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A Lifetime for Justice Hosted by Alex Raikes

Festival of Ideas
Lady Hale. Leroy Logan, Alex Raikes

Great Hall, Wills Memorial Building  |  £5 - £50

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‘Every meaningful step towards a fairer legal system, towards improved human rights, has been pre-empted by ordinary citizens with fire in their bellies. People who have been unwavering and persistent and relentless in their quest for a fairer society. Often fuelled by their own experiences of brutal injustice, these are the people who have pledged their life to justice. They have given a lifetime for justice.’

Alex Raikes, the High Sheriff of the County and City of Bristol

This event, organised and hosted by Alex Raikes, brings to life the breadth and depth of the legal and criminal justice system – and explores what needs to be done to increase diversity within it.

Thought-provoking and trailblazing, the event includes former President of the Supreme Court (and the first woman President) Baroness Hale and Dr Leroy Logan, one of the UK’s most highly decorated Black police officers who also set up the Black Police Association. They are joined by I. Stephanie Boyce, the sixth female and the first Black President of the Law Society of England and Wales, who will be interviewed by Anjali Gohil, Chair of BarNone and a criminal barrister at Guildhall Chambers, Bristol. Clive Stafford Smith, a British attorney who specialises in the area of civil rights and campaigning against the death penalty in the US completes the line-up of speakers.

The evening will be compèred by Sherrie Eugene-Hart with a special welcome from new Vice-Chancellor and President of the University of Bristol Professor Evelyn Welch. Mayor Marvin Rees and the High Sherriff will close the event.

There will be an opportunity for networking and to meet organisations involved in the criminal and civil justice sector.

17:30 18:30 Reception drinks and showcase of agencies and organisations involved in the criminal and civil justice sector.
18:30 – 21:15 Presentations and hosted conversations with featured speakers.
There will be an interval, with drinks and canapés.
21:15 – 21:45 Showcase and networking.

Tickets range from £5-£50. Free bursary tickets will be made available. Proceeds from the event will go to the High Sheriff’s charity, BYCA – Bristol Youth and Community Action. Full ticketing information below.

This event will be BSL interpreted.

Full Programme

Download to find out more about the evening, the speakers and the role of the High Sherrif.

Presented in partnership with

This event is supported by Avon and Somerset Police Constabulary and the Police and Crime Commissioner, People and Cities and UWE.

Community partners: VWV, Clifton College, Burges Salmon, BusinessWest

Lady Hale credit Mat Smith Photography

Brenda Hale, Rt Hon the Baroness Hale of Richmond DBE, studied Law at Girton College, Cambridge. She was called to the Bar in 1969 and spent almost twenty years in academia whilst also practising as a barrister for a short time. In 1984, Lady Hale became the first woman and the youngest person to be appointed to the Law Commission, where she oversaw critical reforms in family law and mental disability law. She also began sitting as a part time judge, was appointed a QC in 1989, and became a full time judge in the Family Division of the High Court of England and Wales in 1994. She was the first and only woman to become a Lord of Appeal in Ordinary, joining the appellate committee of the House of Lords in 2004, when it was still the top court for the whole United Kingdom. She was the first woman to serve on the newly created Supreme Court, was appointed Deputy President in 2013, and its President from 2017 to 2020.

Image credit Mat Smith Photography

Bristol-born Sherrie Eugene-Hart is an award-winning broadcaster and was the first Black woman in the UK to qualify as a British Sign Language Interpreter, going on to become the anchor woman for the news programme at HTV West. Her involvement in TV has spanned over 30 years, from reporting, presenting and producing to devising and developing programmes for mainstream broadcast TV.

Leroy Logan

Leroy Logan MBE is one of UK’s most highly decorated and well-known black police officers. A highly respected and well-regarded commentator on policing and wider social justice issues, he believes that there is still much work to do in creating a more equitable and fair criminal justice system. Leroy’s early career was recently depicted in Red, White and Blue, the BAFTA and Golden Globe-winning episode of director Sir Steve McQueen’s acclaimed Small Axe series. Since his retirement, Leroy has published his autobiography, Closing Ranks: My Life as a Cop and continues to use his decades of experience to give insightful, critical analysis on current events surrounding the UK justice system. As the founding member and past Chair of both the Met and National Black Police Association (BPA), he also co- founded Voyage Youth a citizen’s focus of the BPA. As a social justice charity it aims to empower marginalised young black people and provide them with the self-awareness and motivation to transform themselves and their communities. In January 2022 Leroy was appointed Chair of Transition to Adulthood (T2A), the justice arm of the Barrow Cadbury Trust.

Image credit: Rich Barr

Alex Raikes was the first caseworker at Stand Against Racism & Inequality (SARI), a leading regional hate crime charity. She is now their Strategic Director and continues to be a driving force in the city in tackling racism and hate crime. She was awarded an MBE in 2009 for her contribution to race relations, made an Honorary Doctor of Laws by UWE Bristol in 2019, became a Deputy Lieutenant of Bristol in July 2020 and was High Sheriff of Bristol 2022-2023.

Marvin Rees

Marvin Rees is the elected Mayor of Bristol. He entered the political world having graduated from Operation Black Vote and Labour Future Candidate programmes.

Clive Stafford Smith is a British attorney specialising in human rights, death penalty cases and other civil rights issues in the United States. During his career, he has represented more than 300 prisoners facing the death penalty in the southern states of the US, all of whom he worked with on a pro bono basis, never having been paid by a client. He has also represented over 80 detainees held at the Guantanemo Bay detention camp.

In the US, he helped found the Louisiana Capital Assistance Center in New Orleans and was a founding board member of the Gulf Region Advocacy Center in Houston, Texas. Since returning to the UK, he has co-founded Reprieve, a human rights non-profit organisation. In 2005 he received the Gandhi International Peace Award.

I. Stephanie Boyce is a British solicitor and the former president of the Law Society, a position she held from March 2021 to October 2022 as the sixth female and first Black office holder.

As well as working in corporate governance and commercial, civil and public law, she is a member of the Joint Tribunal Service and of HM Treasury and the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy-commissioned independent taskforce to boost socioeconomic diversity at senior levels in UK financial and professional services.

Anjali Gohil is a criminal barrister with Guildhall Chambers in Bristol and chair of BarNone, a group formed to encourage more diversity at the Bar in Southwest England and welcome those from under-represented backgrounds to apply to the Western Circuit.

Booking Information

Your ticket admits you to the entire evening and includes drinks and canapés.

Standard Ticket £40: this ticket contributes to the event costs, including reception drinks, canapés and includes a donation to BYCA.

Give A Ticket Forward £50: this ticket supports someone who could not otherwise afford to attend the event, plus an additional donation to BYCA. PLEASE NOTE this ticket does not admit the purchaser to the event. An additional ticket needs to be bought to attend yourself.

Concession Ticket £15: applies to Full Time Students, Job Seekers Allowance, Incapacity Benefit claimants, over 60s and disabled people. This ticket contributes to the event costs.

Student Early Bird Ticket £5: this ticket is for students at University of Bristol, UWE, BPP and The University of Law. Available until 15/10/22. PLEASE NOTE you may be asked to show proof of your enrolment, e.g. NUS card

Bursary Ticket £0: Please get in touch to apply.

Booking is managed by Bristol Ideas on behalf of Alex Raikes. Proceeds from the event will go to the High Sheriff’s charity, BYCA – Bristol Youth and Community Action.

Online ticket booking is via Eventbrite. Please note that Eventbrite is a third-party service that is not owned or managed by Bristol Ideas. Please review Eventbrite’s terms and conditions and Privacy Policy as we do not accept any responsibility or liability for the policies. You can read Bristol Ideas’ Privacy policy here.

Full Terms and Conditions here.


  • This event will be BSL interpreted.
  • The Great Hall in the Wills Memorial Building has an induction loop system.
  • There is level access via double doors to the left of the main entrance and a lift to the Great Hall and Reception Room.
  • There are accessible toilets for public use on the ground floor.
  • Guide and assistance dogs are welcome.
  • There is free disabled on-street parking available on University Road.
  • More information here.

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