Professor Judith Bourne Head of the Department of Law, Criminology and Politics at St Mary’s University, Twickenham has been appointed as an Academic Bencher by the Treasurer of The Honourable Society of the Inner Temple.
An Academic Bencher is a senior member of an Inn of Court with an academic background. An Inn of Court is a professional association that all barristers must belong to. In the UK, there are four: Gray’s Inn, Lincoln’s Inn, Inner Temple, and Middle Temple.
A bencher’s duties can vary depending on the Inn they were elected by. The main function of the Inner Temple is the provision of education and training in professional skills such as advocacy for students as well as continuing professional development for more experienced barristers.
Speaking of her appointment, Professor Judith Bourne said, “I am honoured and extremely grateful to have been appointed as a Bencher of the Inner Temple. I have worked extensively with their archivist, Celia Pilkington, for example in December we will launch a digital exhibition on diversity in the legal profession, which follows on from the success of our Women in Law digital exhibition. It is great pleasure to work with them and really benefits our students.”