Preliminary Hearing, 11th – 12th February 2021
We prevailed. The hearing went very well indeed.
Stonewall and Garden Court Chambers argued that my case against them had no reasonable prospects of success and should be struck out. They failed. They argued that I should pay a deposit order on the same grounds. They failed. They argued that I should not be permitted to amend my claim to tidy up the legal basis for it. They failed.
Far from there being no reasonable prospects, as both Stonewall and Garden Court argued, the learned judge found that I have a good arguable case with more than reasonable prospects of success.
Every aspect of my case proceeds to a trial in June (1-10 June 2021).
The strikeout applications against me actually turned out to strengthen my case, and some elements of the case that we had expected to have to wait until trial to resolve were in fact resolved in our favour this week.
My barrister Ben Cooper QC was brilliant. He stood in for my barrister, Ben Collins QC because he was required in the High Court. For Ben Cooper QC to have got to grips with the case as well as he did and then deliver the advocacy that he did with such skill is a testament to his brilliance and is in the best traditions of the bar. He was outstanding. The assistance Ben received from his junior Rachel Owusu-Agyei was equally invaluable and impressive. Behind the scenes, working on this case from the outset, was my solicitor Peter Daly, who worked tirelessly to pull this complex case together. He made himself available 24/7. I am incredibly grateful to them all.
A huge amount of work is ahead of us.
We still haven’t got all our disclosure from the Respondents. There are also questions about where the relevant documents are, what Stonewall and Garden Court will provide, and what we will need to ask other people to provide – and whether we need court orders for that. We also need to receive unredacted copies of the relevant documents from my Chambers. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of pages of documents to receive and review.
All of the parties have agreed to get together to discuss an agreed way forward on this, which I hope will happen next week.
Once we have done that, we then need to refine my case and point out precisely who was responsible for what happened, and why Stonewall and Garden Court Chambers are responsible for the actions of those people. These are complicated questions of fact and law.
Once that’s done we need to see what the Respondents say in response to that, and I need to prepare my witness statement. This is always an important document in any trial, but in the Employment Tribunal it is especially so.
The trial in June, is not very far off at all, given the amount of work to be done. But, given how things have gone this week, I am extremely hopeful.
Thank you to every single one of you who has supported me. Your encouragement, your donations, your messages of solidarity and support made this happen. I cannot tell you how much it means to me.