Fountain Court hosted two events in Singapore in the week of 17 September: a Panel Discussion, followed by the annual Christopher Bathurst Prize Reception.
The Panel Discussion was titled ‘The Effects of Illegality in Civil Law Claims’, the first time Chambers had held such an event in Singapore, on this occasion in the beautiful surroundings of a packed Chamber at The Arts House. Welcome remarks were given by Ms Serene Wee, Chief Executive of the Singapore Academy of Law. The discussion was moderated by Stephen Moriarty QC (Head of Chambers). The speakers were Mr Francis Xavier SC of Rajah & Tann, Dr Sandra Booysen of the National University of Singapore, and Akhil Shah QC and Kanaga Dharmananda SC of Fountain Court Chambers.
The panel discussed competing approaches to the effect of illegality in civil law claims in different jurisdictions, with a view to assessing the merits of the various approaches. The discussion also picked up on the issues raised by this year’s Christopher Bathurst Prize problem.
It is the ninth year that Chambers has awarded the prize in memory of the late Christopher Bathurst QC (Viscount Bledisloe), who as a member of Fountain Court developed a substantial practice in Southeast Asia, particularly Singapore, whilst still being a leading practitioner at the Commercial Bar in London and serving as Head of Chambers between 1989-1994. The prize was again kindly supported by the Singapore Academy of Law.
The Reception was held at Empress at the Asian Civilisation Museum and the guests included many old and new friends of Fountain Court, spanning the legal profession in Singapore and the Pan-Asia region. The delegation from Chambers included Stephen Moriarty QC, Leigh-Ann Mulcahy QC, Akhil Shah QC, Anneliese Day QC, Nik Yeo, Andrew Pullen, Alexander Milner, Niamh Cleary, Daniel Carall-Green, Alex Taylor (Senior Clerk) and Caroline McConnon (Practice Manager, Asia). They were joined by three of its door tenants, Kanaga Dharmananda SC, Gaurav Pachnanda SA and Professor Benjamin Hughes.
Participants were asked to submit a piece of written legal advice of not more than 3,500 words. Chambers were delighted to award the winning prize to Mr Tan Ee Kuan, a Justices’ Law Clerk at the Supreme Court of Singapore. The winning advice can be found here, along with the competition question here.
The prize for the winner is an all-expense-paid two-week internship at Fountain Court Chambers in London.
Entrants were judged on a variety of criteria, namely, originality, critical analysis, succinctness, clarity, persuasiveness and pragmatism. The judges were Michael Brindle QC, former Head of Chambers and a door tenant at Fountain Court, Francis Xavier SC and Dr Sandra Booysen.