The Legal 500

Doughty Street Chambers

Work 020 7404 1313
Fax 020 7404 2283
Manchester, London, Bristol

London Bar

Within Administrative and public law (including local government), Doughty Street Chambers is a third tier set,

Standout silks at Doughty Street Chambers include the ‘extremely good’ and ‘knowledgeableEdward Fitzgerald CBE QC . New silk Stephen Cragg QC is ‘a real fighter’. Kate Markus is ‘dedicated’, ‘collaborative’, and ‘a brilliant strategist’; and Jamie Burtonlooks for solutions from all angles’. Phillippa Kaufmann QC left for Matrix Chambers.

[back to top]

Within Civil liberties and human rights (including public inquiry law and actions against the police), Doughty Street Chambers is a first tier set,

Doughty Street Chambers has ‘a reputation for turning work around extremely quickly, and for being professional and personable at all times’. Heather Williams QC is ‘impressive across the board’, and is noted for her willingness to ‘go the extra mile’. Geoffrey Robertson QC is ‘a true heavyweight in international human rights law’. ‘Excellent’ new silk Stephen Cragg QC is ‘an expert in civil actions against the police’. Henrietta Hill is ‘exceptionally bright, knowledgeable, and second to none on large, difficult and novel cases’. The ‘hugely experiencedKate Markus is singled out for her ‘commitment to her clients’. Other recommended juniors include the ‘incredibly intelligentRuth Brander, the ‘focused, knowledgeable and extremely hardworking’ Caoilfhionn Gallagher, and ‘leading lightAswini Weereratne . Adam Straw joined from Tooks Chambers.

[back to top]

Within Clinical negligence and healthcare, tier 4

At Doughty Street Chambers, Robin Oppenheim QC has ‘immensely deep and wide-ranging knowledge of both legal and medical issues’. Christopher Houghclearly cares about his clients and their cases’, and Gerwyn Samuelthinks outside the box’. Paula Sparks is also recommended, for her ‘considerable experience’.

[back to top]

Within Crime, Doughty Street Chambers is a second tier set,

Doughty Street Chambers provides ‘a breadth of experience in areas such as prison law, judicial review, human rights and actions against the police’, and added to its ‘array of high-calibre silks’ with the recruitment of Tim Moloney QC, who is noted for his ‘humble yet powerful approach’, and Joel Bennathan QC, who is marked out for his ‘ability at appellate level’; both joined from Tooks Chambers. Edward Fitzgerald CBE QC, Edward Rees QC, and Christopher Sallon QC are highly sought after. Sarah Elliottleaves clients reassured by her manner and juries persuaded by her arguments’. David Bentley QC and John Jones QC took silk in 2013.

[back to top]

Within Defamation and privacy, Doughty Street Chambers is a second tier set,

At Doughty Street Chambers, Heather Rogers QCremains one of the best brains’ among the QCs in the field, and Gavin Millar QC is ‘great for when you need to slug it out in court’. Anthony Hudson and Guy Vassall-Adams are key juniors.*Guy Vassall-Adams is now at Matrix Chambers.

[back to top]

Within Education, Doughty Street Chambers is a third tier set,

Doughty Street Chambers is ‘an impressive set for judicial review and public law matters’. Nicholas Bowen QC’s ‘top-class intellect enables him to put forward very subtle, innovative arguments persuasively’. Ian Wise QC has appeared in all the leading children’s rights cases, and ‘works at an impressively breakneck speed’. Azeem Suterwalla is ‘an unflappable, no-nonsense advocate who turns work around quickly’.

[back to top]

Within Employment Employment - Leading Silks

[back to top]

Within Immigration (including business immigration), Doughty Street Chambers is a third tier set,

Doughty Street ChambersJoseph Middleton is ‘outstanding’ and ‘adds significant value’; and ‘there is no one quite as formidable’ as Laura Dubinsky . Other recommended practitioners include Alison Pickup, the ‘incredibly hardworkingAlasdair Mackenzie, and ‘great tacticianMark Henderson . The ‘excellent’ John Walsh ‘can be relied upon to dissect a case and identify what lies at the heart of it’. The set is also commended for its ‘helpful and efficient’ clerking team.

[back to top]

Within Media, entertainment and sport, Doughty Street Chambers is a third tier set,

Doughty Street Chambers’ privacy and defamation specialists advise on reporting restrictions and freedom of information matters. The ‘excellentGavin Millar QC represented Telegraph Media Group at the Leveson Inquiry. ‘First-class advocate and team player’ Anthony Hudson is representing several claimants in phone-hacking claims against News of the World journalists. Guy Vassall-Adams is representing News Group Newspapers in respect of News International’s voicemail interception compensation scheme. ** Anthony Hudson and *Guy Vassall-Adams are now at Matrix Chambers.

[back to top]

Within Personal injury Personal injury - Leading Juniors

[back to top]

Within Product liability, Doughty Street Chambers is a third tier set,

Doughty Street Chambers is ‘a go-to set for product liability claimants’. Robin Oppenheim QC is leading the three-counsel team instructed by the PIP steering committee, and junior Daniel Bennett is acting in PIP breast implant and DePuy hip replacement claims.

[back to top]

Within Professional discipline and regulatory law (including police law) Professional discipline and regulatory law - Leading Juniors

[back to top]

Within Property litigation Property litigation - Leading Juniors

[back to top]

Within Social housing, Doughty Street Chambers is a second tier set,

Cutting-edge’ housing and public law set Doughty Street Chambers is noted for representing tenants, and is ‘prominent in developing case law’. Clients appreciate Martin Westgate QC for his ‘clear and economical style of advocacy’, and the ‘tenacious’ Tracey Bloom, whose ‘common-sense approach sets her apart’. ‘First-class housing lawyer’ David Carter acts for landlords and tenants, and Jim Shepherd is ‘particularly strong at identifying Equality Act arguments’. Also recommended are ‘strong advocateJamie Burton, and Lindsay Johnson, who ‘develops a quick rapport with clients’.

[back to top]

Legal Developments in the UK

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • Home Office announces extension of support service for SMEs

    An online support service for small and medium sized businesses (SMEs) which need to recruit skilled overseas workers has been extended until 28 February 2014. The pilot was launched by UK Visas & Immigration (UKVI) in partnership with the Greater London Authority (GLA) and provides a step by step guide to sponsoring an overseas worker. This service is available via the GLA website.
  • Penningtons Manches' immigration team considers new changes to the Tier 4 Sponsor Guidance

    The Home Office has recently published new Tier 4 Sponsor Guidance, version 12/13. This guidance is to be used by all prospective and existing Tier 4 sponsors from 11 December 2013.
  • Finding the 
right words

    In the recent case of Newbury v Sun Microsystems [2013], the defendant argued that an offer to settle proceedings was ‘in principle' only and that a binding contract could not be formed until further terms had been agreed and a formal contract had been signed. It supported this argument by referring to a statement, in the offer letter, that the settlement was to be ‘recorded in a suitably worded agreement'. 

  • Behind the corporate veil: is that all there is?

    That companies have an existence entirely separate to that of their shareholders and directors is a foundational principle of English law and commerce.

  • Playing fair with penalty clauses

    It is often difficult to predict what will be recoverable as damages for breach of contract. To provide some certainty, parties will often seek to agree the sum that will be payable in the event of specified breaches. 

  • Restoring environmental damage: putting a price on ecosystem services

    On 7 August 2009 a 40-inch pipeline ruptured, spilling 5,400 cubic metres of crude oil into the soil and groundwater of La Crau nature reserve in southern France, a habitat protected under French and European law. The operator had to excavate and replace 60,000 tons of soil, install 70 wells to pump and treat groundwater and 25 pumps to skim oil from surface water, at a cost in the region of €50m. However, this was just the primary remediation (that is, restoring the site to the state it would have been if the damage had not occurred). The operator was also required to compensate for the damage to the habitats and the loss of the ecosystem services that would otherwise have been provided by La Crau nature reserve. Measures included purchasing land outside of the nature reserve and contributing to its management for a period of 30 years (over €1m), monitoring the water table for 20 years (over €500,000), monitoring fauna over three years (€150,000) and rehabilitation in accordance with best available ecological techniques (nearly €2m). Overall, the compensatory restoration (to compensate for the amount of time that the ecosystem was impacted) and complimentary restoration (to compensate for elements of the ecosystem that had been permanently lost) came to more than €6.5m. 

  • The role of arbitrators in EU antitrust law

    In May 2014, it will be ten years since Regulation No 1/2003 entered into force. When the legislator of the European Union adopted this Regulation on 16 December 2002, its main objective was to decentralise the enforcement of the two main provisions of EU antitrust law, Articles 81 and 82 of the Treaty establishing the European Community (now Articles 101 and 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU)). Where do the arbitrators fit in this picture?

  • New Immigration Bill, October 2013: cause for concern or appeasing public sentiment?

    The year 2013 has seen a string of reforms to the immigration system by the current coalition government. On 10 October, the government published a Bill aimed at continuing its drive to reduce net migration figures. 

  • New Schengen EU Regulations: impact on short-stay visa visitors

    The publication on 26 June 2013 of the European Union Regulation EU 610/2013 modified the incumbent Regulation EU 562/2006 in relation to third country nationals (ie non-EU citizens) and those travelling on a short-stay visitor visa, as well as those who do not require a visa to enter the Schengen area, Romania, Croatia and Bulgaria. Exceptions include EU and EEA nationals travelling to other EU/EEA states within the Schengen area together with foreign nationals holding either long-stay or residence permits for their destination Schengen countries.

  • New revised guidelines for administrators in pre-pack sales

    Pre-pack sales by administrators are now used frequently enough for most people in business to be aware of them and many have come across them in their business lives. A small amount of controversy still attaches to pre-packs, but it is probably right to say that they are now an accepted part of the UK business scene as a useful means of rescuing a business in difficulty and preserving some or all of the jobs connected with the business.
    - Druces