay Chair of the Bar Standards Board. I am very much looking forward to deepening my understanding of your work.

I plan to spend the next few weeks getting to grips with my new role, and, in particular, with the current regulatory issues being considered by the BSB. These include taking into account the views obtained from our two recent consultations on Future Bar Training and on transparency standards at the Bar in response to the recommendations of the Competition and Markets Authority.  We are very grateful to all those who took part in those consultations and we remain committed to working closely with you as we take these issues forward.

In the meantime, and on the subject of Bar training, I note with interest the recently published research findings about differential attainment on the BPTC course and in obtaining pupillage, which you can read more about in this edition of Regulatory Update. The findings offer some important insights into current issues in the education and training of barristers. The BSB is keen to work with the profession and more widely to address these serious issues.

Finally, I should also like to welcome my fellow appointees this month on to the BSB Board - Lara Fielden, Kathryn Stone OBE and Stephen Thornton CBE. I look forward to working closely with them and, of course, the rest of my Board over the coming months and years.   You can read more about our new Board below.

Meanwhile I hope to meet many of you during my term in office and wish you all a happy and prosperous new year.

Tessa Blackstone