Attorney General visits government lawyers in Leeds

The Rt Hon Victoria Prentis KC MP visited the Government Legal Department’s (GLD) Leeds office on Friday 27 January 2023 to meet with civil servants, including government lawyers.

The Attorney General was joined by Elizabeth Hambley, Director General of GLD’s Commercial with Trade and International directorate and champion of the Leeds office.

GLD is staffed with nearly 3,000 colleagues and over 2,500 lawyers, 172 of whom are based in Leeds – up from 112 in 2021.

Government lawyers work on some of the most complex and varied legal issues of the day, ranging from education and transportation to health.

GLD is committed to providing job opportunities and contributing to legal excellence outside of Westminster, recently announcing the acquisition of office space in HMRC’s Manchester office.

Some of the legal teams that have a strong presence in Leeds include the Commercial Law Group, Employment Group and Litigation.

The Commercial Law Group provides specialist commercial legal services to the majority of government departments, working closely with commercial and policy colleagues to protect and promote the interests of government when delivering complex public procurements and associated infrastructure and service delivery contracts.

Attorney General Victoria Prentis said:

I was so impressed by the incredible legal work taking place in Leeds, where I was able to thank government lawyers for their commitment to helping fulfill the government’s ambitious legislative agenda.

As a former government lawyer for 17 years, I know first-hand the hard work, camaraderie, and dedication of government lawyers.

Elizabeth Hambley, Director General of GLD’s Commercial with Trade and International directorate said:

I was delighted to welcome the Attorney General to the Government Legal Department in Leeds. We showcased the expert litigation, commercial, advisory and employment law services we deliver from Leeds in collaboration with colleagues across the department. The Attorney is committed to helping us offer great legal careers in Government and her visit today was warmly received.

We are growing our national presence beyond London, with established bases in Bristol and Leeds, and a new, just announced, expansion to Salford. I am delighted we can be part of a strong and long-established legal market in Leeds and look forward to our continued growth.

The Attorney General also visited the University of Leeds during her trip, where she spoke to students about the Government Legal Profession’s Legal Trainee Scheme and the exciting work government lawyers can be involved in.

Justinia Lewis, the Government Legal Department’s Commercial Law Director, also joined the visit and outlined routes to become a government lawyer, including GLD’s Legal Trainee Scheme.

Attorney General Victoria Prentis said:

It was wonderful to meet students at the University of Leeds interested in pursuing a career in law. I am passionate about promoting careers in government law to the future generation of lawyers and encouraging them to look at the Government Legal Profession’s Legal Trainee Scheme.

Alex Batesmith from The University of Leeds, School of Law said:

The School of Law at the University of Leeds was delighted to welcome the Attorney General to talk about her role as Chief Legal Adviser to the Crown. Our students benefit from engaging with senior legal professionals in this way, not only inspiring them to consider a tremendous career in law, but also to hear first-hand how the law functions within society and, in the case of the GLD, at the heart of government.

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