Ceremonial sitting of the Full Court
To welcome the Honourable Justice Halley
Transcript of proceedings
THE HONOURABLE JAMES LESLIE BAIN ALLSOP AO, Chief
THE HONOURABLE JUSTICE RARES
THE HONOURABLE JUSTICE FLICK
THE HONOURABLE JUSTICE PERRAM
THE HONOURABLE JUSTICE JAGOT
THE HONOURABLE JUSTICE NICHOLAS
THE HONOURABLE JUSTICE YATES
THE HONOURABLE JUSTICE KATZMANN
THE HONOURABLE JUSTICE FARRELL
THE HONOURABLE JUSTICE WIGNEY
THE HONOURABLE JUSTICE PERRY
THE HONOURABLE JUSTICE MARKOVIC
THE HONOURABLE JUSTICE BURLEY
THE HONOURABLE JUSTICE LEE
THE HONOURABLE JUSTICE STEWART
THE HONOURABLE JUSTICE ABRAHAM
THE HONOURABLE JUSTICE HALLEY
THE HONOURABLE JUSTICE CHEESEMAN
9.29 AM, TUESDAY, 20 APRIL 2021
ALLSOP CJ: I welcome everyone here today for this ceremonial welcome for Justice Halley. It is most pleasing to see you all here in person rather than on an electronic screen. First, I acknowledge the traditional owners of the land on which we gather, the Gadigal People of the Eora Nation and I pay my respects to their elders, past, present and emerging. May I particularly welcome Justice Halley's family and friends. This is an important day for you, but it is also an important day for the Court, both the event itself and that you are here to witness it.
May I also welcome and acknowledge Justice Gleeson of the High Court; the Chief Justice of New South Wales, the Honourable Tom Bathurst AC; the Deputy Chief Justice of the Family Court, the Honourable Robert McClelland; the President of the Court of Appeal of New South Wales, the Honourable Andrew Bell, and two of his present colleagues, Justice Leeming and Justice Payne. May I also welcome the Honourable Ruth McColl AO, former Judge of Appeal of the New South Wales Court of Appeal, the Solicitor General of New South Wales, Judges and former Judges of the Supreme Court and the Land and Environment Court and former Judges of this Court; Justice Emmett, serving on the Supreme Court; the Honourable Roger Gyles AO QC; the Honourable Peter Jacobson QC; the Honourable Brian Tamberlin QC and the Honourable Antony Whitlam QC. If I have overlooked anyone, I apologise.
Justice Halley, having been sworn in the day after the announcement of your appointment, you have shown the same dispatch and enthusiasm in beginning to exercise the judicial power of the Commonwealth. May I, on behalf of all the judges of the Court, in particular, the Judges of the New South Wales District Registry, welcome you to the Court and wish you many years of rewarding service to the Australian community and, personally, I greatly look forward to working with you.
HALLEY J: Thank you, Chief Justice.
ALLSOP CJ: Ms Jane Supit, Director of the Australian Government Solicitor and a senior executive lawyer representing the Attorney-General for the Commonwealth of Australia.
MS J. SUPIT: May it please the Court, may I also begin by acknowledging the Gadigal People of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the Sydney area and to pay my respects to all of Australia's Indigenous people. It is, indeed, a great privilege to be here today on behalf of the Australian Government and the Australian people to congratulate your Honour on your appointment as a Judge of the Federal Court of Australia. The Attorney-General, Senator the Honourable Michaelia Cash, regrets that she cannot be here to share this occasion with you today. She has, however, asked that I convey the Australian Government's sincere thanks for your Honour's willingness to serve as a Judge of this Court and the Government extends its very best wishes for your illustrious career on the Bench.
Your Honour's appointment to the Federal Court of Australia is a reflection of your achievements in your legal career thus far and the high regard in which you are held by so many members of the judiciary and legal profession that are here today. May I particularly acknowledge the Chief Justice the Honourable James Allsop and Honourable Judges of this Court; the Honourable Robert McClelland, Deputy Chief Justice of the Family Court of Australia; Mr Bernard McCabe, Deputy President of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal; the Honourable Thomas Bathurst, Chief Justice of New South Wales; the Honourable Justice Andrew Bell, President of the New South Wales Court of Appeal; the Honourable Justice John Robson, Judge of the Land and Environment Court of New South Wales; Mr Michael Sexton, Solicitor General of New South Wales; Mr Michael McHugh, President of the New South Wales Bar Association; Ms Cassandra Banks, Junior Vice President of the Law Society of New South Wales and other members of the legal profession. May I also acknowledge the presence of your Honour's family who proudly share this occasion with you: your mother, Kirstin; your wife, Kate; your children and their parents, Henry and Lucy, Tom, Amelia, Will and Phoebe; your brother, Oliver and Adrian, and Terence, Suzanne, Emma, Nick and Kathleen.
Your Honour's appointment to this Bench represents your dedication to the profession and the extensive experience your Honour brings from having conducted lengthy and complex hearings in this very Court. Time does not permit me to outline the full catalogue of your Honour's accomplishments, therefore, I intend to speak to just a few of the qualities that have marked your career to date and which will inform the significant contributions you will no doubt make to this Court.
Your Honour's formative years was spent in many interesting locations. As the son of Royal Australian Navy Commander George Halley, your family moved often. You were born in England and spent your early childhood and primary school years at Jervis Bay, Crib Point in Victoria, Canberra and even Manus Island, where your father was the Navy Officer in Command of the Australian Naval Base. Your Honour attended Cranbrook School during your secondary education, where you developed a love for cricket. You tried your hand at other pursuits and represented the school in the first 15 rugby team, in the first debating team and as the school captain in 1978.
After completing your education at Cranbrook School, your Honour attended the University of Sydney where you completed a Bachelor of Arts with Honours in 1983 and a Bachelor of Laws in 1985. In addition to excelling in your legal education, your Honour was a resident of St Paul's College where you were elected to the house college committee in your final years and also participated in the college and university union debates. Indeed, it was after a certain fresher debate on the topic that we should check before we mate that your Honour met the girl who would become your life companion, your beloved wife, Kate. Unfortunately, though, while your highly successful debating team reached the semi-finals, despite having three lawyers on the team, it was unable disprove that law is an ass.
Your Honour joined the Sydney University Regiment of the Army Reserve in 1979 followed by the 2nd/17th Battalion at Pymble and the 8th Brigade at Mosman. I am told that alumni of your Honour's soldiering days in the Sydney University Regiment include Justices Robertson Wright and Paul Brereton of the Supreme Court of New South Wales and the Governor-General of Australia, His Excellency, General, the Honourable David Hurley. I am further told that during your Honour's service you had a particular issue with one warrant officer who continually accused you of not shaving each morning. You reportedly took to dabbing shaving cream behind your ears just before morning parade as irrefutable evidence of having shaved. Such shows your Honour's subtle sense of humour.
In 1986, your Honour was admitted as a solicitor of the Supreme Court of New South Wales and commenced work as a solicitor at Allen Allen & Hemsley, now Allens. It was there your Honour worked extensively in a number of areas, including insolvency, banking, defamation and litigation. Even as a young lawyer, your Honour was recognised for your legal acumen, so much so that your Honour completed a stint in the firm's New York office. After working as a Senior Associate on high profile defamation proceedings and litigation, your Honour was called to the Bar in 1993. Members of the profession have lauded your Honour's broad practice at the Bar where your areas of expertise include administrative law, competition and consumer law, professional liability and disciplinary proceedings and taxation. This breadth of knowledge is highly regarded across the public and private sectors. Because of this, your Honour was regularly briefed by both the ACCC and ASIC on various confidential investigations into market power, merger clearances, price fixing, market manipulation, insider trading, abuse of breaches of director's duties, continuous disclosure obligation and civil penalties.
Following appearances as Junior Counsel in many large and complex matters, including, amongst others, Standard Chartered Bank v Antico, Idoport v NAB and the C7 mega litigation, you were appointed Senior Counsel in 2008. After taking Silk, your Honour continued as a popular and much sought after counsel. You were known for always being approachable and making time to deal with any inquiries. You would treat people equally, whether they be instructing solicitors, investigation team members or Commissioners.
Your Honour's approach to cases always involved meticulous preparation resulting in a prodigious work output which others have described as unbelievably efficient, to the extent that you have been known to surprise your juniors within hours of receiving voluminous documents with a complete analysis of the material. May I suggest that this may be the result of your Honour's extensive stationery systems that you have put in place in your chambers. As many people in this room would be aware, one of your Honour's most endearing character traits is your love of a wide array of stationery, every colour, pen and highlighter imaginable, and, in particular, the omnipresent red crayon that you use to mark briefs in chambers, in conference and in Court. I have every confidence it will get equal exercise on the Bench.
Perhaps more impressive than the wielding of your Honour's red crayon is a complex colour coding system you have developed with Post-it notes. That system, while undoubtedly designed to be indecipherable to your opponents has also been, somewhat less helpfully, occasionally indecipherable to your juniors. I trust your Honour may share the inner works of the Post-it note wisdom with your judicial associates.
As many here today would agree, your Honour is a creature of habit and, with the Court's indulgence, I wish to make but two submissions on this matter. First, it has been observed that one could set the clock by your Honour's daily route. In fact, it was your regimented routine that triggered a COVID alert in chambers last year, when your gym reported a case. The gym you attended every weekday a little after 2 pm, save for when you were in Court or in conference. Thankfully, your Honour's test returned negative. Second, your Honour was instructed from the outset of your time on your floor in chambers that one should only go to Court using the elevators at the Selborne end of the floor. I am told that this is what you always did, without fail. Despite many attempts, and perhaps even a little goading, your colleagues were unable to get you to go to Court from the lifts at the Wentworth end of chambers.
Outside of chambers life, your Honour is a person of many interests and activities. Stamp collecting, painting lead miniatures and gardening are but some of your hobbies. I'm reliably told that your Honour is a talented water colourist and sketcher, a great reader of history, biographies and novels, and a keen consumer of history podcasts. Your Honour is deeply committed to your family, and you are immensely proud of their achievements. Indeed, your priority has always been your children and your family. When your Honour's youngest daughter finished school, you bought new golf clubs; however, they rarely see the golf course, as you are happiest, we understand, spending time with your loved ones.
As I'm sure was a slight relief for your Honour, you found balance between your family commitments and lifelong sporting prowess when your eldest son started rowing in 2001. Those closest to you have informed me that you are, indeed, a renowned rowing tragic. You have been president of school rowing committees, the on-course announcer at regattas and even learned to row for corporate regattas. A rowing highlight was an eight comprising: you, your wife, Kate, your four children, a son-in-law and two family friends, Hannah and Georgia Potts, the crew most appropriately called the Halley Pott-Oars.
Your Honour has also given back to your community in a number of ways, one such way being as a member of the board of Loreto Kirribilli Girls College, in addition to your memberships of numerous professional committees. On a more personal note, I am told your Honour is sincerely caring and compassionate and not afraid to show your emotions. It is possible your Honour has been observed to shed a tear during movies like, Love Actually, Divergent and Agent Cody Banks, during the iconic Qantas ad and when you hear your daughters' school song, Queen of Loreto.
Your Honour's appointment to this Court is a testament to your many years of hard work and dedication to the law and justice. Your Honour will bring with you many qualities, including your sharp legal intellect, exceptional work ethic and highly valued collegiality that I have no doubt will serve you well on this Court. A colleague has described your Honour as being one of the most decent human beings they have had the pleasure of working with, as being a dedicated professional and observed that, while your Honour's appointment to this Bench is a loss to the Bar, it is undoubtedly a huge gain for the Court and the wider community. I could not agree more. On behalf of the Australian Government and the Australian people, I extend to you my sincerest congratulations and welcome you to the Federal Court of Australia. May it please the Court.
ALLSOP CJ: Thank you, Ms Supit. Mr McHugh, President of the New South Wales Bar Association, also representing the Australian Bar Association.
MR M. McHUGH SC: May it please the Court, I too acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land on which we meet, the Gadigal of the Eora Nation, and pay my respects to their Elders, past, present and emerging. On behalf of the New South Wales Bar, and on behalf of the Australian Bar Association, it is my pleasure to welcome your Honour's appointment to this Court. It's wonderful that so many family and friends are able to be in Court in person and observing by virtual Court today. Family is clearly important to your Honour, and we acknowledge your family here in Court. And your Honour's wife, journalist and writer, Kate Halley. Meeting in your early years at university, you have been together ever since. Born only a matter of weeks apart, your Honour was a former school captain for Cranbook and a rather reserved law student, who met your match with Kate, an outgoing former school captain of Loreto Normanhurst. You were both debaters at university and both graduated with honours.
Another, perhaps, serendipitous connection was that Kate's father had been a doctor at Manus Island, and we heard that you went to school there. As we have also heard, your Honour's late father, George Halley, was a Royal Australian Navy Commander at his retirement. His influence, and your time living on a naval base as a boy, instilled your Honour with a love of adventure and the sea. Your Honour took a different route to military service, joining the Sydney University Regiment of the Army Reserve. I am told your Honour has expertise with an anti-tank weapon, known as the 84-millimetre Carl Gustaf, named, I presume, after the Swedish King and not Carl Gustav Jung, the Swiss psychiatrist.
Your Honour also undertook jungle warfare training at Canungra Army Base as a young lieutenant and enjoyed parachuting with your platoon. There are, I am reliably informed, any number of exploits from your time as an officer, such as when, after a regimental dinner, your Honour and a fellow platoon commander parted way to navigate by foot, at night, to your respective lay-up areas in order to be ready for an exercise the following day. I am pleased to say your Honour made it, but your brother platoon commander was not seen for two days. Thick jungle at Canungra. However, apparently, he was later able to navigate his way to become a President of the Law Society.
This imagery of your Honour as an action man on a mission is somewhat different to perceptions of your Honour at the Bar, as someone known for calmness and perseverance. However, these discernments are not mutually exclusive and, no doubt, the military experience having formed your Honour's well-known calm courtroom presence. Those who have worked closely with your Honour at the bar describe your even keel and calming influence in the preparation of cases. The preparation was always and inevitably thorough. It has been said that your Honour's running of cases meant that junior counsel never had to work through the night, as your Honour had it under control. High words of praise, indeed, your Honour. Your Honour acted as a leader and a sounding board for ideas, yet without enforcing a hierarchy. Juniors were encouraged to take the initiative and were given confidence to trust their own judgments, and your Honour demonstrated that trust by giving juniors time on their feet.
Your Honour's ability for team building and collaboration was an asset in the running of long and complex matters in your practice areas of competition, corporations and commercial law. Of significant note is your Honour's patience and perseverance. When others were tired, jaded or perhaps losing hope, your Honour appeared unphased and determined to continue. Your Honour's endurance and commitment has been much remarked upon. In matters of market manipulation and continuous disclosure, your Honour took complicated factual scenarios and distilled them into simple, easy to grasp propositions.
Your Honour was a regulator's counsel of choice, prosecuting claims for public litigants against well-resourced corporate defendants, and who had invariably briefed formidable opponents. Your Honour has held your own repeatedly and humbly. Not interested in the exchange of zingers or grandiose flourishes and theatrics, instead operating as a straight bat advocate in those sorts of matters. In chambers, your Honour has been an available mentor to junior and senior members alike, and your Honour has encouraged, event insisted, on the great strength of the independent referral Bar, the open door policy.
It is in pursuits outside of law where your Honour is seen to be more playful and relaxed. Your own grandchildren – twins, Teddy and Archie – are, of course, a source of real joy. I am told your Honour has a first class and pinpoint short game at golf. Your Honour also has a love of bridge and has no doubt enjoyed encouraging opponents to overbid their hand. As we have heard, rowing is a family pursuit. Your Honour has been described as a born-again rower, coming to it later in life. In your Honour's social life, friends acknowledge, the warm generosity as a co-host of many parties and dinners at home where there was always room for more at the table. Your Honour's signature dish is well-known to be marinated lamb cooked on the barbeque which must stand for at least 20 minutes, followed by wines and cheese served in a French way before dessert.
Other than your knowledge and expertise in the law, your Honour brings to the court a strong sense of duty and experience of a lifetime of service in numerous voluntary roles, often as president or director across various organisations that service both our social and professional communities. I am reliably told that your Honour is managing a rapidly expanding docket while unsurprisingly remaining calm and collected on and off the bench. Your Honour has even managed to make a Mabo "It's the vibe" reference on the first day of a hearing during opening submissions. Your Honour, it is evident from the abundance of contributions to remarks made today that this appointment to the court is enthusiastically welcome. Your Honour will be a great asset to the court. On behalf of all the bars, I extend to your Honour warm congratulations and best wishes for the future. May it please the court.
ALLSOP CJ: Thank you, Mr McHugh. Ms Banks, junior vice president of the Law Society of New South Wales and also representing the Law Council of Australia.
MS C. BANKS: May it please the court. I too acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land upon which we meet, the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation and I pay my respects to their elders, past and present, and to their youth, their emerging elders. I am here today on behalf of both the Law Society of New South Wales and the Law Council of Australia to offer congratulations and wish your Honour well in your appointment to the Federal Court of Australia. Mindful of the important role family has played in your Honour's life, I would like to acknowledge your family here today. Your entire family is united in its pride, and your achievements and your love for the sport of rowing.
Your sons, both accomplished rowing coaches, are somewhat unique in today's company. While federal regulators and commercial giants have all eagerly sought your advice, I am told that when it comes to coaching the sport, they have not always actively sought yours. I am also told that this has not stopped your Honour from offering it anyway. As we have heard, your Honour attended Cranbrook School in Sydney's east and in your graduation year, was made head prefect. Your schoolmates, some of whom would follow your Honour to the bar, recall how many of your defining traits were evident from an early age. There is your keen intellect, the meticulous attention to detail and penchant for planning and the fierce competitive drive in the classroom while debating and on the athletic and rugby fields. All of this, they agreed, was held together by an acute sense of fairness and respect for the rules.
As we have heard, after studying law at the University of Sydney, your Honour threw yourself into commercial litigation at Allen Allen & Hemsley, a firm which would prove fertile recruitment ground for future barristers. Many years later, while representing ASIC in a civil matter against Vocation Limited, your Honour would find yourself across the aisle from no less than three silks, all contemporaries from your time at Allens. After being called to the bar in 1993, your Honour developed a reputation for hard work, diligence and delivering on a deadline. Your Honour expected no less when you became senior counsel. I am told your Honour's nickname at chambers was "the hound" for your ability to search out and find junior barristers who were slipping behind a deadline on a matter, but also to mentor them. Notwithstanding your high expectations, junior barristers loved working with your Honour and consider you both a mentor and a friend.
With time, your Honour would become the silk of choice for the nation's top regulatory bodies. Staff at ASIC and the ACCC have spoken glowingly of your impressive command of details, your easy-going collegiality and your willingness to argue a point for the sake of establishing a precedent. A representative from the ACCC's legal team remembered that your Honour would approach court days not only well-prepared but with your own agenda to direct the proceedings your way. Multiple sources have also spoken of your Honour's ability to distil huge amounts of complex information down to just the core details that truly mattered. In the words of one silk:
John was at his best in cases which required a mastery of the detail, combined with his sublime ability to corral all of the evidence into a coherent and persuasive case.
This persuasiveness was reflected in your appointment as senior counsel in 2008 and in the many high-profile and complex cases your Honour would lead. We have heard some of these cases already. This includes the Air Cargo litigation, which staff at the ACCC began to call the case that keeps on giving. A colleague who worked with your Honour on this case was gratified to note that Air Garuda chose to settle roughly the same time as your appointment to the Federal Court, a welcome exclamation point in a job well done.
While your Honour has been very successful within the law, you have also been very active outside of it. Barristers at the Sixth Floor are not sure how your Honour has found time to sit on so many boards and to even serve as a director of Counsel's Chambers Limited, nor, for that matter, to raise chickens and even fit in a game of tennis or two between rowing – lots and lots of rowing. I would like to conclude today with a final observation by one of your former colleagues from the Sixth Floor:
Although he was competitive in trying to achieve the best results for his clients, he was always a model of fairness. His good judgment and overarching belief in the rule of law will not only equip him well for the bench but the administration of justice will well be served.
Your Honour brings a wealth of knowledge, personal integrity and good sense to the Federal Court of Australia. The people of Australia are privileged to be served by you in this role and solicitors and barristers have every confidence that you will make an exceptional judicial officer. On behalf of both the Law Society of New South Wales and the Law Council of Australia, congratulations, your Honour. As the court pleases.
ALLSOP CJ: Thank you, Ms Banks. Justice Halley.
HALLEY J: Chief Justice, Chief Justice Bathurst and other distinguished guests, judges, former judges, friends and family, thank you for all coming and honouring this court by your presence today. I begin by acknowledging the traditional owners of the land on which we meet today, the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation, and I pay my respects to their elders, past, present and emerging. Thank you, Ms Supit, Mr McHugh and Ms Banks for your kind words and for the creative flourishes of some of your primary sources. I suspect I know who they are but I will, of course, forgive them on this occasion and not seek to qualify or cast doubt on their recollections.
I am very conscious of the significance of my appointment to this court and the responsibilities that come with being a judge of it. I am also very conscious of the outstanding contribution that the Federal Court has made to the development of the law and the administration of justice in this country and its commitment to the principles of excellence, innovation and courtesy. In my many appearances as counsel before the Federal Court, I have invariably seen those three principles applied in practice.
Today gives me a rare opportunity to acknowledge publicly and thank all those people who have been instrumental in my journey to this court. If I might commence with those primarily responsible for me being here today: my parents. I arrived into and was brought up in a naval family. My father, Commander George Halley, was often at sea and my mother, Kirstin, was effectively a single parent for long periods. The navy, as you have heard, had a very profound influence on my development and until my eyesight deteriorated at the age of 12, I could think of no career other than being a naval officer. My late father taught me much but nothing more important that the importance of family, commitment and service. My parents sacrificed much to ensure that I was given every opportunity in life and I will always be very grateful for their unqualified love and support.
If I might then move to my formal education. I did not lack for variety. I was exposed to four different state and territory education systems, private single-sex and co-ed government schools, modern, at least for the late 60s and early 70s, classrooms in Melbourne, Sydney and Canberra and also grass sak sak huts and chalkboard slates at Lombrum Primary on Manus Island. I have the good fortune to have had a series of outstanding and inspirational teachers, notwithstanding the somewhat circuitous path of my schooling, none more so than my housemaster and modern history teacher at Cranbrook, Jim Windeyer, the only non-lawyer Windeyer.
I was able to pursue my love of history at Sydney University, perhaps at times focussing too much on the arts side of Arts/Law. I hope that deficiency has now been addressed after seven years as a solicitor and 28 years at the Bar.
Much of my time, as you've heard, at university and for several years thereafter, was devoted to my service in the Army Reserve. My experience as an infantry officer in the Army Reserve taught me much about leadership, resilience, self-discipline, responsibility and perhaps most significantly, the importance of working together and valuing each member of a team for the different skills and experiences they possess. They are lessons that I put into practice as a solicitor, barrister and lessons that I expect will be equally relevant in my time as a Judge of this Court.
I turn, now, to my time as a solicitor. In my seven years at Allen Allen & Hemsley, I was exposed to a very diverse and challenging series of matters. By the time I departed for the Bar, I had worked for over 25 different partners and had spent three months in the firm's New York office. The partners, solicitors and support staff for whom I worked at Allens were all exceptionally talented and dedicated professionals. The training that I received was rigorous and uncompromising, but always given generously and constructively. It was invaluable in developing my skills as a junior lawyer and in emphasising at all times the need for attention to detail, brevity, precision and professional courtesy. I made many friends at Allens and I had many mentors, but the two partners with whom I worked most closely and from whom I learnt the most were Tim L'Estrange and Michael, now Justice Ball.
After moving to the Bar, I came to appreciate even more the importance of litigation solicitors in preparing matters for hearing and assisting in the conduct of trials. I have been very fortunate to have been instructed by so many outstanding, dedicated and hardworking solicitors during my career at the Bar and by so many exceptionally capable and industrious litigation counsel and staff members of ASIC and the ACCC. I regret that I cannot name you all, but you know who you are and I most sincerely thank each of you for all your support and friendship.
As a barrister, I had the privilege of being briefed with and also against many of the Bar's finest advocates. But the Silks that had the most profound influence on my development is a barrister and to whom I will always be in their debt, were Tom Hughes QC; George, later Justice Palmer; Bob, later Justice McDougall; John, now Justice Sackar; and John Sheehan QC. I must also acknowledge the generous guidance and support that I received from my two tutors, Ruth, later Justice McColl, and Bruce McClintock SC, both of whom are here today.
Equally importantly, I had the good fortune to work with many superb junior counsel, a large number who have whom since taken Silk and two of whom have preceded me to a judicial appointment. You invariably contributed much to the cases in which you were briefed, worked tirelessly and were always a pleasure to work with. I am glad to hear you did not have to spend too many nights catching up on additional work. I value very much all you have done for me and I will always be grateful for the time that we spent together both in and out of Court.
I spent all but the first six months of my career as a barrister on the Sixth Floor of Selborne Wentworth Chambers. In that time, I have made many friends and I am delighted that so many of my former floor members are here today. In particular, I would like to acknowledge the unfailing support of my clerk, Lisa Stewart, over the past 28 years, initially as my secretary, then assistant clerk and finally as my clerk.
I have enjoyed and learnt much from my time as a member of the Board of Loreto Kirribilli and as a director of Counsel's Chambers Limited and Sixth Floor Limited and as a member of the Professional Conduct Committee.
I have also enjoyed and learnt much from my extensive involvement in the rowing programs of Cranbrook and then Loreto Kirribilli, from commentating at schoolgirl regattas and, of course, rowing together with so many diverse crews at parents and friends regattas, in particular, the Halley Pott-oars, often coached by one of my more infinitely capable rowing children, and I do not recall ever providing rowing advice to either of my sons, but they may have different recollections.
If I might be forgiven for passing on two pieces of advice to those that I left behind, as one good friend described herself and my former colleagues, please do not allow the law to consume all aspects of your life and please always be yourself in your oral and written advocacy. You are advocates, not actors.
None of what I have achieved to date would have been possible without the incredible love and support of my wife and best friend, Kate, not least her tireless efforts in smoothing out my rough edges and expanding my horizons and tolerating my usually less than ideal attempts at fixing plumbing problems and pruning box hedges. I married a journalist, not a lawyer, and all of my children have successfully resisted the temptation to follow me into the law, but I am immensely proud of everything that Kate, Henry, Tom, Amelia and Phoebe and their partners, Lucy and Will, have achieved both on and off the water and, of course, I am thrilled to be a grandfather to Archie and Teddy. I look forward to my time on the Bench and I thank the Court for its most generous welcome both today and at all times since my appointment as a Judge of this Court.
ALLSOP CJ: Thank you, Justice Halley. The Court will now adjourn.