Staff,Board and Patrons
Iris Quar (Solicitor) -
Iris is is a qualified solicitor with a background in family law practice and extensive experience in advising on child law issues. Iris is a Trustee and member of the management committee of the Still Birth and Neonatal Death Society Lothians(SANDS) an organisation which supports the bereaved families of stillborn babies and babies who die shortly after their birth.
Briony Cruden (Solicitor) -
Briony is a qualified solicitor with a focus on family and child law. Briony is the newest member of the Scottish Child Law Centre and provides advice to our service users on a wide range of child law issues including contact and residence, court procedure and Children's Hearings. Briony is driven by the importance of Children's rights and is dedicated to helping children express their views in matters which relate to them.
Evelyn Hay (Office Manager) -
Evelyn is the Office Manager at the Scottish Child Law Centre. She has over 20 year’s experience of working in the voluntary sector and has a particular interest in supporting work with children and young people.
Jenny Wright (Administrator) Family Decision Making service -
Jenny has over 12 years experience in various administration settings in the public, voluntary and private sectors. She has a PhD in Botany and is also a Fitness Instructor, Cycling Coach and Personal Trainer. Jenny shares the values of SCLC and is committed to supporting their work in her role.
Heather is a qualified solicitor and is currently working for the Family Decision Making service. The service involves giving free legal advice to parents who are going through separation. Heather is committed to the ideals of the Centre in providing impartial, child-centred advice. The FDM service is in partnership with Parentline Scotland and One Parent Families Scotland.
Lena van Dülmen (Administrator) - Family Decision Making Service -
Lena is a qualified German lawyer with a background in family law. She is very interested in children’s rights and has a long history of volunteering with the SCLC. Lena is currently working as an administrator on the Family Decision Making Project.
Siobhan is qualified in Information Management and Preservation. She is working with SCLC to improve its record storage, management and reporting. With over 4000 contacts to the Centre's Advice Line every year this is a vital function to maintain, and provides valuable information to the Centre, our funders and potential funders.
Nick Hobbs (Chair)
Nick is Policy and Public Affairs Manager for the Scottish Children’s Reporter Administration, where he has worked since 2006. His role is focused on enabling SCRA to influence and inform the national policy agenda for children and families in areas such as youth justice, child protection, children’s services planning and the reform of the Hearings System. He is a member of SCRA’s Participation Group, which seeks opportunities to improve children and young people’s experiences of the system, and has recently been leading work which culminated in the organisation being granted First Responder status in relation to child trafficking.
Prior to joining SCRA, Nick worked for Holyrood Communications, researching and developing policy conferences while writing for Holyrood Magazine and editing a variety of quarterly supplements. He has contributed to publications as varied as the Edinburgh Evening News and Honduras This Week, as well as co-authoring a chapter on the Children’s Hearings System in “Scottish Life and Society: The Law”. Nick graduated from the University of Sheffield with a Law Degree in 2001 before moving to Scotland in 2003 and has travelled extensively in Latin America and Central Asia.
Gillian Donald (Treasurer)
Gillian trained with Scott-Moncrieff and qualified in 1993. Since then she has specialised in the charity sector, and is the firm's specialist charity audit partner. She has extensive practical experience of charity regulation and is responsible for ensuring technical compliance with charity regulation across all service sectors within her firm. She is Treasurer of a number of Scottish charities with income ranging from under £100,000 to over £11 million. She is currently a specialist charity lecturer for the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland (ICAS), a member of its Charity Working Party and was a member of the Scottish Charity Law Review Commission. She is a regular contributor on current accounting topics to charity publications within the UK.
Bruce is originally from Wellington, New Zealand. He has degrees in Law and History from Te Whare Wananga o Te Upoko o Te Ika a Maui/Victoria University of Wellington (link) and a Diploma in the International Protection of Human Rights from Åbo Akademi University in Finland. He practised as a barrister and solicitor in Wellington before moving to Scotland in 2002, qualifying as a solicitor in England and Wales in 2004, and in Scotland in 2006. Bruce worked for the Scottish Parliament and was a founding staff member of Scotland’s Commissioner for Children and Young People before becoming the legal officer at the Scottish Human Rights Commission when it was established in 2008. Bruce volunteered at the Wellington Community Law Centre from 1998 to 2002 and has been a member of the Edinburgh’s Children’s Panel since 2004. He was also an independent expert on Human Rights Institutions for the European Commission’s peer review mission to Turkey on judiciary and fundamental rights in 2011.
David was initially a research chemist but after a career change in his late 20s qualified as a solicitor in Scotland in 1972. After two brief spells in private practice with Edinburgh firms he became a member of the legal staff of the Scottish Law Commission. He retired from there in 2009 having been involved in a wide variety of law reform exercises. In the Family Law area these have included: domestic violence and the matrimonial home, civil legal capacity and criminal responsibility of children and the abolition of illegitimacy as a legal concept.
He has also been tutoring and lecturing at the School of Law at Edinburgh University from 1972 to date in family law and other areas. He is the author of several books in the Family Law field and is a co-editor of Greens Family Law Bulletin, a bimonthly updater for family law practitioners.
Dr Helen Hammond
Dr Helen Hammond is a Consultant Community Paediatrician with specialist interests in Child Development, Child Protection and the needs of children 'Looked After'. Until recently, she also contributed to the hospital service through the acute on-call rota and she is firmly committed to an integrated model of care. Helen is the designated doctor for child protection for NHS Lothian and put in place the specialist clinical service offering advise and joint paediatric/forensic examination of children who have suffered any form of physical or sexual abuse or neglect. She was recently appointed as Clinical Lead for the Managed Clinical Network for Child Sexual Abuse for South East Scotland.
Helen led the inquiry into the death Kennedy McFarlane in Dumfries and Galloway in 2000 and subsequently was a member of the Inquiry team in to the death of Caleb Ness in Edinburgh in 2003. She completed a 3 year secondment as a part time professional advisor to the Child Protection Reform Programme Action Team of the [then] Scottish Executive.
Helen has served as a Council Member and a member of the Academic Board of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH). She recently completed an extended term on the Standing Committee for Child Protection for the College and is Chair the Child Protection Sub-Committee for the Scottish Committee of the RCPCH. She also represents the RCPCH on the working group developing a diploma in medical and legal aspects of sexual assault with the RCOG and Society of Apothecaries.
Sue Moody studied Law and Criminology, working originally as a criminal justice researcher. She was the Director of Victim Support Scotland when it was first established in the 1980s and then was appointed as a Senior Lecturer in Law at Dundee University. From 2002 to 2011 she worked for COPFS, the prosecution service in Scotland, establishing an information and advice service and leading on policy matters concerning victims and witnesses and on children. She is currently a freelance consultant working on a variety of projects including the establishment by Scottish Government of a confidential forum where adults who were abused in care as children can describe their experiences and an Inquiry into Child Neglect sponsored by Action for Children. Her interest in the SCLC began when she was at Dundee University undertaking work on confidentiality and the law relating to children and she was on the SCLC Board in the 1990s.
Between 2006 and 2011 Sue was closely involved in policy and practice developments in relation to children and young people at risk, chairing and taking part in a variety of multi-agency cross-cutting groups designed to encourage appropriate and effective intervention.
Julian is a member of the Scottish bar having been called in 2014. Previously he was a solicitor in private practice for 18 years specialising in family and child law cases and was an accredited specialist in child law for 10 years. He has considerable experience of acting for birth families and children in cases concerning children in the care system and has a specialist interest in cases involving the impact of article 8 of the ECHR in compulsory care, adoption and permanence order proceedings.
Grace is the Principal of McGill & Co Solicitors, Edinburgh & Glasgow, a firm specialising in Immigration, Refugee & Nationality Law which she opened on her own account in April 2008. Prior to this, she was a Partner in Wilson Terris Solicitors Edinburgh. She has been a practioner in the field of Immigration law since 1995 and has considerable experience in all aspects of work of this nature. She is a member of the Immigration Law Practioners Association and International Bar Association. She has a keen interest in the development of the law for the protection of immigrant children and indeed ran several significant cases at the Court of Session advocating the Best Interests of the Child which ultimately influenced the change of Government Policy - Every Child Matters and section 55 of the Borders and Immigration Act 2009. She has recently completed her LLM in International Human Rights law, her dissertation subject being written on Judicial Protection and recognition of Human Rights for Immigrant Children in the UK.
Dame Elish Angiolini
Dame Elish was appointed in 2001 as the first non - political Solicitor General for Scotland on 5 December 2001 – also the first woman, the first Procurator Fiscal and the first solicitor to hold the post. She was installed as Lord Advocate on 12 October 2006.
During her appointment Dame Elish took particular interest in supporting the children who are witnesses in criminal prosecutions, contributing greatly to the improvements in the experience of these most vulnerable witnesses. Her Guidance on the handling of offences allegedly committed by children has helped to ensure that only those cases which are not suited for the Children's Hearing system go through the adult courts.
She chaired the Department's Strategy Group on Diversity and helped victims from minority communities achieve greater confidence in the prosecution service. Her leadership in the area of domestic violence was recognised by the charity Zero Tolerance when she was given their inaugural "Women in the public Eye" award – one of several awards and distinctions she has received during her time in office.
The review of the investigation and prosecution of rape and sexual crimes which she instigated was a major undertaking which resulted in profound and successful changes to prosecution practices including the establishment of the specialist National Sexual Crimes Unit, the first of its type in Europe. She also set up the highly successful Health and Safety Division and the National Deaths Inquiry Unit.
Dame Elish has recently taken up an appointment as visiting Professor of Law at Strathclyde University and is now in practice at the Bar with Terra Firma Chambers. She is also chairing a Commission into Women Offenders in Scotland.
Sheriff Brian Kearney
Sheriff Brian Kearney, formerly a sheriff of Glasgow and Strathkelvin at Glasgow, he served as a legal member of the Parole Board for Scotland from 2008 until 2010. In 1988 Sheriff Kearney was appointed by the Secretary of State for Scotland as a member of the Review Group charged with considering the reform of child care law (reported 1990). In 1989 and 1992 he presided over the Inquiry into Child Care Policies in Fife (reported 1992).
He was Chair of the management committee of The Glasgow Marriage Guidance Council (now Couples Counselling) and is now its Honorary President. Sheriff Kearney is an acknowledged expert on the Children's Hearings System, and author of several books on the Hearings system and court procedure, together with numerous learned articles.
Janys Scott qualified and practised as a solicitor in England and in Scotland before entering the Scottish bar. She has served as Convenor of the Scottish Child Law Centre (1992 - 1997), Stepfamily Scotland (1998 - 2002) and the Scottish Legal Group of the British Association for Adoption and Fostering (2004 - 2010). She was part of the Scottish Executive's Adoption Policy Review Group, which reported in 2005. She specialises in family law, including divorce. She is also a recognised expert in education law. In 2005 Mrs Scott was appointed a part-time sheriff.
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Are you a solictor who practices in the area of family law, child law, education law, children's hearings or related areas?If so then please get in touch to let us know who you are and your details. We are building up a database of solicitor's practicing in these areas in Scotland as we are frequently asked for the names of solicitors. Please also tell the Law Society of Scotland as we refer many people to the records department for names of solicitors in their area.