The Dame Frances Patterson Human Rights Mooting Competition 2018

The inaugural final of the competition took place on the 3 May 2018 at Leicester Law School.
The Dame Frances Patterson Human Rights Mooting Competition 2018

Graham Nicholson, Shree Ziradkar, Alexander Cotton, Samuel Ford, Erin Vandzura and John Hunter

The competition was established and sponsored by King’s Chambers to celebrate the contribution of Dame Frances Patterson to the law. Dame Frances was a graduate of Leicester University who enjoyed a distinguished career at the Bar, specialising in planning, environmental and public law. She became a QC in 1998, Head of King's Chambers in Leeds and Manchester in 2014, was appointed to the Law Commission in 2010 and became a High Court Judge in 2013. She died 2016.

The competition was judged by John Hunter, a barrister from King’s Chambers, and by Graham Nicholson, Dame Frances’ husband and alumnus of the University. The standard of advocacy displayed by the finalists, who had to argue points of law in relation to the Human Rights Act 1998 and the wearing of the Niqab in court by a complainant in a criminal trial, was very high, but the team for the Appellants, Samuel Ford and Erin Vandzura, won by a narrow margin. Congratulations are due to the winners and to the runners-up, Alexander Cotton and Shree Ziradkar.

Many thanks are due to King’s Chambers for enabling Leicester Law School to create and run this new competition and for their sponsorship. The competition provides both an opportunity to remember one of the University’s most distinguished alumna, but will also provide students with an excellent opportunity to apply their knowledge of human rights’ law and to enhance their advocacy skills. For the finalists, the competition provided them with practical insight as to what it is like to be an advocate in court, being grilled by an experienced judge about the finer points of their argument, which will hold them in good stead in their future careers!

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