In the novel Sad Cypress, Sir Edwin Bulmer is the counsel for the defence at the trial of Elinor Carlisle. He is known as the "forlorn hope man", that is, cases looking bleak for the defendant. As Peter Lord told Poirot, for Elinor's defence, Bulmer proposed to take the (rather implausible) line that there was no motive for Elinor to murder Mary Gerrard. That was because the engagement between Elinor and Roddy Welman was entered into to please Laura Welman and the moment the old lady was dead Elinor broke it off of her own accord. In fact Bulmer planned to call Roderick Welman to give evidence to that effect.