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Unlawful Killings book by Wendy Joseph

Wendy Joseph

Held on Wednesday 21st February 2024

"We SO enjoyed the talk. What an impressive woman, so balanced and humane. The way she spoke, so measured, huge brain obvs! And I learnt a few things, maybe even grew a synapse, what's not to love." KH

"Thank you for such a great evening. Found it fascinating.

We all so enjoyed it. Well done." KN


Srewart Collins interviewing Her Honour Wendy Joseph
Every member of the audience receives a complimentary glass of Roebuck fizz
Her Honour Wendy Joseph signing her book
Book signing after the literary talk

About Wendy Joseph

It was a pleasure to meet Wendy Joseph who recently stepped down as one of the handful of judges qualified to preside over murder trials at the Old Bailey. And one of the few female ones at that.


She had the audience spellbound with her description of life as a trial judge at the Old Bailey and her 

(very qualified) thoughts on how we need to help people before they offend, before it is too late.

As she explained, murder cannot be undone or put right.  

Interviewer:  Stewart Collins

Stewart Collins is the Literary Director of the Kent House Series having also founded literary festivals in both Stoke-on-Trent and Petworth, West Sussex. A fifteen year career as a singer has been followed extensive experience as a writer, broadcaster and festival director, the latter most notably as the Artistic Director of the large scale Henley Festival.

Unlawful Killings

A gripping account of the law that reads like a cliffhanger. THE TIMES 

For the first time, Wendy Joseph can now talk about what it’s really like presiding over and ruling on life-changing cases as an Old Bailey judge.  Through six extraordinary stories, she explores why we kill, what happens in court and what this teaches us about the society we live in.  A page-turner of a book, and a must-see event.

"Every day in the UK lives are suddenly, brutally, wickedly taken away. Victims are shot or stabbed. Less often they are strangled or suffocated or beaten to death. Rarely they are poisoned, pushed off high buildings, drowned or set alight. Then there are the many who are killed by dangerous drivers, or corporate gross negligence. There are a lot of ways you can kill someone. I know because I've seen most of them at close quarters."

High-profile murder cases all too often grab our attention in dramatic media headlines - for every unlawful death tells a story. But, unlike most of us, a judge doesn't get to turn the page and move on. Nor does the defendant, or the family of the victim, nor the many other people who populate the court room.

And yet, each of us has a vested interest in what happens there. And while most people have only the sketchiest idea of what happens inside a Crown Court, any one of us could end up in the witness-box or even in the dock.

With breath-taking skill and deep compassion, Wendy describes how cases unfold and illustrates exactly what it's like to be a murder trial judge and a witness to human good and bad. Sometimes very bad.

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