Nigel Pascoe QC




Formerly Leader of the Western Circuit, he prosecutes and defends equally in high-profile murder cases. To date, he has been briefed in well over 100 murder cases, including many of the major cases of the last 25 years. He specialises in Jury speeches and believes passionately in trial by jury. He takes particular pleasure in opening his cases to the jury.

Courts Martial

Nigel undertakes Courts Martial work and has represented a senior Army officer charged with extensive fraud.

Inquests and Inquiries

Recorder of the Crown Court for 34 years President of Mental Health Restricted Tribunals for over 10 years Legal Assessor to the Nursing and Midwifery Council. He has a specific interest in public Inquiries, mental health issues, disciplinary hearings. He has recently completed an Inquiry in Hampshire.

Regulatory and Disciplinary

Nigel Pascoe sits as a legal assessor in the NMC where his long experience in very serious crime and mental health is valuable. He has also prosecuted in corporate manslaughter cases and has appeared in well over 100 murder cases.  

Nigel has represented the interests of New Forest Industries when Shell applied to drill for oil in the New Forest, he understands and has experience of local government planners and their work and is accredited to a panel that can chair planning appeals in the Forest of Dean.



Year of call: 1966
Year of silk: 1988
  • Recorder 1979
  • Queens Counsel 1988
  • President of Mental Health Tribunal Review 2000
  • Legal Assessor to the Nursing and Midwifery Council
Areas of specialism:
  • Administrative and Public Law
  • Courts Martial
  • Criminal
  • Inquests and Inquiries
  • Regulatory and Disciplinary
Professional associations:
  • Nigel was Chairman of the board of Counsel Magazine, remaining on the Board.
  • He is both the founder and presenter of All England Quarterly Law reports.
  • He is a former chairman of the Bar Public Affairs Committee.
  • A recorder for 34 years, he was also a President of the Mental Health Review Tribunals for six years.
  • Association of Regulatory & Disciplinary Lawyers (ARDL)
Professional activities:
  • Over the years, Nigel has enjoyed a dual career as an actor, notably with his one man show - "The Trial of Penn and Mead" which has had over 90 performances and which he has toured with in America, New Zealand and Holland.
  • He also presents a one-man show called "Merely Players”, which is an advocate’s tribute to Shakespeare, a new version of “Christmas Carol” with his wife Elizabeth and recently a new show about the early life of Charles Dickens.
  • He regularly trains other barristers on the Western Circuit, particularly in cross examination in serious sexual cases and also on the nature of Mental Health proceedings.
  • He is a BBC media trainer and a contributor to the NSPCC video on the cross-examination of children.
  • His CD on the art of advocacy has been available for many years and has written frequently on the same subject.
Outside Interests:
  • Nigel’s outside interests are principally family life, walking in the New Forest, acting, after dinner speaking and playwriting.
  • His plays include The Nearly Man, Pro Patria, Who killed William Rufus, My Country Right or Wrong (about the war in Iraq), Without Consent, To Encourage the Others (about the life and Court Martial of Admiral Byng) and an adaptation of St Mark’s Gospel.
  • He is in the process of completing a film script about motor racing in the 1920s.
Notable Cases:
  • Among his reported cases are R v Hyde, Sussex and Collins, which is the leading authority on the foresight of intention in murder.
  • R v Cairns, concerning disclosure of defence statements and the prosecution's discretion to call a witness who was not wholly credible. He provided the Archbold commentary on the case.
  • R v Fulgence
  • Nigel has written articles on a range of legal issues in journals including: "Letters to a young Barrister" (NLJ) and "Denial of Justice" (Counsel Magazine).
  • The Plays of Nigel Pascoe can be downloaded at , which also gives details of his other speaking activities including after dinner.