Grand Opening of New Kent Law Clinic
Deputy President of the UK Supreme Court, the Right Honourable Baroness Hale of Richmond, will open the new £5 million Law Clinic at the University of Kent on Thursday 6 October. The new law clinic, to be known as the Wigoder Law building, is situated between Eliot and Rutherford and is named after the key benefactor, The Honourable Charles Wigoder, who helped fund the completion of the new building.
The grand opening of the new location for the Kent Law Clinic will be followed by a keynote speech, entitled Human Rights and Social Justice, which will take place in Woolf Lecture Theatre at 6.00pm and is open to all who wish to attend.
The new building reflects its historic neighbours by offering a footbridge to the entrance, like those used at both Eliot and Rutherford Colleges and also offers interview rooms, offices and shared work space for both students and staff. Equally, a Moot Chamber is the centrepiece of the new building, providing a realistic courtroom setting. Law students will now be able to practice their advocacy skills in a professional and accurate environment, allowing greater first class education on campus.
Kent Law Clinic, under the direction of Clinic Director Professor John Fitzpatrick and with the help of UKC Law students, has helped local clients in need gain millions of pounds in compensation in employment law cases and offers free legal advice to all those who seek help and representation. The Law Clinic has even brought landmark cases in asylum law to court which have been of huge benefit to subsequent claimants.
Last month Kent Law Clinic won £2,500 compensation for local tenants in a case at Canterbury Crown Court. Landlord, Judith Wilson, had sued the tenants claiming £4,000 for allegedly causing damage to their flat. The Law Clinic defended the tenants and lodged a counterclaim that the landlord had broken the terms of the tenancy by not repairing a leak for over eight weeks and for disturbing the tenants’ peace and privacy at the property.
The new law building is being funded by donations from benefactors including law alumni, corporations, trusts, foundations, friends, staff and students. Furthermore, the University has matched pound-for-pound every donation to the Kent Law Clinic. As a sign of gratitude each seat on the benches of the new Mooting Chamber will be named after a benefactor of the new building.