JUDGES, legal colleagues and court staff gathered at Bradford Crown Court yesterday to pay tribute to Halifax-born barrister Graham Hyland QC who died in hospital last month.
The highly-respected 59-year-old, who was known for his love of life and stylish advocacy, had been the head of chambers at Broadway House in Bradford for 13 years.
His colleague Michelle Colborne QC claimed that his death had left a “massive hole” in the region’s legal profession.
Mr Hyland’s widow Jane, his mother Evelyn and children Edward and Lucy were in a packed courtroom together with other family members to hear a series of tributes led by the Recorder of Bradford Roger Thomas QC, who was also born in Halifax.
Judge Thomas recalled stories from Graham’s life in the town and his education at Heath Grammar School.
He described Graham as “very much a son of Halifax” and he recalled an exasperated comment from his friend’s headmaster who said that Mr Hyland was “not fit to sweep the streets of Halifax”.
Judge Thomas pointed out that as it happened Graham was later employed by the borough council as a street cleaner for three months.
Mr Hyland was called to the Bar in 1978 and became a Queen’s Counsel in the late 1990s.
Miss Colborne said her colleague’s decision to stay in Bradford after becoming a QC had transformed the professional criminal bar in the city and all his colleagues owed him a huge debt of gratitude.
Mr Hyland’s funeral service will take place at The Halifax Minster on Monday at 1.30pm.