18 February 2006

IPKat Sole Practitioners' Meeting

I had a really good day yesterday in London on Thursday. I spent the morning and early afternoon at the offices of Mischcon de Reya who are on the other side of a copyright and trade mark infringement and passing off claim. In the afternoon I met a public access client at The Crown Tavern in Clerkenwell Green. But the best part of the day was the sole practitioners and small firms' evening held in the same pub than ks to the generosity of Jeremy Phillips and Ilanah Simon.

NIPC were there in force, that is to say Lois and I were there. So, too, were Kate Reid (a new specialist intellectual property firm in York which I mentioned in my post of the 9 Sep 2005 "More IP Specialists in the North"), patent agent Richard Gallafent and Human Law blogger Justin Patten. I also met Chris Rycroft of OUP whom I had missed on the launch of the JIPLP on 1 Dec 2005 and the remarkable Margaret Briffa with whom I had previously only corresponded.

In his introduction Jeremy disclosed that he was the son of a sole practitioner. He said that whenever he complained to his mother that his father came home late she replied that it was when he came home early that he really had to worry. Richard shared with us that he also was the son of a sole practitioner. Margaret told us how she had set up her firm and was still opening packing cases when she received instructions in her first big case. I might add that that story was one of the things that kept me going when I opened NIPC in 1997. She is witty and entertaining and well deserves her success. We had a short discussion on CPD for trade mark agents before returning to the drinks.

Two good things for northern IP practitioners:
- the first is that we will be welcoming Jeremy to Leeds on 15 June 2006; and
- the second is that we will also entertain Ilanah later in the year or perhaps the beginning of next.

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