15 September 2016

Jonathan Turner QC

Jonathan Turner QC

It is with great sadness that we have to announce that Jonathan Chadwick Turner QC (always known as Jon) died on 14 September 2016, aged 65, after a long illness which, despite its severity, he faced with great dignity, courage and characteristic humour.

Jon was called to the Bar in 1973 and practised exclusively in the field of criminal law. He joined the Chambers of Jeffrey Thomas QC MP at 3 Temple Gardens where he remained in practice for 18 years before joining what was then the Chambers of Michael Worsley QC at 6 King’s Bench Walk in 1992. He was appointed as an Assistant Recorder, then Recorder, from 1997 to 2004. He took silk in 2003.

Jon’s love of the criminal law was obvious and he quickly established a reputation as a formidable advocate both prosecuting and defending, but it was with defending that he felt most at home and which gave him the greatest professional satisfaction. A superb barrister, his performances in court were characterised by charm, wit and great tactical acumen. Refreshingly down-to-earth, whether cross-examining or making speeches juries loved his deep Lancastrian tones. He advocated skilfully: often understated but to devastating effect. Clients, colleagues and judges admired him, not only for his professional abilities and integrity but also for his good-natured humour, modesty and even temperament.

Jon was a great Chambers’ man who loved the Bar and its traditions. He was proud to belong to an honourable profession and his contribution to it, and to the life of his colleagues, was enormous. He was an outstanding supervisor of pupils, all of whom became his friends and many of whom have gone on themselves to pursue successful careers at the Bar.

A gregarious and cultured man with deep roots, he wore his learning lightly. He loved nothing better than conversation, at which he sparkled, carried out in the company of his many friends and preferably accompanied by quality beer and rich Virginia tobacco. Jon was a loyal and dedicated friend and his friendships, often of many years standing, reflected every aspect of his rich and varied life. Warm and generous, easily moved to deep, throaty laughter, his company was delightful and memorable.

Jon loved life and he was loved in return by those who knew him. He will be greatly missed.