Portrait of Darren Weir

Darren Weir

Lecturer in Law
Director of Lawyering Skills

About

Darren Weir was called to the Bar in 1998. He specialised for 12 years in criminal and regulatory law and practised from Stour Chambers in Canterbury following his London pupillage. Darren prosecuted and defended an array of offences from motoring to murder and appeared in all level of court including the Court of Appeal. He was the ‘go to’ local counsel for the Crown Prosecution Service at the time in cases of fraud and sexual offences. He was, for example, prosecution counsel at first instance in the seminal case of R .v. Heard [2008] QB 43 where his adopted submissions were then followed by the Court of Appeal. Other reported cases include R .v. Brett [2005] EWCA Crim 983, a case which involved undercover policing and abuse of process. 

As the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 was still new when he was called, he became an expert in hate crime legislation. Between 2007 – 2010 he was asked by the CPS to be the Independent Legal Advisor on their ‘Hate Crime Scrutiny Panel’ whose task was to review hate crime and domestic violence cases on a quarterly basis.  He was instrumental in drafting the first local protocol between the police and CPS.    

In 2010 Darren became a specialist associate lecturer at Kent Law School, teaching the law of evidence for law students and forensic science students. Whilst doing this on a part time basis, he also ran a hospitality business in Sussex. He brought his legal knowledge to bear in the business world as he ran a profitable business and served as Vice Chairman and Chairman in an important stakeholder trade association. Whilst in that capacity he served as spokesperson at a local and national level for the said association which represented over 120 businesses. He gave evidence, for example, before a House of Lords Select Committee on the practices of online booking sites. 

He also served as a member of the local coastal team (a team that liaised with Central Government) and helped establish a joint local authority and association planning panel. He was responsible for important initiatives such as a local tourism passport which helped promote local businesses to visiting tourists. He also applied his legal training when he became a Director of a Community Interest Company which took over the running of a failing 500 seat Victorian Theatre. Darren was responsible for sales, marketing, contracts and compliance as well as managing a volunteer force of over 50 staff. In his five-year tenure he turned around a £70k pa loss making business into an £800k revenue making one with footfall rising from 4,000 pa to 50,000 pa. He also obtained grant funding for the building’s façade restoration.  

In 2018 Darren became a permanent lecturer of law at Kent Law School.  He convenes the law of evidence module for undergraduates and has taught on the policing module and the critical introduction to law module.  He introduced the Mock Trial Advocacy module in his first year at KLS and is now the Director of Lawyering Skills, responsible for all the co-curricular modules including mooting, mock trial advocacy, negotiation and mediation and specialises in advocacy training. He completed is PGCHE in 2020 and his keen interest is in the development of legal education to meet the challenges of a changing work environment. In 2021 Darren edited the CILEX (Chartered Institute for Legal Executives) manual for their Criminal Justice Administration Course. He has also given script editing advice to TV companies writing criminal dramas to ensure authenticity and legal accuracy.  

Having previously been a visiting lecturer at Brighton University, Darren is also an external examiner on the Policing and Criminal Investigation degree at Staffordshire University.  

Darren was formally a member of the Criminal Bar Association and is a member of Middle Temple. He was previously a pupil supervisor and is undertaking further training to train pupil barristers in advocacy.  

Research interests

Darren’s focus is on the work required to ensure that Kent Law School’s LLB equips its students for future careers as solicitors and barristers whilst ensuring that the teaching provided is in keeping with the law school’s established ethos of being one of the country’s leading critical law schools. 

Teaching

Darren principally teaches undergraduates about the Law relating to evidence.

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