A very warm welcome to Crucible.

27 October 2020

May I offer you a very warm welcome to Crucible and our new website.

Crucible is a new barristers’ chambers and we will, metaphorically at least at the moment, open our doors on 2 November.

‘A Tradition of excellence, forged for the modern world’

Crucible was born in the height of the pandemic when our former chambers made the decision to sell its large, old and underused building. The changes in the way we work and where we work is perhaps best illustrated by the transition to digital working. This, coupled with the demands which the pandemic has placed upon us, has perhaps irreversibly changed our future working lives.

But what about Barristers’ chambers? Have they adapted to this new future?

Against the backdrop of our old chambers being in an oversized underutilised building, we started to discuss how we could create a new chambers fit for the future, which has learned from the lessons of the past and specifically the last months. We wanted to create a chambers that was not going to continue in the old ways but one that could both maintain our traditions, and embrace modern life at the Bar whilst meeting the needs of our clients. A chambers born out of the pandemic that reflected the need for a new way of working. This was how we forged ‘Crucible’ – where the very name was chosen to show that something good can come out of a severe trial. And, as trial advocates where we always aim to deliver favourable outcomes for our clients, it was clearly an appropriate name.

Crucible has certain core elements in its formation.

  • First and foremost, we promise it will always be about people and relationships. The relationships we forge with you and the quality and responsive services we deliver to you, our clients.
  • Our members are leaders and respected experts in their fields. Their reputation and ability speaks for itself but is consistently echoed in the legal directories. We have a number of highly ranked individuals. And whether it is last year’s Legal 500 Crime Junior of the Year 2020 Leila Gaskin, our ‘up and coming star’ in Clea Topolski (Chambers & Partners 2021 Crime) or our nominated “Rising Star – Barrister of the Year” at the Women in Law Awards 2020, Libby Anderson, the quality of our barristers throughout Crucible speaks for itself.    
  • As a modern progressive set, we remain adaptable and agile, a set fit for the future. A hallmark of the past was a large unadaptable building. At present we have chosen not to take significant property in the centre of London. We have a registered address and a location to work in, as and when we need it, or when you would like to see us in conference. At present, the ability to switch our footprint on and off reflects our agility and the new wider world of business that we will live in as we emerge from the pandemic.
  • As circumstances change, so will we. We are not and will not be any entirely virtual set – we will use premises which are proportionate to our and our clients’ needs so that we can deliver our services to you.
  • We have invested in technology. Our robust and entirely cloud based systems, whether that is our email, video facilities, diary management or our telephone systems all mean that we can work anywhere and remain available to one another, and to you throughout, even at a time of pandemic.
  • We are very proud that as a group of individuals we reflect the modern world we serve. For example, 57% of our members are women. Social mobility, and social responsibility will be at the heart of Crucible. We will look to nurture talented advocates of the future. 

I am really excited for Crucible’s future. I cannot express how proud I am that so many talented barristers have come together to form Crucible with our shared vision of how a modern set of chambers should function and what it should offer. I know that all of us look forward to working with you. As advocates, and advisers, we promise that we will deliver a responsive service, expertise, and excellence.

Best wishes, and stay safe,


Neil Hawes QC
Head of Crucible Law 

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Neil Hawes KC.