Nicholas Stadlen

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Sir Nicholas Felix Stadlen (born 3 May 1950) is a former judge of the High Court of England and Wales.[1] He was appointed to the High Court's Queen's Bench Division on 2 October 2007 and retired early, on 21 April 2013.[2]

His parents were campaigner Hedi Stadlen and pianist and composer Peter Stadlen.[3] He was educated at St Paul's School, London and Trinity College, Cambridge, where he read history and classics and was President of the Cambridge Union in 1970. He was called to the bar in 1976 and became a QC in 1991, and was a member of Fountain Court Chambers.[4] He was knighted in 2007.[1]

In 2006-2007 he conducted a series of interviews with well-known figures (Gerry Adams, Desmond Tutu, F. W. de Klerk, Simon Peres, Hanan Ashrawi, Tony Benn and David Blunkett) which were podcast by The Guardian.[5] He is Alistair Horne Visiting Fellow at St Antony's College, Oxford.[6] Since retirement he has researched the history of the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa and is writing a book on the Rivonia Trial, which led to Nelson Mandela's imprisonment.[6][7][8]

In 2005 he made the longest speech in British legal history when he spoke for 119 days while defending the Bank of England at the Royal Courts of Justice.[9]

In 2015 he appeared on the BBC Radio 4 programme Great Lives, nominating anti-apartheid lawyer Bram Fischer.[10]


  1. ^ a b "STADLEN, Hon. Sir Nicholas Felix". Who's Who and Who was Who. Retrieved 19 February 2016. (Subscription required (help)).
  2. ^ "Senior Judiciary: Retired Senior Judiciary under 75". Courts and Tribunals Judiciary. Retrieved 19 February 2016.
  3. ^ Obituaries (31 January 2004). "Hedi Stadlen: Dauntless Austrian emigree who campaigned on liberal issues and supported music as the wife of the pianist Peter Stadlen". The Times (67986). p. 51. (Subscription required (help)).
  4. ^ "History". Fountain Court. Retrieved 19 February 2016.
  5. ^ "Writer profile: Nick Stadlen". The Guardian. Retrieved 19 February 2016.
  6. ^ a b "Sir Nicholas Stadlen". People. St Antony's College. Retrieved 19 February 2016.
  7. ^ Stadlen, Nick (24 January 2016). "From apartheid jail to No 10, the long journey of Mandela's trial comrades". The Guardian. Retrieved 19 February 2016.
  8. ^ Battersby, John (1 August 2014). "Bram Fischer and Nelson Mandela changed South Africa forever: Former British High Court Judge emerges as powerful SA storyteller". Retrieved 19 February 2016.
  9. ^ Bowers, Simon (25 May 2005). "QC completes longest speech in legal history". The Guardian. Retrieved 19 February 2016.
  10. ^ "Nick Stadlen on Bram Fischer". Great Lives: Series 37 Episode 8. BBC Radio 4. Retrieved 19 February 2016.