Rhian Kirby

Rhian Kirby

Year of Call: 2000
Clerk: James Watson /Lee Fifield

Rhian is a leading junior barrister in the field of childcare law, and her practice area covers the whole of South Wales.

She is considered a team player when instructed in a case, and welcomes a dialogue with solicitors during the pre-proceedings process to assist in the early preparation of the case. 

Whilst being a hard working individual with attention to detail, Rhian is renown for quickly building a rapport with the client as her entry in Chambers UK 2016 illustrates. She is recognised as being approachable to professional and lay clients alike, and empathetic in dealing with the sensitive matters raised within family and care proceedings. Going hand in hand with this approach is her ability to communicate advice clearly and concisely to the solicitor and client, tailoring the manner in which such advice is conveyed to ensure clarity and understanding. 

Rhian is a fluent Welsh speaker capable of conducting both conferences and hearings through the medium of Welsh. 

For many years, Rhian has provided CPD training to solicitors and counsel alike as to recent developments in case law and legislation. This of course necessitates a clear understanding and capacity to analyse the subject matter.  She has experience of lecturing university students and has undertaken the same through the medium of Welsh.

Rhian has developed a thriving practice within the field of care proceedings. She has a varied practice, representing local authorities, parents and guardians alike, and cases have included representing Local Authorities in cases of complex historical non-accidental injury spanning many years and often involving sibling groups, representing parents and grandparents facing allegations of sexual abuse and / or physical abuse, representing Guardians and children who are competent to give instructions. Rhian is also regularly instructed by the Official Solicitor to represent adults with cognitive difficulities.

Notable and Reported cases 

Family & Child Care

Rhian’s practice focuses on Local Authority work, parent and guardian work within the area of family and childcare. Additionally, her previous experience of working within a busy Local Authority child care team has provided her with in-depth and invaluable experience as to the complex workings and structures of the processes relevant to a practice in child care.

Chambers UK 2022 record that Rhian is a strong junior with a wide-ranging care practice.  She acts for Local Authorities and parents in challenging matters such as those involving non-accidental injury and sexual abuse. 

The Legal 500 2021 recommend Rhian as a Leading Junior in Child Law (Public and Private). 


  •  "She works tirelessly and diligently for those she represents.  She is an extremely effective advocate who is thorough and exacting in her detailed preparation." (Chambers UK, 2022)

  • 'Her strength is her ability to communicate with her clients and win their confidence.' (Legal 500, 2021)

  • 'An exceptional barrister. The paperwork she prepares is always of the highest standard. She is an effective advocate who is well thought of by the judiciary and her peers.' (Chambers and Partners, 2018)

  • 'She is pleasant, user-friendly and very good at what she does.' (Chambers UK, 2018)

  • Strong junior with a varied care practice, representing local authorities, guardians and parents in non-accidental injury and abuse cases, among others. Interviewees note her excellent manner with vulnerable clients and her handling of complex issues. Strengths: "She is extremely patient, has excellent preparation, is very approachable and experienced. More than a safe pair of hands." (Chambers UK 2017)

  • 'Well-regarded barrister who specialises in representing local authorities, guardians, parents and other family members in care proceedings. She has particular experience in cases involving non-accidental injury and allegations of historical sexual or physical abuse.' "She is very comprehensive, very approachable and very good on a personal level in building a relationship of trust with guardians." (Chambers UK 2016)

Education & Qualfication

  • 1999-2000: BVC Inns of Court School of Law London (Very Competent grade) 

  • 1996-1999: LL.B (Hons) Cardiff University 

  • 1989-1996: Secondary Education at Queen Elizabeth Maridunum School, Carmarthen 


  • Hardwick Scholarship for BVC year (1999-2000)

  • Sir Thomas Moore scholarship (Lincoln’s Inn) for pupillage year (2001-2002)