Lawyers lead the way at the top of London politics as Sadiq Khan appoints Matrix Chambers QC to Deputy Mayor post

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By Katie King on

Matthew Ryder QC takes diversity and social mobility position


Human rights solicitor and London Mayor Sadiq Khan has appointed fellow lawyer Matthew Ryder QC to the top of the capital’s political food chain.

Matrix Chambers barrister Ryder broke the news on Twitter that he’ll be working alongside Khan — who himself had a successful career as a human rights and employment solicitor before becoming an MP — in the quest to ensure social integration, social mobility and community engagement in the capital.

With a successful career as a human rights and criminal law barrister under his belt, Brixton resident Ryder will be begin working in City Hall next month, and Khan is confident he’s picked the right man for the job, commenting:

I am thrilled that Matthew has agreed to join my team at City Hall and to help me find ways of improving the social integration of our city… We have to strengthen the bonds between Londoners of every background and I believe that Matthew is the very best person for this important role.

Ryder seems equally thrilled about his new job title. He said:

I am hugely excited about taking on this role. There is no more important task in a global city like ours than building successful communities where Londoners of every background feel connected with each other.

It is worth noting neither Ryder nor Khan is the first to make the sidestep from law into politics.

Glasgow University law professor Adam Tomkins is currently a Member of the Scottish Parliament and 11KBW barrister Harini Iyengar campaigned to be the Women’s Equality Party’s London mayoral candidate. Keith Vaz, MP for Leicester East, used to be a practising solicitor, while former Prime Ministers Tony Blair and Margaret Thatcher enjoyed careers at the bar before their stints running the country. Interestingly, however, our Justice Secretary Liz Truss does not have a background in law.