A medical negligence specialist who practised as a doctor before switching to the law is the only solicitor among 18 deputy High Court judges whose appointment was announced last week. Peter Marquand, admitted in 1996, is head of the clinical law department at healthcare and commercial firm Capsticks.

The 18 appointments are temporary posts under section 9 of the Senior Courts Act 1981. Each appointee will serve a single four-year term. Eight of the new judges are women, including high-profile human rights and public law advocate Dinah Rose QC of Blackstone Chambers and Merseyside criminal barrister Anne Lynne Whyte QC.

Marquand qualified as a doctor in 1987 and practised to registrar level before taking a diploma in law at London Guildhall University. At Capsticks he has specialised in cases of maximum severity, such as children injured as a result of obstetric negligence. He acted for NHS bodies in the Court of Appeal ‘right to die’ case of Ms B v An NHS Trust and N v Dr M.

He is also known for his expertise in information law, and is a former deputy chairman of the information tribunal, which hears appeals against the information commissioner.