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St Mary's Academic Publishes Book on Opening of the Bar to Women

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St Mary’s University, Twickenham academic Dr Judith Bourne has published a biography of Helena Normanton KC, the first woman to enter an Inn of Court in England and the second woman to be called to the Bar of England and Wales. Titled: ‘Helena Normanton & the Opening of the Bar to Women’ the book is an account of Helena Normanton’s life and career, her fight to join the Bar of England and Wales and open it up to women. The book describes how solicitors, fearful of the unknown, were reluctant to instruct Helena Normanton, leaving her to take on poor person’s cases, dock briefs and those few cases ‘deemed suitable for a woman’, noting her constant struggle to establish herself against a backdrop of prejudice, misogyny and discrimination. Dr Bourne commented: “Helena Normanton was a force to be reckoned with and a prolific author, leading feminist and speaker. I’m delighted to publish this work which explores the controversies that surrounded her, in what is the first full-length account of her astonishing life and career.” Judith Bourne SFHEA LLB LLM PhD joined the Law Programme at St Mary’s University as a lecturer in September 2013, having previously worked at London Metropolitan University for 12 years as a senior lecturer. Dr Bourne holds degrees from the University of Westminster (LLB (Hons) and an LLM), and a PhD from King's College, London. She was a practicing barrister and also spent 18 months as a Legal Adviser to the Magistrates'.  
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