YLAL Meetings

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

- Tuesday 25 July 2017: Meeting in Manchester with criminal law speakers
- Wednesday 9 August 2017: Summer Social in London - details TBC

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. 

Our last event was on Wednesday 12 July, in the Basement Bar at Hodge Jones & Allen, 180 North Gower Street, Kings Cross, London, NW1 2NB. We heard YLAL members speak about A Day in the Life of a Young Legal Aid Lawyer practising in crime, family, immigration, housing and community care.

Our next event in London will be a Summer Social on Wednesday 9 August - details to be confirmed so save the date and watch this space!

YLAL Midlands

The last YLAL Midlands event was A Day in the Life of a Young Legal Aid Lawyer on Thursday 29 June at Cornwall Street Chambers. We heard from junior solicitors and barristers based in the Midlands about their day-to-day experiences as legal aid lawyers in crime, family, housing, public law and human rights.

Our next events in the Midlands will be a social in Birmingham on Friday 4 August 2017 and an event on Wednesday 18 October 2017; Becoming a legal aid lawyer. Please save the dates. 

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

We will be speaking at the Lawyers Against Poverty networking event at Apotheca, Manchester on 12 June 2017.


YLAL Liverpool's last event was 22 June 2017, at Exchange Chambers. 

YLAL seeks to represent YLALs from across all sectors, however we have a disproportionate number of members from the areas of civil legal aid. We are working to redress this balance nationally. This event was to hear from criminal lawyers on their experiences within criminal legal aid, the fight they have led against cuts to it and the reasons they continue to dedicate their professional lives to the sector.

We hosted Crime and Punishment? Criminal Legal Aid after LASPO 2012, with three fantastic speakers:

Zoe Gascoyne, Criminal solicitor and Partner at Quinn Melville. Zoe is also Chair of the Criminal Law Solicitors' Association (CLSA) which represents the interests of criminal lawyers across the UK. She has many years of experience in practice representing defendants in a wide variety of cases but she also has vast experiene of campaigning for justice and for legal aid as she stood at the forefront of campaigns against the cuts to criminal legal aid.

Peter Killen, Barrister at Exchange Chambers. Peter previously worked as a solicitor advocate. In 2007 he qualified as a Higher Courts Advocate and was called to the bar in 2015. He will be able to give members insight into an alternative route to the bar. He has acted as advocate for both defence and prosecution and has appeared at the court of appeal. 

Calum Whelan, Trainee solicitor, James Murray Solicitors. Calum is an accredited police station representative and now a trainee solicitor. He gave members insight into routes into criminal legal aid and described the difficulties facing junior lawyers in the sector at the present time.

Thanks to our speakers, and to the attendees.

For more information, follow YLAL Liverpool on facebook and/or email liverpoolylal@gmail.com.


We will be meeting at Garden Court North Chambers on Tuesday 25 July at 6pm to hear from two incredible criminal defence lawyers;  

  • Robert Stewart, Higher Court Advocate from Tranters Solicitors in Stockport; and  
  • Mark George QC, Head of Chambers at Garden Court North.

It is sure to be a really interesting event and will be our last one of the summer so we hope to see lots of you there!

Please let us know if you can make it by emailing us ylalnorth@gmail.com or confirming you can attend on the Facebook event. There's a poster at the bottom of this page, feel free to circulate it. 


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


YLAL Sheffield recently hosted a Summer Social, on 22 June 2017. Thanks to all those who came. 

Further events will be published soon. 

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.