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The great Mansfield Chambers exodus: 50% of barristers quit the set

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Exclusive: Half of the members of Michael Mansfield QC’s set have just left

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Recent updates to the website of Mansfield Chambers have suggested that a major exodus has taken place — and Legal Cheek can today confirm that this is indeed the case.

The predominately criminal set — headed up by legendary silk Michael Mansfield QC — has lost 14 tenants of its 28 tenants. This before and after shot (pictured below) of the set’s website, using the Google cache, illustrates the damage.

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Only 11 tenants and three associate tenants — including Charlotte Proudman, of LinkedIn sexism row fame — remain at the Chancery Lane legal aid set.

Fellow London set Goldsmith Chambers has taken the lion’s share of those bailing out. Some of the departees have already gone public with the news, with former Mansfield man and immigration specialist Reuben Soloman tweeting yesterday:

Back in 2013, Mansfield QC was head of Tooks Chambers when it announced it was winding up operations, citing — at the time — government policies on legal aid. He went on to found Mansfield Chambers in the same year.

Despite the departures, the set insists that it won’t go the way of Tooks, with senior clerk Martin Parker telling Legal Cheek this morning that Mansfield Chambers will “most definitely be continuing” and that its incoming pupils would be unaffected. Parker added:

People come and go. That is the way of the bar at the moment.