Being a legal aid lawyer can be tough, but the life has its light-hearted moments. 


After winning a prestigious gong for criminal defence at last week’s Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year Awards, Lydia Dagostino, of Brighton firm Kellys Solicitors, was asked by host and Sky News presenter Anna Jones about a client who protested against the construction of the Newbury bypass. ‘Activists love pushing boundaries,’ Dagostino said. Her client, she recalled, asked ‘if he could have an “Excalibur sword” brought to Reading Crown Court so he could swear an oath in front of the jury before taking evidence’.

The audience reacted with laughter after hearing that the police did in fact bring in an implement billed as Excalibur – under escort. Bet that wouldn’t get through court security these days.