Martin Partington: Spotlight on the Justice System

Keeping the English Legal System under review

Archive for the ‘Podcasts’ Category

Encouraging Judicial Diversity

leave a comment »

In April 2019, the Judicial Diversity Forum launched a new initiative designed to encourage talented lawyers from the Black and Ethnic Minority community to think about applying to become a judge. The first part of this programme is a series of YouTube videos – which can be watched by anyone interest. A further part of the programme – judge-led discussion group courses – will launch later in 2019.

This is the first joint initiative of the Judicial Diversity Forum, which is made up of the Judiciary, Ministry of Justice (MoJ), Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC), The Bar Council, The Law Society of England and Wales and the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEx). Forum members are committed to delivering actions that attract applicants for judicial roles from all backgrounds to achieve a more diverse judiciary.

PAJE offers participants from all legal backgrounds the opportunity to develop their understanding of the role and skills required of a judge, through a series of digital resources including 10 short online videos and four podcasts, developed by the Judicial College, which show judges talking about their work and the Judiciary.

These digital resources cover a number of topics such as judgecraft, decision-making, judicial ethics, resilience and equality and diversity.

For further information see

The YouTube videos may be viewed at
Read the rest of this entry »


Interview with Chairman of the Parole Board, Sir David Calvert Smith

leave a comment »

In the latest podcast, I talk to the Chairman of the Parole Board for England and Wales. (There is a separate Parole Board for Scotland). The Parole Board is an independent body that carries out risk assessments on prisoners to determine whether they can be safely released into the community.

In the interview, we discuss when and why the Board was created, how its functions have developed over the years, and its current work.

You can find out more about the work of the Parole Board by going to

You can listen to Sir David Calvert Smith by going to

Written by lwtmp

May 29, 2015 at 11:28 am

Posted in Chapter 5, Podcasts

Tagged with ,

What is happening to legal aid: podcast with Ruth Wayte

leave a comment »

Ruth Wayte is the principal legal adviser with the Legal Aid Agency. In this podcast she reflects on the changes that have been taking place to the legal aid scheme. She acknowledges that legal aid practitioners have experienced significant cuts in the fees they receive for the work they do. But she also notes that there are still practitioners seeking contracts for work from the legal aid agency. Most applications to tender for work are well subscribed. She also comments on a number of the legal issues that have arisen in the courts, arising out of changes to the legal aid scheme.

You can hear her remarks at:

Written by lwtmp

March 3, 2015 at 4:58 pm

Podcasts – volunteers: innovation in service delivery

leave a comment »

One feature of this blog are the podcasts I have made with a variety of leading legal actors. I will continue to add to these from time to time.

But, given the rapidly changing environment within which legal services are being provided, I thought it would be interesting to hear from more recently qualified lawyers about what type of work they are doing, how they are doing it, how it is being paid for.

I would be especially interested in talking with people offering legal services in innovative ways, who may be able to share ideas about the development of legal services in ways that will interest current law students and those coming new into the legal world.

If you would like to volunteer please contact me through the ‘leave a comment’ button just below the heading to this blog item. Your comment will not be published unless you want this to happen.

Written by lwtmp

September 26, 2014 at 10:02 am

Posted in Podcasts

The work of the Howard League for Penal Reform: Podcast with Frances Crook

leave a comment »

The Howard League for Prison Reform, established in the mid 19th century, is a national charity ‘working for less crime, safer communities and fewer people in prison. Too much money is spent on a penal system which doesn’t work, doesn’t make our communities safer and fails to reduce offending’.

In this podcast I talk to Frances Crook, Chief Executive of the League. She speaks about the work of the League, noting some of the successful impacts it has made in recent years. She talks about penal policy in the UK arguing that it operates in a more ‘punitive’ way than other European countries (including former Easter-bloc). She makes a passionate defence of the current probation service and deplores the current Government’s approach to reform of the service. Finally she calls on those setting out on their legal studies to understand the importance of social justice as an aspect of being a professional lawyer.

You can listen to Frances at

To read about the work of the Howard League go to

Written by lwtmp

October 21, 2013 at 4:24 pm

Posted in Chapter 5, Podcasts

Restorative Justice – Podcast with Lizzie Nelson

leave a comment »

In this podcast I talk to Lizzie Nelson, who is Director of the Restorative Justice Council. The Council is a small charitable organisation that exists to promote the use of restorative justice, not just in the court (criminal justice) context, but in other situations of conflict as well (e.g. schools).

There is evidence that restorative justice can help the victims of crime to come to terms with what has happened to them and can also help the perpetrators of crime to realise the consequences of what they have done. There is good evidence that, used well, restorative justice can reduce reoffending.

In this podcast Lizzie Nelson explains both the concept of RJ and talks about the work of the council.

For further information see

The research by Professor Joanna Shapland, and others, which Lizzie talks about in the interview can be found in Restorative Justice in Practice, Evaluating What Works for Victims and Offenders (Authors Joanna Shapland, Gwen Robinson, Angela Sorsby) – further details at

Listen to Lizzie Nelson at

Written by lwtmp

April 12, 2013 at 3:27 pm

Posted in Chapter 5, Podcasts

Pro bono costs: Podcast with Ruth Daniel, Access to Justice Foundation

leave a comment »

In January 2013, I wrote a short note about pro bono costs – costs recovered from a losing party, where the winning party to the litigation has been represented pro bono (for free). In these cases, the payments do not go to the litigant – by definition, being represented for free they have paid nothing – but to a charity, the Access to Justice Foundation.

In this podcast I talk to Ruth Daniel, CEO of the Foundation and the work it does throughout the country.

Listen to Ruth at

For more information about the Foundation go to

Written by lwtmp

February 14, 2013 at 3:49 pm

Legal profession: the role of chartered legal executives. Podcast with Diane Burleigh

leave a comment »

The Chartered Institute of Legal Executives is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. The Institute sets standards for and regulates the activities of legal executive, who play an important role in the delivery of legal services.
Those who left school but decided for what ever reason not to go to university, but who nonetheless wish to work in a legal environment can – by joining the Chartered Institute and studying the different courses it offers – become qualified in specific areas of legal expertise.
They can also become fully qualified solicitors (though not barristers).
A major attraction of this way of entering the legal profession is that you can work while you qualify – and thus avoid much of the expense now associated with obtaining a professional legal qualification.
You can find out more about the Chartered Institute by going to their website at

In this podcast I talk with the Chief Executive of CILEX about the challenges facing the legal profession and the opportunities provided for Legal Executives in the rapidly developing legal world.
Go to

Written by lwtmp

February 14, 2013 at 12:59 pm

Posted in Chapter 9, Podcasts

Interview with Lucy Scott-Moncrieff, President-elect Law Society

leave a comment »

There have been a number of recent podcasts and blog entries recently reflecting on the future of the legal profession – see for example podcasts with Richard Susskind and Crispin Passmore and the blog entries relating to the Legal Services Act 2007.

In this podcast I talk to Lucy Scott-Moncrieff, who takes over as President of the Law Society of England and Wales in July 2012. I talk to her about the challenges facing the solicitor’s branch of the legal profession and the optimism she feels about the future. She is confident that solicitors will respond imaginatively to new challenges.

I also talk to her about the innovative model of private practice which she has developed – the ‘virtual’ firm – which enables her still to offer legal aid services to the public in important areas of law such as mental health and child protection. See

Listen to Lucy Scott-Moncrieff at

Written by lwtmp

May 30, 2012 at 8:07 am

Posted in Chapter 9, Podcasts

Educating Judges – the Judicial College. Interview with Lady Justice Hallett

leave a comment »

The Judicial College was created by bringing together separate arrangements that had previously existed for training judicial office-holders in the courts (the Judicial Studies Board) and Tribunals Service (through the Tribunals Judicial Training Group). In this podcast I talk to its Chairman Lady Justice Hallett about the reasons for the change and ways in which the College is developing new ideas about judicial education. She particularly mentions the international links it has been establishing.

More information about the College can be found at

To hear the interview, go to

Written by lwtmp

March 2, 2012 at 11:20 am