Hickman & Rose strives to be a responsible business which contributes positively to both the legal community and society more generally.
Our firm’s progressive ethos is reflected in the people, organisations and initiatives we support.
Pro Bono work
Hickman & Rose was established with a founding commitment to uphold the Rule of Law and to hold the state to account in the exercise of its power.
We are proud of our long history of pro bono work acting for those unable to secure private funding or where the inadequacies of the legal aid scheme mean individuals have fallen outside its scope.
This includes former partner (now consultant) Jane Hickman, who has worked for many years on miscarriage of justice cases being considered by Criminal Cases Review Commission and before the Court of Appeal. This is work she continues to do as a consultant to the firm following her retirement from the partnership. Following submissions made by Jane, the CCRC has recently referred the 2005 murder conviction of Lee Firkins, back to the Court of Appeal.
Our Head of Serious & General Crime, Jenny Wiltshire, has acted for a number of appellants including Stephen Simmons, and members of the so called ‘Oval Four’, and ‘Stockwell Six’, whose convictions have been overturned by the Court of Appeal as a result of corrupt police evidence in the 1970s.
In 2020, Helen Stone of our Civil Litigation team acted for the charity INQUEST as an intervener before the Supreme Court in an important case with far-reaching consequences for the verdict of unlawful killing at inquest.
Ben Rose founded the charity Grit (formerly called Youth at Risk) in 1989. Grit is dedicated to helping young people who face desperately difficult challenges to transform their lives. Its supporters and advisors include Lord Neuberger and Lord Phillips – both former Presidents of the Supreme Court – and Lord Ramsbotham, GCB, CBE, former HM Chief Inspector of Prisons. Grit has worked with tens of thousands of young people and has achieved outstanding results in fragmented communities both within the UK and abroad.
In 1988 Ben Rose and Daniel Machover jointly founded Lawyers for Palestinian Human Rights. Daniel Machover has undertaken significant amounts of pro bono work for Palestinian clients through his work with the charity.
Daniel Machover is a Director and Chair of the Board of Trustees of INQUEST, a charity which supports people whose relatives have died at the hands of the state. Daniel is also a trustee of Legal Action Worldwide, a non-profit network providing legal assistance to individuals and communities who have suffered from human rights violations and abuses in fragile and conflict-affected areas.
We take an active role in many professional associations including those with a focus on ensuring access to justice and the rule of law.
Jane Hickman was one of the founders of the Criminal Appeal Lawyers Association, which works to improve law and procedure for those who suffer miscarriages of justice. She served as its secretary for 10 years and still plays an active role on its Committee. Peter Csemiczky is on the committee of the London Criminal Court Solicitors Association (LCCSA) and served as its Secretary between 2018 and 2020, while Jenny Wiltshire served as its Vice President between 2015 and 2017. The LCCSA regularly participates in discussions with the state on developments in criminal law and recently challenged the government’s planned criminal legal aid reform and aims to ensure a viable future for criminal legal aid and access to justice.
Aileen Colhoun and Jenny Wiltshire are two of the founding members of Women in Criminal Law which aims to support the careers of women working in all areas of the criminal justice system by breaking down barriers to success. Aileen Colhoun has been the Secretary of Women in Criminal Law from May 2018 to date. Emily Sheils is a current committee member of the Female Fraud Forum whose purpose is to promote and encourage the advancement of women of all levels of expertise, through shared ideas, knowledge, and experiences. The Forum holds regular discussions on important issues concerning women in the legal sector.
Hickman & Rose offers mentoring and work experience to young people who do not have ready-made networks to help them access careers in the legal world. Many of the young people whom we help have already overcome significant hurdles to reach this stage of their careers.
Since 2016 the firm has also worked closely with Leaders Unlocked, an organisation which works with young adults from under-represented groups to help shape decision-making on issues that affect their lives. We are proud to have developed a successful programme aimed at introducing young people to the legal profession through work experience and mentoring. We hold an annual ‘Taster Day’ designed to help open doors to a career in law.
Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion
We are a signatory to the Law Society’s Diversity and Inclusion charter and are committed to implementing and promoting the standards set out in the charter. We promote an open forum for staff to raise EDI issues and observations and educate ourselves from the experiences of others. We hold regular training and are always looking to improve our recruitment processes to reach talented individuals from a cross section of society.
Hickman & Rose became an Accredited UK living wage employer in 2016. The Living Wage is an hourly rate set independently by the Living Wage Foundation and updated annually in November. It is calculated according to the basis cost of living in the UK and is separate from the National Minimum Wage and National Living Wage. Employers choose to pay the Living Wage on a voluntary basis.
Our lowest rates of pay were considerably higher than the Living Wage but it has offered us a route to interact with our suppliers on this important issue. We are committed to ensuring that all our employees and contracted staff are paid at least the Living Wage.
We are a committed member of the Legal Sustainability Alliance which provides support and advice to law firms in the UK to reduce their carbon emissions and we are constantly looking at ways of reducing our environmental impact