Public Access

Contacting a barrister is not a daunting experience as we are approachable, professional and
understand your needs. Our Practice Manager, Bernard, is your first contact in Chambers and
has been dealing with members of the public directly since the scheme started in 2004.
Further detailed information can be located through the Bar Standards Board dedicated page for lay clients, found here.

For who?

  • Quite simply – anyone who already has or may soon have a legal issue or situation that needs answering or resolving
  • You may be a homeowner, a professional, a business owner or just someone that needs some assistance and isn’t sure who to turn to
  • You may want advice on policy and procedure to avoid future legal issues

Why us?

  • We are experts in the area of law you need assistance with
  • We have local Knowledge
  • We are approachable and accessible at times when you most need it
  • We are cost effective, competitive and can offer fixed quotes or work on an hourly basis
  • We are fast and reliable

How to?

  • Contact Bernard, with no obligation, for any related enquiry. Email or call 01392 279751
  • Send us the relevant documents
  • Your enquiry will be considered in confidence and a plan forward
  • Sign an agreement with the barrister recommended or of your choice and together as a team we will work to resolve your legal problem

A specialist practice

We are the region’s pioneers in dealing with the public direct. We will offer you a specialist yet practical approach to your legal problem and we aim to do so at a cost that can be realistically met by you.

Where we work

Based in Exeter but serving Devon, Cornwall, Somerset and further afield, we offer high quality advice and representation across a broad range of disciplines at all court levels.

What our clients have said

I would thoroughly recommend Walnut House Chambers to anyone in need of legal services.  They have consistently provided my clients with expert advice and formidable representation.   The clerks are helpful, enquiries are dealt with swiftly and they often go the extra mile to deliver an excellent service.  My clients appreciate the straight forward and understanding way the legal position is explained to them and I am always confident that with Walnut House my clients will receive the highest possible standard of legal services.

Angie Manning – Intermediary – What’s Your Problem Torbay

Dear Ms TM, I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for looking after me during a very long day yesterday. I am extremely grateful to you for all the effort you put in for me and my children. I can now start a new chapter with my children and put everything else behind us. I would not have got the results for the children if it was not for your dedication.
Forever grateful.

K – Mum and resident of Devon

When corresponding from a great distance, confidence that things are happening in the background is a must – and was never in doubt with Andrew and his team from Walnut House.

Debbie and Mark – Residents of Australia and UK

Acting as intermediary for a client I have found the experience of dealing with Walnut House direct to be professional and knowledgeable. The clerks are pro-active as they have the tribulations of dealing with the court schedules and are positive and reliable. If the picked barrister is not available due to court schedules, as is alas sometimes the case, then a practical alternative is put up for the assignment. My experience was that they care, which is important.

Intermediary Client – Cornwall

As a layman, the opportunity to be able to instruct barristers who specialise in providing expert legal advice, advocacy and the drafting of documents, without the need and expense of firstly instructing a solicitor has been nothing less than, a saving grace. The professionalism of the team at Walnut chambers has been consistently sterling. The clerks efficiently address a client’s legal requirements, and introduce the correct barrister for the type of case. The barristers clearly review a case before conference or court, and deliver a swift legal view, demonstrating the legal merit and weakness. My experience of the barristers has been reassuring and inspirational. Walnut Chambers tell it as it is, there is no judgement cast or mirage of false hope.

JGW – Exminster

We have used Walnut Chambers on two occasions, the first through a solicitor and then Chambers directly. Having direct communication with our barrister made life much easier and the whole process smoother. Our barrister could explain to us personally what we needed to do and what we could expect and we could get in touch whenever a question arose. We were given no nonsense advice in a language we could understand. We would have no hesitation in using them again if necessary.

As you know we were very pleased with both the times we have used Mr MS. To the inexperienced, court can be a daunting and frightening experience, but Mr MS and chambers made it as easy and clear as possible.

K&N – Husband and wife; Ashburton

I was more than satisfied with the way that Lara and yourself trusted and supported me . It was a very difficult time for me and I will always be grateful . I will highly recommend walnut house.

YD – Cornwall

The distance of the world didn’t make any difference in the service and advice we received. Living in Australia, travelling to the UK for the court appearance was very easy, knowing that Andrew had clear direction and understood our case extremely well from document correspondence.


We were extremely happy with the services of Walnut House, from the initial telephone conversation with Bernard, to a skype call with the Barrister he recommended, through to our Hearing in Court.  Mr AEH was professional and personable and explained everything in an honest, understandable way.  He saw us through a very long day and remained constant and confident throughout.  We could not have done it without him and remain forever grateful for his advice and professional wisdom through a very trying case.


Civil Law

Other work undertaken by individual Barristers includes Employment, Libel & Malicious Falsehood, Wills & Probate, Trusts and Insolvency. Our Civil Law Barristers have extensive experience of selecting experts and dealing with expert evidence. The Team has developed expertise in the increasingly important area of mediation and alternative dispute resolution.

  • Personal Injury
  • Contract and Commercial
  • Land and Property
  • Landlord & Tenant and Housing
  • Professional Negligence
  • Planning

Criminal Law

Over the years our criminal barristers have appeared across the South West and nationwide in cases of the gravest kind. The strength and depth of the criminal team contributes to the quality of the representation that we can offer to all our clients.

  • Rape and Sexual Offending
  • Murder, Manslaughter and Non-Fatal Violence
  • Fraud, Commercial Crime and Confiscation
  • Driving Deaths and Motoring Offences
  • Regulatory Offences and Health and Safety
  • Inquests and Enquiries
  • Police and Professional Disciplinary
  • Robbery, Theft, and Burglary

Family Law

The members of our Family Team offer a comprehensive range of services across all aspects of family law. Our barristers are instructed to appear in all the Family Court Centres in the South West as well as in the High Court and Court of Appeal; and offer a consistent and high quality level of representation and service.

  • Public Law Children Cases
  • Private Law Children Cases
  • Ancillary Relief Cases
  • Inheritance Act Claims
  • Trust of Land Act and Cohabitee Disputes
  • Domestic Violence and Injunctions

Bernard Hayward

As Practice Director, Bernard has the overall responsibility for the running of Chambers. He is also your first point of call for enquiring about any of our barristers on a Public Access basis and has been assisting clients direct since 2004.

Having previous experience of working for solicitors, government departments and other non-legal related businesses he understand the needs of clients irrespective of whether or not you have any experience of the legal system. Please feel free to make contact and Bernard will be able to suggest how we may be able to assist and as early as possible provide an indication of possible costs to you.