Glasgow Bar Association
Executive Committee Meeting
Glasgow Sheriff Court,Glasgow
On 6th November @ 5.45 pm


Ron Mackenna , Andrew Stevenson, Stephen Fox, Moira Deeney , Urfan Dar ,Fiona McKinnon , Eddie Gilroy , ,David Flint ,Des Ziolo ,Lindsey Mcphie ,Eileen McGowan’ ,Craig Dewar ,Ross Yuill ,Katy Wilson .
Apologies -Alison Heron

Minutes of Last Meeting
Treasurers Report
Year-end Balance £130,000,however over £3,000 venue hire, VAT bill of £4,000 to be settled
Current account £96,984
High Interest Account £40,801

Presidents Report
-Free Contempt of Court cover for members, by Snr Members of the Faculty of Advocates
-Appointment of Ken Carter as GBA Auditor
Support for members experiencing personal health or family issues
All three items were featured in recent edition of Scottish Legal News
Important benefits for members and these can be outlined in the End of year letter to members

GBA Trainee -we are keen to make progress with this and will contact the Law Society of Scotland to ascertain the position with regards the new rules which may be coming into force for trainee solicitors.

Moira confirmed that a reception has now been arranged for Thomas Ross QC ,Past President .Date -26/01/2018 in the Corinthian , many people have been in touch to indicate they wish to attend.

CPD – Important developments re Criminal Finances Act
David Flint happy to provide CPD for members on data protection issues and this may be considered as a free CPD session for members in 2018 .
Moira has been working on CPD programme for next year after another very successful programme and was thanked for all her efforts .

AOCB – Issue raised re level of Diversion – Understood that Glasgow have a target of 89% Diversion. A meeting with PFs office is taking place shortly and clarification can be sought if this understanding is an accurate reflection of situation.

Impact upon courts and scheduling of business-
Issue raised by Ross Yuill re listings sheets not being put at front desk until 3pm -this is causing difficulties for members who attend at 2pm for custodies etc- This is to be raised with Sheriff Clerks Office .There has also been an issue with the rescheduling of summary cause cases to specific court days without any consultation – Fiona McKinnon will prepare a letter to The Sheriff Clerk on behalf of the GBA.

Separately, in the absence of either a Sheriff Court standing Advisory Committee or an Operational Users Group there are concerns about a forum to consult with solicitors – Lindsey raised with new Sheriff Principal last year setting up a Court users group .
Ron will raise this issue with Sheriff Principal and also seek a meeting with the Sheriff Clerk.
The Sheriff Principal meets readily with the President .

Discussion re JP cases being dealt with by Summary Sheriffs Discussion re JP cases being dealt with by Summary Sheriffs – This raised by member Tina McGreevy .This was raised previously and the difficulty with claiming an enhanced payment is that the Summary Sheriffs will only exercise the sentencing powers of a JP in these cases .There has previously been the same issue with Stip /JP cases .
There is a possibility that certain “low Level “ Domestic Cases are to be dealt with in the JP courts and this will be monitored as there could be a significant disparity between Glasgow and out of town courts if domestic cases are only dealt with by JPs in Glasgow .

Des Ziolo is to give evidence at the Justice Committee tomorrow morning on behalf of the GBA in respect of the Offensive Behaviour at Football and Threatening Communications (Repeal ) (Scotland ) Bill following preparation of the GBA response
Urfan Dar and Craig Dewar prepared the GBA Reponses submitted in respect of the Pre -Recorded Evidence of Children and Vulnerable Witnesses Consultation
Urfan is working on the GBA response to Lord Bracadales Consultation re Hate Crime .

VP Andrew Stevenson is preparing the GBA Response to the Consultation on Increase in Court Fees .Andrew previously prepared a response but Govt. are now revisiting the issues in light of the Unison case in respect of Tribunal Fees .
Andrew is also preparing the response to the SCJC Consultation on Solicitors Fees .

Independent Review of the Regulation of Legal Services .
Fiona McKinnon will attend the Meeting at the Royal Faculty on the 14th November -meeting to be addressed by the Chair of the Review Panel Esther Roberton
Legal Aid Review
Lindsey Mcphie confirmed that the 2 reviews are entirely separate but there is a cross over and this has been raised at the LA Review .
Fiona McKinnon – who is on the Law Soc Civil LANT team raised ,following a recent meeting between Law Soc and LA Review panel, that the tenor of the questioning raised concerns -e.g. concerning contracting and composition of the Panel includes Colin Lancaster Discussion re Chief Exec of SLAB being on the panel, variety of opinions .
Ron has been concerned that SLAB have not been required to submit a Written Response .
Lindsey confirmed that this issue has been raised in the Review Panel .
Following a meeting at the Sheriff Court with the Chair of the Review Panel it was understood that a date had been fixed for a further meeting on 30th October 2017 at approx.. 1.30 pm onwards to ensure panel saw operation of custody courts .This date was in Moira ,Ron’s and Lindsey’s diaries but the Secretariat to the review indicated they did not have this diarised and then that it was not intended to meet further ,this has been raised and Ron will write to the review Secretariat. Solicitor nominees on panel are to seek further meeting and will meet with Law Soc who have been asked by Chair to submit further information . This is a wide ranging Strategic Review and the issue of fees has been raised consistently .It is an independent review and the issue of different delivery models is clearly a matter which the Chair is interested in .

Next Year’s Committee and size of committee / committee meetings
Over the past number of years the membership of the GBA has been increasing and the number of persons wishing to join the committee has also grown . It is really important that new members are encouraged to join . At present there are 23 committee members .The constitution fixes a minimum number but not a maximum and in view of the considerable interest which has already been expressed in joining the committee next year it was decided that anyone who did not want to remain on next year should let Moira know as soon as possible – Agreed also that if a committee member misses 2 meetings without tendering apologies or 3 meetings with apologies they will be deemed to have come off the committee, unless the committee resolve to the contrary. If apologies are given in the first instance and a reasonable explanation in the second instance there should be no prospect of this resulting in unreasonable decisions and was seen as the best way to ensure that the committee can manage the business and ensure that new members can join ; it being recognised that members can join the committee and then find that they are unable to attend meetings as a result of personal and business commitments .

AGM -Thursday 30th November


Glasgow Bar Association
Executive Committee Meeting- Glasgow Sheriff Court – Monday 4th December 2017- 545pm.

Ron MacKenna, Andrew Stevenson, Moira Deeney, Craig Dewar, Michael Gallen, Eddie Gilroy, David Flint, Des Ziolio, Eileen McFadyen, Katy Wilson, Alison Heron, David Fisken, Jim Bauld, Billy Lavelle.
Apologies- Scott Adair, Lindsey McPhee (Apologies noted)
Fiona McKinnon was not present but was on GBA business at the RFPG.
Minutes of last Meeting
Treasurer’s Report
Accounts in credit
Presidents Report
Legal Aid Review Meeting- 11th December 2017 1. 30pm. Martin Evans will be returning to GSC to engage with the GBA- primarily attending in order that we can show an insight into the workings of a legal aid lawyer. RmacK advising that he is keen for both CIVIL and CRIMINAL practitioners to assist on the 11th. Concerns raised regarding the lack of knowledge of Martin Evans on the workings of practitioners and how the legal aid system operates in practice. He has been invited back so would be helpful if members are able to assist.

GBA Trainee- Position is the same as was advised at the AGM last week.
Membership –Ongoing initiatives to encourage new members to the GBA such as the GBA Auditor/ CPD etc. Possible introduction of Corporate memberships/ advertisement of the benefit of the GBA Auditor (clear benefit to the GBA as a clear ongoing revenue stream due to the % of existing work by Ken Carter on top of GBA referrals).

CPD- Clearly a large part of the revenue stream to the GBA- MD open to suggestions for topics in order to keep the already successful programme, topical and interesting. Any suggestions from members should be sent to MD/Aileen. David Flint will be providing free CPD on data protection issues in January.
SLAB Quarterly Meeting- This will take place on the 19th December. RmacK advised that SLAB have advised that they wish to change the format of the meeting but no further details provided as of yet. Some key issues to be raised in particular to the forthcoming implementation of the Criminal Justice Act on the 25th January 2018. Implications of this including rise in number of Undertakings/ Cited cases. RmacK advised that he has had discussions with Kingsley Thomas regarding this and the issue with Undertakings- are they to be on the same footing at Custody cases etc when consideration of ABWOR tests- KT advising in principle yes but there would have to be a change in the regulations- Decision makers at SLAB will be alerted to the situation.
Simplified Solemn Fee Payments- RmacK advised that there is to a further revised plan by SLAB in relation to the models highlighted at the recent SLAB meeting with GBA members earlier this year. This is an issue where it will be difficult to get a unified position- dependant on business models/ structures etc. Have been advised that all proposals are cost neutral- implantation of block fees for perusals/ s76etc.
Release of Production & Letters re Diversion- Discussions ongoing. MG advising that a course of action will be to raise court proceedings against the PF/ Police. An effective tool in forcing the issue- Possible Style to be available for members?
Annual Dinner 2018- Date for the Dinner is the 7th September 2018 at the Grosvenor Hilton. Peter Martin has confirmed that he will be delighted to appear again. Decided that he should be paid for his evenings work- he waived fee last year- Charity of choice is the St Margaret’s Hospice – Members asked for donations of raffle/ auction prizes- especially any high value prizes etc.
RmacK has made a formal complaint to the Sheriff Principal in relation to Sheriff R. McFarlane QC. This primarily relates to concerns brought forward by GBA members in relation to the Sheriff’s conduct in the Heritable Court recently and comments made to practitioners appearing.
Alison Heron raised an important issue regarding the Children’s Hearing System- There has been a recent meeting between two senior Reporters from Bell St and the Sheriff Principal to discuss the operations of the CHS in GSC- to date there has been no contact made with the GBA or any practitioners regarding the CHS to make any representations on the workings of the system. Clearly this is a very important issue if other stakeholders such as the Reporters/ NSPCC Barnardo’s are all been asked for input. AH inviting that a letter be sent to the Sheriff Principal inviting the GBA to engage in the consultation process on behalf of member. Is there a new Practice note to be implemented? – given that there was a significant PN issues a few years ago.
RmacK advising that this SP is very open to discussions- however this is another example of a lack of engagement in general to consultations/discussion to operations within GSC that affect the day to day operations and structure of the workings of the court.
Heritable Court- Concerns raises by Jim Bauld, following on from last month’s issue raised by Eileen McFadyen regarding scheduling of Proofs- only last week in every month- No one was consulted regarding this- another example of changes to existing structures without consultation- problems for practitioners (knock on affects for clients/ landlords etc).
Lindsay Williams (Gaughan)- Co-opt Committee Member / Social Secretary- Moved.
Quiz- Stevie Semple Memorial Quiz- Eddie Gilroy will contact Dave Ross at the Admiral Bar for dates in March regarding this event.
Andrew Stevenson is working on the GBA response to the Consultation on the increase in court fees- due in January.
SLAB Code of Practice- third draft to be circulated- Reponses from members welcomed.
Check with Urfan Dar as to the response to Lord Bracadales Consultation regarding Hate Crime.




Glasgow Bar Association

Executive Committee Meeting- Glasgow Sheriff Court- Monday 8th January 2018- 545pm.


Ron McKenna, Andrew Stevenson, Moira Deeney, Craig Dewar, Michael Gallen, Eddie Gilroy, Desmond Ziolo, Eileen McGowan, Katy Wilson, Alison Heron, David Fisken, Jim Bauld, Billy Lavelle, Scott Adair, Fiona McKinnon, Lindsay McPhee, Lindsey Gaughen

Apologies- David Flint

Minutes of last Meeting


Treasurer’s Report

Current Account- In credit

High Interest Account – In credit

Presidents Report

Legal Aid Review Meeting:- RMcK and AS met with Martin Evans at GSC to discuss issues that arise whilst representing accused persons in court during legal aid work. RmcK advising ME of the rates of pay etc/ the issues arising out of waiting at court and client being liberated etc Draft report will be due in early course- RMcK advised ME the GBA are keen to get a look at the report for comment- apparently ME sympathetic to the issues that have been raised.

GBA Trainee- No update to advise members.

Membership- As per last month- ongoing initiatives to encourage members- Moira Deeney chasing existing and new members for membership fees.

CPD- if any members have thoughts/ideas for topics that they believe would be of interest please contact Moira.

Withdrawal From Duty Scheme- Discussed at length – further meeting with the membership will be arranged


Level Of Prosecutions Issues raised regarding figures obtained by RMck and CD over the level of prosecutions- EG raising the point that the figues need to be broken down to ascertain the number of warrant cases/ failure to appear complaints and road traffic complaints that make up the total number of complaints that are being issued by COPFS. Large drop in cited cases.

Assessment of the total budgets of the COPFS and payments made by SLAB in Criminal Legal Assistance. Role reversal in last 10 years- funding up for COPFS and LA payments down.

Release of Productions- Craig Dewar issued a letter by email to members – Michael Gallen will provide a concise list of actions points/ draft style of small claim action for members that can be served on the Police/ PF.

Annual GBA Dinner- 2018- No further information at this stage.

Slab Quarterly Meeting Update given


Tommy Ross Event- 26th January 2018- 7pm Corinthian- Can all members that are attending please advise asap. Speakers tbc.

Drug Court Committee- New GBA rep is Michael Gallen- he will attend next meeting on 17th January.

Request by Fiona McKinnon Permanence & Adoptions Workshop. – Permission was sought by FMcK to contact Lee McCormack regarding training for those solicitors on the Reporters List in relation to Permanence orders etc- Rmck happy for FM to contact LM regarding issue
– possible workshop to be provided and costs met by Council.

GBA Quiz- 2018 Stevie Semple Quiz will be Friday 23rd March in the Admiral Bar. Eddie Gilroy and Lyndsey Gaughan will be organising. EG will advise of the restriction in numbers asap in order that membership can be emailed etc.

Consultation Responses- Response submitted by AS in relation to the proposed increase in civil fees- submitted 5/1/18.


Glasgow Bar Association
Executive Committee Meeting- Glasgow Sheriff Court – Monday 5th February 2018- 5. 45pm.

Ron MacKenna, Andrew Stevenson, Moira Deeney, Craig Dewar, Michael Gallen, Eddie Gilroy, David Flint, Des Ziolo, Eileen McFadyen, Alison Heron, David Fisken, Jim Bauld, Lindsey McPhie, Fiona McKinnon, Scott Adair.

Apologies- Katy Wilson, Billy Lavelle Jim Bauld. (Apologies noted)

Minutes of last Meeting

Treasurer’s Report
In credit

Presidents Report
Strategic Review of Legal Aid- – Lindsey McPhie providing update to the Committee regarding the publication of the long awaited report by Martyn Evans into the Legal Aid system currently in place. The report is anticipated by the end of February and as such can be digested and discussed at the next committee meeting. Committee members concerned regarding the possible/probable/ likely implications that this has for members etc. Committee queried the role of SLAB in the process and whether any formal written response by SLAB had been submitted .Lindsey confirmed that SLAB has submitted a number of documents to the review which are listed on the LA review website rather than one formal written submission to the call for evidence . Martyn Evans aware that the funding gap that was highlighted between COPFS budget and that spent on Criminal Legal Aid and AA has been reversed.

GBA Trainee- No further update for Members
Membership- 118 members from 2017 have not re-joined as yet – but efforts being made to encourage them to do so.
CPD- Committee expressed their gratitude to David Flint for his excellent CPD seminar General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) at the Nautical College.
The Family Law Weekend- There are still some places for members/ Non- members to attend this excellent event- MD has arranged for some excellent speakers at this great venue.
Members feedback as to what they want from CPD is sought- Police Interviews- The role of the Defence Lawyer etc- RmcK is going to approach a couple of Advocates/ Sol Ads regarding this increasingly important issue. Law Society Guidance on Police Station interviews- JUSTICE etc.
Release of Productions- Committee are grateful that Michael Gallen has prepared a guide for members on how to take action/ raise an action for the release and return of seized productions. Will be emailed to members shortly.

Annual Dinner- 7th September 2018- RmcK to confirm availability of Peter Martin
GBA Quiz- ED and LG organising and any donations for raffle prizes should be given handed into the office or to Eddie & Lindsay direct. Numbers for the event will be limited- Max 6 members to a team- EG and LG to start raffle ticket sales asap to ensure maximum money raised.
Website Suggestions- Any members that have suggestions for items for the website/ ideas for content etc- please Contact Ron and Moira.
Permanence & Adoptions Workshop – Work is under way and Fiona will give an update at the next committee meeting.
Withdrawal from Duty Scheme – This remains a potentially divisive issue- it is an anxious matter as there are strong, competing views from members as to how best proceed.
RmcK/ AS/MG &LMcP met with Colin Lancaster on 26th January – raising concerns of members regarding the terms of the duty scheme and its implementation.
RMck advising of GBA stance to give control of the duty plan back to the GBA at present the Government decide who is on the duty plan. / regular reviews of rates for Legal Aid Cases.
Colin Lancaster will provide feedback to RMcK on the outcomes of the meeting and his interpretation of what was achieved etc.
GBA stance is for the PDSO to be removed from the duty plan.
After much discussion ultimately, there requires to be a meeting of members – A vote will be required.
Tommy Ross Event- 26th January- Tommy Ross QC was delighted with the turnout and thanks the GBA for putting on the event for him.
Alcohol Court- GBA understands that Kingsley Thomas will be issuing guidance on the fees that are likely to be attached for appearances in this court- in line with Drug Court
GBA Auditor- Reminder to members that Ken Carter is the official GBA Auditor etc Members to be emailed again regarding his role.
Des Finneston Retirement- RmcK and Moira will arrange for a gift to mark the retirement of one of the finest lawyers to have graced the Court.
Consultations- None at present.

MARCH 2018

Executive Committee Meeting
Glasgow Sheriff Court, Glasgow
Monday 3rd April 2017 @ 5.45pm

• Sederunt
Moira Deeney; Ron McKenna; Lindsey McPhie, Fiona McKinnon, Alison Heron, Craig Dewar, Eddie Gilroy, David Flint; Andrew Stevenson, Lee Doyle; Eileen McGowan

• Apologies for Absence
Laura Greer, Paul Mullen, Stephen Fox, Gaynor Kelly, Katie Wilson; Susith Dematagoda; Scott Adair, Des Ziola, Ross Yuill, Carla Boylan, David Fisken; Urfan Dar

• Minutes of Last Meeting

• Treasurer’s Report


• President’s Report (See Action Points)

• Chief Executive’s Report (See Action Points)
1. Assistance to members in time of need; suggest contact points are GMcL and BL re Criminal; AS re civil;
a. Action: email to members
b. Action: RMcK to contact SLN re news story
2. Membership: 430 paid up etc and to join 35
3. CPD: going well
4. GBA Bank Account: No Further Action
5. Annual Dinner: further enquiries are being made
6. Contempt of Court cover; RMcK has had further discussions re same; Banny MacKinnon and Gary Allan are to be points of contact
a. Action: to be advertised as a members benefit
7. Website update: Now mobile friendly, further developments in the pipeline.
8. Meeting with Crown – Arranged for 19th April 2017
a. Action: members to be asked for any comments re same

• Matters requiring Special Attention
• Changes to Court Programme from 1st May 2017;(changes to court 2, which will start at 2pm) RMcK has spoken to the SP re same and there isn’t much that can be done about this.
i. Action: RMcK to raise possibility of regular meetings in the next meeting with the SP
• Member Issue; re rate of payment in JP cases which call before a Sheriff. This has been addressed previously in a number of quarterly meetings with SLAB.
i. Action: feedback to be given to member
• GBA Trainee: RMcK spoke to the Law Soc re the possibility of GBA taking on a trainee.
i. Action: further discussions to take place with Law Soc
• Mentoring Suggestion
i. Action: Continue consideration to next meeting
ii. Action: RMcK to contact Law Soc re current facilities available
• Extraordinary GBA meeting 3rd April 2017
i. Action: RMcK to contact EBA to advise of the outcome of same

• A.O.C.B.

• Current Consultations for Information & Consideration

• Response needed to Alternative Routes to Qualification- LSS
i. Action: drafted response to be updated
ii. Action: EMcG and GK to look at
• Domestic Abuse (Scotland) Bill consultation
i. Action: LMcP and EG to look at

Next meeting: 8th May 2017, 1745

MAY 2018


Executive Committee Meeting
Glasgow Sheriff Court, Glasgow
Monday 8th May 2017 @ 5.45pm

• Sederunt
Ron McKenna; Andrew Stevenson, Stephen Fox, David Fisken, Urfan Dar, David Flint, Des Ziola, Alison Heron, Eileen McGowan; Ross Yuill, Craig Dewar: Lindsay McPhie

• Apologies for Absence
Moira Deeney; Scott Adair; Carla Boylan; Fiona McKinnon; Susith Dematagoda; Lee Doyle; Ross Yuill; Laura Greer; Paul Mullen; Gaynor Kelly; Katie Wilson; Eddie Gilroy

• Minutes of Last Meeting
Minutes Approved

• Treasurer’s Report

• President’s Report (See Action Points)
• Re Action Points:
• Assistance to members in time of hardship; Update was given and this is ongoing
i. Action: Continue to next meeting
• CPD; CPD plan is progressing well and further events planned for autumn
i. Action: Callum Steele to be invited to do CPD
ii. Action: CPD re vulnerable witnesses to be considered
• Membership; this is now at 437
• Annual Dinner; Plans are well underway, band to be sourced
i. Action: Continue to next meeting
• Contempt of Court cover: this was further discussed
i. Action; RMcK to update members
• Website; this is progressing well
i. Action: Continue to next meeting
• Various consultations; volunteers are required to complete submissions
i. Action: RY, CD, DZ and UD have volunteered to prepare criminal response re LA review
• Meeting with Crown: CD gave an update on his recent meeting with Crown
• Changes to court programme: update given, members have been advised via posters etc
i. Action: Members to be advised of new procedures re IDs
• GBA trainee
i. Action: Continue to next meeting
• Mentoring
i. Action: Continue to next meeting

• Chief Executive’s Report (See Action Points)
As above

• Matters requiring Special Attention
• SLAB Meeting 25th May – items for Agenda
i. Action: membership to be canvassed

• A.O.C.B.
• Intern Honoraria: this was discussed and decision taken to issue same
i. Action: SF to issue cheques

• Current Consultations for Information & Consideration

• Alternative Routes to Qualification- LSS – – update & additional comments from Committee on Gaynor’s response
• a call for written evidence on the Domestic Abuse (Scotland) Bill, with a closing date of Monday 1 May 2017.
• completed and submitted
• Legal Aid Review Consultation

Next Meeting: Monday 5th June 2017 , 1745

JUNE 2018





Ron McKenna, Andrew Stevenson, Lynsey Gaughan. Katy Wilson, Desmond Ziolo, Eddie Gilroy, Alison Heron, Jim Bauld, Billy Lavelle, Lynsey McPhee, Fiona McKinnon, Moira Deeney, Craig Dewar, Michael Gallen, David Flint, Lynsey McPhee


Scott Adair (did he send in apologies). David Fisken





CD will look into different ways of investing the money in the high interest account which is not providing a reasonable return at all- Premium Bonds etc.


Police Station Duty Scheme- The EBA- Nothing to update the committee on regarding the stance of the Edinburgh Bar and the duty scheme.

SLAB Meeting- RmcK advising that he will be having a meeting with Kingsley Thomas shortly and will report back to the Committee in June.

Legal Aid Revue Response- The Sub Committee that was created for this matter continues to deliberate over the best way to respond and will do so asap.

Membership- Member Numbers are at an all time high- clearly disappointing that some firms have elected not to re-join- we will clarify if this is solely down to finance as there are a significant number of benefits of being a member. Moira and Aileen will ensure that any non members cannot have use of the facilities offered by the GBA- GBA library/ fax machine etc.

CPD- Several Ideas were floated with regards to proposed speakers for CPD events- This is an important revenue stream for the GBA and MD keen that we have excellent speakers to maintain the high numbers of those that attend our seminars. If any member has a specific topic/ area of interest that they would like or think should be subject of a CPD sessions, please do not hesitate in contacting MD or Aileen.

Edinburgh Bar Dinner- As members are aware the GBA supported the EBA by buying two tables. We are grateful to those from the GBA whom attended the dinner and we note that a great time was had by all. The Committee are glad that those members took advantage of the invitation to have a night on the GBA.


Sheriff Principal Practice Note- Children’s Referral- This issue was raised by Brian Lanigan and the Committee are grateful to him for raising this issue. Rmck will request a meeting with the SP to discuss this and other issues. There was no consultation with the GBA or invitation to do so. It is of no surprise that shortly after its publication, SLAB had new guidance to issue to practitioners- which clearly infers that the SP had liaised with the Board and not practitioners.
This is yet another example of the SP and, frankly, the administration within the Court dictating to practitioners without consultation. It remains to be seen whether any direct contact could have had any influence on the SP, however, without discussions with ourselves, members are growing increasingly frustrated by such actions.

Sheriff & Jury List- All Criminal members- please see the additional comments added in Green regarding requirements for submitting Written Records and Defence Statements timeously. Further, with regards to agents holidays- we would recommend putting any such information in the cover email to the sheriff clerks office and in your WR just as the practice is in the High Court.

GBA Dinner- Rmck confirmed that a band has now been booked(finally!)

JULY 2018

Glasgow Sheriff Court – Common Room – 5.45 p.m.

Ron MacKenna, Billy Lavelle, Moira Deeney, Andrew Stevenson, Eddie Gilroy, Fiona McKinnon, Alison Heron, Katy Wilson, Scott Adair, Desmond Ziolo.

David Fiskin, Lindsay Gaughan, Jim Bauld, Michael Gallen, David Flint.


Accounts In Credit.

Meeting with Kingsley Thomas – Ron MacKenna confirming to the Committee that he recently met with Kingsley Thomas from the Legal Aid Board. He has confirmed that SLAB will be reducing the number of slots that the PDSO have on the duty scheme – in particular to the Petition slots these will be reduced from 18 down to 9 and this will be the same number with regards to the police station duty slots. Clearly this is a positive step in the right direction and has been achieved by RM in his own discussions and communication with the Legal Aid Board and Kingsley Thomas in particular in recent months. One further issue that Kingsley Thomas raised was the issue of amalgamating JP duty slots with those of the domestic slots – Committee will email members in this regard, however, put to members that the JP Custody Court and the Domestic Custody Court now calling within Court 2, the same Court, and it may be in members’ best interests that they have both the JP and Domestic slots at the same time.
Trainees – RM having had reported back as to having discussions with Rob Mars with regards to when a first year trainee would be eligible to appear in Court – there seems to be some consensus that this could be reduced to appearing after a period of four months. Clearly there will be restrictions as to what work the solicitor would be able to undertake, for example no Sheriff and Jury work and no cases where it is likely that the accused would be sentenced to a period of imprisonment or detention. That is likely to potentially come into force from October 2018. There is also to be the increase in the validity of the diploma for up to five years standing the difficulty many diploma graduates have in obtaining a traineeship. Moreover, there is to be no ratio between the number of trainees as to partners within the requisite training firm. In theory it could allow full practitioners to take on two trainees. Each firm would also have to have a training supervisor whom is responsible for the trainee and ultimately regulation could be in place whereby trainees could be “loaned” to other firms if and when need be. The issue with regards to civil work is to be looked at.

Meeting with Sheriff Principal – Ron MacKenna advising that he had a meeting with the Sheriff Principal regarding the issue of First Diets and the requirement of practitioners to engage with the Written Record and Defence Statement process within the timescales. Noting the feedback from the Sheriff Principal that at present solicitors are advised to continue to engage fully with the timescales and email their Written Records and Defence Statements within the prescribed periods in advance in order that Sheriffs are able to make the best use of Court time when the First Diet calls and also that practitioners provide dates of the unavailability in order that CLO can allocate cases accordingly.
Ron MacKenna also discussing the issue regarding the new Children’s Practice Note. Sheriff Principal advising that he issued correspondence to multiple organisations regarding proposed changes and received no response from any organisation. The Sheriff Principal advised that he is willing to consult now and wishes Ron MacKenna to raise to the Committee Membership that he is open to receiving any issues raised by members and will look into the issues raised by practitioners. Noting Fiona McKinnon will email and invite members to feedback within fourteen days any issues raised by the new Children’s Practice Note. Moira and DZ to discuss points with Brian Lanigan.

Legal Aid Review Response – Fiona McKinnon advising that her response is progressing well in regards to the response regarding the civil aspect of the review and Ron MacKenna advising the Committee that there is to be a meeting with the Sub-Committee in early course regarding the criminal response.

Band for the GBA Dinner – Ron MacKenna advising that the band has been confirmed. Advising that costs of the band this year have been significantly reduced due to Ron MacKenna managing to obtain the band through contacts with one of the Court police officers. Accordingly the Court police officers are going to take a table at the GBA dinner and the remaining cost that would normally be paid to the band will be used to subsidise the cost of the ticket for the police officers’ table.

Chief Executive’s Report – Membership stands at 457. Discussing continued ways to increase membership and going membership drive with corporate firms in particular with country membership etc. Ron MacKenna inviting Moira to write to all of the top 20 corporate firms regarding this in early course – possibly August.

CPD – CPD ideas coming along. The Autumn programme is well under way.

AOCB – Craig Dewar advised that he had a meeting recently with the Procurator Fiscal’s office and raised with their office the ongoing issue with regards to letter pleas for pleading diets going missing and the continued problems with return of property to accused after cases have finished. The Procurator Fiscal’s office advising that they have not had many actions raised and Committee discussing the possible reasons why and clearly that could be down simply to the cost and how is the cost recuperated by the legal firm or even the accused. Craig Dewar reporting that the Procurator Fiscal advised that could members refrain from asking Deputes why they have been allocated to work in a certain court. In particular, issue has been raised with regards to certain Sheriff and Jury Deputes who are more commonly seen practising in the Sheriff and Jury Court whom sometimes then end up practising within a JP Court. Deputes have reported back that they then receive a number of comments from defence agents such as “have you received a demotion?” etc., and it has been reported that certain Deputes do not like this.

Appropriate Adults for Court – DZ raising the issue that as of March/April 2018 Glasgow City Council has withdrawn appropriate adult support for accused persons appearing in Court. Noting again this was not an issue that was highlighted to practitioners by way of notice or email from organisations. DZ advising the Committee that a trial had to be adjourned recently due to the lack of availability of an appropriate adult and will investigate the procedure that agents must follow now if an appropriate adult is required to assist an accused person in court and will report back to the Committee in this regard.

Video Link Full Committals – It was raised to the Committee that all full committals are to be proceeded by way of video link by way of Section 288 of the Criminal Justice and Licensing Act. Ron MacKenna has advised that he will send a letter to the Sheriff Principal with regards to full committal by those under twenty one should be considered to be carried out in person with due regard to the accused’s age.

Ron MacKenna confirming that he will write a letter to the Justice Secretary welcoming him to his new role and extending an invitation to the Glasgow Bar Association Dinner.
Next Committee Meeting ?

APRIL 2018

Glasgow Bar Association
Executive Committee Meeting- 16th April 2018
Glasgow Sheriff Court at 5.45pm


Ron MacKenna, Andrew Stevenson, Jim Bauld, Katy Wilson, Lindsay Gaughan, Desmond Ziolo , William Lavelle, Alison Heron, Craig Dewar, David Fisken, Fiona McKinnon, Scott Adair, Lindsey McPhee, Moira Deeney, Michael Gallen.


David Flint, Edward Gilroy, Eileen McGowan

Minutes of Last Meeting


Treasurers Report

Accounts in credit.

Presidents Report

Police Station Duty Scheme- EBA are going back to SLAB & Scottish Government with proposals. Dumfries Bar Association have gone back on the Scheme- GBA position remains the same.

Meeting with SLAB- Kingsley Thomas has proposed a meeting regarding the restructuring of the Duty Plan in Glasgow. Fundamental issue at the outset is the discrepancy that still exists regarding what was agreed/ not agreed a the last meeting and the lack of consensus on the issues raised then. In any event RMacK will arrange to meet KT next week and report back in detail to the Committee on the proposals advanced.

SLAB Quarterly Meeting- No date allocated just yet for the next meeting. RMacK again reiterating his concerns over this issue- SLAB contacted him (GBA) prior to Christmas 2017 regarding restructuring of the meetings- Overriding concern is that SLAB see these meetings as a box ticking exercise and nothing meaningful is achieved- allows SLAB to report to the Government that they are “engaging with service users”.
Committee keen to stress that we have an ongoing dialogue with SLAB and discussions are continually being had with RMacK.

Legal Aid Review Response- Discussing the response made by the Faculty of Advocates- RMacK to arrange a response by the GBA assisted by E Gilroy/ David Fisken/ Craig Dewar & Fiona McKinnon.

Membership- 423 Members have joined- 46 have not re-joined from last year. Frank Irvine has taken a corporate membership- Encourage this type of membership to large firms etc. Issue over the invoicing of membership fees- 1 Month prior to the renewal date Invoices will be sent out to existing members advising if they do not wish to continue their membership they must respond by resigning prior to the 31st October 2018.

CPD:- Committee are grateful to Jim Bauld & Alison Hempsey whom are to deliver their seminars on Private Residential Tenancies and Adults with Incapacity respectively.
The Society of Solicitor Advocates will be delivering a Seminar on “The Trial starts at the Police Station”- Krista Johnston Sol AD one of the speakers- The Panel will have a rep from the Police Federation.

Undertakings:- GBA advised at the Custody Court Meeting that there is a central diary system that the Police have access too- They were given 50 spaces for UT over a calendar month- Police confirmed that the custody figures are decreased by 50%- clearly the decrease in actual custodes in court has not been replaced by a volume increase in the use of Undertakings- significant number of cases being released for report.

GBA Trainee- Committee/ MD/ RMacK will explore the assistance that maybe available by the Justice First Fellowship- MD will liaise with other court users who have used this organisation for assistance in the past-Applications process/ Criteria etc

Issue is that the Law Society has not agreed as yet that the GBA can have a trainee-We can apply in the Autumn for a trainee from the Law Society.

Annual Dinner- RMacK is to order/book the band.

Chief Executives Report

GDPR- Issue of sending emails to members in line with new GDPR regulations. MD to liaise with David Flint to ensure compliance- will require an active response from recipient of email to stay included in the mailing list etc.
All present at Committee Meeting gave express permission to MD and the GBA to retain their email addresses and wish to receive emails.

Health & Safety:- Common Room- MD has been contacted by the SCTS regarding the volume of papers in the Common Room- Issue has been raised that the papers that are left lying in the common room are not compliant with the data protection regulations. Possibility for the Common Room to be for GBA members/ swipe cards/ a lock?

GBA Computer- MD requested funding for a new Computer/laptop – all agreed a new laptop should be purchased and if possible the old computer placed in to the GBA Library and connected to the internet and printer.

AOCB- The Committee wishes to express their best wishes to Gerry McClay on his retirement. Gerry was a Past President of the Bar Association and his presence around the court will be missed.

Annual Golf Outing- The Committee agreed that the outing will receive £400 funding- to be clear the sponsorship/reduction for this outing only applies to GBA members.

Next Committee Meeting Monday 14th May2018