Brian Barker

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For the American football punter, see Bryan Barker.
Judge Brian Barker CBE QC
CBE insignia

Brian John Barker CBE QC (born 1945) is a British judge and the former Common Serjeant of London, the second most senior judge at the Old Bailey. From February 2013 to January 2015 he served as the Recorder of London, the senior judge at the Old Bailey.[1]

Barker graduated from Birmingham University with an LLB degree in law in 1966.[2] Barker was called to the Bar by Gray's Inn in 1969[3][4] and was a leading criminal barrister excelling as a prosecutor and a defender. He served as Chairman of the Criminal Bar Association. He was appointed Queen's Counsel in 1990,[4] and was appointed a circuit judge at the Old Bailey in 2000.[3][5]

Barker was appointed as the 79th holder of the post of Common Serjeant of London (the second most senior judge at the Old Bailey) in 2005, succeeding Judge Peter Beaumont QC.[3][6] The Common Serjeant is an ancient office first recorded in 1291 with the appointment of Thomas Juvenal. Barker has since presided over trials including those of Umran Javed, the murderers of Jody Dobrowski,[7] the murder trial of rapper 'Crazy Titch', aka Carl Dobson, and the murder of Ben Kinsella. He succeeded Peter Beaumont as Recorder of London (the most senior judge at the Old Bailey) in February 2013.[1]

Barker is married to Dame Anne Rafferty DBE PC QC, one of the United Kingdom's few female Appeal Court judges,[8] with whom he has three daughters. Another daughter, who had Down's syndrome, died aged two.[9]

He lists his hobbies as golf and sheep rearing. Barker is a Governor of Sir John Cass's Foundation, one of London's oldest and largest education charities, which was founded in 1748.[10] Barker is a Freeman of the City of London, a Past Master of the Worshipful Company of Coopers and an Honorary Liveryman of the Curriers' Company.

Barker was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2015 New Year Honours for services to the administration of justice and to charity.[11][12]


  1. ^ a b Next Recorder of London announced: His Honour Judge Brian Barker QC, City of London, 10 December 2012
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b c Judicial Appointments, Central Office of Information, 1 July 2005. Retrieved 22 September 2008.
  4. ^ a b The London Gazette: no. 52123. p. 8423. 27 April 1990. Retrieved 2008-09-22.
  5. ^ The London Gazette: no. 56067. p. 14459. 27 December 2000. Retrieved 2008-09-22.
  6. ^ The London Gazette: no. 57697. p. 8901. 8 July 2005. Retrieved 2008-09-22.
  7. ^ Killers of gay barman jailed for 28 years, The Times, 17 June 2006. Retrieved 22 September 2008.
  8. ^ The London Gazette: no. 55874. p. 6423. 13 June 2000. Retrieved 2008-09-22.
  9. ^ Valerie Grove, "Woman against the rape of reason", The Times, Interview with Anne Rafferty, QC, p.21, 20 June 1998.
  10. ^ Sir John Cass's Foundation—Governance. Retrieved 22 September 2008.
  11. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 61092. p. N8. 31 December 2014.
  12. ^ 2015 New Year Honours List

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