The Hearing

The Hearing – A legal podcast from Thomson Reuters provides unprecedented access to the most interesting people and topics in and around the legal profession. Hosted by lawyer Kevin Poulter, The Hearing welcomes famous, familiar and unsung personalities to sit down and discuss the events and stories that have shaped their lives and careers.

Episode Twelve – Charlotte Proudman

Before the #MeToo movement, publicly speaking out against sexual harassment was a much riskier exercise. Calling out behaviour could find you isolated and even alienated in certain industries, both professionally and personally. Despite these risks, that's exactly what our latest guest did – challenging a senior solicitor over a now infamous message he sent via LinkedIn.

In episode 12 of The Hearing, barrister and self-proclaimed feminist Charlotte Proudman sits down with Kevin to speak about how she dealt with her face being splashed across the front pages, being trolled by keyboard warriors and even being labelled a 'feminazi'. Charlotte and Kevin also cover the feminist movement, gender parity, women's only events, her 'inspiration' Catharine MacKinnon, and the difficult subject of disclosure around rape cases.

Episode Eleven – Jonathan Goldberg QC

He's a controversial, no holds barred, opinionated, orator who defends the guilty and loves a good cup of Yorkshire tea. No, we're not talking about Kevin.

In The Hearing's series 2 opener, Jonathan Goldberg QC invites us into a world of colourful characters and rogues. Not one to be backward about coming forward, Jonathan lets rip on the state of the "groaning and creaking criminal justice system", the incompetence of solicitors, and the lavish and unnecessary spending on champagne and lunches at the Bar.

With more stories than a skyscraper, Jonathan rattles through everything from Hillsborough, Royal Marine A and defending "the charming" Charlie Kray. It's time to meet the man who takes on the task of defending the guilty. "I'm just a mouthpiece. I'm not the judge and jury, I'm the advocate." He's certainly no wallflower.

Get your ears around this today.

As you might expect, this episode contains language that some may find inappropriate.

Episode Ten – Karen Jackson

Karen Jackson is an inspirational lover of problem-solving, passionate for French and a self-styled protector of the underdog. In this episode Kevin meets the founder of didlaw, one of the UK's leading disability discrimination practices.

A former City trader, Karen talks candidly about the roundabout route she took into law and how a heart transplant helped guide her to a new path – setting up her own practice that's focused on challenging mental health, disability and illness discrimination.

Episode Nine – Dean Strang

Fans of the hugely popular Netflix documentary Making a Murderer will know this week's guest. Dean Strang was one of the defence lawyers for Steven Avery. Dean was an eloquent voice of reason throughout the series, which led to him being labelled an international sex symbol.

A modest Dean tells Kevin how he first got involved in the Avery case, and how he's dealt with the wave of media and public attention ever since. They also discuss Dean's views on the US criminal justice system, his cartoonist aspirations, and whether Dean should move to the UK to become a judge.

Episode Eight – Ayesha Vardag

The 'Diva of Divorce', Ayesha Vardag, sits down with Kevin in the luxurious Vardags offices in St. Paul's, London. They discuss Georgian mahogany, her high net-worth clientele and the Var-Bot – Ayesha's personal office robot that'll be familiar to fans of The Good Wife.

During her divorce, Ayesha had an Erin Brockovich-esque transition from commercial to family law, which ultimately led to her being offered a job by the lawyer who managed her case. This episode looks at the impact Ayesha's cases and campaigning have had on family law reform, and it offers an exciting behind-the-scenes look at one of the UK's fastest growing law firms.

Episode Seven - Rt. Hon. Kenneth Clark

In this episode, Tory MP Ken Clarke reveals why he has occasionally dressed up in women’s underwear. The former Lord Chancellor and current Father of the House of Commons also tells Kevin what he thinks of his new-found fans – drawn by his outspoken views on Brexit.

This episode won't disappoint.  The pair also discuss: pressure to modify Ken's Nottinghamshire accent; attending Rushcliffe beauty parades for column inches; death threats; selfies; and Trump (the president, not the inflatable baby).

Episode Six - Yasmin Sheikh

In this episode Kevin is joined by Yasmin Sheikh. Yasmin is the founder of Diverse Matters, vice-chair of the Law Society’s Lawyers with Disabilities Division, consultant, coach, actress, comedian and TEDx speaker. 

During their conversation, Yasmin talks about her experience of being thrown into the world of disability overnight and the daily challenges she faces. Yasmin also discusses the impactful work she's doing with law firms, advising about disability related issues in an effort to improve communication, visibility and opportunities.


Episode Five - Sir Rupert Jackson

In this episode Kevin is joined by Sir Rupert Jackson, Barrister, Lord Justice of Appeal and legal reformer.

As well as his infamous reform of civil litigation costs, Rupert has authored some of the industry's leading texts during his 50 year career. Now, back at the bar, he talks through the fresh challenges facing lawyers and discusses his new role as a Justice in the AIFC Court and International Arbitration Centre in Kazakhstan.

Episode Four – Robin White

In this episode Kevin is joined by barrister Robin White.  Robin was the first barrister to transition from male to female while in practice at the employment and discrimination bar.  They chat about Robin's early life and career, and how dealing with personal discrimination in her late twenties became a catalyst for a career change into law. 

Now specialising in transgender rights, Robin offers a candid insight into her experience.  She discusses the current issues that surround gender-transformation, as well as general workplace and social discrimination in Britain today.

Episode Three - Lord Michael Michael Howard of Lympne

In this episode Kevin is joined by Lord Michael Howard of Lympe. Although best known for his time as a Government Minister and as a former leader of the Tories, Michael’s life before Westminster involved a distinguished career at the Bar. As a vocal supporter of the 'Leave Means Leave' campaign, Michael's views on Brexit are crystal-clear but we also hear he has some personal regret over one of his most controversial ministerial decisions.

Episode Two - Joe Raczynski

In this episode Kevin is joined by 'futurist' Joe Raczynski (@joerazz). You'll hear Joe explain what his job actually is and why we should all pay attention to cyber security. As an expert in legal technology and AI, we also explore the rise of blockchain and crypto currencies, the challenges for driverless cars and the future of the robot lawyer.

Episode One – Dame Fiona Woolf

In the inaugural episode of The Hearing – a legal podcast from Thomson Reuters, Kevin is joined by Dame Fiona Woolf. During their conversation they reflect on Fiona’s fascinating career, including her time as president of the Law Society, and as Lord Mayor of London. Kevin and Fiona also chat about Fiona’s ongoing work in promoting diversity and inclusion with the Power of Diversity programme. Listen out for Dame Fiona’s incredible anecdote on how Carrie Morrison became the first female to be put on the roll.

About Us

For over 200 years Thomson Reuters has been advancing the art and science of law. Whether through the most up-to-date legal content, driving innovative legal technology, or ground-breaking thought leadership, Thomson Reuters provides legal professionals across the world with the confidence to act. Find out more at legal-solutions.co.uk.


Listen to The Hearing

About Kevin

The Hearing podcast is hosted by British lawyer Kevin Poulter (@kevinpoulter). Kevin is a partner in the London office of national law firm Freeths, advising corporate and employee clients on a broad range of employment matters. Kevin regularly appears in the press and broadcast media and is a regular feature on a number of television and radio shows.