Vale – His Honour Graham Fricke QC


Bar Roll No: 652

It is with deep regret that the Bar Council informs members of the death of His Honour Graham Lewis Fricke QC on 7 November 2021.

Graham was born on 5 December 1935.

He was an outstanding student who progressed from the state school system to obtain an LLB with honours from the University of Melbourne and an LLM from the University of Pennsylvania.

Having started his career as an academic and lecturer at the University of Tasmania, he never ceased to be deeply interested in both the law and the lore of the courts.

Graham was admitted to practice on 1 December 1961 and signed the Bar Roll on 1 February 1962. He read with The Honourable Richard E McGarvie. He was appointed Queens Counsel on 27 November 1979.

Graham had a mixed practice, mainly in civil law, with expertise in areas such as personal injuries, compulsory acquisition, and defamation. He was extremely efficient and popular with both solicitors and clients.

He was a mentor to three readers, Robert W Davis, David J Bell, and The Honourable Stuart R Morris QC.

He was a prolific author of articles and books:  including being the co-author of The Law of Trusts in Victoria (1964) and the author of Compulsory Acquisition of Land in Australia (1982), Judges of the High Court (1986), Tales from the Courts (1999) and Shute the messenger (2011).

He was appointed a judge of the County Court on 31 May 1983 and, although Graham enjoyed his forays into criminal law on the court, he did not enjoy sentencing and retired in 1995 to enjoy travel and retirement.

Graham loved relaxing with friends and colleagues, especially with a red wine in hand, discussing politics, the law and social justice. After a couple of drinks, he would launch into poetry, often his own work, and explore life, philosophy, and history. Graham was a warm friend to those who worked with him.

He will be sorely missed by all members of the Bench and Bar.