THE ADVOCATE V O L . 7 6 P A R T 2 M A R C H 2 0 1 8 171
Your editor, Michael Bain, has asked me to write Entre Nous
on this, the occasion of the Advocate’s 75th birthday.* I am
honoured to do so and somewhat chuffed to have been asked.
Three score and fifteen years ago, the late Elmore Meredith,
Q.C., established the Advocate by publishing its first edition at the end of
The world was then in the midst of a terrible war. That month the Kraków
Ghetto was liquidated, an attempt on the life of Hitler failed, the Red Army
was forced to evacuate Kharkov, a trainload of French Jews was transported
to Sobibór, 173 civilians were killed when a bomb fell on a London air-raid
shelter and Greer Garson won an Oscar for her role in the eponymous
movie Mrs. Miniver—like Laurence Olivier’s Henry V, a highly successful
At that time there were fewer than a thousand members of the B.C. bar.
Half that number were in the armed forces. Elmore Meredith decided that
it would be appropriate to create some means of keeping in touch with
those in service abroad, disseminating news about them to what remained
of the profession at home. That news, all too often, was of those wounded
and the many who were killed in action. Some became inhabitants of prisoner
of-war camps, like Cecil Merritt, whose citation for bravery at the
Dieppe Raid, a year earlier, was included in the first edition—bravery which
won him the Victoria Cross. Nine members of the B.C. bar and six students
lost their lives in action in World War II.
The profession in March 1943 was almost exclusively made up of men. As
far as can be discerned, there were only three women practising in 1943:
* Because the March 2018 issue is a special, commemorative one, reflecting the 75th year of publication of the Advocate,
we have asked David Roberts, Q.C., the third and longest-serving editor of the Advocate (he became editor in 1967 and
remained a contributing editor until 2017) to write the editorial for this issue. – Ed.