President's Letter (December 2014)    

Readers may recall my advising that the theme of my Presidential year is ‘Engaging for the Future – Maintaining Pride in the Profession’.

‘Pride in the Profession’ was certainly evident at the Opening of the Legal Year Ceremony that I recently attended in Westminster Abbey (see page 10 for further details) and ‘Engagement’ was a recurring theme at the National Local Law Societies’ Conference, which I attended in Bolton during October. Monmouthshire Law Society was successful in its bid to host next year’s Conference and it is encouraging that Welsh Local Law Societies are playing such an active role in the profession’s representation – Cardiff & District Law Society having previously hosted the Conference in 2013, during Anne-Louise Ferguson’s Presidency.

The importance of the legal profession within the Welsh Business Sector was highlighted by the Lord Chief Justice, who addressed Cardiff Business Club members and guests at St David’s Hotel in November. I wish to thank the Principality Building Society for inviting me to the address and post-address Dinner. The Lord Chief Justice spoke of the need for legal services at proportionate cost and the highest level of expertise, particularly given the huge sums being invested in technological companies, life sciences and other industries in Wales. He added that the Welsh economy would be adversely affected by companies having to go to other regions for legal advice and that Wales should therefore strive for excellence in attracting inward investment in professional services.

Based upon the numbers (in excess of 400 people) attending the South Wales Society of Chartered Accountants’ Annual Dinner in Cardiff during October, it is apparent that the Chartered Accountants’ profession in Wales is very active and another important professional services provider within the Welsh economy. I am grateful to the President of SWSCA (Andrew Williams) for inviting me to a very enjoyable and enlightening evening.

Managing Partners’ and Directors’ Lunch

This has now been arranged to take place at the Hilton Hotel (Sophia Suite) on Wednesday 4th March 2015 between 12.00noon and 3.00pm. Further details (including booking information) can be found elsewhere in this edition.

With the demise of the ‘Friday afternoon lunches’ of yesteryear, there appears to be a need for a vehicle by which decision makers can engage on an informal basis, to share ideas and experiences, which may prove mutually beneficial. Hopefully, the above lunch will help to fill this void and become the catalyst for increased communication between firms within Cardiff & District.

The Society will also have a presence and is keen to know how it can assist its members, wherever possible.

Simon Mumford Award

As referred to in the previous edition, the Society has been considering a way to honour Simon Mumford’s dedication to the profession. It has been agreed that an award (in Simon’s name and memory) will be awarded annually by the Society to a lawyer from the Law Society’s South Wales constituency, in recognition of his or her contribution to the Law and the legal profession. The first award will be presented at next year’s Annual Dinner, which will be held at City Hall in Cardiff on Friday 24th April 2015 – Make a note of the date!

Further details of the award and how to nominate can be found elsewhere in this edition.

Trilogy Of Free Members’ Forums - Welsh Devolution From A Legal Perspective

I am pleased to announce that this trilogy of Members’ Forums (mentioned in the previous edition) is now scheduled to take place on 25th February 2015, 25th March 2015 and 29th April 2015 (all at 6.00pm - with registration from 5.30pm). The Society has lined up some great speakers, including David Dixon (Senior Professional Tutor, Centre for Professional Legal Studies at Cardiff Law School), Emyr Lewis (Senior Partner, Blake Morgan - Cardiff Office) and Theodore Huckle QC (Counsel General for Wales).

Members can register for these particular Forums by e-mailing tomd@dolmans.co.uk or via the Society’s website: www.cardifflaw.org – Just click on the CPD button!

Members can attend free of charge and should register for these Forums on the Society’s website (www.cardifflaw.org) – Just click on the CPD button!

I do hope that those readers who may not already be members of the Society are suitably inspired by the above to join the 1,000 plus who are already members and that those who are already members will be keen to re-new their membership for 2015. Again, information on joining/renewing membership of the Society can be found elsewhere in this edition.

Finally, I would repeat the sentiments of my first President’s Letter: The success of this Society is very much a team effort and I am grateful to everyone in ‘the team’ (which includes all those who sit on the Society’s Council) for their contributions in 2014.

I wish all readers a very Merry Christmas and a Happy, Healthy and Prosperous New Year! 

 

Tom Danter
President
Cardiff & District Law Society
tomd@dolmans.co.uk

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