About The Bournemouth & District Law Society

The Bournemouth and District Law Society has been active in the Bournemouth and surrounding area since it was first established in 1893. Membership of the society is open to qualified and trainee Solicitors and the society offers a wide ranging programme of events to support our members. We have an extensive lecture programme and also a series of social events during the course of the year designed to enable solicitors to network and offer each other mutual support.

The society is run by its General Committee and led by its elected President who serves a one year term starting from the Society's Annual General Meeting which is normally held in April of each year. The President is supported by a Vice President and a Junior Vice President and by an Honorary Secretary and Honorary Treasurer. The society has an office in Bournemouth staffed by two part time employed members of staff who run the day to day events of the Society.

The Society's events are organised on an annual basis and change from year to year. To give a flavour of the Society's activities the main annual events are as follows:-

1. Lecture Series

The Society runs an extensive lecture series on legal topics and reference is made to the lecture programme on this web site showing our forthcoming lectures. Membership of the society entitles delegates to a discount on the lecture fee.

2. Newsletter

The Society publishes a newsletter to all of its members which is produced every other month giving news of society events, firm news and other matters of importance and interest. Copies of recent news letters can be seen on this web site.

3. European Law Conference

Each year the Society holds a four day conference abroad usually in a European capital. Recent conferences have taken place in Kiev in the Ukraine, in Rome, Athens and Malta. The conference is open to members of the Society and is usually strongly supported and this year sold out early in the year.

4. Annual Dinner

The Society holds an annual dinner in March of each year and recently this has been at the Carlton Hotel and in 2016 moves to the new Hilton Hotel. The dinner is an exclusive professional event and is open to solicitors, legal executives, notaries, trainee solicitors, barristers and the judiciary only. Speeches are made by the President and an invited speaker. It is an occasion for members of the society to meet and socialise and for the President to entertain invited guests from the Judicaiary and other Southern Law Societies

5. Annual Lunch

Each year in February the Society has its annual lunch which in recent years has been held at the Pavilion. A high profile speaker is normally invited and firms are encouraged to bring guests including professional contacts and clients. In recent years the event has attracted over 380 guests.

6. President's Social Events

Each year the President of the Society also organises more informal social events. They can take a variety of forms at the President's discretion and in recent years this has included a boat trip in Poole Harbour to see the fireworks, a jazz evening, quiz night and wine tasting.

7. Membership of the Southern Area Association of Law Societies

 Bournemouth and District Law Society is an active member of SAALS which is a grouping of a number of Law Societies covering the central southern area and which meets at least twice a year to discuss policy matters.

8. The Law Society, London

Although independent of the national Law Society based in London, the Bournemouth and District Law Society works in close contact with them. The society, together with the Dorset Law Society, have a Council member who represents their views in Chancery Lane on matters of national interest. Our current Council member, Tim O'Sullivan, is a former Treasurer of The Law Society and chair of its Management Boards and is active in supporting our views. There are frequent other connections with the main Law Society.

9. Junior Lawyers Division

The Bournemouth and District Law Society was proud to be the first local Law Society in the country to set up a Junior Lawyers' Group in January 2008 by amalgamating its previously very active Young Solicitors and Trainee Solicitors Groups. The Society actively encourages the work of the Junior Lawyers Group in assisting and representing students coming in to the law, trainee solicitors undertaking their contracts with local firms and newly qualified solicitors. The Junior Lawyers Group organise a series of social events of their own including a well established and well supported Annual Ball as well as regular informal events in the evenings to both educate and support members coming in to the profession.

10. Property Group

The Society has a Property and Probate Group that monitors and considers developments in this area of law.  The Society was active in developing in a Leasehold Questionnaire which is regularly updated and it is now being used by other local Societies. In addition, the Society maintains a series of other conveyancing related documents including a local restrictive covenants register.

11. Private Client Group

The Society has a Private Client Group that monitors and considers developments in this area of law.

12. Litigation Group

There is a Litigation Committee which similarly monitors and assists matters relating to litigation aspects. From time to time they are involved in making submissions as to charge rates and being active in monitoring the position in respect of the Criminal Duty Solicitor Rota.

13. Careers and Public Relations

The Society ensures that where possible members attend and represent solicitors at careers meetings at schools and elsewhere.

14. Press Relations

The Society's Press Officer has an active role in arranging press coverage when needed and monitoring the press coverage that occurs.

15. Parliamentary Liaison officers

One of the societies functions is to monitor development in the law and legal services and when appropriate to bring some influence to ensure that changes are well informed and we a have a number of members who act as parliamentary liaison officers who assist in this role.

16. Golf Section

The Society has a Golf Section that organises periodical matches in the spring and autumn of each year.

17. Cricket Team

The Society runs an active cricket team (Lex X1) with a good turn out each week. The team has been active now for many years with varying fortunes.

18. Football

An annual inter firm football competition is well supported and hard fought. The Society is looking at setting up a netball team.

19. Citizens Advice Bureaux

The Society supports the local Citizens Advice Bureaux in Bournemouth, Poole , Christchurch and New Milton and provides a representative for each of the Management Committees.

20. Legal Medical Dinner

Each year the Society has a very successful Legal Medical Dinner with the Doctors which is usually sold out quickly.

21. General Committee

The society is controlled by it's General Committee which meets every other month and is made up of the officers of the society and elected committee members who serve a three year term. It's agenda covers a wide range of matters from consider professional difficulties to managing current projects.

The lists of the events and the work of the Society could continue and the above is given to show the variety of activities that the Society undertakes, some of which are open only to our members and others of which are provided at a discounted cost to members.

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