Archive for July 26th, 2009


Short film on Brian Inkster and his practice

Law firm that is just that little bit different

Lawcast 151: Scots lawyer Brian Inkster on Crofting law, technology and other matters

Today I am talking to a Scots lawyer – my first podcast with a practitioner from Scotland. Shetland born Brian Inkster founded his own practice, Inksters, and as we will see…does things a little differently, providing a City level of service from his Glasgow offices to his crofting clients in Shetland and his other clients throughout Scotland… Brian is on Twitter, not surprisingly, given his passion for technology and after finding out a bit about practice in Scotland I want to ask him what makes his delivery of legal services special enough to attract the attention of the Telegraph and other news services.

Listen to the podcast

Podcast version for iTunes


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26 July: Postcard from the seaside

I shall not be taking a holiday this year.  This is not unusual.  I have not had a holiday for five years – and it suits me.  Drinking a small glass of Tempranillo with my toast and marmalade at 5.30 this morning,  as the gulls flew in, I wondered where the middle classes would be holidaying this year and, in particular how Her Majesty’s judges do holidays.  I cannot for one moment picture a High Court judge dancing in a foam filled nightclub dance floor  in Ibiza or running amok in Magaluf – so where do they go?  I shall return to this shortly.

In these credit-crunched times the middle classes are developing a taste for ‘Staycations’.  So instead of pouring into Tuscany en masse in their linen jackets and Panama hats, they are staying at home.  Those with young lager lout offspring may well piss off to Cornwall so that Harry from Stowe, Jack from Eton and Thomasina from St Paul’s can take recreational drugs and ‘hang out’.  Others may head for Wales, The Lake District or Scotland for something more spartan and ‘uplifting’.

I have this image in my mind of a High Court judge on holiday with his wife. He is used to presiding,  so I imagine him sitting in splendid isolation on his side of the table – in the centre; his wife positioned opposite like counsel. The waiter has just delivered the skeleton argument containing details of the meal.  The judge asks his wife to put her submissions on what points she is likely to take in terms of the food set out in the schedule. The judge listens patiently, nodding approvingly when his wife makes a particularly interesting selection, calls the waiter as an expert witness to clarify some particularly troublesome evidence in French,  and satisfied with the veracity of the evidence,  places his papers on the table, turns to the waiter and gives judgment. The judge speaks slowly to ensure that the order is reported accurately to Chef in the kitchens.

It may be that a glass of Tempranillo at 5.30 am is not one of my better ideas when I start to have thoughts of this nature – but it is National Silly Week tomorrow according to Man in a Shed.  One must do one’s bit.

Apropos of nothing… I don’t have children. Some people don’t. The upside however, is that at least I won’t have a son or daughter anxiously asking ‘after my health’ in later life or worse, shuffling me off to Green Lawns Hall for the demented and gaga and advising me about my cigarette and alcohol consumption while consulting a Wills & Probate textbook and clutching a power of attorney form.  But if you do have a young family and decide to holiday in rain soaked Britain then you may find a trip to the cinema useful.  I did my 150th podcast and my guest was US lawyer Dan Hull yesterday. I like the idea of having ‘guests’ on podcasts, makes it sound like a ‘show’.  I always enjoy podcasts with Dan – I have no idea what he is going to come up with next.  Yesterday it was his latest fave rave ‘Anonymity on the blogosphere’ – and, of course Geeklawyer and Scott Greenfield of Simple Justice were mentioned. After the podcast Dan was telling me about his friend Ellen Bry, a well known actress in the States.  Ellen has made a new film which would be perfect for holiday family viewing.

I haven’t seen it – but I have read about it and Dan describes it thus… ” In the film, we meet a determined and spiritual woman who is surprised to learn that she has inherited just one thing from her dead businessman husband: a run-down old house in Georgia, and the turbulent foster family living in it. Taken from the story Mrs. Hobbes’ House, The Lost & Found Family is a poignant, uplifting, instructive and remarkably powerful family film set in the American South.” You may watch the trailer here

So… if it is on at a Cinema near you and the family is missing their wifi, twitter, Facebook or their Playstation… no need to panic…

I haven’t had swine flu yet despite the fact the pandemic is currently sweeping across Britain,  causing further problems for British holiday makers who are being touched up and screened by French Immigration and Health officials (apparently).  It is curious how the French over react to everything and then make a complete hash of things – but they do do making a hash of things with style and elegance… Trafalgar, Waterloo, Maginot Line etc…

As my Grandfather, Sir Humphrey Charon KCMG, our man in Paris many years ago used to say… “Charon…. just remember… the Frenchies invented the hot air balloon…. entirely appropriate… remember that when you visit France and all will be well”.  I have never forgotten his advice.

So there we are… another weekend postcard written.  The gulls are having breakfast.  I am only moderately over refreshed and it is time for coffee.  I shall, of course, be back later in the day to blog.  Now I must scour the horizon for U-Boats… and, as Gordon Brown ponders his future after the ludicrous result in the Norfolk by-election where a Labour majority of 5000 was turned into a Tory majority of 7000 – I shall have some breakfast.

Best, as always


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