We are deeply saddened by the passing of The Honourable Sir (Richard) Ian Barker KC on Friday 11 November 2022. Sir Ian was an exceptional judge, arbitrator and mediator, and a warm, wise and loyal friend and mentor to many here at Bankside.
Admitted to the New Zealand Bar in 1958, Sir Ian was made silk in 1973. He was a Judge of the High Court of New Zealand from 1976 to 1997 presiding over major commercial litigation and making distinguished contributions to the evolution of the New Zealand court system. In 1994 Sir Ian was knighted for services to the law.
Sir Ian also served as a judge of several Pacific courts, including the Fiji Court of Appeal, Vanuatu Court of Appeal, Samoa Court of Appeal, Pitcairn Court of Appeal, and Kiribati Court of Appeal. Most notably, Sir Ian served on the Cook Islands Court of Appeal from 1990 to 2019, including as President of the Court.
Following his retirement, Sir Ian was a founding member of Bankside Chambers and one of New Zealand’s pioneers of international and domestic arbitration. He conducted a considerable number of commercial arbitrations and mediations including appointments as to several arbitral tribunals for the ICC Paris and the PCA at The Hague.
For the last twenty years, Sir Ian filled the informal but important role as Bankside’s senior Kaumātua. His mana, wisdom and humour was apparent through numerous speeches at Bankside events and will live on long in our memories.
Our deepest sympathies are with Sir Ian’s family at this time.
Sir Ian, moe mai ra e te rangatira i roto i te aroha o te atua.
Rest in peace within the love and embrace of God.