I was called for jury service at the local Crown Court at Dorchester and served on a jury trying quite a serious offence, indecency with a child by a C of E clergyman. Plainly I have to be very careful not to reveal anything of the jury discussions but we did find him guilty on both counts.
Full marks to the court officials and staff who took my trans status in their stride as did, now I come to think about it, my fellow jurors.
I was very conscious of not being seen to lead the other jurors by virtue of my professional status and didn't tell them that I was a barrister until after we had decided our verdict. Quite by chance I found myself foreperson of the jury which meant I had to chair the discussion and announce the verdict in court at the end of the trial.
The other concern of the week was whether the jurors would get to court at all. In the early part of the week the snow interfered with transport, particularly on the high road between Sherborne and Dorchester. I decided to leave the driving to others and caught the bus in. On Tuesday evening it was a close run thing about getting home. The police had closed to road to all but 4x4's but it turned out that included the bus, so we ploughed on steadily and got home a little later than scheduled.
It was a worry to know what to wear. Elegantly female or snow-competant? I certainly had no choice but to choose walking boots on two days when the snow was worst. In the battle between my Jaeger Cashmere and athick railway pea-jacket it was 4-1 to the cashmere!
And my TV appearance due on Monday evening last? The snow also affected that! BBC Inside out decided that they had a topical piece aboyut the Gloucester police coping with the affect of snow on transport.. I'm told that I will be on in a week or two and when I have a new date, I'll let you know.
My other bit of news is that I will be moving house in March, temporarily to Glastonbury and later in the summer to near Taunton, so 2013 is definitely going to be a year of new beginnings. Perhaps in other ways as well?
I'll keep you posted
Robin Moira White