Richard Parkes QC joins the bench

Judicial appointments at 5RB

The Lord Chancellor has today announced the appointment of Richard Parkes QC to the circuit bench, with effect from 17th November.

Richard was called to the Bar by Gray’s Inn in 1977 and joined what is now 5RB in January 1979. A bencher of Gray’s Inn, he has been a Recorder since 2000, chairs Mental Health Review Tribunals (Restricted Patients Panel), took silk in 2003 and was appointed a Deputy High Court Judge in 2007.

For many years a contributing editor of Gatley on Libel & Slander and of Civil Procedure (The White Book), Richard recently took up the joint general editorship of Gatley and joint editorship of the Entertainment and Media Law Reports. Consistently ranked as a leader in his field, the most recent Chambers & Partners review praised his “splendid knowledge of libel law and his dedication to the client”.

Joint Head of 5RB and current Chairman of the Bar Council, Desmond Browne QC said:

“This is a bitter-sweet moment for 5RB. Naturally we are delighted that the Judicial Appointments Commission should have recognised the qualities that have been apparent to all Richard’s many clients for so long. But for both clerks and barristers alike, it is very sad to be losing a colleague held in such universally high regard after so many years. We wish him every success in his career on the bench.”

Richard, who has been assigned to the South Eastern Circuit and will be based at Reading Crown Court, said:

“I am very sorry to be leaving my friends and colleagues in the media field, but I have greatly enjoyed my part-time judicial work, and I wanted a new challenge. I am lucky to be carrying on with my work on Gatley and the EMLR, so there is no chance that I will lose touch with what is happening in this fascinating area of law.”

Separately, 5RB‘s Mark Warby QC and Matthew Nicklin have also been appointed as Recorders in the Crown Court. Mark Warby QC has been assigned to the Midlands Circuit and Matthew Nicklin to the South Eastern Circuit. They will be sitting as part-time judges for up to 5 weeks each year.