Year of Call 2012
Sian studied Law at the University of York, graduating in 2011. She completed the Bar Professional Training Course at Kaplan Law School in 2012 and was called to the Bar in the same year. Sian joined Chambers following the successful completion of her pupillage, under the supervision of Moira Walsh. She now practises in Family (Children) and Criminal Law.
Siân deals with the full range of private law matters at all Court levels, on a regular basis. She is often instructed in complex hearings such as contested fact finds. For example, Siân was recently instructed to represent the Child through the instructions of a rule 16.4 Guardian in the High Court and subsequently the Court of Appeal (see published judgments below). The case required a thorough understanding of how domestic wardship provisions interact with both the law on child abduction across Member States and applications under the Hague Convention. Siân has successfully represented clients in a number of cases which involve allegations of sexual exploitation, serious domestic violence and religious radicalisation.
Siân has been instructed in a wide range of public law matters, acting on behalf of the respondent parents and the Children through the instructions of the Guardian. Siân has dealt with a variety of complicated hearings such as urgent ICO applications, contested final hearings and applications to discharge care orders. She has dealt with cases involving allegations of sexual, physical and emotional abuse and chronic neglect. Solicitors have praised her for her thorough preparation, often drafting detailed position statements and skeleton arguments. They have also recognised her ability to work with particularly vulnerable or challenging clients, including those with significant learning or mental health difficulties.
Siân is regularly instructed in proceedings involving applications for Non Molestation Orders, Occupation Orders and Domestic Violence Protection Orders, including contested breach hearings.
Siân has extensive Magistrates’ Court trial experience for both the prosecution and the defence. She has appeared in the Crown Court on behalf of the defence to deal with committals for sentence, confiscation proceedings and appeal hearings. She has also conducted trials in the Crown Court on behalf of the Probation Service. Given her background in criminal defence she is keen to expand this area of her practice. Prior to the completion of pupillage Chambers received a reference for Siân from a Crown Court Recorder whom she had appeared before in a successful appeal against sentence, recommending her for tenancy on the basis that ‘her arguments were well marshalled and persuasive…I understand that she is a second six pupil. Her confident performance belied that status. She has a great future at the Bar.’
Prior to commencing pupillage Siân worked for two years as a paralegal in the criminal team at Bindmans LLP in London. She has therefore gained extensive experience of criminal defence work. The magistrates’ court cases she was responsible for preparing were usually complex because the clients had often been arrested at political demonstrations, which engaged Articles 10 and 11 of the ECHR. In addition to this Siân assisted in the preparation of a broad range of Crown Court cases ranging from murder, sexual offences and serious organised crime. Her record for securing acquittals or persuading the Crown to offer no evidence afforded her an excellent reputation and she joined Chambers with an impeccable reference from the firm.
Throughout her studies and during her employment at Bindmans LLP Siân gained substantial experience of public speaking. She enjoyed mooting and in 2011 won both the York University Criminal Law IV Moot (which was judged by the Recorder of York) and also the Southampton University Criminal Law Moot in 2011. For several years Siân also volunteered for a variety of pro bono advocacy charities such as FRU, the National Appropriate Adult Network and the Thames Valley Magistrates’ Scheme.
In the Matter of T (A Child) – available to view on the BAILII here.
Re AB (A Child) – available to view on the BAILII here.