YLAL Meetings

This page contains information about recent and upcoming YLAL meetings and events across the country. Our current upcoming events are as follows:

- Wednesday 8 March 2017: Youth Justice in the Criminal Courts - meeting in London in the downstairs bar at Hodge Jones & Allen, from 6:30pm.

- Wednesday 22 March 2017: Social Mobility & Diversity in the Legal Profession - YLAL Midlands meeting at Cornwall Street Chambers in Birmingham to discuss access to the profession, from 6:30pm.

Please see below for full details of all upcoming events.

New members are welcome to come along to our meetings. Unless stated otherwise, there is no need to confirm your attendance - just turn up. There's no obligation to talk at the meetings - just come along and observe if you've never been to a meeting before and are nervous about speaking. On the other hand if you have lots to say, feel free to come along and say it!

London Meetings

We hold meetings in London on the second Wednesday of every month. At our last meeting, on 8 February 2017, we held an open discussion about social mobility, diversity and access to the legal profession, following our Social Mobility Survey which closed in December 2016. We are analysing the results of the Survey and will prepare an updated Social Mobility Report in the near future. We are very grateful to members who attended the discussion, and your comments will feed into our updated report.

Our next meeting, 'Youth Justice in the Criminal Courts', will be at 6:30pm on Wednesday 8 March 2017, in the downstairs bar at Hodge Jones & Allen, 180 North Gower Street, Kings Cross, London, NW1 2NB. We are delighted to be joined by Kate Aubrey-Johnson, Director of the Youth Justice Legal Centre (YJLC) set up by Just for Kids Law. Kate will speak to us about youth justice in the criminal courts and the work of the YJLC in providing information and training about youth justice law for lawyers, professionals and young people, their families and carers.

The YJLC was launched in November 2015, and in 2016 was shortlisted for a Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year Award in the ‘Access to Justice through IT’ category for its innovative use of technology to educate lawyers and empower young people in the wake of cuts to legal aid. We will also discuss the current consultations about proposed reform of criminal legal aid fees - the Advocates Graduated Fee Scheme and the Litigators Graduated Fee Scheme.

You can find the poster for the event at the bottom of this page - please feel free to share this with friends and colleagues. 


YLAL Kent's last meeting was a panel event on Thursday 8 December 2016 at the Mooting Chamber, Wigoder Law Building at the University of Kent in Canterbury.

Details of future meetings of YLAL Kent will be posted here. For more information or to get involved, follow YLAL Kent on facebook and/or email ylal.kent@gmail.com.

YLAL Midlands

The next YLAL Midlands event will be an open discussion on the subject of 'Social Mobility & Diversity in the Legal Profession' from 6:30pm on Wednesday 22 March 2017 at Cornwall Street Chambers in Birmingham.

At the end of last year, we carried out a survey of our members covering issues affecting access to the profession, including course fees, debt, work experience and salaries. We intend to use the data to publish an updated Social Mobility Report, to follow our last report in 2013. We would like to invite junior and aspiring legal aid lawyers in the Midlands to this open discussion about social mobility and diversity to discuss your motivations for working in legal aid and the barriers to access to the legal profession.

Your thoughts and ideas will contribute to our updated Social Mobility report, so whether you are a law student, paralegal, trainee, pupil or a qualified junior lawyer, please come and have your say! The address for the venue is Cornwall Street Chambers, 85-87 Cornwall Street, Birmingham, B3 3BY and you can find the poster at the bottom of this page.

For more information about YLAL Midlands or to get involved, follow YLAL Midlands on facebook and/or email ylalmidlands@gmail.com.

YLAL North

For more information or to get involved, join the YLAL North google group, follow YLAL North on facebook and/or email ylalnorth@gmail.com

Our last meeting "Welcome to legal aid" was on Thursday 3 November 2016. For more information, follow YLAL Liverpool on facebook and/or email liverpoolylal@gmail.com.


We met on Thursday 7 December 2016 at Lost in Tokyo in Manchester's Northern Quarter for drinks and a festive catch up. John Nicholson and Mark Schwenk of Kenworthy's Chambers joined us to provide an update on the fantastic progress made with the Greater Manchester Law Centre this year and to discuss future opportunities to get involved with the centre. Many YLAL North members attended the launch of GMLC on Saturday 11 February 2017: thanks to all who came! 


YLAL members Ronagh Craddock and Rachel Barnes are organising an introduction to legal aid meeting at Northumbria University which is likely to take place in March 2017. More details will be provided here and on the YLAL North facebook page and google group.


Our final meeting before the festive holidays was on Thursday 1 December 2016 at Irwin Mitchell (Riverside East House, 2 Millsands, Sheffield S3 8DT). The guest speakers spoke about 'Recent Developments in Immigration Law and a Day in the Life of a Council Lawyer in Sheffield'.

YLAL South West

YLAL South West's last meeting was a panel event on Tuesday 7th February 2017 at the University of Law, Bristol. A summary can be found on the Minutes page

Details of future meetings of YLAL South West will be posted here. For more information or to get involved, follow YLAL South West on Facebook and/or email YLALsouthwest@gmail.com.