How Teachers Utilise AI

Artificial intelligence (AI) is being used by teachers more and more in the classroom, which is changing the way that education is provided. Here are some examples of how educators are utilising AI and the impact it is having on students:

  •  Personalised Learning:

AI is being utilised to develop adaptive learning systems that modify course material based on the requirements of specific students. These platforms evaluate the performance of the students and modify the curriculum to concentrate on areas where they might require more help.

  • Automated Grading & Learning Analytics:

Assignment and quiz grading is being automated by AI technologies. This makes it possible for professors to give students feedback on time and consistently, which helps students recognise areas that need work right away.

Analytics powered by AI can reveal patterns in student performance and learning habits. Educators can utilise this information to make well-informed choices regarding intervention and strategy implementation.

  • Virtual Teaching Assistance:

Chatbots and virtual assistants driven by AI are being utilised to give students immediate support. In addition to offering extra support outside of scheduled class times, these resources can respond to inquiries, provide clarifications, and mentor students through the learning process.

  • Automated Administrative Tasks:

Teachers’ administrative responsibilities are being streamlined by AI, freeing them up to concentrate more on teaching. Teachers may focus on student engagement and support by freeing up critical time with automated grading, attendance tracking, and other regular duties.

Even though artificial intelligence (AI) in education has many advantages, its application must be carefully considered, taking into account data protection, ethical issues, and the need for a well-rounded strategy that integrates technology with efficient teaching techniques.

Despite the obvious benefits, it us clear that one thing AI can’t do is provide the personal touch.  AI cannot interact with students and talk about feelings in English literature in the same way, cannot extol the virtues of what science can achieve, cannot celebrate students’ individually – and more importantly cannot care about students’ well-being and ensure their safeguarding in the same way a human can.

I personally use AI in my business as a digital marketer quite a bit. It assists me in various ways such as using Chat GPT to gather ideas or Quillbot to assist me in paraphrasing. It has helped me to get my work done more efficiently as at times I don’t have to spend as much time thinking for ideas and I’m also picking up on how AI paraphrases and thinks of new ideas and applying that to my own work.

Here at Aston Bond, we are all for AI being used to enhance everyday life but strongly believe relationships are at the heart of human nature.  That’s how we do business, and we believe that will remain unchanged for many years to come.

The Festive Season is about to begin!

It’s that magical time of the year, and at Aston Bond, we’re diving headfirst into the holiday spirit! As we wrap up another incredible year of hard work, dedication, and growth, it’s time to come together and celebrate the warmth of the season.

Our offices are transforming into winter wonderlands with twinkling lights, festive decorations, and a contagious air of excitement. The holiday cheer is contagious as colleagues collaborate to bring the spirit of Christmas to every corner of our workspace.

As we celebrate the holiday season, we’re also eagerly looking forward to the opportunities and challenges that the upcoming year will bring. Together, we’re poised to tackle new goals, support each other, and continue the journey of success.

From all of us at Aston Bond, we wish you a joyous holiday season filled with warmth, laughter, and moments of connection. Please feel free to share any Christmas decorations at your home or workplace! Here is a few we have done so far by our brilliant team:

Judge to Taste Test Competing Ciders

The High Court heard arguments today on a “knock-off” trade mark dispute between Thatchers and Aldi, during which a judge will blind taste test two different ciders.  

Her Honour Judge Melissa Clarke will determine  whether Aldi’s Taurus brand—which has been accused of “riding on the coat tails” of the Somerset brewer— is being “passed off” as  Thatcher’s hazy lemon cider. . With the debut of the Taurus drinks in May of last year, Thatchers is suing Aldi for passing off and infringing on intellectual property.

Thatchers’ Martin Howe KC stated at a hearing at the Rolls Building that Aldi’s launch of its Taurus product gave it a “unfair advantage” because of the product’s packaging’s resemblance to Thatchers’. According to Howe, “this has given Aldi an advantage.” He has argued that despite appearing to have done little to promote the product, Aldi  have made significant sales which, he has stated, was essentially their entire strategy from day one.  The resemblance in the products’ looks here is paramount and he argues can easily be misleading.

‘There is a real risk that some consumers, bearing in mind the very rapid nature of the transaction, plonking it in their trolley thinking it is the Thatchers product.’

Howe informed the court that he, his junior, and a student had all conducted a comparable test using two cups marked “A” and “B,” and he asked the judge to conduct a blind tasting test to see if the items tasted different. According to him, “the do taste materially different, at least to a substantial number of people,” which will distort consumers’ perceptions of the product and harm the brand.

Although Her Honour Judge Melissa Clarke  would have the ciders delivered to Oxford where she would taste them privately, Clarke agreed to conduct a taste test. The judge joked, “I have a no-alcohol while sitting rule.”  

The court heard that Aldi refuted the allegations and any desire to mislead customers or “ride on the coattails” of Thatcher’s registered trademark.

The trial continues and is still ongoing.

If you have any infringement concerns or are concerned about damage being done to your brand’s reputation, please do not hesitate to contact our award winning head of litigation: James Dyche at

The Autumn Statement’s unnoticed tax increase

The chancellor’s Autumn Statement focused mostly on tax reduction, but the policy choices won’t stop taxes from remaining at their highest point ever.

Economists refer to these “hidden” tax increases as “fiscal drag,” and it can have a substantial effect on household earnings.  The phrase refers to a procedure wherein more people are “dragged” into paying more personal income taxes without any increase in tax rates. Jeremy Hunt chose to keep income tax and national insurance (NI) thresholds unchanged, which means they would stay locked until 2028 even though he announced a reduction in NI rates. Normally, tax thresholds increase in tandem with inflation—that is, the pace at which retail prices rise—but since 2021, they have remained unchanged.

Due to a recent era of high inflation, many workers were able to secure salary increases to help with the rising cost of living. However, since a larger percentage of their income is taxed or because they are now in a higher tax bracket than they were previously, they are also paying more tax. According to official estimates, 2.2 million more workers pay the base rate income tax of 20% than they did three years earlier, and 1.6 million more people fell into the 40% tax band during that same period. The freezing of tax bands, which determine the tax rates that apply to an individual’s wages, is referred to by critics as a “stealth tax” due to the slow implementation of the process as an individual’s income increases.

The chancellor’s cut in NI, which is a fixed percentage deducted from people’s wages and goes towards the cost of benefits, the NHS and the state pension, will partially offset this so-called stealth tax. But income tax revenues – the largest money maker for the Treasury – will continue to rise.

“The Treasury has done nothing to protect us from the misery of fiscal drag, and means the lion’s share of the damage done to our finances from these tax hikes will still continue to be felt years down the line,” said Sarah Coles, head of personal finance at Hargreaves Lansdown, even though the 2% reduction in NI “isn’t to be sniffed at.” Laith Khalaf, head of investment at AJ Bell, continued, “Fiscal drag is a powerful force, especially when tax thresholds are frozen in the face of an inflationary storm.”

The UK’s official forecaster, the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR), has estimated as a result of the policy, almost four million more people will be paying income tax and three million will move into the higher bracket by 2029.

Paul Johnson, director of the Institute for Fiscal Studies independent think tank, said the tax cuts for NI and businesses would not be enough to “prevent this from being the biggest tax raising Parliament in modern times”.

“Higher inflation pushes up tax receipts by more than it pushes up spending on debt interest or social security benefits. But rather than use the proceeds to ease the ongoing ‘fiscal drag’ effects of threshold freezes, or to compensate public services for higher costs, the chancellor opted to cut other taxes – most notably National Insurance and corporation tax,” he said.

The Resolution Foundation said households would on average be £1,900 worse off over the current parliament period from 2019 until the next general election. “The truth is, taxes are up not down,” said Torsten Bell, chief executive of the independent think tank which focuses on improving living standards for those on low to middle incomes. “The cuts [in the Autumn Statement] are dwarfed by tax rises already under way.”

If you need any further advice on how best to manage your money, consider taking independent financial advice from an accountant or IFA.  If you are interested in setting up any trusts for future financial planning, our Private Client department can assist.

Contact us with any queries, and we would be happy to assist.

Deliveroo no longer legally required to interact with unions

Judges have decided that Deliveroo cannot be legally forced to participate in collective bargaining with a union that represents its riders. This ruling is the most recent development in a protracted legal dispute that started when a union attempted to represent a group of riders regarding working conditions and pay. Although lower courts had already rejected the case, an appeal was filed with the Supreme Court.

Nonetheless, the appeal was unanimously rejected by the Supreme Court’s judges.

Deliveroo riders did not have an “employment relationship” with the food courier company, according to Judge Vivien Rose, and thus were therefore not eligible for mandatory collective bargaining. In a ruling, Lady Rose and Lord Lloyd-Jones stated that a number of elements, such as the riders’ freedom to turn down job offers and to work for other companies, were “fundamentally inconsistent” with this kind of relationship. Through the formal process of collective bargaining, trade unions deal with employers on behalf of their members.

Due to the fact that riders are not considered “workers” under UK employment  law, the IWGB was initially denied authority to represent riders in 2017. It presented a legal argument, but the Central Arbitration Committee (CAC), a labour law body, determined that riders were self-employed.

From then, the union has been pursuing several appeals, all of which have reached the Supreme Court. The question of whether the agreement between the food courier and its riders qualified under Article 11 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which protects the freedom to form unions, was one of the arguments made in the case, which was dismissed on Tuesday.

According to the Supreme Court, there is no law in the UK that prohibits riders from organising or joining a union, nor is there any law that prohibits Deliveroo from engaging in collective bargaining with them. However, its decision stated: “The issue is whether Article 11 requires the United Kingdom to go beyond that current position and to enact legislation conferring on Article 11 workers the right to require their reluctant employer to recognise and negotiate with the union of their choice.” According to a Deliveroo representative, the UK has “repeatedly and at every level” acknowledged that its riders are independent contractors.

“This is a positive judgement for Deliveroo riders, who value the flexibility that self-employed work offers,” the spokeswoman continued.

The IWGB countered that: “Flexibility, including the option for account substitution, is no reason to strip workers of basic entitlements like fair pay and collective bargaining rights.”

Deliveroo said that it and the GMB Union had reached a “voluntary partnership agreement” in 2021, which recognised riders as independent contractors but granted the union collective bargaining rights on salary and benefits.

If you ever have any employment concerns with  which you require assistance, then we would be more than happy to help you here at Aston Bond.  Our employment solicitor, Ilinca Mardarescu has extensive experience acting on behalf of employees asserting individual rights and similarly, acting for companies defending claims brought by employees . Do feel free to contact her on or call on +44 (0)1753 486 777.

Men’s Mental Health Month

Men’s Mental Health Month is November, and it’s important to raise awareness of this often-silent issue that affects a great number of people. Beneath the exterior of fortitude and resiliency, men often confront a complex array of mental health difficulties. This month offers a chance to dispel myths, promote candid dialogue, and offer assistance with mental health.

There is a very strong stigma surrounding men’s mental health. Historically, men have been expected to express their emotions within a rigid framework set by society norms. The stigma associated with mental health issues frequently deters men from getting treatment. We explore the effects of these preconceptions and how crucial it is to destroy them in order to foster an accepting culture.

Men frequently have different mental health issues, such as the pressure from society to uphold traditional masculinity and the often-ignored difficulties with body image, self-esteem, and emotional expression.  An essential component of mental health advocacy is communication. We talk about the need of having candid conversations in both social and private spheres. Men’s experiences, anxieties, and victories can be shared, which helps build a feeling of community and lessen the stigma attached to mental health issues.

Strong support networks and wholesome connections are essential for mental wellness. In addition, the benefits of exercise, diet, and mindfulness techniques on men’s mental health should be considered the relationship between physical and mental well-being. Men might be empowered to take proactive measures towards leading balanced and healthy lives by emphasising and normalising holistic approaches.

In a study of 1000 men by Priory Private Healthcare, 40% of men polled said it would take thoughts of suicide or self-harm to compel them to seek professional help. 40% have never spoken to anyone about their mental health due to being too embarrassed or by the negative stigma on the issue as 77% have suffered with symptoms of negative mental health. At the most concerning end, nearly 70-80% of people who die by suicide are men and 1 in 3 men in the UK have experienced suicidal thoughts.

Aston Bond believes that Men’s Mental Health Month is an important chance to raise awareness of a topic that needs greater consideration and education. By breaking down preconceived notions, encouraging candid dialogue, and offering assistance, we can help create a culture in which men are confident enough to put their mental health first. Let’s end the stigma and open the door to a more accepting and caring approach to mental health. Together, let’s break the silence and pave the way for a more compassionate and inclusive approach to men’s mental health.

Kulbir Conner at The Green Room College: Her Journey

Kulbir Conner, our Head of Residential Property here at Aston Bond recently attended The Green Room College to give a talk about her journey!  The Green Room College is an Independent School in Windsor providing an alternative solution for young people for whom mainstream education is not an option.

Kulbir shared her inspiring journey as a highly regarded property lawyer, giving students a glimpse into her path and the world of work. It was a great session and has sparked some real curiosity about potential legal career paths for a couple of the students who attended.

Many positions at law firms sometimes appear extremely demanding and are described as “professional” and “suit and tie” in nature. Despite the serious atmosphere of law, the solicitors and staff at Aston Bond take pride in maintaining a more approachable and friendly manner. 

By participating in these events and educating more people about our experiences and the legal profession generally, we may help to advance this more positive perception of the legal profession. 

If you ever need any help with residential property or conveyancing matter, please contact Kulbir Conner at or ring us on +44 (0)1753 486 777

2023 King’s Speech

In his inaugural King’s Speech, King Charles has set the government’s priorities for the coming year. In the speech, ministers laid out their plans to pass twenty-one bills during the upcoming year-long session of Parliament. Approximately one-third were either carried over from the previous session or had already been published. It is the first—and probably the last—such blueprint of Rishi Sunak’s administration before the upcoming general election in the United Kingdom, which is scheduled for next year.

Some of the key changes that were announced in Kings Charles speech were:

  • A Sentencing Bill would make it more likely that short terms for lesser offences be served in the community, with a mandate whole-life penalties for the worst murder offences as well as preventing convicted rapists from being released early.
  • The existing Terrorism (Protection of Premises) Bill will deliver Martyn’s law, forcing UK venues to draw up and adhere to anti-terror plans.
  • A Leasehold and Freehold Bill will ban leaseholds for new houses, but not new flats, in England and Wales, and increase the standard lease extension period to 990 years.
  • An Animal Welfare (Livestock Exports) Bill will ban the export of cattle from Great Britain for fattening and slaughter.
  • Pledges to strengthen consumer rights online and tackle fake reviews are contained in the Digital Markets, Competition and Consumers Bill.
  • A Tobacco and Vapes Bill will deliver plans for a (much-discussed) phased ban on smoking, and introduce restrictions on the packaging and marketing of vapes.
  • An Arbitration Bill will introduce new rules for individuals and businesses to resolve disputes without going to court.

Many more changes were announced with some, such as the replacement of section 21 evictions being kicked to the curb whilst the Courts undergo reforms, being a substantial way off yet.  However , these were some of the changes which were more eye catching and could have the potential to affect a greater proportion of the population. The King of England usually gives a speech annually regarding new changes (or updates on older ones). Stay tuned to Aston Bond to always be in the know as to how these Bills develop.

New Legislation: Rehabilitation of Offenders

Legislation has been introduced amending the length of time in which individuals have to disclose their (custodial) convictions. 

Most convictions can be considered “spent” after a specified period of time.  In reality this means, once that time has passed, that an individual is allowed to never mention the conviction again – including on job applications.  Legislation also prevents employers from subjecting individuals to any detriment or prejudice where the convictions are spent.  There are exceptions for certain types of roles and these are listed in the legislation and should be looked at separately (for instance caring roles or those working with the vulnerable).

Now, .  Section 193 of the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Act 2022 (which came into force  on October 28, 2023) has reduced the time period in which one must declare convictions as follows :

If you commit another offence during the declaration period, the additional deadlines are extended. Any new conviction has its own disclosure period, and until the end of the original conviction’s active period—or, if that occurs later, the end of the new disclosure term applicable to the more recent conviction—both the new conviction and the prior conviction must be disclosed.

Note that the time frames mentioned above apply to offenders who were older than 18 at the time of conviction. This is modified for those under the age of 18.

Employers are responsible for ensuring that all pertinent systems and forms are updated to account for the new time frames. Roles requiring basic or enhanced DBS checks won’t be impacted by these changes.

It is important that you are transparent to your employer about any run-ins you have had with the law previously. If it is found that you are lying and have not declared any convictions which are not spent, you could suffer legal consequences that vary depending on the severity of the lie and the circumstance involved. Some of them are:

  • Breach of Contract
  • Fraud or Misrepresentation
  • Violation of Company Policies
  • Dismissal for breach of trust and confidence

Conversely, if you are asked about any convictions that are now spent, then you are legally allowed to answer “none”.  Even if an employer later finds out about it, they are not allowed to terminate your employment or prejudice you in any way.

For any assistance with any criminal or  employment law matters, please do not hesitate to contact us Aston Bond. We would be more than happy to help. You can contact us at, use our chat facility or call on  +44 (0)1753 486 777. 

Promoting Diversity and Inclusion: Elevating Women to Partner Roles in Law Firms

The necessity of promoting diversity and inclusion has become increasingly apparent in the legal sector in recent years, especially regarding female representation among partners. Even though the legal industry has come a long way in recognising the need of diversity, law firms still need to do more to advance women to partner positions. There is increasing demand on law firms to improve gender balance and foster an environment that supports female leadership as inclusiveness gains prominence and cultural expectations change.

The legal profession has historically been dominated by men, and women have faced numerous obstacles in their quest to overcome the “glass ceiling” and achieve partnership positions. Implicit biases, inflexible work environments, and conventional networking channels are just a few of the obstacles that have traditionally prevented women from advancing in legal companies. But as the importance of varied viewpoints in decision-making processes becomes more widely acknowledged, the legal community is stepping up to address these issues and working to reshape the conventional narrative.

The need to establish a more diverse and equitable work environment in law firms has become apparent because of changing legal market dynamics and societal expectations. Clients are prioritising more and more working with firms that represent a variety of opinions because they understand the advantages of having a wider range of perspectives when handling complicated legal issues. In response, there is growing demand on law firms to show their dedication to diversity and inclusion by creating an environment that actively supports women’s advancement into partnership roles.

The advancement of women to partner roles in the legal sector is a tribute to the progressive transition that is currently taking place. It is not just strategically necessary but required by our regulator (encompassed in SRA Principle 6 to encourage diversity, equality, and inclusion.   Law firms which pave the way for a more inclusive, inventive, and resilient future by creating an atmosphere that values diversity and supports women’s’ professional development,  will strengthen their role as trailblazers in the industry..

These changes are something that all businesses should strive for, not just within law. A few changes that business can do is promote equal opportunities to all employees, flexible work arrangements such as remote work, flexible hours and job-sharing opportunities which can enable women to balance professional and personal commitments effectively. Other things such as companies offering diversity training and employee resource groups can serve as valuable places for addressing common challenges, sharing experiences, and driving initiatives that support the professional development and well-being of women in the workplace.

At Aston Bond, we pride ourselves in our diverse team and strong leaders of both men and women. We are always working towards the goal of promoting diversity and equal rights and responsibilities in our team. Find out more about our team at: