Obituary - Glenn Noel Holden



It is with deep regret that the Bar Council informs members of the death on Saturday 20 October 2018, of Glenn Noel Holden. Glenn was 68 years of age (born 5 January 1950).

There was a private Funeral on Tuesday 23 October 2018. There will be a Memorial Service and Celebration of Glenn’s Life on Thursday 1 November 2018 at 2 pm in the Rosina Room at the Abbotsford Convent, 1 St Heliers Street, Abbotsford.

Glenn was born in Brisbane. His schooling was peripatetic, to say the least: two years’ Primary School in Brisbane; then a boarder at Our Lady of Good Counsel Primary School in South-East Queensland; Gordonvale High School in North Queensland; then Port Moresby High School in New Guinea. He played rugby and had fun but did not matriculate.

He worked for the Department of Civil Aviation in Port Moresby for two years; then, with his bride, went on a two-year working holiday to the UK and Europe. 

He came to Melbourne and, in one year, working full-time as well, he completed matriculation by correspondence and night school at University High School. In 1979, he graduated LL B from the University of Melbourne.

Glenn served Articles with Jack Heffernan OAM, the first and only Secretary of the Victorian Legal Aid Committee, who established that Committee from scratch. Glenn was admitted to practice on 1 May 1980. He remained with the Committee as a Solicitor and was then a foundation Solicitor with the Legal Aid Commission from its inception in 1981 – from 1983, the Head of the Magistrates’ Court Section of the Commission’s General Law Division. He mentored Greg Smith (later barrister; NT Legal Aid; now NT Local Court Judge).

Glenn was a driving force in creating, and he wrote, the Legal Aid Commission’s first Duty Lawyers Manual (published in July 1991 – Glenn finished work on this after he came to the Bar) – a particular boon to regional centres where training and mentoring were not readily available.

He read with Remy van de Wiel (now QC) and signed the Bar Roll on 29 November 1990. He practised at the Bar mainly in Criminal Law for more than 27 years until ill health prevented him in March this year.

On a couple of occasions, once for some months, Glenn worked with the Northern Territory Legal Aid Commission in Darwin. As Counsel, Glenn had a healthy scepticism and no-nonsense style of advocacy. He was prepared to stand up to the Court – and he imbued confidence in the young Legal Aid Solicitors, to whom he became a mentor.

Glenn was devoted to his wife Judy and to his family.

Click here to view the Victorian Bar's Tribute Notice from The Age. 

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