cathedral chambers


In so far as any arrangement exists between the authorised person and Counsel it shall be construed and interpreted with the benefit of the Bar Councils Standard Conditions of Contract for the Supply of Legal Services by Barristers to Authorised Persons 2012 (attached hereto)

In particular, attention is drawn to the following conditions:

    1. The authorised person must ensure that these instructions delivered to the barrister are adequate to supply him with the information and documents reasonably required and in reasonably sufficient time for him to provide the services requested.
    2. Where an authorised person requires the barrister to preform all or any part of the services urgently the authorised person shall ensure that the instructions are clearly marked with unambiguous timescales and reason for the urgency.
    3. Upon receipt the barrister will within a reasonable time review the instructions and inform the authorised person whether he accepts or not the instructions.
    4. The fee of the services shall be calculated as agreed between the barrister and the authorised person through his clerk prospectively or retrospectively.
    5. The barrister is entitles to deliver an invoice to the authorised person at any time after supplying the services or the relevant part thereof.
    6. Such invoice shall be delivered not more than 3 months after the supply of services.
    7. The authorised person must pay the invoice within 30 days of delivery whether or not the authorised person has been put in funds by the lay client. The invoice must be paid without any set-off (whether by reason of a complaint made or dispute with the barrister or otherwise) and without any deduction or withholding on account of any taxes or other charges.

If the invoice remains outstanding after 30 days the barrister is entitles to the fixed sum and interest in accordance with the Late Payment of Commercial Debts (Interest) Act 1998; to sue the authorised person for payment; and subject to the Barrister obligations to the court and under paragraph 610 of the Code to refrain from doing any further work in the case unless payment for that further work is made in advance.

  • Cathedral Chambers is committed to providing a work environment in which all individuals, clients and the public are treated with dignity and respect. Cathedral Chambers is determined to promote a work environment in which everyone is treated equally and with dignity and can flourish.
  • Harassment in any form will not be tolerated at Cathedral Chambers. Harassment includes any unwanted conduct related to sex, race, disability, gender re-assignment, religion or belief, sexual orientation or age. Such behaviour may take many forms including:
    • Conduct which is unwanted by the recipient and perceived as hostile or threatening;
    • Conduct which gives rise to a hostile or threatening work environment;
    • Conduct which creates an atmosphere in which it is feared that rejection or submission will be used as a basis for decisions which have an impact on the recipient at work such as an allocation of work or tenancy decision.
  • The following are examples of types of behaviour which may amount to harassment:
    • Physical or sexual assault
    • Requests for sexual favours in return for career advancement;
    • unnecessary physical contact;
    • exclusion from social networks and activities or other forms of isolation;
    • bullying;
    • compromising suggestions or invitations;
    • suggestive remarks or looks;
    • display of offensive materials, including on a computer screen;
    • tasteless jokes or verbal abuse, including any sent by email;
    • offensive remarks or ridicule;
    • dealing inappropriately or inadequately with complaints of harassment.
  • Harassment is unlawful under the Equality Act 2010. In addition to the above unwanted conduct, it can arise where a person engages in any kind of unwanted sexual behaviour (or gender reassignment or sex related behaviour).
  • Complaints of harassment may be raised informally in the first instance with a Head of Chambers, Sara who will attempt to resolve the matter. Formal complaints should be made under the Cathedral Chambers Equality Procedures, available on request from Head of Chambers, Sara Owen.
  • Harassment is misconduct for employees or a breach of the Bar Code of Conduct for barristers. Allegations of harassment will be dealt with under the Cathedral Chambers Equality Procedures.
  • Cathedral Chambers is committed to ensuring that no-one who makes an allegation of harassment in good faith should be subjected to any detriment as a result. Any victimisation of the complainant, witness or anyone else involved in the investigation of a complaint will be viewed as a disciplinary matter.
This policy was adopted on 14th October 2013 and will be reviewed in October 2020.
Aims and Remit of Policy
    1. Cathedral Chambers is committed to making reasonable adjustments in order to remove or reduce substantial disadvantage for disabled people working with chambers or receiving legal services. This policy covers all employees of chambers, barristers, clerks, pupils, mini- pupils and visitors to chambers.
    1. This policy is circulated to all members, staff, pupils, clerks and those who are required to read and understand it. 
Definition of Disability
    1. For the purposes of this policy the definition of disability follows that set out in the Equality Act 2010 s.6. A person is therefore disabled if s/he has a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long term adverse effect on his/her ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities. “Substantial” means more than minor or trivial and “long term” means 12 months or more.
 Types of Reasonable Adjustment
    1. This policy does not provide an exhaustive list of the reasonable adjustments that Cathedral Chambers will make for staff, barristers, pupils or visitors however the following types of adjustment that may be made are listed below:
      • Provision of information in alternative formats (e.g. large print, Braille etc)
      • Paid leave for disabled employees of chambers
      • Provision of auxiliary aids e.g. induction loops
      • Provision of accessible conference room facilities e. Provision of a reader or interpreter.
  Staff, Barristers and others in Chambers
    1. Staff or barristers with specific requirements should make requests to the Head of Chambers, Sara Owen for reasonable adjustment decisions. All requests for reasonable adjustments will be considered on a case by case basis with the advice and assistance of chambers’ Equality and Diversity Officer, Christine Abbott and where it is not possible to make the adjustment requested Cathedral Chambers will discuss viable alternatives with the applicant. 
    2. Head of Chambers is responsible for considering whether or not disabled staff, barristers or pupils require assistance during an emergency evacuation and if so whether or not a personal emergency evacuation plan is required for the individual/s concerned. If so, the plan will be developed in partnership with the individual concerned in order to ensure that adjustments to the emergency evacuation procedure may be made.
    3. Cathedral Chambers is committed to ensuring that no-one who makes an allegation of harassment in good faith should be subjected to any detriment as a result. Any victimisation of the complainant, witness or anyone else involved in the investigation of a complaint will be viewed as a disciplinary matter.
Visitors to Chambers
    1. Barristers are responsible for considering reasonable adjustment requests for their visitors. They are also responsible for anticipating any likely reasonable adjustments that will need to be made for visitors whom they know to be disabled and are likely to require assistance. Visitor requests for specific reasonable adjustments may be made by contacting one of the Senior Clerks.
 Cost of Making Reasonable Adjustments
    1. In no circumstances will Cathedral Chambers pass on the cost of a reasonable adjustment to a disabled person.
 Monitoring and Review
    1. This policy will be reviewed by Cathedral Chambers’ Equality and Diversity Officer at least every two years. The date of the next review will be October 2021.
  Approved by the Management Committee on 14th October 2013

Equality and diversity monitoring results 2021

This document sets out Cathedral Chambers’ Equality & Diversity Programme of Action from 2021. It describes the positive actions Cathedral Chambers is taking to promote good Equality & Diversity practice. Also attached is an appendix detailing compliance-evidence requirements.


Cathedral Chambers is committed to the active promotion of equal opportunities for all and to the avoidance of discrimination related to a protected characteristic including age, disability, gender, gender identity, race, colour, ethnic or national origin, nationality, citizenship, marital or civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, religion or political persuasion, sexual orientation.

In particular, Chambers recognises the need to take positive steps to identify and eliminate discrimination so as to afford:

  1. Equality of access to all applicants for pupillage, tenancy or employment
  2. Equality of treatment to all members, pupils and staff
  3. Equality of service to professional clients covering both the planning of services and decisions whether to accept instructions or offer advice

Chambers is also committed to providing a working environment in which all individuals including Members of Chambers, pupils, mini-pupils, employees and visitors are treated with dignity and respect.

This programme of action takes account of the Equality Act 2010, related employment legislation, The Bar Code of Conduct, the Bar Council’s Equality and Diversity Code.


Membership of and employment by Cathedral Chambers (“Chambers”) involves a commitment to give effect to the Equality and Diversity Code for the Bar.

Chambers’ Equality & Diversity file contains detailed statements of the policies and procedures applied in Chambers in accordance with the Bar Code and Expectations Statements.

Equality & Diversity Programme of Action.



Cathedral Chambers recognises the importance of demonstrated top level commitment and support to translate our Equality & Diversity values and standards into practice.

Equality and Diversity are a regular feature of monthly Management Committee meetings.


We have a designated Chambers’ Equal Opportunities Officer. The EOO plays an important role in reviewing, developing and implementing our Equality and Diversity Policy, working closely with the Head of Chambers and members of Chambers Management Committee on equality and diversity issues. The EOO is also the conduit for informal resolution of grievances related to equality and diversity.


The EOO ensures that all Clerks and Members of Chambers are aware of, apply Chambers Equality and Diversity Policy and are kept up to date with changes made to it.

Chambers includes a statement of our Equality & Diversity Policy in client and business engagement letters, on all promotional material and through our website.



Chambers collects, analyses and monitors equality data from tenancy, pupillage and staff recruitment exercises. The results of equality monitoring are reported to the Management Committee at regular intervals to facilitate appropriate action.

All vacancies for pupillage are advertised on a website designated by the Bar Council, subject to limited exceptions. We also have a separate written policy covering Pupillage, in accordance with the requirement in Annex C of the Code of Conduct of the Bar Council. This is contained in our Equality & Diversity file.

Each person working in Chambers has a written contract of employment; individual job description; record of staff sickness and planned holidays; training records; an annual appraisal with appropriate records maintained. The job description for each staff member sets out in writing what is expected of them. This is given to them on commencement of their employment together with a copy of the disciplinary and grievance procedures.

Cathedral Chambers ensures that those involved in recruitment and selection are briefed on the importance of adopting an evidence-based approach in interviews. Applicants receive an application form and standard questions are used in interviews to test suitability for vacancies. Decisions are recorded using a standardised form.


Work distribution amongst pupils is covered in the separate Pupillage policy.

The EOO ensures that the clerks are trained to be fair in the distribution of work amongst all Members of Chambers.

The Clerks monitor and review the distribution of work during Practice Reviews with Members of Chambers

Any complaints about the distribution of work are dealt with in accordance with the Chambers’ Grievance Procedure.

All Chambers’ employees have contracts of employment containing details of the Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures in place in relation to their employment Chambers has a written grievance procedure which includes procedures for handling complaints about discrimination or harassment. There is a separate complaints resolution procedure to deal with complaints from solicitors, a copy of Chambers Grievance Procedure is made available to every current and future tenant and pupil in Chambers through the office files which are readily available.

The EOO is responsible for administering the grievance procedure A person who believes that he or she has experienced discrimination in breach of any of the provisions of this policy or the Equality Act 2010, is invited to raise the matter informally with the EOO or through Chambers’ Grievance Procedure Equality & Diversity Programme of Action

Appendix – Compliance and evidence of good practice

Evidence – General Actions
To be legally compliant, Chambers must be able to provide evidence of the positive steps they have taken to promote good equality and diversity practice in the following areas:

  1. Demonstrated top level commitment to Equality & Diversity issues (designated senior manager/Head of Chambers with accountability for implementation and oversight)
  2. Publication of a policy on Equality and Diversity and Harassment and action plan.
  3. Publication of a policy on maternity, paternity and paternity leave
  4. Evidence that policies and action plans have been communicated across chambers and to clients and suppliers
  5. Process in place to make reasonable adjustments in a timely and appropriate manner
  6. Training for all staff, members and pupils
  7. Effective procedure for dealing with complaints (informal and formal)
  8. Evidence that managers and supervisors take complaints seriously
  9. Equality targets and positive action initiatives
  10. Robust equality monitoring to ensure effective personnel practices and policies at recruitment, pay and conditions, selection, placement, work allocation and returns, practice development, promotion, training opportunities, disciplinary action, appraisals
  11. Audits to check fairness in provision of legal services and client relations
  12. Mechanisms for monitoring and reviewing progress e.g. checking recruitment monitoring data annually and taking corrective action to redress underrepresentation

Evidence – Specific Actions

Given changes arising from The Equality Act, Chambers may need to take specific actions in the following areas:

  1. Review recruitment processes and procedures to remove inappropriate pre-employment medical questions
  2. Adapt policies and procedures to prevent harassment from third parties
  3. Review policies and procedures to avoid potential associative discrimination claims
  4. Remove pay secrecy clauses from contracts of employment
  5. Ensure those responsible for recruitment and selection are updated on the changes arising from the Equality Act.
Cathedral Chambers Privicy Notice as at 1st January 2021 Further to the implementation of the GDPR on the 25th May 2018 Cathedral Chambers and its constituent members will operate with instructing solicitors in accordance with the following terms:
  1. Instructing solicitors will have overall responsibility for their compliance with GDPR as it relates to the personal data of its clients and that data which is passed to Cathedral Chambers and its members for the purposes of representing the client in proceedings. This will include obtaining the consent of the client to instruct counsel and to provide to counsel/Chambers personal data to ensure effective case preparation.
  2. The instructions/brief to counsel shall set out the terms in which the data is to be held by way of subject matter and likely duration of the proceedings.
  3. The instructions/brief to counsel shall set out the nature and purpose of the documentation being sent to Chambers.
  4. The instructions/brief to counsel shall identify the category of the data subject where appropriate.
  5. The relevant counsel and/or Chambers shall ensure that all personal details are subject to a duty of confidence
  6. The relevant counsel and/or Chambers shall take appropriate measures to ensure the secure processing of the data
  7. The relevant counsel and/or Chambers shall delete or return all personal data provided under the instructions/brief in accordance with safe and secure practice
  8. The relevant counsel and/or Chambers shall submit to any audit or inspection as may be required pursuant to any investigation of the instructing solicitors practice
  9. Counsel and/or Chambers will advise instructing solicitors of any request by the client to alter, amend or erase any data held by them.Counsel and/or Chambers will comply with any supervising authorities.Counsel and/or Chambers will keep adequate records of their processing activities which will be subject to inspection.
  10. Counsel and/or Chambers will only engage sub processors with the prior consent of the instructing solicitors and under a further written contract which maintains the criteria of GDPR.
  11. The relevant counsel and/or Chambers shall inform instructing solicitors within 48 hours of any breach to the GDPR.
  12. Counsel and/or Chambers remain responsible for their own compliance under the GDPR.
Updated : 21st March 2021

Cathedral Chambers

We are a specialist set of chambers with 14 full-time members and one working door tenant. Our members of chambers routinely accept instructions in respect of :

  1. Public law children. This often means that social services are involved in relation to children. It may mean that the local authority has applied to the court to request that a child is taking into care, for example. Our members routinely represent local authorities or parents at court.
  2. Private law children. This often involves a decision about where a child should live or with whom they should spend time. In addition, it can involve where a child should go to school or any changes to their surname, for example
  3. Financial remedies work. This often means dealing with assets such as pensions and homes following the breakdown of a marriage/civil partnership. Our members routinely advise and represent individuals at court.

All of our barristers are registered with the Bar Standards Board and can be found on the Barrister Register

In addition, all of our barristers are registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office and have appropriate insurance to practise.

Contact us

Cathedral Chambers welcomes enquiries from solicitors/practising lawyers and members of public through the Public Access scheme.

Chambers can be contacted at and/or 01633 215 112. Our dedicated clerking team will provide the relevant information from an enquiry including a quote for our barristers’ fees. The fees quotation will be set out as clearly as possible but the clerking team are happy to discuss any queries.

Given the nature of chambers’ work, fees are often fixed fees using the family advocacy scheme. There are on occasions where a case may fall outside of this scheme but the clerks will notify you as soon as practicable.

In addition, members of chambers also work on a fixed fee private basis for example, when acting for a local authority, private law children matter or financial remedy case. However, there may be an occasion that a barrister may wish to charge an hourly rate if the work involves drafting, for example. The clerks will be able to provide this information to you.

All fees include VAT, if applicable. Individual VAT numbers can be provided upon request.


There are a number of factors that can affect the timescale of a case. For example, the complexity of the case, availability of barristers and the volume of documents. Please bear this in mind.

If you wish to make a complaint directly chambers, please follow the complaints procedure on this website.

You may also wish to complain to the Legal Ombudsman:

In making a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman you must do so within 6 years of your barrister’s action/failure to act, or no later than 3 years after you should reasonably have known there were grounds to complain.

You must also complain to the Legal Ombudsman with 6 months of receiving your barrister’s final response to your complaint.

The following link relates to the decision data on the Legal Ombudman’s website:

Public Access
Certain members of chambers are accredited to accept instructions under the Public Access scheme – please follow the direct access link at the top of the website. Instructing a barrister under the scheme enables you to instruct a barrister directly which can be cost effective.

If you wish to instruct a barrister under the Public Access Scheme, you may wish to view the 
BSB public access guidance.

Accredited members of chambers are willing to accept instructions in respect of private law children, financial remedies and injunction cases. Typically, members will work on a fixed fee basis. However, if for any reason the barrister decided that an hourly rate is more applicable for example, if there is drafting, then this will be communicated to you.

Given the nature of the work our barristers undertake, there are additional transparency requirements that relate to financial disputes arising out of divorce (cases where joint assets add up to less than £300,000).

Our members of chambers only accept instructions in respect of private law children and financial remedies work.  Further information is set out below about potential fees for relating to a financial remedies’ application and the key stages of the case.   For the “avoidance of doubt, members of chambers do not accept instructions relating to employment, immigration appeals, inheritance act advice, licencing applications in relation to business premises, personal injury claims, summary only motoring offences and winding up petitions”.

If you require a barrister to attend a court hearing, we typically require 1 week notice but please contact the clerks on the above to discuss our barristers’ availability.

Financial Remedies

BSB price transparency policy statement

Our accredited barristers can advise you in respect of the financial element following the breakdown of a relationship. They can provide advice in conference and/or assist in the drafting of proposed financial agreements, for example. If the matter needs to be heard by the court, our barristers can represent you at those hearings. There may be a number of hearings before the matter concludes and could in principle, take 6-12 months.

However, timescales may vary depending on the individual case.

We have set out indicative fees for a (private) fixed fee below:

Conference/drafting – £250 – £1,000

First Appointment – £480 – £1,000

Financial Dispute Resolution – £500 – £1,800

Final Hearing – £840 – £3,000

Refresher – £600 – £1,500

Fees will include VAT (if applicable). Individual VAT numbers can be provided upon request. The above fees are for guidance and fees can change due to complexity, length etc.

There may be occasions where additional fees will be needed such as travel costs.  Travel costs are typically charged at 45p per mile plus additional costs of hotel if the Barrister is required to travel long distances.  If clients require us to provide photocopying facilities,  this can be charged at 2p per page.  This will depend on the court/venue location.

Please also contact the clerks if the joint assets are worth more than £300,000.

The key stages of a financial remedies case (after an application has been made) are as follows:

First Directions Appointment (‘FDA’).

Although settlement can be achieved at this hearing, this often not the case. This type of hearing often relates to asking the court to direct further information. Such information can relate to getting the home valued, a pension report or asking for more statements relating to bank accounts.  This type of hearing usually takes place about 2 months after the initial application

Financial Dispute Resolution Appointment (‘FDR’).

This hearing is typically when all the information has been received (property valuation, pension reports etc) and so all concerned have an idea of the available assets. This type of hearing is aimed at encouraging parties to reach an agreement and avoid a contested hearing. This type of hearing usually takes place 2-4 months after the FDA. However, this can vary depending on what information was requested at the earlier hearing.

Final Hearing
This is where the parties will come to court and give oral evidence on what they say is a fair division of the assets in the case. The Judge will then decide what the outcome should be. This hearing will take place when no agreement can be reached. This type of hearing usually takes place about 2-4 months after the FDR.

Therefore, from starting the application and getting to a final hearing if parties don’t reach an agreement themselves) can take 6 months in an average case. However, things can take longer if expert reports are needed, for example.

Updated : 31st Jan 2022.

Please see the latest version of our complaints procedure here.

Get in touch now to book a specialised Family Barrister

Office telephone: 01633 215112
Out of office hours: 07713 475998