I am very sorry to learn of the death of another very good friend of mine in recent weeks. Andrew Keogh helped me greatly when I was very ill some time ago and was a very amusing and kind man. He was also a fine lawyer.
“My friend Andrew Keogh, who has died of lung cancer aged 66, was a barrister, blogger, writer and political activist.
He was called to the bar in 1978 and, starting out in law in London in the 1980s, was committed to the legal aid system and to resisting the then often transparent racism of the Brixton police. A friend recalls being astonished at how elegant Andrew looked in pinstripe suit, wig and gown. Andrew explained that “if you’re a poor, black kid being fitted up by the Brixton nick, that’s how you want your brief to look”.
He joined No5 chambers, and became a widely respected jury advocate, known for his integrity and his willingness to devote time to helping younger members of his profession. He was also a writer, author of the longstanding White Rabbit blog, of two published novels, twentytwelve (2006), and The Killing Room (2013), and of the unfinished Diary of a Jobbing Barrister.
Andrew was born in Leeds, son of Austin, a headteacher, and Hilda, a district nurse. He was brought up a Roman Catholic, and was educated at St Michael’s college, a Catholic grammar school, but later converted to Anglicanism. He went on to the London School of Economics, where he studied political science and then law, and to the Inns of Court.
Despite living and working in London, he thought of himself as a Yorkshireman, and was a loyal supporter of Leeds United and Yorkshire county cricket club. Probably cricket mattered the most to him: his parents had lived within easy walking distance of Headingley cricket ground and he regularly went with his father to watch both Yorkshire and England. He inherited a magnificent collection of Wisden from his father, which has now been bequeathed to his sons.