The City of London has long been an international centre for Arbitration and dispute resolution. The Masters of the early Guilds, the forerunners of today's Livery Companies, often acted as arbitrators in disputes between guild members and between those members and their customers.
The Worshipful Company of Arbitrators seeks to foster the professions of arbitration, mediation and other forms of private dispute resolution as a collegiate forum for practitioners and proponents. We aim to support the Lord Mayor, the Sheriffs and the Aldermen in the development of UK business and in the promotion of London and the UK as a centre for the provision of private dispute resolution services and as a source of advice and guidance internationally. There is an Annual Lecture held in the City and a Pupillage Scheme provides assistance to aspiring arbitrators. We are members of the Financial Services Group of modern Livery Companies through which we provide active support to the Lord Mayor in his rôle as ambassador for UK trade and commerce.
Through its Charity the Company provides support in the education of students in the fields of arbitration and other related forms of dispute resolution; a number of grants and bursaries are given every year.
New Court Installed
On Tuesday 29 October 2013 in the magnificent surroundings of the Mercers' Hall Dr Derek Ross, John Uff and Michael Goodridge were installed as Master, Senior Warden and Junior Warden respectively. Their profiles follow below.
Dr Derek Ross, Master
Dr Derek Ross is a chartered civil engineer, chartered arbitrator, accredited mediator, adjudicator and conciliator. He graduated from Trinity College Dublin in 1969. He holds a PhD from that same university (1976), an MSc in Construction Law and Arbitration from King’s College London (2000), and a Diploma in International Commercial Arbitration from the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (2010).
Prof John Uff, Senior Warden
John originally qualified in engineering but switched to the Bar and practised at Keating Chambers, initially as a barrister and QC and now as an arbitrator and dispute resolver. His practice has covered most parts of the world including a recent public inquiry in Trinidad. He was the founding director of the Centre of Construction Law at Kings College, London, where he continues to teach as Emeritus Professor. He served as Treasurer of Gray’s Inn in 2011.
Michael Goodridge, Junior Warden
Michael is a solicitor by profession, who prior to retirement specialised in family law. As a collaborative lawyer, he was involved in resolving disputes between husbands and wives without going to Court. Michael still sits as a Deputy District Judge in the London County Courts.