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MTYBA & MTSA Black History Month Celebration

Monday 19th of October 2020 17:30


Online via Zoom (joining link will be circulated via email)
This event is a Qualifying Session and is worth 1 point


Equality, Diversity and Inclusion


17:30 - 19:30

Ensure that you have joined before the QS is due to start.

Dress code

Smart Casual
Online registration has ended for this event

Event Details

[Bookings will open at 10:00 on Wednesday 23 September]

The event is run by the Middle Temple Young Barristers Association and Middle Temple Students Association, to celebrate Black History Month.

An introduction will be provided by members of MTYBA and MTSA followed by a Middle Temple welcome provided by Master Elaine Banton. She will be discussing why representation matters, and some of her journey/currently work with the Bar Council Race Working Group & Middle Temple Anti-racism Committee.

Personal testimonies to be provided by the following two encouraging barristers, who have had interesting paths to the bars/are leading positives initiatives currently:

  • Alexander Wilson
  • Abimbola Johnson

The following individuals are/have been involved in interesting projects that trying to remove barriers and will be discuss them:

  • Aaron Mayers – Bridging the Bar
  • Brian Richardson – Black Lives Matter
  • Elisha Lindsay – BSB Race Equality Taskforce

Jael is scheduled to provide a live song performance, allowing attendees sometime to mediate on the educational information they have just heard.


Master Elaine Banton

Master Banton of 7 Bedford Row Chambers specialises in employment, equality and discrimination law. Master Banton deals with multi-strand discrimination matters and advises individuals and public bodies on high-level policy matters. Previously, Treasurer for the Discrimination Law Association, and formerly on the Bar Standards Board’s Complaints Committee, Master Banton advocates for diversity amongst the Bar as Co-chair of the Bar Council’s Equality, Diversity, and Social Mobility Committee and is a Temple Women's Forum Committee member.

Brian Richardson

Brian Richardson was called to the Bar at Inner Temple in 2008. Since then he has built up a strong criminal court defence practice. His early years in practice coincided with the riots of 2011 in the aftermath of the death of Mark Duggan. During that period, he represented a number of people from first appearances to crown court trials. Brian has a particular interest in issues of human rights and social justice. He is also an active supporter of the Justice 4 Grenfell campaign and edited books on school exclusions and race equality.

Abimbola Johnson

Abi’s practices at 25 Bedford Row where she focuses on serious crime, professional discipline, inquests and inquiry work. She is a regular commentator on the criminal justice system and racial discrimination in particular. She has featured in the BBC, Metro, Elle UK, Channel 4 News, Bloomberg and Thomson Reuters. She has also appeared on academic panels and webinars for Cambridge University, the LSE (where her writing features on the LLB undergraduate reading list) and for the Inner Temple where she volunteers as an advocacy trainer. Abi won the 2018 Diversity Legal Awards Rising Star (Chambers) category; was a finalist in the 2018 Black British Business Awards; and has been shortlisted as a future leader in the 2020 Chambers UK Bar Awards.

Aaron Mayers

Aaron Mayers is a pupil barrister at 3PB Chambers, and Deputy Chairman at Bridging the Bar. Prior to commencing pupillage, Aaron worked as a paralegal in numerous commercial litigation teams at firms such as Signature Litigation in London. He also worked as a paralegal at Baker & Partners in Jersey (Channel Islands) where he worked on various offshore and multijurisdictional matters concerning commercial litigation and trusts disputes.

Aaron has a First-Class law degree from the University of Westminster and is a recipient of several scholarships, most notably a Major Exhibition Award from the Inner Temple. As an advocate for personal development, social mobility and equality of opportunity, Aaron sits as Deputy Chairman at Bridging the Bar, a charity which aspires to create a bridge between talented students from non-traditional backgrounds and the skills and experience necessary for a successful career at the Bar.

Alexandra Wilson

Alexandra is a barrister specialising in criminal and family law. In her criminal law practice, she represents a variety of clients charged with serious matters and specialises in young and vulnerable clients. Her family law practice includes private children, public children, domestic abuse and finance cases. Alexandra Wilson has authored her first book, 'In Black and White’, a memoir of ‘a young barrister’s experience of race and class in a broken criminal justice system’. Alexandra’s post regarding being mistaken for a defendant three times in one day went viral and was covered by BBC News & the Guardian, catalysing an apology from court officials.

Elisha Lindsay

Elisha Lindsay is a Bar student and race equality activist. Elisha is in the first mentoring pair of a new scheme undertaken by the BSB’s Race Equality Taskforce. Elisha Lindsay, is mentoring Paul Stanley QC. In September 2020, the BSB Race Equality Taskforce launched a pilot of its reverse mentoring scheme. The Scheme aims to address the barriers to race equality at the Bar, by providing insight into people’s experiences of racism and working to foster anti-racism in the profession. To achieve its aims, the Scheme pairs Bar students, pupil barristers and junior barristers from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic backgrounds as mentors, with senior barristers from White backgrounds as mentees.


Members of other Inns and non-barristers are welcome - click here to book a ticket

Qualifying Session Details

Click here to see details of the QS Requirements and how to be credited with the QS for this session

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Explain the history of black history month.
  2. Identify the barriers and struggles still faced by black people in the legal field.
  3. Describe what positive initiatives are taking place to support improvements, as well as the impact recent global protests have had in many areas. 

Links to the Professional Statement, wider workings of the Bar, administration of justice or a public interest matter

The QS focuses on elements of public interest looking at social justice, and realities of over/under representation within the justice system. 

The QS will align with these elements of the Professional Statement:

  • 1.1 / 1.7
  • 2.3
  • 3.3 / 3.4

Click here to view the BSB's Professional Statement

Data Protection & Photography

Please be aware that photography, audio and video recording may take place at our events. These may be used for promotional purposes by the Inn, including in printed publications, on our website, and on our social media accounts. If you do not wish to have your photograph taken or to have images of you used, please alert the EducationTeam at the start of the event. We are unable to guarantee that you will not be included in the background of photographs that are being taken. Contact: 020 7427 4800,

All personal data that the Inn stores and processes is held in accordance with the Data Protection Act 2018 and the Inn’s Data Protection Policy. You can ask the Inn to stop using your images at any time, or request to see the personal data that the Inn holds on you. For more information please visit the Data Protection page

Times and details for this event are subject to change. Please check this webpage for the most up to date information.