Kweku Aggrey-Orleans is a Barrister who lives in North East London. He’s also skateboarded for over 35 years, it being one of his first memories from his childhood spent in Ghana and Japan. We met him on the streets of London a few months ago when we got talking to him about Hudson 365. A classic formal shoe to the naked eye, it’s constructed to feel like a sneaker – who better to try it out?
HUDSON LONDON | Where did you grow up?
KWEKU | I grew up in Accra Ghana until the age of 10 and thereafter in Brussels, Geneva, Yokohama (Japan) and London.
HUDSON LONDON | Does the name Kweku have a meaning in Ghanaian?
KWEKU | The name Kweku is given to male children born on Wednesday amongst the Akan ethnic group. My family are Fante from Cape Coast and Elmina in Ghana.
HUDSON LONDON | Do you practice in Ghana as well as London? How is it different?
KWEKU | Yes, I do practice in Accra. The differences are both slight and stark. It is clearly still identifiable that the way in which law is practised in Ghana derives from England and Wales. However, since Ghana’s independence, Ghana has added its own stamp (intentional and otherwise) to how the law is practised. That system has incorporated local customs and norms. Other obvious differences are the reduced use of technology within the Ghana court system, where little appears automated, and the length of time it takes to resolve a case in court. Cases tend to be judge managed in England and Wales with deadlines, whereas cases in Ghana are lawyer-driven and managed. The legal profession in Ghana is fused – there is no distinction between the role of barristers and solicitors – which allows me to work on non-contentious legal matters.
HUDSON LONDON | What do you prefer about living in Ghana to London, and vice versa?
KWEKU | In Ghana, I love the fact of living in a tropical country with all that entails. I am also inspired by the optimism Ghanaians have irrespective of their circumstances. In London, I love the independence and diversity of thought and the range of cultures in London. London is never satisfied and always on the move.
HUDSON LONDON | What was your ambition as a kid?
KWEKU | I had no ambitions per se. I had a very happy childhood. My parents organised my education. I just passed the exams.
HUDSON LONDON | And what’s the thing you love most about being a Barrister?
KWEKU | I sometimes come across and work with (be that as clients, opposing lawyers or witnesses) amazingly talented individuals, and no day is ever the same.
HUDSON LONDON | Apart from the fact that you’ve skateboarded from an early age, what else is unexpected about you?
KWEKU | I speak Japanese and collect hats.
HUDSON LONDON | Where’s your favourite place to escape to in London?
KWEKU | Portobello Road Market.
HUDSON LONDON | What’s your desert island disk?
KWEKU | There’s gotta be more than one….
Gladys Knight & the Pips: Midnight Train to Georgia.
Luther Vandross: House is not a home.
Merge: Volcanic voodoo
Steel Pulse: Bodyguard
Tommy Lee Sparta: Outlaw
Tartini: Devil’s Trill
KRS 1: Sound of the police
HUDSON LONDON | Such a great list – how about any artists?
KWEKU | Babajide Olatunji – Nigerian artist often displayed at Tafeta Gallery, London.
HUDSON LONDON | And lastly, words to live by?
KWEKU | Everyone is blagging!