28.11.06

Day 41 (week 9): The tape

Had lunch with Worrier today. She had had her morning meeting with the Head of Chambers and she had also made a recording although I didn’t get to hear it. Needless to say, he had discouraged her from making any formal complaint, even to him. He was sure it was something which could be sorted out informally with a word in the right ear. Two choice quotes which Worrier told me about were the following (as near as I can remember):

“I can assure you that I say this with the very best of intent for your career. Be very careful where you take this. A woman can get a name for herself for causing trouble which it becomes impossible to lose in such a small world.”

“I’m afraid Dear, you’re going to have to get used to the rough and tumble of the Bar. It’s only going to get worse once you’re in court and throwing insults at each other across a courtroom. To survive in this job, you have to be tough. I’m sure [the barrister she was complaining about] was only trying to help you.”

I agreed with Worrier that his reaction perhaps wasn’t surprising given the talk he’d given us at the start of the year. However, it was extraordinary given the nature of the complaint she was making. The choices were either to make a formal complaint to Chambers or alternatively to take it straight to the Bar Council and include the Head of Chambers. I suggested she should not over-step the mark and that perhaps it was wise simply to formalise her complaint with Chambers. She said she would think about it.

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