Criminal Practice Directions

It is well known that many children appearing in criminal courts have communication or learning difficulties. These factors alongside age and normal adolescent development can make it difficult for children to participate in legal proceedings, particularly in the Crown Court. In this seminar discussing our legal guide on the Criminal Practice Directions, you'll hear from leading youth justice experts on how the Criminal Practice Directions can support in this context. Our guide provides practical advice on using the Criminal Practice Directions to give effect to the right that children have to effectively participate in criminal proceedings.

This seminar took place on 24th June 2021. For more detailed practical advice and information, check out our full legal guide on the Criminal Practice Directions


Mr Justice William Davis

Mr Justice William Davis, who sits on the Criminal Procedure Rules Committee, practised at the Bar in Birmingham for over 30 years (10 years as QC) before becoming a Senior Circuit Judge in Birmingham in 2009. He was appointed to the High Court Bench in 2014. In the same year he was appointed Judicial Lead for Youth Justice in England and Wales. Until 2019 he was the Director of Criminal Training for the Judicial College and a Presiding Judge of the Northern Circuit.

Ed Smyth

Ed is a criminal litigation solicitor and partner at Kingsley Napley. A mark of the high regard in which Ed is held within the profession is his membership of the Criminal Procedure Rule Committee, a law-making body where he sits alongside senior members of the judiciary, the CPS, police and Ministry of Justice. Ed deals with clients facing a wide range of criminal allegations, from sexual offences to extradition and white collar crime. Ed specialises in advising clients prior to, or at the earliest stages of, an investigation with a view to preventing further action. Where his cases engage issues beyond criminal law (for example employment, family or dispute resolution) he works with colleagues from other disciplines to provide a comprehensive solution. At the other end of the criminal process, Ed is regularly instructed to advise on challenges to police cautions, appeals against conviction and sentence and in respect of applications to the Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC).

Professor Kathryn Hollingsworth

Kathryn Hollingsworth, co-author of the Criminal Practice Directions guide, is a Professor of Law at Newcastle University (UK). Her research focuses on children’s rights especially in the context of youth justice and she has published widely in this area. She has a particular interest in the theorisation of children’s rights as well as their practical application. In addition to her youth justice work, Kathryn is also interested in judicial approaches to children’s rights, including in judgment-writing and sentence delivery. She has worked with the Judicial College on judicial communication in sentencing and has also delivered training to members of the judiciary in other jurisdictions, including New Zealand. She was a trustee for Just for Kids Law from 2016-2019 and has been on the Advisory Board of the Youth Justice Legal Centre since 2014.

Daniella Waddoup

Daniella is a barrister at Doughty Street Chambers. The focus of Daniella’s practice is criminal justice and mental health and capacity. In addition to a busy criminal trial and appellate practice, she undertakes work in related areas, including prison law, crime-related public law and mental health law.

Daniella is recognised for her commitment to representing vulnerable young defendants: in 2017 she was presented with the ‘Rising Star in Youth Justice’ award by the Youth Justice Legal Centre. Her pro bono work includes providing training to probation and prison staff to promote understanding of the entitlement of children and young people in custody with special educational needs to appropriate educational support and provision.

Shauneen Lambe, chair

Shauneen Lambe, co-author of the Criminal Practice Directions guide, is Director of Impact Law for Social Justice. She is co-founder and former CEO of Just for Kids Law (2005-2018), where she set up the Youth Justice Legal Centre in 2014 and now serves on the YJLC Advisory Board. A barrister in the UK and a practicing attorney in the USA where she helped Clive Stafford Smith set up Reprieve. Shauneen is a legal innovator dedicated to the law being a tool for social change and enjoys supporting ground-breaking social justice projects which she does through Impact and by supporting Justice First Fellows.

She is vice-chair of the Barings Foundation, a trustee of the Centre for Justice Innovation and on the advisory board of University of Liverpool Law Clinic.