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Tooks Chambers to be dissolved

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After months of rumours about its imminent demise, and a host of high profile departures, Michael Mansfield QC’s set Tooks Chambers has announced that it is to wind up its operations.

In a statement issued on its website a few minutes ago, Tooks puts its dissolution down to government policies on legal aid…

The statement reads: “The dissolution of Chambers is the direct result of government policies on Legal Aid. The public service we provide is dependent on public funding. 90% of our work is publicly funded. The government policies led by Justice Secretary Chris Grayling are cumulatively devastating the provision of legal services and threatening the rule of law.”

Tooks says that it will continue to accept briefs until 11 October, with the set not being formally dissolved until Friday 27 December. It adds that “Michael Mansfield QC and others are actively pursuing the possibility of reconfiguring resources in order to create a new and alternative working model based on an electronic hub and a compact physical space.”

Tooks’ junior barristers and the set’s three pupils are said to be particularly aghast at what has happened, with their chances of a move to another leading chambers far lower than the senior figures who have already jumped ship.

One insider told Legal Cheek: “This seems to be down to mis-management. Legal aid has had a massive impact. But on that analysis why isn’t everyone else going into administration?”

Meanwhile, there is uncertainty about the fate of the pupil who is due to start at Tooks in 2014.

Tooks has not yet responded to Legal Cheek‘s request for comment.