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Philip Rodney Bridges Edit Profile

judge , Barrister

Philip Rodney Bridges was a British barrister and judge who ended a distinguished legal career as Chief Justice of The Gambia. He served as a Chief Justice since 1968. An easy-going Briton who has worked in Gambia since 1954, when he first went to work for the colonial government as Public Trustee and Lands Officer. As the only white minister, he has held cabinet rank since 1964 and remains a close and trusted friend to his Gambian colleagues.


Phillip Rodney Bridges was born on July 9 1922, the son of Sir Ernest Bridges, commodore of the Royal Mail Lines.


He was educated at Bedford School, read law at Aberdeen University.


Served with the West African Frontier Force in Burma during the war, and became a solicitor in 1951. He went to Gambia in 1954 and was made a temporary member of the Gambian Legislature and Executive Council in 1955 and a member of the House of Representatives from 1964 to 1968.

In 1962 he was made Solicitor-General; Attorney-General in 1964 and Chief Justice in 1968. Knighted in Britain in 1973.

On retiring to England, Bridges represented The Gambia Legion in Britain and became honorary legal adviser to the British Commmonwealth Ex-Services League. He contributed a chapter on law to The Gambia's Studies in Society and Politics (1991).

Phillip Bridges was appointed CMG in 1967 and was knighted in 1973.


Sir Phillip Bridges was invested as a Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George on 10 June 1967.


He married first, in 1951 (dissolved 1961), Rosemary Streeten; they had two sons and a daughter. He married secondly, in 1962, Jill Huyton

Rosemary Streeten

Jill Huyton