President's Review - Nigel Lyons

I hope you have all enjoyed your summer holidays. All in all the weather in the south west was very good.


I would be grateful if you could ensure you get your nominations to us for the 2020 Devon and Somerset Legal Awards and raise the profile of the solicitors’ profession. Grow Marketing Group is again working with us to help to give the associated firms and individuals the significant public exposure they deserve. They help us to put together an incredible night in celebration of the legal profession and to showcase the achievements and successes within it. As you will recall the 2020 Annual Dinner is being held at Exeter Cathedral, on the 30th April when we will celebrate and recognise the achievements of those in the legal profession. Don't miss this dazzling occasion. 


You will no doubt have seen that we have two new Council members for the South West and Gwent Constituency that we are a part of. Congratulations to Kathryn King and Scott Bowen on their elections. We look forward to receiving their regular updates on Law Society Council matters. I know from my conversations with Kathryn and Scott at our recent Association of South Western Law Societies (ASWLS) AGM that they plan to alternate their attendance at our DASLS meetings to keep you fully informed. Both Kathryn and Scott are to be DASLS ‘interviewees’ of the month in the near future.


Following the ASWLS theme many congratulations to Mel Bevan-Evans for her election as President of ASWLS for the forthcoming year.


Also, a well done to our very own Stephen Mahoney who has recently completed his ASWLS year in office. 


Photo of them together airing the ASWLS brand new medal of office.


I must say a big thank you and express this Society’s very best wishes to Rod Mole for over a decade’s commitment as our Council Member at Chancery Lane. We have in fact been lucky enough to have had 13 years of news from the big smoke delivered to us from Rod.  We all wish you well Rod and as a Past President and Lifetime Member I know you will maintain close links to DASLS in the future. So to a lifelong French wine drinking oenophile it is “au revoir Rod” from Monique and all your friends at DASLS …..but it’s not goodbye.


Following my usual theme (and taking Scott Bowen’s lead as a legal aid criminal practitioner) can I encourage you all to support The Law Society's Criminal Justice Campaign Focus groups for lawyers working in criminal law. If you work within the criminal law fields and are potentially willing to attend a Law Society focus group please take part in the below survey. See the link -


We have our In-House Lawyers Conference coming up in the autumn and I would encourage you all to get involved. Please put the 17th October in your diary and we look forward to seeing you. The Speakers are to be: Juliet Oliver SRA General Counsel, Rav Hothi Head of Relationship Management - Midlands & Southwest, The Law Society, Phil Sampson Sampson Hall, Alex Fetcher Nomanton Chambers, Kate Gardner Clarke Willmott.


Coming up we also have our Joint Professional Networking Group meeting in Exeter on the 19th November for the Bank of England Briefing. That almost made me mention the.. “B” ..word. I wish you a pain free Brexit when and if it occurs in October. I am sure the Roscoff Ferry will continue to be sailing from Plymouth when I write to you later in the year.


On a personal note I am still at the gym three times a week as a round of dinners could otherwise take its toll on me if I didn’t maintain my regular exercise. I am looking forward to travelling to see colleagues at a number of events in the near future as we head into darker evenings of the autumn. Fear not it will soon be Christmas.


Nigel Lyons

DASLS President 2019-2020

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