It sounds like a scene from a latter day reworking of Charles Dickens' legal satire in Bleak House. Today, lead counsel for the Bank of England will sit down after delivering what is believed to be the longest speech in British legal history.

After 119 days talking through a "core trial bundle" of 125 lever-arch files, Nicholas Stadlen QC has finished his opening comments in the Bank's defence of a £850m compensation claim by creditors to collapsed bank BCCI.

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