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Masterclass Law Lecture with Michael Beloff KC

Come and join the Vice-Chancellor and Dean of Law, Professor Adolfo Paolini, in conversation with Michael Beloff KC.

Michael Beloff KC

Michael Beloff, previously QC, once described as ‘the Bar’s Renaissance Man’, has had a distinguished career as advocate, arbitrator, and judge.

An outsider of mixed Russian Jewish heritage with four immigrant grandparents and immigrant mother, he had an insider’s education as a scholar at Eton and Oxford, with a professional life culminating in his offices as President of Trinity, one of the most famous of the historic Oxford Colleges and Treasurer of Gray’s, one of the four mediaeval Inns of Court. In this candid story he reflects on the development of his vocation through its various staging posts from his childhood to his swan song as barrister after fifty years in practice, highlighting his most important cases, in particular those with a political dimension as well as a quintet of high profile libels.

He uses his personal experience to illuminate the arts of both advocacy and judging to evaluate how the Bar and the law has reformed during his professional lifetime and to predict and assess the likelihood of future changes. Familiarly called ‘the Godfather of Sports Law’, he has had, both as Counsel and Panellist, involvement in some of the major sporting scandals of the age, and gives special insights into the areas where sport and law intersect – doping, corruption, match fixing and transgender participation.

On these issues as well on those born of his university experience such as the Oxford admissions system and freedom of speech on campus, he expresses views which, if sometimes unfashionable, are always honest. His portfolio roles have led to his encounters with many interesting people, from Blair to Bolt, from a two term-President of the USA to the heir apparent to the throne of the UK (and now king), tales of which provide the icing on the cake of this intriguing memoir.

The Hon Michael Beloff KC is a barrister at Blackstone Chambers, a former President of Trinity College Oxford, Treasurer of Gray’s Inn, Senior Ordinary Appeal Judge of the Courts of Appeal of Jersey and Guernsey, and a former (and first) Chairman of the Administrative Law Bar Association. He is Chair of the International Cricket Council Code of Conduct Commission and Disputes Resolution Committee, and of the Ethics Commission of the International Ski Federation. He is a former Chair of the IAAF (now World Athletics) Ethics Commission and Dispute Resolution Tribunal, a former member of the International Appeal Panel of the International Automobile Federation, and, as a member of the Court of Arbitration for 25 years, arbitrated at 5 summer Olympics. He is Editor of Sweet and Maxwell’s International Sports Law Review, Consultant Editor of Halsbury’s Laws on Sports Law, and former President of the British Association of Sport and Law. The third edition of his book Sports Law is in preparation.

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