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’I am delighted at the announcement of the new silks. I congratulate each one of them. The selection process is a rigorous and demanding one. We collect confidential assessments from judges, fellow advocates and professional clients, who give freely of their time to provide evidence about an applicant’s demonstration of the competencies. The best applicants are then interviewed by two members of the Panel, following which the whole Panel discuss all the evidence on each applicant. We remain concerned that the number of female applicants remains stubbornly low, but I am pleased that of those women who did apply, 58% were successful. BAME applicants had exactly the same success rate (42%) as other applicants.The new silks will be sworn in on 16 February. The independent Queen's Counsel Selection Panel expects to invite applications for the 2015-16 competition in the second half of February, with a closing date in very early April. The confirmed dates will be announced as soon as possible.
Each year, the Panel has the difficult task of identifying the truly excellent advocates. I am confident that those appointed today truly deserve to be Queen’s Counsel. Unsuccessful applicants will of course be very disappointed. But I must stress that almost all of those who are unsuccessful are nevertheless highly respected and effective advocates.'
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