Twitter Logo Youtube Circle Icon LinkedIn Icon

The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In the United Kingdon, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for eight years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
Click here for more details

United Kingdom > London > Public sector > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings




Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Overview clients in London using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact


The public law sectors continue to face increasing pressure due to funding shortfalls which are adversely affecting local authorities’ ability to meet social care demands and this is also affecting other areas such as education and housing. Local authorities continue to generate work in relation to property sales and building projects - often based on PPPs and PFIs - as well as borrowing and investment matters and cost-cutting shared service agreements. Urban development work continues, although not without some challenges such as the high-profile action taken against Haringey Council to stop its proposed huge urban regeneration project in partnership with Lendlease.

The education sector continues to generate a whole range of commercial mandates, human rights and other disputes. On the commercial side, many higher education institutions are engaging in joint ventures and collaborations with overseas colleges and schools in Asia and the USA, in part with a view to attracting overseas students. High-profile cases where parents are unable to secure specialist school places continue, with actions brought against the local authority where funding for such places is usually the underlying issue. This is in addition to broader work where schools’ and educational establishments’ admissions or exclusions policies are challenged for being unfair or where safeguarding and disciplinary policies are challenged.

The healthcare (and social care) sector is dominated by NHS and Primary Care Commissioning procurement and tendering work together with a range of other commercial work, including the merger of trusts and strategic planning matters. This is in addition to investigations and inquiries concerning deaths and negligence actions against Trusts and practitioners.

Brexit issues continue to generate work. Aside from challenges on the political/electoral front, cases have arisen such as the rights of EU citizens to live in the UK post-Brexit. Immigration more broadly has been at the fore  with highly-publicised cases concerning asylum seekers and the Windrush scandal generating a number of compensation claims.

Civil liberties and human rights are frequently at the core of many public law concerns ranging from immigration or human trafficking to cases brought against the police. Some of the most notable cases in the public law realm include the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse; the inquest into the Birmingham bombings; the ongoing Hillsborough work and the inquiry and related actions in respect of the Grenfell Tower tragedy.

Administrative and public law

Index of tables

  1. Administrative and public law
  2. Leading individuals: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next generation lawyers

Leading individuals: Hall of Fame

  1. 1

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Administrative and public law clients in London using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact


'Standout performers' John Halford and Saimo Chahal QC (Hon) , the joint heads of public law and human rights, lead an outstanding team at Bindmans LLP  that is considered 'the go-to firm in London for any public law or regulatory matter.' It takes on clients ranging from commercial bodies to NGOs, action groups and individual claimants and interveners and offers pro bono assistance. The team is acting for the Law Society in a challenge to the cuts to legal aid remuneration for complex Crown Court cases. It is also acting for an individual in a challenge to the Prevent duty guidance, issued under the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act regarding the gathering and storage of data by the Home Office in relation to alleged extremists. The claim also challenges the Prevent duty guidance in relation to universities.  Key team members include Jamie Potter whose expertise includes regulatory and information rights, as well as judicial reviews. Associate Salima Budhani is also a core practitioner.

Fieldfisher 'is without doubt among the best UK firms for major inquiries and inquests; any major inquiry or inquest would be well advised to instruct it'. Its expertise spans legislative drafting, government relations and judicial reviews.  Sarah Ellson in Manchester co-heads the group, which includes senior partner Matthew Lohn in London and Partner Martin Smith, who is 'able to think strategically'. Tim Suter  'combines a phenomenal work ethic with outstanding organisational abilities; his judgement is superb, at both a strategic and tactical level.' Notable senior associates include 'up-and-coming-star' Oliver Carlyon , Carina May  and David Northfield . The team acted on the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, the inquests related to the Birmingham bombings and for the Financial Conduct Authority in defending a judicial review of the new deadline for consumers to make claims for mis-sold PPI.

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP acts for claimants, defendants and interveners. Its clients range from well-known corporates and government departments to organisations such as Liberty, the Public Law Project and the Child Poverty Action Group.  Andrew Lidbetter who is considered 'simply the top admin and public law lawyer' continues to act for KPMG on the ground-breaking case on whether it is liable to a judicial review. The highly regarded Nusrat Zar acts for commercial organisations, public bodies and  regulators in sectors such as media, telecoms and broadcasting and consumer goods and services. Other key members of the team include Jasveer Randhawa  and senior associate Anna Eliasson. It is  representing  Telefónica as an interested party in judicial review challenges by other parties to Ofcom's position on  the competition issues and auction regulations for the award of  2.3 and 3.4 GHz spectrum bands. It was also selected to  represent the Church of England  in relation to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse. Natacha Heffinck has left to take an in-house role.

At the 'excellent' Hogan Lovells International LLP Charles Brasted is noted for 'giving robust advice as to the risks and practical implications of matters.' He heads the public law and policy team which sits within the government regulatory practice and also co-leads the Brexit taskforce. The other key members of the team are Julia Marlow and associate Dervla Simm. It advises well-known corporate clients and regulators and has a strong government relations and policy practice. It advised Uber in its judicial reviews of TfL's regulatory requirements and on the withdrawal of its  licence. It also represented Whirlpool, as an interested party to the judicial review brought by the Consumers' Association (trading as Which?) in respect of the alleged failure by the trading standards enforcement authority to consider exercising its enforcement powers under product safety regulations against Whirlpool in relation to certain of its brands of tumble dryers.

Kingsley Napley LLP is held up for 'giving pragmatic advice which always demonstrates a sensitivity to the concerns and objectives of the client' and is praised for its 'extensive experience of high-profile public inquiries.' Team head Adam Chapman 'provides clear and firm advice and demonstrates a keen insight on the likely decisions and responses a public inquiry is likely to make.' It counts a range of major regulatory bodies and government departments among its clients and its broad public law expertise includes judicial reviews, human rights law, public inquiries and inquests. Sophie Kemp has substantial expertise in major public inquiries and inquests and is representing a former Metropolitan Police commander in connection with the undercover policing inquiry. Other noted team members include regulatory expert Iain Miller,  Emily Carter  'who is not afraid to provide advice which may be unpopular with the client',  Caroline Day and Nick Wrightson. The team acted for David Crompton, the former Chief Constable of South Yorkshire Police, in a landmark judicial review against the Police and Crime Commissioner, in which he successfully challenged the decision to force him to resign following the Hillsborough Inquest verdicts. In other work, it is advising on major public inquires in the legal, healthcare and energy sectors.

Sean Humber¬†heads a group of specialists at¬†Leigh Day¬†¬†that assist claimants, NGOs and charities in impressively diverse areas ranging from healthcare, prisoner rights, immigration and refugee law through to challenges related to planning and environmental law. It also handles¬†international public and criminal law matters. Jamie Beagent¬†represented the Friends of Evenlode Valley and West Oxfordshire Cotswolds in a successful judicial review of the grant of planning permission for a substantial development in an area of outstanding natural beauty. He is also handling cases concerning inquests and a trafficing/sexual exploitation matter. Rosa Curling's broad practice includes acting for the Campaign against the Arms Trade in a¬†¬†challenge to the licensing and sale of arms from UK companies to Saudi Arabia. Tessa Gregory¬†has a focus on human rights and is representing refugee families who have been denied entry to the UK.¬† In other work it is acting for an NGO in a judicial review against the Cabinet Office challenging the failure to¬† designate a private company as a ‚Äúhigh risk‚ÄĚ strategic supplier for government contracts relating to the operation of number of immigration removal centres, prisons and young offender institutes.

'One of the strongest city firms for administrative and public law' Allen & Overy LLP offers a blend of broad commercial and regulatory expertise together with public law in areas such as procurement, telecoms and banking and finance. Andrew Denny, who heads the public law group also chairs the firm’s human rights working group and provides pro bono assistance to NGOs. He acted for Bail for Immigration Detainees on a Supreme Court intervention concerned with whether bail can be granted to, and conditions imposed upon, an individual when there is no longer a lawful basis for detention. Together with senior associate, Maeve Hanna, he acted for The AIRE Centre as intervener in a Supreme Court case concerned with the application of the Refugee Convention and the UK government’s responsibilities for refugee families living on the Sovereign Base Areas in Cyprus. The team also advises on Brexit constitutional matters.

Baker McKenzie serves an impressive range of clients from regulators and well-known corporate clients to pressure groups and those in need of pro bono assistance. It has especially notable experience in the healthcare, pharmaceutical, technology and finance sectors. It advised the United Nations Commissioner for Refugees on a number of high-profile refugee law cases. It also acted for Stonewall Equality as intervener in a complex case involving equality and human rights issues with regard to a transgender father and continues to advise the BBC Trust on its public law issues. Joanna Ludlam heads the regulatory, public and media law team working with Francesca Richmond, senior associate Joanne Redmond and Mary Jordan who joined in September 2017 and who has a focus on regulations and investigations in the finance sector.

Clients find that 'the level of service is excellent' at Bates Wells. The team takes on a broad range of work including inquiries and the safeguarding of vulnerable groups and acts for both public bodies and claimants. The well-regarded team head Melanie Carter  advises the National Audit office on its audits of local government and NHS bodies and other day-to-day matters. Most recently she advised on the Advisory Notice issued by KPMG (for whom it also acts) on the bankrupt Northants Council. In other work it acted for Airport Coordination following the collapse of Monarch Airlines which included defending a judicial review and involved issues of interpretation of two EU Regulations. Both Carter and Jessica Collings are considered to be 'creative, hardworking and imaginative.' Rupert Earle is noted as 'an outstanding advertising and regulatory law practitioner who is flexible, dependable and has a good team to back him up.' Emma Dowden-Teale , who has been promoted to partner and Claire Whittle  are both noted practitioners.

The 'highly rated' Bevan Brittan LLP 'has a great deal of common currency between many team members' according to a client. The team is headed by Virginia Cooper who regularly advises local authorities, health commissioners, NHS England and Ombudsman clients, including local government and the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman. She also acted for the South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner in connection with the judicial review challenge made by the former Chief Constable, David Crompton. The team has an exceptionally strong focus on the health sector; Emily Heard and David Owens act for clinical commissioning groups and other NHS bodies as well as claimants on a range of judicial reviews. Senior associate Olivia Carter is also noted for her work on judicial review and procurement challenges.

Bhatt Murphy¬†is consider to be¬† 'a stand out' practice that is 'excellent across all areas and leaders in their field.' It is¬†in demand for its work on public and private claims against the state, representing both individuals and NGOs on matters including unlawful detentions and the protection of child refugees. It also has deep expertise in prison law.¬†¬†Mark Scott¬†is¬†'an¬†incredible advocate for clients caught up in legal proceedings ‚Äď be they inquests, public inquiries or judicial reviews' according¬†to a client and he acts for claimants and interveners often on behalf of detainees including those in immigration detention centers.¬†¬†Janet Farrell¬† is considered 'brilliant' and Tony Murphy¬†is acknowledged for his¬†'long track record of acting for vulnerable clients¬†-¬†¬†he is a campaigning and brilliantly strategic solicitor.' Other team members include Shamik Dutta¬†who is¬†'incredibly approachable, always puts clients first and is a real expert', Michael Oswald¬†and Jed Pennington¬†are other names to note. It acted for Liberty in a¬†judicial review challenge to¬†part of the Government‚Äôs mass surveillance regime¬†under the Investigatory Powers Act and other clients include the national Union of Journalists, Privacy International and Medical Justice.

DAC Beachcroft LLP advises public bodies across education and local government and has a well-established reputation for its work in the health sector. Stephen Hocking’s work encompasses strategic advice on public and commercial law matters as well as judicial review and procurement challenges. He acted for NICE in a judicial review brought by the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry against a new budget impact test in which it was successfully argued that NICE could consider costs when approving a drug for use by the NHS and which was a highly significant result for the NHS. He also advises NHS England on various pharmaceutical regulatory matters. Julian Gizzi, who now practices as a consultant, offers similarly deep expertise and advised the Higher Education Funding Council for England/the Office for Students on all aspects of the latter’s creation and powers. Other clients include the Post Office, the Faraday Institution and the Office for Fair Access.

Deighton Pierce Glynn is 'a high quality public law firm' that is home to 'a number of very experienced, creative and talented lawyers' according to a source. It offers wide-ranging expertise to  well-known NGOs as well as detainees and other vulnerable individuals. Its expertise encompasses litigation, private and EU law as well as the gamut of public law. Practice head Sue Willman has especially strong expertise on migrant rights;  Louise Whitfield has a focus on gender and other forms of discrimination and  Jo Eggleton , Polly Glynn and Adam Hundt are other core team members. Associate Daniel Carey is noted as 'a brilliant public and human rights lawyer with years of experience in complex litigation.' Highlight work includes acting for the United Nations Independent Working Group on Discrimination Against Women as an intervener in the appeal to the Supreme Court by the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission in respect of the criminalisation of abortion in Northern Ireland.

The 'excellent' Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP assists clients on a blend of commercial, litigation and public law issues spanning governance, regeneration and  procurement as well as investigations and inquiries. It serves clients such as Transport for Greater Manchester, the Serious Fraud Office and Borders to Coast Pension Partnership. In the Grenfell Tower public inquiry, it is representing Cadent Gas which had been the gas distributor to the tower. Peter Jones  is reported to be 'a fantastic and experienced inquiry solicitor, who excels at running a team.' Paul Pugh is the corporate lead on public sector matters and is also the relationship partner to the UK Government’s new general legal services panel. Other team members include Bridgette Wilcox, Gary Pellow 'who is  a very calm, experienced partner who delivers well-considered advice' and Edward Williams in Leeds 'did a great job at getting up to speed very quickly on what was a complex issue.'

Addleshaw Goddard has a strong dispute resolution team that handles litigation, judicial reviews and regulatory challenges for commercial clients, especially in the energy sector as well as government and other public bodies. A client affirms: 'They have a good judicial review regulatory team and are frequently instructed in the energy sector.' Simon Kamstra  'is excellent with clients and an inspirational leader of a team' and Bill Gilliam 'is truly excellent - one of the best strategic thinkers.' The team is further enhanced by Clare Dwyer 'who is a measured and confident practitioner who is imaginative about finding solutions for her clients including ADR.' Managing associate Paul Rowley  and Susan Garrett are also well rated practitioners. Highlight work includes acting for Scottish and Southern Energy which joined a judicial review challenge against Ofgem on the highly contested matter of the statutory basis for charging for connections to the national grid by electricity distributors.

Bircham Dyson Bell is considered to be 'very strong in its specialist areas and especially strong in the healthcare field.' It acts for an array of governmental and local authority bodies, companies and individuals on wide ranging public law advice and judicial reviews. Its work ranges from assisting a head teacher on preparing for an appearance at the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse to advising the National Grid on defending judicial review challenges and assisting Transport for London and the London Mayor’s office on  charging orders and environmental issues. Matthew Smith and David Mundy are the well respected joint heads of the group and core team members Richard Langley and Helen Fry 'are both very smart, efficient, and wise' according to clients. 

Practitioners from across various practice areas at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP provide regulatory and public law expertise to clients in areas such as fintech, energy and consumer products. Advice can vary from licence applications to investigations and judicial reviews and also extends to human rights matters.  Litigator Paul Bowden has a focus on environmental, energy  and product liability matters and advises on class actions and judicial reviews. He is especially known for his expertise in nuclear law. Sally Roe is known for her UK and international construction, engineering and PPP expertise and head of the commercial disputes practice Tom Snelling takes on cross-border disputes, regulatory issues and EU matters. He advises extensively on Brexit issues. Its clients include an impressive range of corporates and  public bodies.

Hickman & Rose is acknowledged as 'a go-to firm for public law cases in a criminal context' and for providing 'extremely high quality advice.' Team leaders Daniel Machover and Kate Maynard are highlighted for 'using their knowledge and experience wisely and creatively.' Machover handles cases up to the  Supreme Court and European Court of Human Rights and in a recent case he acted for a young man of Iraqi-Kurdish descent, whose passport was cancelled by the Home Secretary exercising the Royal Prerogative. Permission to appeal to the Supreme Court is pending.  Stefano Ruis has a wealth of experience in challenges to arrests and  search warrants. Associate Eva Whittall, working with Machover, acted for a charity as an intervener in a case where claimants sought a declaration that there was an ongoing failure to prevent injuries and deaths at a prison.  Associate Helen Stone, who is especially experienced in actions and judicial reviews arising from police activity,  is also a core member of the team. Beth Handley left private practice.

Hodge Jones & Allen Solicitors is judged to be 'very strong' in the public law field generally with a breadth of expertise across inquests, actions against the police and miscarriages of justice. It has extensive judicial review experience including challenging CPS and IPCC decisions. Jocelyn Cockburn and Susie Labinjoh who are joint heads of the group and Sasha Barton, are some of the dedicated and specialist partners together with Peter Todd who is noted for his 'meticulous approach which coupled with his considerable empathy for his clients marks him out as a very formidable practitioner in this area.' Nancy Collins is the lead partner acting for Humanist UK in its intervention in two high-profile judicial reviews concerning the right to die. In other work the team continues to represent Neville Lawrence in connection with an ongoing police investigation into the murder of his son.

Irwin Mitchell is noted for 'often being ground breaking in the sense of winning important cases'. It acts for campaigning groups and individuals on a broad range of issues and is increasingly handling  cases against various NHS trusts concerned with the closure of facilities. In one example, it is representing a group of clients in a second set of judicial reviews concerning the withdrawal of funding by Hertfordshire Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group for a respite care centre. It is also acting for an individual in a landmark  case concerning assisted suicide  in which it is claimed that the Suicide Act 1961 is incompatible with the individual's rights under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights. Yogi Amin heads the team which includes Alex Rook who is acknowledged for being 'extremely able in the fields of social care and public law.' Polly Sweeney , who heads a team in Bristol, has a focus on health and education issues affecting children and young people with disabilities.

The 'excellent' team at Linklaters LLP¬†is¬†'very responsive and practical, has great soft skills and makes you feel like you are their only client.' It assists¬†businesses and public bodies on judicial reviews combined with technical knowledge of the telecommunications, financial services and water industries and¬†continues to advise clients on Brexit issues. Tom Cassels, who is singled out¬†for being 'brilliant in a crisis ‚Äď totally unflappable'¬†acted for Hutchison 3G UK in judicial review proceedings against Ofcom in respect of Ofcom‚Äôs decision to impose competition measures in the¬†public sector spectrum release auction process.¬†It also acted for Barclays as an interested party on a judicial review as to whether KPMG could be the¬†subjected to a judicial review. Other key practitioners include partner Alison Wilson¬†and¬†managing associate Tim Miller¬†.

Sources report that Simpson Millar LLP has 'a real emphasis on the rights of children, in particular vulnerable children in care' and 'is a brilliant firm of very committed lawyers.' Oliver Studdert is noted for having 'a great reputation' and Victoria Pogge von Strandman  'is a great black letter lawyer with a sharp mind.' Dan Rosenberg  and Julie Cornes are also considered 'brilliant lawyers.' It is well known for its niche Court of Protection work and in one highlight it acted for two individuals in a challenge against the Secretary of State for Health in England over the policy which refuses NHS funding for abortion services for women from Northern Ireland.

Trowers & Hamlins LLP  advises a broad range of central and local government departments as well as schools and individuals on an array of public law issues. It is considered 'excellent for value for money and service' and for being  'reactive and responsive.' Team leader Helen Randall garners appreciation for her 'great in depth knowledge of local government and trends and for being well connected' and the head of commercial litigation Lucy James , who is is a solicitor-advocate, has considerable experience of judicial reviews and procurement disputes. James Hawkins leads the firm's national public sector group. In work highlights it represented Homes for Haringey and Haringey Council in a judicial review brought by a local leaseholder group, the Haringey Leaseholders Association. It also advised a group of London councils on the establishment of a new business rates pooling arrangement.

BCL Solicitors LLP is in demand for being 'excellent for all types of criminal-related judicial reviews.' In conjunction with its excellence in areas such as white-collar and corporate crime, it takes on public inquiry, judicial review and  inquest work. Its current cases include acting for a corporation in a judicial review regarding search warrants obtained by the police, a judicial review in connection with allegations of money laundering and fraud and a number of inquests with possible criminal ramifications. Richard Sallybanks is characterised as 'a cool-headed individual in big-ticket cases'; Michael Drury is 'a great strategist and a very bright lawyer who is brilliant at client-handling' and Guy Bastable is 'tenacious, hard-working and a brilliant tactician.'

From offices in London and Nottingham Browne Jacobson LLP is 'accessible and consistent in its advice which it provides with clarity.' It assists a broad range of clients including local government agencies, parliamentary ombudsman and national audit organisations as well as regulators and health sector clients. It is acting for the Royal Mail Group in a fraud investigation where it is being challenged in a judicial review concerning the basis on which warrants were obtained. It is also acting for the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman in a case where two GPs challenged its powers to recommend financial payments in cases involving clinical judgment, a case which is going to the Court of Appeal. Senior practitioners Richard Barlow and Laura Hughes are based in Nottingham and Ros Foster heads up the London team. The group is further enhanced with the arrival of Gerard Hanratty who joined in April 2017 from Capsticks LLP .

Following its merger with Olswang LLP and Nabarro LLP, CMS offers a variety of public law-related expertise. Dan Tench handles judicial review challenges, data protection and privacy matters as part of his broader litigation practice. It acts for claimants, defendants and interested parties with a focus on regulated industries and regulator decisions. It has a specialism in  challenges to planning, compulsory purchase matters.

Christopher McGee-Osborne and Catherine Bingham co-head the government sector group at Dentons which serves an impressive roster of governmental, regulator and corporate clients. Multi-disciplinary teams advise on procurement, environmental and other areas in addition to the public and administrative law, especially in the telecoms sector. It has been appointed to a number of government panels, including the central government General Legal Services Panel. Recent work includes advising the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and other government entities on the procurement of their global fixed and mobile voice and data telecoms network and services. It is also advising Ofgem on a range of matters including  an offshore transmission asset licensing process. Other noted contacts include Stephen Ashworth and Mark Bassett.

At Imran Khan and Partners Kim Vernal and Jade Brown are advising core participants in the accountability, reparations and child migrant investigations and Sarah McSherry is representing core participants in the catholic church inquiry into child sexual abuse. Imran Khan continues to represent Baroness Lawrence in connection with the ongoing issues arising from the murder of her son Stephen. He is also acting for the Monitoring Group and the Blacklist Support Group as core participants in the Pitchford Inquiry into Undercover Policing which is examining police surveillance activities. The team is also handling a number of challenging inquests.

With an emphasis on claimant work, Matthew Gold & Company Limited, solicitors take on cases against the police and IPPC, local authorities, and central government departments. It also has a particular focus on migrant rights and Clare Jennings is highlighted for her 'particular commitment to the cause of destitute migrant families' in addition to 'injecting energy and passion into all her work and being an impressive litigator.' Matthew Gold is 'delightful to work with; charming and dedicated and has a considered, intelligent and creative approach to his cases.' In representative work, it acted for claimants in a judicial review challenge to the London Borough of Camden's policy on the subsistence it pays to families who have no recourse to public funds. A source commented: 'This is a smaller firm but they give superb attention to their clients’ needs and real commitment to the area. They punch far above their weight.'

A client found the service at  Saunders Law to be 'top notch' on a judicial review matter. Team head Nia Williams is noted as 'exceptionally experienced and tenacious' and 'always goes the extra mile for her clients.' Founding  partner James Saunders  is held up for 'his passion, commitment, sensitivity, and tactical astuteness.' The team is representing over 200 people in the  Hillsborough misfeasance group litigation against against South Yorkshire and West Midlands police and is also acting for a core participant in the  Grenfell Tower Inquiry. It handles a broad range of cases for claimants, many of which are high-profile and includes actions against police forces.

From offices including in Liverpool, Manchester and London,  Weightmans LLP offers an impressive number of specialists such as Tony Yeaman, the  national head of healthcare clinical in Birmingham and Richard Jolly, the national head of healthcare advisory in Liverpool. Martin Forshaw, based in Liverpool has decades of experience acting for police forces defending an array of actions. A client reported of the team: 'The service received is second to none. They are quick to respond and the advice they give is excellent.' Liverpool-based senior associate Morris Hill is also highlighted as 'very pragmatic, sensible and effective.' In addition to its work for police forces, it is acting for Rochdale Council as a core participant in the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse.

Anthony Gold is highlighted for it work in the housing sector and being 'a good niche firm for any aspect of local government work.' It combines this expertise with challenges in the education field, road and rail management and environment issues. The 'impressive' and 'hugely knowledgeable' Andrew Brookes  is noted as is David Smith : 'There is nothing he doesn't know about local authority enforcement powers in the private rented sector.' Eleanor Solomon  is 'a very talented up-and-coming public lawyer.' Giles Peaker  'is an outstanding lawyer - dazzlingly clever, persistent, highly effective and cares deeply about his area of law.' He is acting for the Residential Landlords Association on a prospective intervention into a judicial review of the extension of the Right to Rent statutory obligations to Wales and Scotland by the Joint Committee on the Welfare of Immigrants. The team is also acting for a number of clients in relation to the the Grenfell Tower Inquiry.

DLA Piper 's practice covers judicial reviews and procurement law and it counts various public bodies among its clients and acts both for and against government departments and agencies. A client commented: 'It is an excellent, out-of-box thinking and client- focused team.' It is acting for Ocean Outdoor UK against the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham in relation to a procurement process for leases on land either side of the M4 for the purpose of putting up advertising towers. It is also acting for Uber in a judicial review challenge against a change of policy by Knowsley Borough which would require drivers to obtain a local licence. Other clients include the NHS, the Department of Transport and Transport for the North. Paul Stone, who co-heads the group with Hazel Moffat, is noted for being a 'free thinker who is careful and has an excellent strategic mind as well as an eye for the detail.'

With offices around London and nationally, Duncan Lewis Solicitors is reported to have 'a strong presence in this area of the law, making a particularly dominant contribution in immigration, asylum and prison law.' James Packer, who co-heads the public law department, 'is an outstanding lawyer who identifies points with ease and precision and thinks tactically.' Toufique Hossain is acknowledged for taking on 'important challenges' especially in relation to immigration detentions and mental health issues. Trevor Hatton is also noted as is Jenna McKinney  who shows 'remarkable insight and rigour' and Zofia Duszynska  whose cases are 'well run and inspired.' The team is handling cases of the deprivation of British citizenship and deportation threats, many of which have gone to the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court.

Gowling WLG  straddles all areas of public law including human rights and aspects of EU law combined with regulatory expertise, especially in the energy, education, health and transport sectors. John Cooper heads the public law and regulation group which includes directors Ravi Randhawa  and Kieran Laird. It acted for the Northern Ireland Authority for Utility Regulation defending it on two appeals brought by energy companies. It also acted for Oxfam as intervener in a judicial review brought by the Campaign Against Arms Trade challenging the grant of export licences by the government to companies selling arms to Saudi Arabia. Cooper continues to act for the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy on its smart meter programme which involves regulatory, policy development and new legislation work.

Emma Stockwell and Kiran Bhogal  head the teams at Hill Dickinson LLP that are situated across Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds and London and they are both especially experienced in assisting health sector clients. David Hill, who is a director in the London office, has impressive NHS-focused expertise - his current work includes assisting on the NHS statutory framework and working with NHS England on the development of its commissioning policy and proposals for legislative change. In other work it acted for a Clinical Commissioning Group in relation to its new model of care for the community and out of hospital services. The team has expanded with new hires from Capsticks LLP and DAC Beachcroft LLP.

With an established track record in the healthcare and education sectors, Mills & Reeve LLP represents clinical commissioning groups and educational establishments in an array of work. It acted for a NHS Clinical Commissioning Group ("CCG") that was challenged on a funding matter. The team managed to have the client removed as a co-defendant but remain an interested party. It is also advising NHS Corby CCG on a number of matters relating to the Corby Urgent Care Centre involving two judicial reviews regarding a procurement matter and the potential closure of the centre. Richard Sykes in Birmingham is the team head and other key practitioners are  Gary Attle  in Cambridge and  Molly Sanghera in Birmingham.

In addition to being acknowledged for its election law expertise and broader work with local authorities, Sharpe Pritchard LLP also handles judicial review and statutory appeals work, especially in the planning arena. A client considers them 'excellent' in all relevant areas; 'knowledgeable and value for money.' Team head Trevor Griffiths is highlighted for being 'approachable and meeting deadlines' and senior associates William Rose  and Mari Roberts are the other core team members. Its work includes advising Suffolk Coastal District Council on an appeal to the Court of Appeal on a successful challenge of a planning inspector’s decision which then went to the Supreme Court and concerned the meaning and effect of a government planning policy.

Katie Brown and Jacky Starling co-head the highly regarded social welfare and public law department at TV Edwards LLP which is 'a strong and experienced team that is very strong in community care and housing/social housing-related administrative and public law.' Brown is a 'bright and dedicated solicitor who punches far above her weight and has a well-deserved reputation for excellence' and Monica Kreel is noted for 'managing a heavy caseload including complex cases in relation to safeguarding vulnerable adults and human rights breaches.' Kreel has a specialism in Court of Protection work and is further noted for bringing 'enormously helpful knowledge of matters of mental capacity' to judicial reviews.

Birnberg Peirce & Partners is considered a 'significant firm in this practice area' and is dedicated to assisting claimants in actions against government and other public bodies and the police. It handles cases in the fields of immigration, criminal defence, prison law and broader civil liberties. It also acts in relation to inquests and has a role in the Hillsborough matter. Gareth Peirce and Marcia Willis Stewart QC (Hon) are two of the senior practitioners within a substantial team.

Cross-disciplinary teams at Burges Salmon LLP handle mandates from the public and private sector, especially in the transport, energy and waste arenas. Gary Solomon and John Houlden co-head the work that includes advising OFWAT on its Water 2020 Programme for the future regulation of the sector. It continues to advise the Welsh Government/Transport for Wales which includes discussions between Welsh Ministers and the Secretary of State for Transport on the  transfer rail franchising powers to Wales.

Capsticks LLP 'is one of the very best firms specialising in health care-related public law. They have an excellent understanding of the needs of public sector clients and their knowledge and experience of work for NHS Trusts is second to none' according to a source. Ian Cooper heads the team and Francis Lyons who heads the London group is considered 'an outstanding solicitor with great judgment.' Partner Tracey Lucas has long experience of acting for NHS organisations, defending judicial reviews and other challenges. Its current work includes acting for an array of clinical commissioning groups, for example, it successfully defended North Norfolk Clinical Commissioning Group in a complex judicial review involving an alleged failure to provide after-care funding to a patient detained under the Mental Health Act.

The public law team of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher is led Philip Rocher who is head of litigation. Its client base comprises corporate clients, sovereign governments and NGOs, offering many of the latter pro bono services. Much of its work has an international element: It is acting for 18 companies of the Koza Ipek group in challenges before the European Court of Human Rights arising from the many expropriations of the Turkish government.  It also advised the Human Dignity Trust in its support of proceedings brought by local LGBT rights activists in Kenya challenging Kenyan laws which criminalised same sex relationships. Key members of the group include Charles Falconer and Patrick Doris.

Hopkin Murray Beskine Solicitors  assists claimants with disputes  with public authorities including local authorities, housing associations and central government departments. It has a strong focus on housing matters and the highly experienced Rebekah Carrier takes on challenges involving local or central government housing policies and decisions. Her work has included challenges to aspects of the government’s welfare reform policies including the controversial benefit cap where this was found to breach obligations under the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

John Ford Solicitors  specialises in public law matters with a focus on community care, education and Court of Protection work. The founder John Ford  has spent some decades taking on challenges to local authorities and other public bodies on behalf of claimants, many of whom are legally aided. The experienced Karen May  is head of the education team and handles community care work. Other names to note are associates Marian Shaughnessy  and Helen Gill. The firm merged with Sinclairslaw on 1 May 2018.

Just For Kids Law, a registered charity, 'is a niche firm with unrivaled experience in protecting the rights of children in a wide range of public and criminal law cases' according to an interviewee. A multi-disciplinary team has a child-centric approach when bringing claims for judicial review and advocating on an array of youth justice matters. The team's work includes acting for an individual in a case that will go to the Supreme Court which challenges the legality of the disclosure regime in England and Wales that will leave reprimands that were given to a 12 year old on the enhanced disclosure check for a lifetime. Other challenges involve press reporting of minors, the keeping of children in police cells and the rights of migrant children. Team head Jennifer Twite is 'a wise and highly intelligent, strategic lawyer who is devoted to her clients and cases.' Laura Cooper acts for young people in police stations, Youth Courts and Crown Courts; Mital Raithatha 'is always willing to embrace innovative ways of presenting cases and doesn’t shy away from pursuing difficult or unattractive points' and Aika Stephenson 'is tenancious in the defence of her client’s interests.'

Minton Morrill handles a range of public-law related work, particularly in the realms of civil liberties and social housing and broader local government work.  Dr Keith Lomax has long-standing experience of challenging government departments and public bodies in respect of their decisions and policies. Assistant solicitor Keith Coughtrie also handles a range of public law matters, especially from a human rights point of view. Prisoner rights, homelessness and educational issues are some of the matters it takes on.

On behalf of claimants Steel & Shamash takes on challenges to local authorities, especially where they fail to adequately assess the needs of children and vulnerable adults, and the Home Office in connection with unlawful detentions of minors and the dispersal of asylum seekers outside of London. A source acknowledged the team's 'very good reputation in pubic law - especially for children's services and for being reliably excellent.' Another source noted that team head Anna O’Connell  'is good at cross-over cases' where there is, for example mental health and  housing issues and judicial review proceedings may be necessary. Chris Callender is also highlighted as a 'very experienced and confident litigator in children's cases.' 

Civil liberties and human rights

Index of tables

  1. Civil liberties and human rights
  2. Leading individuals: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next generation lawyers

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Civil liberties and human rights clients in London using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact


Bhatt Murphy¬†is ‚Äėat the top of the tree for civil liberties and human rights matters‚Äô. Carolynn Gallwey¬†acted for an individual in proceedings against the IPCC for failure to conduct a prompt and proper investigation into the assault of a heavily pregnant lady in a police cell. She has also successfully represented a Juan Gilly and secured damages from Staffordshire police in settlement of a civil claim for misfeasance in a public office, false imprisonment and malicious prosecution. Raju Bhatt¬†is ‚Äėa brilliant lawyer and a pleasure to work with‚Äô. Tony Murphy¬†is ‚Äėextremely conscientious, hardworking and a master strategist‚Äô. Other names to note include Jane Ryan,¬†who secured substantial damages for her client from Avon and Somerset constabulary for discrimination on the grounds of gender reassignment; and Janet Farrell,¬†who acted for Humanists UK in the Supreme Court in a challenge to the policy refusing to provide abortion services on the NHS to Northern Irish women forced to travel to England.¬†Megan Phillips¬†is now a partner.¬†Mark Scott¬†has an extensive track record handling¬†private and public law claims against the police, Home Office, Ministry of Justice and Security Services.

Bindmans LLP¬†¬†is well-known for its involvement in human rights cases both in the UK and internationally. The practice's diverse caseload covers immigration, actions against the police, and housing among other matters. ‚ÄėAdept negotiator‚Äô Jules Carey¬†is acting for over 180 participants in the Grenfell Tower Inquiry alongside¬† Anna Thwaites¬†, who joined Bindmans in 2015, with the firm representing bereaved survivors . John Halford¬† and Liz Barratt¬† are advising NGO Here For Good on EU and discrimination law issues as they affect European nationals planning to live in the UK post-Brexit. The ‚Äėhighly intelligent and extremely efficient‚Äô Charlotte Haworth Hird¬†focuses on death in custody cases and has acted in a number of high-profile inquests including the deaths of Jereon Ensink, Janet Muller and Melissa Mathieson. Salima Budhani¬† is ‚Äėan incisive claimant lawyer who is utterly committed to her clients‚Äô and is ‚Äėskilled at highlighting illegality in public body decision-making‚Äô.

The ‚Äėsuperb‚Äô Deighton Pierce Glynn¬†has an extensive track record in civil liberties and human rights work. In an illustration of its high-profile workload, the practice is acting in the Supreme Court case concerning the prohibition of abortion in Northern Ireland. Adam Hundt¬†¬† is an ‚Äėenterprising, engaging and excellent partner‚Äô who ‚Äėdoes amazing work‚Äô; he was involved in the legal campaign demanding that the NHS fund the HIV prevention drug PreP.¬† Other names to note include the ‚Äėhardworking and inventive‚Äô Daniel Carey¬† and the ‚Äėtough and highly experienced‚Äô Sue Willman¬†.

Leigh Day¬†'s¬†areas of expertise include matters involving immigration, international human rights, prison law, welfare reform, actions against the police, and data protection law. The 15-lawyer team is ‚Äėknowledgeable on the law and closely engaged in the issues‚Äô. 'Determined' partner Sean Humber¬†successfully acted for over 30 patients of an HIV clinic whose names were mistakenly disclosed to 780 other patients, and is acting for three Muslim prisoners in religious discrimination claims.¬† Yvonne Kestler¬†‚Äėfights exceptionally hard‚Äô for her clients. The 'outstanding' Rosa Curling¬†¬†has led many groundbreaking human rights cases before the UK‚Äôs High Court, Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court as well as the European Court of Human Rights and the African Regional Courts of Human Rights. Other names to note include Jamie Beagent¬† and Benjamin Burrows

The lawyers at¬†Hickman & Rose¬†are hardworking, reliable and committed to their clients‚Äô. The ‚Äėexperienced, imaginative and tireless‚Äô Daniel Machover¬† and ‚Äėknowledgeable‚Äô Eva Whittall¬†are representing eight survivors or bereaved of the Grenfell Tower fire. Eva Whittall¬†has been involved in several high-profile cases including the death in custody cases of Robert Richards at HMP Wandsworth and Kirsty Walker at HMP Bronzefield. Kate Maynard¬† and Stefano Ruis¬† are praised for their ‚Äėphenomenal judgement‚Äô.

Hodge Jones & Allen Solicitors¬†has a reputation for handling challenges involving the police force, the Prison Service, the Ministry of Defence, coroners, immigration detention centres and the Crown Prosecution Service. The ‚Äėpragmatic‚Äô Susie Labinjoh¬† ‚Äėtruly cares about achieving the best for her clients‚Äô and ‚Äėintelligent‚Äô Alice Hardy¬† ‚Äėbrings cool and calm professionalism to claims that might leave other practitioners agitated‚Äô. The practice is acting for 40 former residents of the Grenfell Tower. Other names to note include Nancy Collins¬†, Cormac McDonough¬†, Jocelyn Cockburn¬† and Sasha Barton.

Key figures at¬†Howard Kennedy LLP¬†include the ‚Äėhighly responsive‚Äô Mark Stephens CBE¬† and Elizabeth Morley¬†. The practice has an extensive track record handling cases in the Supreme Court, the Privy Court and the European Court of Human Rights. Clients include Human Rights Watch and the Media Legal Defence Initiative, as well as corporate clients, for which the practice advises on a full range of human rights issues, including compliance and non-financial reporting. Other areas of expertise include free speech and privacy matters, where the practice is able to leverage the firm's media capability; and assisting vulnerable clients with judicial review cases.

Irwin Mitchell handles a range of human rights issues in the health and social care, education, prison and police sectors. Fiona McGhie is pursuing a civil claim against the police for a breach of its investigative duties. Gus Silverman  and Yogi Amin handle detention cases, actions against the police and right to die cases.

Simons Muirhead & Burton¬†has an extensive track record in death penalty cases, as illustrated by its role as founder and long-term supporters of the Death Penalty Project, an international human rights organisation which provides free legal representation and advice to individuals who face the death penalty in over 30 countries around the world. The firm has successfully challenged the mandatory death penalty for anyone convicted of murder in Kenya and is actively involved in international delegations looking into death penalty reform in other countries around the globe. Co-executive directors of the team are ‚Äėdedicated and inspiring‚Äô Parvais Jabbar MBE¬† and ‚Äėexceptionally efficient and thorough‚Äô Saul Lehrfreund.

Tuckers Solicitors'¬†civil liberties work encompasses prison law, inquests, data protection, freedom of assembly, anti-terrorism and actions against the police. Partner Hind Ibrahim¬† is a ‚Äėtour de force who can approach any difficult case, find a solution and push it through‚Äô. She successfully represented the family of Habib Ullah who died after being detained and forcefully restrained by police officers in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire. Zareena Mustafa¬† and Elaine MacDonald¬†have brought several successful claims against prisons for breaches of Article 8 of the European Convention on¬†Human Rights and against the police for wrongful arrests without foundation.

Led by senior partner Martin Howe, Howe + Co Solicitors¬†represents high-profile clients in civil liberties and human rights cases. It is acting for a group of individuals in the Grenfell Inquiry, and is advising another group in the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse.¬†David Enright¬† is leading the team in the latter case and has been involved in numerous immigration public law challenges. The ‚Äėfearless‚Äô Adam Tear¬† handles actions against the police and regularly appears in the Court of Appeal, High Court and Upper Tribunal in respect to judicial reviews relating to immigration.

The lawyers at ITN Solicitors¬†¬†‚Äėhave a good understanding of the legal issues‚Äô and ‚Äėprovide good tactical advice‚Äô. The ‚Äėexcellent‚Äô Ravi Naik¬† has a strong track record including successfully challenging the Home Office‚Äôs systematic and routine use of curfews on immigration detainees and challenging the decision to refuse a journalist accreditation to a Labour Party conference. Lochlinn Parker is acting for a convicted terrorist seeking lifelong anonymity.¬†Simon Natas¬†represents a number of people who have been victims of abuse or who have acted as whistleblowers. William Kenyon¬†joined the team.

Founded by Jason McCue¬†,¬†McCue & Partners LLP¬†handles a range of international human rights cases including representing victims of terrorism, state action, negligence and corporate malfeasance. It also acts for governments and international bodies on conflict resolution, humanitarian aid and legal reform issues. The firm has represented political prisoners around the world. Matthew Jury¬† is ‚Äėhighly recommended‚Äô for his ‚Äėability to manage complex cross-border litigation‚Äô.

Saunders Law¬†is ‚Äėvery good at inquest and actions against the police‚Äô. The firm is acting for over 220 clients in civil proceedings for misfeasance against the South Yorkshire and West Midlands Police arising out of the Hillsborough stadium disaster. Nia Williams¬†is a¬†'skilled strategist' who ‚Äėworks incredibly hard to try to get justice for all her clients‚Äô. Ceri Lloyd-Hughes¬† is noted for her work in public law proceedings involving the police, prisons and the Home Office. Ellie Cornish¬† joined from Fisher Meredith.

Simpson Millar LLP's wide-ranging workload¬†encompasses a range of social welfare issues, from education to Court of Protection and administrative and public law matters. Dan Rosenberg¬† is ‚Äėa very capable litigator‚Äô and acts for young children and vulnerable people in issues concerning public welfare support.¬†Angela Jackman¬† specialises in deprivation of liberty cases. Other names to note include the ‚Äėknowledgeable‚Äô Oliver Studdert¬† and Victoria Pogge von Strandman, who were both on the steering group of the Every Child in Need campaign challenging government proposals to change the way in which social services assess and provide support to children in need.

Slater and Gordon¬†stands out for its expertise in handling a range of human rights cases including medical law, child abuse, inquests, public law, community care and disability discrimination. Zak Golombeck¬†represented Jakki Smith and successfully challenged the law in relation to partners' eligibility to receive bereavement damages. Sarah Jones¬†handles¬†clinical negligence work including cases involving psychiatric harm and secondary victims. Kim Harrison¬†acts for families in Article 2 inquests and ‚Äėfailure to remove‚Äô actions against local authorities. Richard Scorer¬†is head of abuse law at the firm and top name in the field. Liz Perry left the firm.

The ‚Äėexcellent‚Äô practice at¬†Birnberg Peirce & Partners¬†represents individuals who have been victims of a range of human rights abuses. Cases include actions against the police and other state bodies such as Social Services and the Crown Prosecution Service. The practice also handles criminal defence, inquests and immigration cases.

Duncan Lewis Solicitors¬†is ‚Äėone of the leading firms in the field of immigration‚Äô and has achieved success in several Supreme Court, High Court, Court of Appeal and Upper Tribunal cases.¬†Naim Hasani¬†no longer with Duncan Lewis Solicitors) was successful in preventing the deportation of two Albanian nationals who had claimed asylum under false pretences.‚ÄėExceptional‚Äô partner Toufique Hossain and¬†Lewis Kett¬†acted in a successful challenge involving discriminatory practices in immigration detention centres. Other names to note include Zofia Duszynska, who is commended for her ‚Äėwealth of experience in test case¬†litigation‚Äô, and Jamie Bell, who acts for unaccompanied refugee children in their applications to come to the United Kingdom.

Farleys Solicitors LLP¬†‚Äėhas an excellent reputation nationally‚Äô. It is heavily involved in the public inquiry into the police shooting of Anthony Grainger, amongst other high-profile cases.¬†Jonathan Bridge¬† is ‚Äėhighly experienced in inquests‚Äô and ‚Äėuses his vast knowledge to the advantage of his clients‚Äô. Kelly Darlington¬† represents the father of Poppi Worthington in the second inquest into her death. Kelly is commended for her ‚Äėexcellent client-care skills‚Äô, ‚Äėher sharp eye for detail‚Äô and ‚Äėher strategic approach to cases‚Äô.

Gherson handles complex human rights, immigration and asylum cases both in the UK and internationally. Roger Gherson has successfully acted for several clients in respect to immigration appeals. Charles Burnett  is another name to note.

GT Stewart Limited¬†has a legal aid practice that handles criminal defence work and is praised for being ‚Äėvery hands-on in protecting its clients‚Äô interests‚Äô.¬†Andrew Frederick¬† represents clients in civil claims against the police. Lisa Verro left the firm.

Howells undertakes a broad range of civil liberties cases including actions against the police, judicial reviews, prisoner’s rights, immigration, inquests and deaths in custody. The team successfully pursued a challenge in the Supreme Court to the system of disclosure of all cautions and convictions, leading to a change in the law. Nadeem Ahmed  heads the immigration law team and has acted in a number of cases preventing the deportation of several clients. Head of Department Peter Mahy acted in a landmark case before the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights which found the UK’s policy of retaining the DNA of suspects of the unconvicted population was a breach of Article 8. Catrionna Kennaway left the firm.

Matthew Gold & Company Limited, solicitors¬†acts for claimants in judicial law reviews against state bodies and handles civil claims for damages against police forces.¬†Matthew Gold¬† is commended for being a ‚Äėhardworking, composed and dedicated advocate‚Äô and was the lead partner handling the judicial review challenging the refusal of the Home Office to hold a public inquiry into the collapse of a case where eight police offices had been charged with perverting the course of justice. He also has experience in inquests, abuse claims and data protection cases. Other names to note include ‚Äėterrific solicitor‚Äô Maria O‚ÄôConnell¬† and ‚Äėdeeply¬†knowledgeable‚Äô Clare Jennings¬† who was promoted to Director.¬†Harpreet Aujla¬†was promoted to associate solicitor. Rachel Etheridge¬† and Maya Lal¬† joined the team.

Minton Morrill¬†is a ‚Äėwell-regarded firm‚Äô that regularly handles inquests and actions against the police and other public authorities. Gemma Vine¬†heads the team and is ‚Äėparticularly strong in inquests involving the state‚Äô, is ‚Äėcommitted to her clients‚Äô and is ‚Äėwilling to go the extra mile to obtain justice for those she represents‚Äô. She has acted for several families in death in custody cases and represented the family of Pippa McManus who died after stepping in front of a train whilst on leave from the Priory Hospital Altrincham.

Swain & Co Solicitors¬†specialize in prison law. ‚ÄėPersonable‚Äô Dean Kingham¬† ‚Äėpossesses a clear grasp of the issues‚Äô. The team takes on cases ranging from securing parole for prisoners to appealing convictions and acts for Mr Warboys defending the decision of the parole board to release¬†him. The firm also assisted in re-establishing a law centre where weekly drop-in advice sessions on human rights and prison law are offered to individuals. Others to note include Simon Green¬†, Sarah Blake¬† and Jemma Atkinson¬†.

Wilson Solicitors LLP¬†represents individuals who have been adversely affected by the decisions of public bodies.¬†James Elliott¬† specialises in obtaining judicial reviews and injunctions for people facing removal or are in immigration detention. Other names to note are Nina Rathbone-Pullen¬† who is noted for her ‚Äėreal technical expertise‚Äô;¬†Katy Robinson,¬†who is a ‚Äėthorough and excellent tactician‚Äô and¬†Jennine Walker¬†who is ‚Äėextremely thorough and determined‚Äô.

Education: individuals

Index of tables

  1. Education: individuals
  2. Leading individuals: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Education: individuals clients in London using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact


Douglas Silas Solicitors is known for its specialism in advising on special educational needs (SEN). Founding director Douglas Silas has huge experience assisting the parents of children and young people with SEN and disabilities, particularly in more challenging cases, and frequently advises parents as their children move through the education system. Silas has notable expertise acting for children with autism, ADHD, cerebral palsy, Down’s syndrome, dyslexia and dyspraxia. He assists with the whole SEN process, from requesting an assessment through to appeals to the Special Educational Needs & Disability Tribunal.

Doyle Clayton has 'a well-deserved reputation' in this area advising teachers, lecturers and professors. Practice head Simon Henthorn has a wealth of education-related knowledge and is 'knowledgeable, dedicated, enthusiastic and charming and is clever and full of ideas'. Together with senior associate Elizabeth Timmins, he is acting for Professor Peter Edwards in his challenge to a university's policy concerning compulsory retirement age, which is likely to have ramifications for other universities; the professor was  temporarily re-instated but an employment tribunal case is pending. The team is also acting for a number of higher education employees in a variety of unfair dismissal matters and the negotiation of complex employment contracts and is also acting for children who are non-UK residents who require special visas.  Anna Blackden joined the group from an in-house position.

The Irwin Mitchell team, which is 'of the highest calibre', acts for children and young people on special educational needs matters, discrimination issues and challenges to areas such as school transport policies, closures and re-organisations. It also handles judicial reviews of local authority decisions and policies. Examples of its work includes acting for the parents of a child with cerebral palsy and autism in respect to the child's transfer from a maintained school to a non-maintained one that could provide the relevant specialisms; the local authority has refused and an appeal has been filed. In other work, it is acting for a child with autism who was excluded from school on behavioral grounds - an appeal has been lodged with the Upper Tribunal challenging Regulation 4 of the Equality Act (Disability) Regulations arguing that schools should make allowances for children with autism. Team head Polly Sweeney, Steven Baylis and associate Caroline Barrett are 'particularly effective' in this field and Sarah Woosey is also a noted name.

Match Solicitors represents students in a range of cases involving matters such as exclusions and exam disputes and assists disabled children in need of specialist provision. The team handles appeals to the First Tier Tribunal but also settles many cases. It also acts for teachers in cases where there are allegations of misconduct. Practice head Anita Chopra and Nicole Henham  acted for a child who was excluded from an independent school, following an incident concerning substance abuse; the matter was successfully settled with the child withdrawn from the school rather than excluded. The team also successfully represented a retired teacher in a formal hearing pertaining to allegations of unacceptable professional conduct. Salima Mawji and associate Chris Barnett are other core team members.

Simpson Millar LLP has 'a real emphasis on the rights of children, in particular vulnerable children in care' and 'is a brilliant firm of very committed lawyers'. The education sector is a key area within the firm's focus on social welfare matters and it frequently acts for parents and young people in challenging local authorities in cases pertaining to the suitable provision of educational needs. Angela Jackman has broad public law expertise and is a key name for special educational needs. Dan Rosenberg has a strong focus on educational matters within his broader social care practice, especially acting for children from disadvantaged backgrounds who cannot access suitable education.

John Ford Solicitors - part of the Sinclairslaw group, which was formed in May 2018 following the merger of the two firms, 'deals with matters promptly, has in-depth knowledge and is passionate about SEND and the needs of young people with disabilities'. It has established expertise in acting for parents whose children have special education needs and provides advice and where necessary handles judicial reviews. Its work includes matters concerning school admissions and exclusions and also advises students in the higher education sector. Michael Charles is the national head of the firm and is 'an expert in SEN and knows exactly what he is doing' and John Ford is a well-known senior practitioner, particularly for his work on behalf of children with special needs and disabilities. The firm acted for a child with a number of learning difficulties and managed to avoid a tribunal hearing when the local authority was persuaded to allow the child a place at the school of choice.

At Russell-Cooke LLP, head of the children and education department Eva Akins 'has excellent knowledge and great empathy'. The team is acknowledged as 'excellent' for its specialism in assisting children with special education needs and disabilities. Its work encompasses challenges to exclusions, admissions decisions and assistance with funding issues for entry to independent schools. In recent work, Atkins advised the parents of a child with epilepsy and anxiety disorder whose place at an independent school was terminated when the parents requested that the child’s exam load be reduced; te school was found  by a tribunal to have breached the Equality Act. Samantha Little and Sarah Richardson are other senior members of the group.

Education: institutions

Index of tables

  1. Education: institutions
  2. Leading individuals: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Education: institutions clients in London using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact


The 'good all-round team' at Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP advises a range of educational institutions including universities and educational bodies on matters ranging from setting up overseas establishments to the merger of schools. Its comprehensive expertise spans high-level policy advice, in addition to advisory and disputes matters. It acted for a number of further education colleges on their extensive work participating in the national Strategic Area Review and also acted for the Association of Colleges and Havering Sixth Form College on a judicial review challenge to the decision of the Department for Education to approve a new sixth form college at a school in the Borough of Havering. Key team members include Glynne Stanfield, Alison Oldfield and Nicola Bennison. Simon Chamberlain specialises in property-related matters, and Ben Wood handles employment and governance. With a 'national reputation', Diane Gilhooley is the well-known head of the firm’s national and international education sector group.

Farrer & Co's team 'is highly knowledgeable, easily approachable and offers very clear advice'. It provides extensive expertise across charity, constitutional and employment law together with safeguarding matters and large-scale collaborative projects and joint ventures. David Copping is the chair of the higher education group; Sam MacDonald, who is 'excellent in all respects', and David Smellie, 'who has excellent industry knowledge', are two of the senior specialists within the team; and Julian Smith focuses on charity, trusts tax and governance matters for universities. The team advised Imperial College London on safeguarding matters following an audit, and in other work it assisted King’s College London’s international directorate - King's Worldwide - on the correct structuring of international collaborations, work that included producing a suite of contracts and the formation of a new subsidiary company. Its client roster includes Oxford and Cambridge colleges, the London Business School and the Association of Commonwealth Universities.

Mills & Reeve LLP is highlighted for its 'quick response times and very good sector knowledge that is then backed up by specialist lawyers'. A substantial multi-disciplinary team undertakes diverse domestic and international work. Gary Attle, the team leader, has expertise in higher education legislation, governance and data protection. He advised Queen Mary University of London on a freedom of information matter relating to a large-scale clinical trial. The team also advised a number of universities on student disciplinary matters involving issues of potential criminal misconduct, sexual harassment and hate crimes. In other work, it assisted the University of Cambridge in setting up its Cambridge India Research Foundation. Other key members of the group include Richard Sykes, who specialises in contentious matters and is advising an education client regarding a student with a criminal conviction; Christian Bull, who assists universities and colleges with property-related matters; and financing expert Sarah Seed, who is noted as 'an industry expert for re-financing and raising corporate bonds'.

With 'sector-leading experience', Victoria Goddard heads an education department at Pinsent Masons LLP that 'consistently provides a joined-up and in-depth team service and the advice is always pragmatic and well-balanced'. It advises on matters such as financing, debt capital markets, development, procurement, planning and charity law. Martin Priestley leads the universities international group and is advising the University of Sheffield on the expansion of its partnership with Nanjing Tech University to establish a joint Institute for Science. Other names to note are Chris Martin and the 'excellent' Helen Corden, who brings employment expertise to the sector. The team is advising a number of universities on expansion projects, including assisting the University of Sussex with its modernisation project, which involves the procurement of new student accommodation and a new records system.

Shakespeare Martineau LLP provides 'excellent service' to universities and education sector bodies encompassing advice on student-university relationship issues; governance; employment; construction; and home and international collaborations. It is advising a college on expanding into a Middle Eastern country and is advising other clients on extensive building and refurbishments of campuses. It is also assisting two education sector bodies with lobbying for changes to the Higher Education and Research Act. Smita Jamdar is credited with leading a team that 'between them have a broad and relevant range of experience and knowledge'. Geraldine Swanton and Joanna Forbes are also names to note, as is Catherine Yule, 'whose professional approach and attention to detail make litigation comprehensible and uncomplicated'. Jonathan Nicholls joined the team in February 2017 from the University of Cambridge.

VWV serves an impressive breadth of clients including education investors across the whole of the education sector, with expertise in real estate, governance, state aid and charity law as well as areas such as cyber security. It continues to advise Brunel University London on an array of matters including policy reviews, disciplinary and grievance issues, and other disputes. Bettina Rigg and Emma-Jane Dalley head the higher and further education teams, which have expertise in employment law as well as student pastoral and diversity matters. Con Alexander 'provides practical and easily digestible advice', and on the real estate side the 'accessible and responsive' Michael Halsey and Clive Read are other key team members.

Bates Wells’s education service is headed by Caraline Johnson. It is hailed for 'providing a specialist team of outstanding experts in education backed up by first-rate solicitors in employment, property and public policy'. On the employment side, William Garnett assists colleges; he counts the Association of Colleges among his clients and is considered to have a 'richly deserved national reputation'. Other core team members include Lucy McLynn and recently promoted partner Emma Dowden-Teale, who handles regulatory and safeguarding laws. In a highlight matter, the team advised Bromley College (and Greenwich and Bexley Colleges) on the proposed merger between Bromley and Greenwich, a highly complex matter that included the design of a partnership management model. It is also advising Trinity College London on employment, real estate, IP, governance and commercial matters. Julian Blake has recently moved to Stone King LLP.

DAC Beachcroft LLP's 'level of service is very good and the people handling the work are very experienced and knowledgeable'. It has a reputation for providing regulatory and funding advice and is advising the Higher Education Funding Council for England on a range of work, including the conduct of its review of additional funding for specialist higher education institutions. It is also involved in policy development matters such as the development of the new Higher Education and Research Act. Julian Gizzi and Stephen Hocking co-head the group and Eve Gregory leads the employment law advice. The team is advising ESCP Europe Business School on various matters including the setting up of its executive master's programme. It is also advising a number of clients on investigations into cases of historic sexual misconduct. Other clients include Ofsted, the University of Sheffield and Queen Mary University of London.

At Weightmans LLP, team head Martin Vincent is the client partner for universities including Bangor University, Lancaster University and the University of Central Lancashire. Other key partners include real estate expert Janice Weatherly and highly regarded employment law lead Mark Leach. Vincent is advising Birmingham City University on expansion models aimed at expanding into the Vietnam market. In other highlight work, the team is advising Queen Mary University of London on its contract to deliver a global MBA programme through the University of London International Academy. Partner Andrew Roberts handles contentious matters and is advising Middlesex University on a fitness for practice challenge involving matters such as student discipline, professional practices and compliance with procedural requirements.

The substantial, multi-disciplinary team at¬†Blake Morgan LLP¬†is highlighted for providing 'excellent service'.¬†Matthew Smith, who¬†is especially adept in all aspects of non-contentious and contentious employment matters and has chaired a number of disciplinary and appeal hearings for universities, heads the practice.¬†It acts for a range of higher education clients as well as having links with education bodies such as the Association of University Legal Practitioners and the Sixth Form Colleges' Association. The team is acting for Swansea University and the trustees of the university pension scheme in relation to a case that is examining the meaning of ‚Äėunfavourable treatment‚Äô under section 15 of the Equality Act 2010 ‚Äď an action¬† brought by a former employee. Emyr Lewis¬†advises on a wide range of commercial matters and Richard Wade¬†is advising Keble College, Oxford on a construction project that will extend the college‚Äôs campus. Other key partners include¬†Susie Dryden;¬†Rachel Gwilliam,¬†who advises on areas such as construction and engineering; and Penri Desscan,¬†who specialises in procurement and other commercial matters.

BLM is noted for its 'extensive experience in cases involving educational institutions and regulators' and counts universities such as Cambridge, Surrey and Newcastle, as well as insurance companies, among its clients. The highly experienced Richard Wilkins advises both colleges and insurers on a range of contentious and advisory matters, including acting for Bridgwater & Taunton College in a claim brought by the University of Plymouth which alleged that the college was liable for payments made by the university to over 30 students due to breaches of obligations by the college in course delivery. Elliot Pound and associate Geneviève Rich are defending the Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine in High Court proceedings brought by a former lecturer who was dismissed after a disciplinary hearing; the matter is further complicated by an Employment Tribunal case being handled by a different firm.

Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP offers a full service to an impressive range of universities, colleges, student unions and education support organisations. It can provide sector-specific advice in areas ranging from charities law and governance to corporate and real estate and is especially in demand for procurement matters. It is advising Durham University on the delivery of two new colleges via a long-term public-private partnership. Emma Moody  and Kevin Robertson are advising Gateshead College on its response to the government’s local area review process by developing a Career College to focus on the construction industry. Christina Tolvas-Vincent is especially noted for her expertise in employment matters and is advising the Arts University Bournemouth on the introduction of a new academic career framework for its academic staff. Craig Moore is also noted for his real estate work.

Burges Salmon LLP¬†is 'excellent, responsive and knowledgeable'¬†and¬†is one of the ten firms that has been appointed to the ‚Äėone-stop shop lot‚Äô for the national legal services framework agreement for the higher education sector. Matthew Ramus¬†leads the group; Roger Bull¬†handles employment advice; and Marcus Harling¬†advises on construction and procurement projects. The team advised the University of Oxford on a joint venture with Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust which included advising on corporate, partnership, IP and licensing issues. It is also advising universities on funding matters, including one in respect of the funding for the construction of new research facilities. Some of its clients include the Department for Education, the University of Bristol, York St John University and the University of the West of England.

Penningtons Manches Cooper offers 'practical, high-quality advice' and is 'sensitive to the needs and issues of higher education', according to clients. It assists a host of UK, international and alternative providers of higher education, including with immigration issues. Hilary Aldred, who provides 'no-nonsense, practical advice', and Daff Richardson, who has a focus on disputes in this sector, co-head the department. Other noted team members include Pat Saini and Alison Talbot. Aldred leads a team that is advising Florida State University on all its UK employment matters, and in other work it is advising the Institute of Contemporary Music Performance regarding a claim from a disabled student in respect of allegations regarding his fitness to study and practice.

Assad Maqbool leads the education group at Trowers & Hamlins LLP, which includes property specialist Sangita Unadkat; Amardeep Gill, who focuses on commercial matters; and Helen Randall, whose expertise includes complex education governance and contractual issues. The team advises a broad range of educational institutions as well as the Secretary of State for Education and local authorities. It is advising the Education and Skills Funding Agency on a range of procurement matters including major school building projects, and is assisting the Police and Crime Commissioner with the establishment of a new academy focused on crime prevention and policing skills.

As part of the charities and philanthropy team, education specialists at Withers LLP offer a full service covering areas such as employment, immigration, health and safety, IP, data protection, international tax and real estate. Alison Paines, Chris Priestley and Richard Cassell are the leading partners in a team whose work includes advising an impressive roster of American colleges. It is advising the University of Illinois on setting up a dual-qualified charitable structure in the UK, and is also assisting Global University Systems, an international network of higher education institutions, with setting up in Asian countries and acquiring a college in the US.

Penny Chapman heads the Bircham Dyson Bell charities and social enterprise group, which assists higher education colleges in addition to its extensive roster of schools clients. Chapman advised on the establishment of the Parents' Association of Magdalen College School, Oxford as a separate charity, and is also assisting Eltham College with a refinancing exercise ahead of a redevelopment project. Other team members include Jonathan Fewster, who heads the real estate work, and Jesper Christensen, who focuses on employment matters.

Fenwick Elliott LLP offers construction expertise to UK and overseas universities and other further education institutions. It advises on large-scale procurements, builds and refurbishments of campuses and student accommodation, as well as the construction of research facilities. Victoria Russell continues to advise University College London on all aspects of the design and construction of a new, state-of-the-art research facility valued at between £25m and £30m, including dealing with delays caused by the main contractor. David Bebb and Jatinder Garcha also advise on high-value procurements and construction in the higher education sector. Other clients include King's College London and the University of the Arts London.

Education: schools

Index of tables

  1. Education: schools
  2. Leading individuals: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Education: schools clients in London using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact


Bates Wells has 'a specialist team of outstanding experts in education backed up by first-rate solicitors in employment, property and public policy'. It provides advice to early years education providers, schools, academies, multi-academy trusts and their sponsors on the full range of practice areas including charity law. Practice head Caraline Johnson assisted the Mulberry School for Girls with setting up the Mulberry Schools Trust and continues to advise on its expansion. Emma Dowden-Teale, who was recently made up to partner, has a focus on the regulatory side, investigations and appeals to the Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal and Paul Jennings has a wealth of experience advising educational establishments on employment law. Mary Groom has retired from the practice but continues as legal adviser to the secretariat of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Nursery Schools.

Browne Jacobson LLP provides 'five-star service every time' across areas such as company structures, academy conversions, governance, safeguarding, funding and land issues. It is advising on the creation of the Westcountry Schools Trust, which involved the transfer of six schools. In other work, it is handling whistleblowing issues, a disability discrimination claim and parental complaints. The highly experienced Mark Blois heads the education team nationally and Nick Mackenzie, who specialises in governance and corporate matters, heads the Birmingham team and has 'exceptional knowledge of the sector and is always able to provide sound, clear advice'. Other key partners include Adrian Shardlow, Richard Freeth and Dai Durbridge, 'who is just an outstanding presenter who can make the dullest of topics interesting'.

'Market-leader' Farrer & Co 'provides excellent value for money, legal acumen and sector knowledge'. Practice head Sam MacDonald is highlighted for his 'excellent, pragmatic advice' and is noted for his blend of charities and education expertise. David Smellie has 'unrivalled knowledge of safeguarding' and is also a key name for contentious employment matters. Head of the schools practice Jonathan Eley's work ranges from child protection and special needs matters to disciplinary and exam administration cases. Paul Jones advises independent schools on a range of commercial matters including international joint ventures. The team is advising a number of boarding schools on the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse and in other work, a multi-disciplinary team assisted King's College School in Wimbledon with the sale of the business and assets of pre-preparatory The Rowans School to Shrewsbury House School.

Stone King LLP's team has long-standing expertise in the education sector and operates from the firm's offices in  London, Bath, Birmingham, Cambridge and Leeds. Core strengths include advising on academy set-ups and transfers, governance, capital funding and construction. Graham Burns heads the education team and has considerable expertise advising on multi-academy trusts and PFI projects. Roger Inman heads the education sector group and specialises in school governance, funding and academy reorganisations. Laura Berman is acting for an educational trust in connection with complaints regarding disability discrimination and Stephen Ravenscroft's work includes advising a number of schools on the various challenges involved in their closures, including handling the sale and purchase of assets, liability issues and employment relationships. Lee Coley, Helen Tucker, Graham Shaw and Ciara Campfield are other notable names.

VWV 'has a strong team and some excellent individual lawyers', who collectively have an impressive range of education-focused specialisms such as charities law, regulations, employment, real estate and commercial matters. The team's client list includes well-known independent schools, academies and colleges. It assisted with the establishment of the Reach South Academy Trust and is currently advising on its acquisition of two academies. It is also handling an exam malpractice matter and is acting for various schools in disputes raised by parents and pupils. Barney Northover, who is based in Bristol, and Yvonne Spencer jointly head the practice and Simon Bevan, who specialises in employment law, leads the firm's safer recruitment training programme. Other noted practitioners include Emma-Jane Dalley and Naseem Nabi. Tabitha Cave  and John Deakin  handle a range of regulatory compliances and Chloe Brunton has notable charities expertise in the education sector.

Barlow Robbins LLP 'is an extremely personable firm that seems to pride itself on its warmth and expertise' and the team provides 'an excellent level of service and very knowledgeable and pragmatic advice'. It deals largely with the independent sector and also advises organisations such as the Headmasters’ and Headmistresses’ Conference, the Boarding Schools’ Association and the Independent Schools Bursars’ Association. Joanna Lada-Walicki heads the practice and attracts praise for her level of experience and knowledge of the independent sector and for being 'sensible and thorough'. Ben Collingwood, who has recently promoted to partner, is 'quick-witted, intelligent and an excellent support for schools'. Gordon Reid has considerable expertise in charity law matters. The team's work includes advising on mergers and acquisitions, historic sexual abuse allegations, a safeguarding matter and defending schools and individual teachers against various parental complaints.

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP's team provides 'good response times and quality advice'. Its clients span schools, academies, technical colleges, academy trusts, local authorities and independent schools. Recent work includes advising Reigate College on its conversion to an academy, which involved assisting the college with pension, corporate and HR matters, as well as education law. The team also continues to assist ACS International Schools with an array of matters ranging from construction to IP, charity law and governance. The well-respected Diane Gilhooley  heads the practice; Ben Wood advises on employment and governance matters; and Helen Cairns has long-standing experience of working with academies and 'impresses with her industry knowledge'.

Kristine Scott heads the education sector practice at Harrison Clark Rickerbys. The firm, which has a national reach, acts for an impressive range of schools, predominantly in the independent sector. The team is acting for Cranleigh School with regard to negotiating a master franchising agreement with a number of schools in China, headed by the Elite K-12 education fund which operates schools across China. In other work, Scott advises the Independent Schools’ Bursars Association on the formulation of new safeguarding and child protection policies. The team is also able to draw on the firm's wider expertise to provide support to education clients on real estate, trustee matters, data protection and employment law. Emilie Darwin, who was promoted to partner in April 2017, has is a key name for employment matters.

Winckworth Sherwood LLP's team provides 'an excellent service' and supports clients 'through challenging issues'. The group advises on areas ranging from academy conversions and expansions to leadership challenges and governance matters and has a growing reputation for its work for faith schools. Practice head Andrea Squires, who is 'consistently good, knowledgeable and approachable', has a focus on governance, charity law and company law issues applicable to academies and James Lynas has extensive employment experience, including handling dismissals and pay and conditions grievances. The group is assisting Green Spring Education Trust/Green Spring Academy in Tower Hamlets with regard to allegations of historic exam malpractice. Other clients include the Diocese of Westminster Academy Trust, the London Borough of Haringey and Thomas’s London Day Schools.

Bircham Dyson Bell stands out for its 'excellent knowledge of charity law and its impact on the independent sector and for its thorough and timely advice'. Practice head Penny Chapman advises independent schools and other charitable education institutions and is 'trusted for her clarity of advice'. Jonathan Fewster, who heads the real estate practice, advises clients such as the Westminster School and Queens College on various property development and leasing matters. In highlight work, it is advising independent Quaker girls' school, The Mount School, on amendments to its constitution, which includes liaising with the Charity Commission. 

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's team is 'consistently outstanding' for comprehensive advice and senior partner engagement. Lynn Povey, who has a focus on charities and property law, heads the practice and employment specialist Ben Smith is noted for providing 'timely and effective guidance and action'. The group provides multi-disciplinary services and broad charity law expertise to clients such as Eton College, the City and Guilds of London Institute and the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing. In recent work, it is advising education sector clients on refinancing matters, governance and contractual issues and real estate sales.

Michelmores LLP provides 'a fantastic, five-star service: response times are almost immediate and nothing is ever too much for ask for'. Practice head Antony Power is advising Tring School (now part of the Ridgeway Learning Partnership) on public relations matters and  strategic issues regarding its conversion from a single academy trust to a multi-academy trust, as well as assisting the client with a capital-funded building project. Charlotte Antoniou's workload includes advising on academy conversions, admissions and exclusions, matters pertaining to special educational needs and data protection issues. Barrister Russell Holland routinely assists schools and colleges with issues including special educational needs, disability discrimination and Ofsted inspections. The team is also advising Sigma Academy Trust on matters including new governance arrangements.

RPC's client list includes the Mill Hill School Foundation, St Clement Danes School and St Clement Danes Holborn Estates Charity, and the Headmasters' and Headmistresses' Conference. The team is also able to leverage the firm's wider expertise in corporate and investment matters, mergers, HR and employment to provide a full spectrum of service to clients. Geraldine Elliott heads the practice and has a focus on governance matters, as well as staff and pupil issues such as disputes concerning admissions. Corporate practitioner Anthony Shatz advises schools on M&A and investment matters.

Sharpe Pritchard LLP has a strong public law background, which includes advising local authorities (and governing bodies) on the full range of education-related mandates. The team is advising the London Borough of Southwark on its primary school expansion programme, which involves extensions, refurbishments and new builds in connection with 12 primary schools. It also advised the governing bodies of four schools in the Midlands on a number of matters concerning governing body agreements. The team has a focus on construction projects in schools, work which is led by Annie Moy. Recently promoted partner Catherine Newman is able to draw on her previous experience working in-house in local government and advises on a range of matters including governance. Timothy Farr and Paul O’Sullivan are other key team members.

Kevin Robertson, who heads the education practice, and Emma Moody  who specialises in charity law, are the key names at Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP. The team is advising numerous governing bodies such as Waterton Trust, Carmel Education Trust and St Hilda’s Catholic Academy Trust on matters relating to academy conversions. Robertson is assisting the Education and Skills Funding Agency on its Free Schools programme and is also advising the Northern Education Trust on academy conversions and HR matters relating to its schools. Other clients include the Carmel Education Trust in Darlington, Newcastle upon Tyne Royal Grammar School and the Vision Academy Trust.

Blake Morgan LLP's multi-disciplinary team, which is made up of litigators and corporate, real estate and employment specialists among others, provides 'an excellent service'. Matthew Smith, who is the head of the education sector practice, assisted Hereford Sixth Form College with its conversion to academy status, which included preparing a funding agreement with the Department for Education, and advising on due diligence issues, revised governance arrangements and asset transfers. Tim Forer led a substantial team that handled a large-scale title review and academy conversion project for a schools trust. In other work, the team advised the National College for Teaching and Leadership with disciplinary actions taken against a number of teachers in connection with the so-called Trojan horse letter, which alleged a strategy by some individuals to take over and run schools on strict religious principles. Penny Rinta-Suksi and Ruth Leadbitter are other names to note.

At Mills & Reeve LLP, a substantial multi-disciplinary team handles diverse domestic and international work. Practice head Stuart Pemble advises the Academies Enterprise Trust on all aspects of its operations, ranging from safeguarding to commercial contracts, and Gary Attle, the education sector head, has expertise in higher education legislation, governance and data protection. Other key members of the group include Richard Sykes; Christian Bull, who advises on real estate matters; and Nick Abbott, who has a focus on employment cases.

Bevan Brittan LLP is a key name for construction and refurbishment projects concerning schools and academies. Andrew Tobin heads the commercial and infrastructure department and advises a range of local authorities on such matters. David Hutton leads the work relating to project finance education-related regeneration projects. Recent work includes acting for the Education and Skills Funding Agency on the delivery of over 120 new schools, academies and free schools under the government’s priority school building programme. Other clients include the London Borough of Hackney, the London Borough of Barnet, Bristol City Council and Newham Local Education Partnership.

The team at Bird & Bird LLP advises a wide range of schools and colleges, particularly those in the independent and private sectors. It also has an established expertise in international matters; it advised the Westminster School on its dealings with the Hong Kong Melodious Education Technology Group concerning the establishment of six schools in China. Practice head Mark Abell has substantial expertise in this area - he assisted Wellington College and its prep school, Eagle House, in setting up an additional school in China. 

BLM's team, which is headed by Elliot Pound, is, according to one client, 'quite excellent in all respects and always very responsive'. It advises clients in the schools sector on risk management issues pertaining to disciplinary procedure policies, admissions and academy conversions. The group acted for St Olave’s Grammar School on a controversial issue pertaining to the grades required to progress to A-level courses, which included a contentious element. The well-regarded Richard Wilkins and Tim Smith are other noted names and associate Geneviève Rich is also 'excellent'.

Alison Paines, who has long-standing expertise in charities law, jointly heads the team at Withers LLP with Chris Priestley, who focuses on domestic and  international commercial projects such as joint ventures and other collaborations. Special counsel Alana Petraske advises educational institutions, charities and their donors on a range of regulatory and finance issues. The team advises on conversions to academies and other school restructurings together with governance and operational issues. It advised an Australian co-ed school on all aspects of the establishment of a charitable organisation in order to raise funds from UK- based alumnae. In other work, it advised a faith school on the exit of its head teacher following a decline in the school's academic performance and safeguarding concerns.


Index of tables

  1. Electoral
  2. Leading individuals

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Electoral clients in London using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact


‚ÄėOne of the best election law firms‚Äô, Bates Wells¬†has an outstanding track record advising on elections, referendums and parliamentary affairs with experts in constitutional, commercial and media law being able to advise across the political spectrum. It continues to advise the Cabinet Office and Lord Hodgson on the Independent Statutory Review into the regulation of non-party campaigning in respect of the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000, as amended by the controversial Lobbying Act. It also continues to provide a range of advice to 38 Degrees on its campaigning activity. Other clients include Britain Stronger in Europe, the Green Party, the National Union of Students and the Trade Union Congress. Simon Steeden¬†and Rosamund McCarthy¬†co-head the team and Melanie Carter¬†and Jessica Collings¬†are key team members who ‚Äėare both excellent solicitors - creative, hardworking and imaginative.‚Äô

Historically K&L Gates LLP has advised candidates for membership of UK Parliaments, the European Parliament as well as mayoral and local elections. Head of the team, Piers Coleman has some decades of experience advising political parties, election candidates and Returning Officers and Christine Braamskamp is also noted for her expertise assisting electoral candidates and advising on Electoral Commission investigations. It has advised the Liberal Democrats for many years, since its merger with the SDP. Recently it advised on remedies available to several candidates in connection with dealing with the Electoral Commission. It has also advised an MP on the controversial issue of having his Parliamentary election declared void.

Sharpe Pritchard LLP is acknowledged primarily for advising Returning Officers and their teams on the complex procedural requirements connected with running elections and referendums and also advises on the application of technology to elections, including electronic vote counting. It has advised on a number of high-profile matters including a case concerning a challenge to an election result based on the fact that people could not vote due to long queues. Work of late includes assisting a campaigning client with an investigation carried out by the Electoral Commission into an alleged breach of spending limits at elections and advised another client on alleged electoral offences. The team advises a number of councils including the London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham, the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea and Westminster City Council. The senior practitioners Alastair Lewis and  Emyr Thomas have decades of experience across all aspects of electoral law.

Steel & Shamash¬†'is an outstanding firm in this area with unparalleled knowledge and expertise.‚Äô Its exceptional breadth of experience covers not only election law but also Parliamentary boundary inquiries, judicial reviews,¬† Standards Board and Adjudication Tribunal matters and the Parliamentary rules relating to the conduct of Members of Parliament.¬†Gerald Shamash,¬†who is reported to have ‚Äėan encyclopaedic knowledge of election law and also draws on experience in a wide range of other litigation‚Äô has been advising the Labour Party for 27 years and is steeped in election law including high-profile postal vote fraud matters. He is also dealing with a number of cases concerning the MPs expenses controversy. Frances Randle¬†is noted for her local government expertise.

At Manleys Solicitors, James Roochove  acts for Conservative MPs, candidates and election agents who were under police investigations concerning expenses returns and has also represented MPs on various other types of expenses irregularities.  Consultant lawyer Nama Zarroug has noted expertise assisting clients in the political arena on criminal and fraud defences.


Index of tables

  1. Healthcare
  2. Leading individuals: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next generation lawyers

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Healthcare clients in London using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact


Bevan Brittan LLP¬†'s healthcare team has¬†‚Äėextensive knowledge of the sector‚Äô and is¬†‚Äėproactive in its response; it always goes the extra mile'.¬†The multi-disciplinary practice advises NHS trusts, clinical commissioning groups, government bodies and private sector organisations on a wide range of healthcare, mental health, real estate and corporate matters. Practice head Sharon Renouf¬†is praised for her ‚Äėexcellent attention to detail‚Äô; she focuses on high-value procurements for NHS clients contracting with the private sector, and counts Barts Health NHS Trust as clients. ‚ÄėShrewd, knowledgeable and very client focused‚Äô, Carly Caton¬†acts for NHS trust clients on private patient projects and international ventures, among other matters. Rosemary Jago¬†leads on complex public/private partnership procurements, and is advising Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust on a complex redevelopment programme for St Mary's Hospital valued at ¬£900m. Ian Caplan¬† is recommended for health-related property matters and Vincent Buscemi¬†for commercial healthcare work.

Browne Jacobson LLP¬†'s ‚Äėhighly recommended‚Äô healthcare practice handles a range of work, including public/private partnerships, social care, and ehealth work. The Manchester office recruited Gerard Hanratty¬† from Capsticks LLP;¬†he continues to advise several CCGs on a ¬£2bn merger in the West Midlands. Simon Tait¬†leads the national practice and specialises in contentious matters; he recently represented Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust in an inquest into the death of a one-day-old baby from cerebral infarction. Clinical negligence expert¬†Matthew Trinder¬† joined in October 2017 from¬†BLM. Corporate and commercial specialist Oliver Pritchard¬†advised Derby Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust on a ¬£650m merger and Vision Express UK on the acquisition of 209 retail optical practices valued at ¬£55m. Ben Troke¬†leads the health and social care advisory team and Clare Auty¬† is a name to note within the independent healthcare sector.

The ‚Äėimpressive‚Äô and ‚Äėhighly experienced‚Äô team at Fieldfisher¬† ‚Äėprovides a level of service that represents excellent value‚Äô. The practice specializes in private healthcare including advice on regulatory, procurement, eHealth issues and contentious cases involving NICE challenges. Department head Sarah Ellson¬† is ‚Äėa well-known name in professional regulation‚Äô and is ‚Äėable to spot potential issues in the mass of detail‚Äô; her¬†recent highlights include representing Roche Products on appeal proceedings against a NICE appraisal that refused to extend the use of Esbriet on the NHS. The team is known for advising regulators such as the Nursing and Midwifery Council and the Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority on matters such as gene editing and mitochondrial donation. Debbie Nicholson¬†regularly advises commercial clients such as the Online Clinic UK in relation to contentious and non-contentious Care Quality Commission matters. Alison Dennis¬†is highly recommended for life sciences work, and Holly Bontoft¬†is singled out for regulatory matters.

Hempsons'¬†‚Äėoutstanding‚Äô specialist health and social care practice handles a wide range of healthcare regulatory, life sciences and corporate work for an impressive roster of clients including NHS trusts, the Care Quality Commission, and ¬†private and third sector providers. Key contacts within the sizeable team are Christian Dingwall,¬†who has ‚Äėunrivalled experience‚Äô in NHS governance and services configuration; recent work includes advising NHS Burley CCG on putting in place interim alliance contracting arrangements, and Manchester Primary Care Providers relating to the establishment of the Manchester Local Care Organisation with its partners (Manchester CC and the Manchester acute and mental health trusts). Miriam Farley¬†focuses on clinical negligence and high value brain injury claims, while Ian Hempseed¬† advises charities and social enterprises, and counts The Health and Work Community Interest Company (Syngentis) and Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists as clients. Jamie Foster¬†has notable experience in the management of complex projects and transactions, having recently advised on the merger of Central Manchester University Hospitals NHSFT and University Hospital South Manchester NHSFT.¬†Other contacts to note are Janie Barber in healthcare regulatory and employment and Tania Francis¬† specialises in advising healthcare practitioners.

Mills & Reeve LLP's team is led by Bridget Archibald and is praised for its¬†‚Äėproactive approach and a great understanding of the NHS industry'.¬†The practice has extensive expertise in healthcare M&A, commercial NHS work and technology. Julian Smith¬† and Duncan Astill¬†advised¬†US-based investors the Nashville Healthcare Council and Tenet Healthcare on entry into the UK healthcare market through joint ventures and acquisitions. The ‚Äėimpressive ‚Äô Jill Mason¬† heads the health care and mental health group and recently acted for a South East CCG in designing a home care package for a patient with complex requirements, as well as for a charity care home in Court of Protection proceedings. Commercial specialist Kevin Calder¬† continues to work with the Department of Health on high-value commercial projects. Peter Wainman¬†is advising Great Ormond Street Hospital NHS Trust on procurement of two new interconnecting IT systems. Jill Weston and Sarah Garrood ‚Äėhave years of experience and are highly recommended‚Äô for mental health and regulatory work, and Stuart Knowles¬† is ‚Äėvery responsive and knowledgeable‚Äô in clinical governance and inquests. James Fry¬† joined the team from¬†Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP¬† in September 2017 to lead the life sciences practice.

Addleshaw Goddard's healthcare practice spans the public sector infrastructure, social care, private healthcare and life sciences sectors and counts NHS England, BUPA and TC Biopharm among its clients. Practice head Michael O‚ÄôConnor¬†is a ‚Äėpragmatic and creative thinker‚Äô¬†who specialises in healthcare transactions. Recent instructions include advising The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre NHS Foundation Trust on estates and facilities management and the delivery of specialist cancer care hospital in Liverpool valued at ¬£160m. Matthew Newing¬† has an ‚Äėimpressive breadth of knowledge‚Äô in healthcare development and investment transactions; he is continuing to advise Kajima Partnerships and Sir Robert McAlpine Capital Ventures on a ¬£600m development with South West London and St Georges Mental Health NHS Trust to build two new hospitals, residential and commercial facilities. Glasgow- based Murray Jack¬†advises life sciences investors.

Bindmans LLP¬†is¬†¬†‚Äėextremely strong in Court of Protection, inquests, and human rights claims in the healthcare arena‚Äô. The practice has a strong focus on contentious cases; representing a range of clients in Court of Protection cases, mental health cases, disciplinary investigations in relation to healthcare professionals and actively challenging the current healthcare framework. Saimo Chahal QC (Hon)¬† is ‚Äėa formidable solicitor and a tough negotiator‚Äô with ‚Äėoutstanding depth of knowledge and experience‚Äô;¬†she has recently acted for Omid T, a neurodegenerative disease patient in a high-profile right-to-die claim challenging the current legislation on suicide. Chahal also represents families on Article 2 inquests and mental health challenges. Charlotte Haworth Hird¬†is extremely active in mental health and inquests;¬†she regularly takes on advocacy work¬†¬†for families whose loved ones have died in custody or whilst in the care of the state. Recently she represented the family of Melissa Mathieson, a woman with ADHD and autism who was murdered by a fellow care-home resident, and acts in several complex mental health and negligence claims against mental health providers. ‚ÄėRising star‚Äô Laura Hobey-Hamsher¬†is highly recommended for cases involving human rights issues.

Bird & Bird LLP  ’s healthcare expertise spans international healthcare projects, public/private partnerships, eHealth, and healthcare M&A. Mark Hilton , Simon Shooter  and Ian Edwards  jointly lead the 26-partner healthcare and life sciences department which was joined by Stuart Cairns  from Pinsent Masons LLP in August 2017. Shooter regularly advises healthcare providers on all aspects of outsourcing and commercial operations in emerging markets; recently highlights include advising Great Ormond Street Hospital NHS Trust on establishing a department in an existing Women's and Children's' Hospital in Abu Dhabi. Cairns and associate Chris Murray have acted for The Christie NHS Foundation Trust to deliver patient information and entertainment system - only the third Innovation Partnership to be procured within the EU. Edwards advises clients Guy's & St Thomas's NHS Foundation Trust on a range of technology and commercial procurement matters. David Ayers' extensive industry experience includes running large scale transformational projects for public and private sector organisations, such as for North Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust on the outsourcing of its pathology services to a joint venture between University College London Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust and The Doctors Laboratory. Associate Ben Woodfield regularly assists Ayers and Edwards and is also recommended.

Blake Morgan LLP ’s practice combines strong expertise in corporate and commercial transactions with an in-depth knowledge of the healthcare sector, acting for regulatory organisations, NHS Trusts, private healthcare and medical equipment providers. Bruce Potter leads the team and is highly experienced in public procurement projects and healthcare re-organisation. Stephen Tainsh leads the new medical technology group and advises global medical technology companies on new models of supplying equipment and software services to the NHS. Recent highlights includes advising Getinge UK  on an innovative transaction with Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust. Allan Wilson’s expertise includes acting for NHS Trusts, CCGs and private sector clients on contentious disputes arising under the public procurement regime and in judicial review proceedings. Alison Patten-Hall advises clients on all aspects of commercial trading contracts and outsourcing projects.

Capsticks LLP  acts for public sector clients, NHS Trusts and private healthcare providers on contentious and non-contentious work such as employment issues, services reconfiguration and advising GP’s on a new code of conduct. Rachael Heenan heads the practice and advised the NHS Employers on issues surrounding GDPR regulations and on terms and conditions for consultants and clinical excellence awards. Martin Hamilton  defended the Croydon Health Services NHS Trust in a case brought on by a consultant cardiologist for dismissal and misconduct. Specialist healthcare litigator Ashley Irons  currently represents Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust on the inquest into Ian Brady’s death whilst detained under the Mental Health Act. The practice has seen several departures recently including Gemma Brannigan to Clyde & Co LLP,  Robert McGough  to Hill Dickinson LLP, Will Marshall to DWF, and Mark Jarvis  to VWV. Hugh Giles, former director of legal services from the Metropolitan Police, joined in November 2017.

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP¬†continues to be a dominant force in the market; the practices's particular expertise in pharmacy law has certainly helped it stand-out in the market and¬†attract key clients in the¬†pharmaceutical sector.¬†¬†Tim Jenkins¬† jointly lead the practise which includes David Reissner¬† and¬†Noel Wardle¬†both of whom¬† have ‚Äėunrivalled‚Äô expertise in pharmacy and healthcare regulatory law. Wardle is currently advising a large online pharmacy company on multiple challenges relating to its online operations in several jurisdictions. Michael Lingens¬†‚Äôs notable expertise in corporate finance and transactional work includes advising the shareholders of Minster and Croftwood Care Groups on the ¬£149m sale and leaseback of 56 elderly residential care homes to Impact Healthcare REIT plc. Jenkins assisted Juno Health Ltd purchase of the entire issued share capital of Ashchem Chemists, a group of 15 pharmacies in North-East England. Jonathan Steele continues to advise BUPA Dental Care and Dentex Healthcare Group on M&A work.

Clyde & Co LLP¬† significantly strengthened their healthcare practice with the recruitment of Gemma Brannigan¬† from¬†Capsticks LLP¬†, David Hansom¬† from VWV¬†¬† and Judith Duffin from BLM¬†¬†. The ‚Äėvery responsive, knowledgeable and thorough‚Äô team is headed by the‚Äėpowerhouse' Claire Petts¬†who ‚Äėhas a wealth of experience‚Äô¬†and has represented a number of NHS Trusts on high profile inquests. Brannigan is a ‚Äėvery strong advocate‚Äô and is also recommended for healthcare inquiries; she has¬† recently acted for Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Trust on a clinical negligence case. Duffin advises a medical defence organisation in the highly complex ‚ÄėDeepcut barracks‚Äô inquest. The team also acts for life sciences clients. Jacques Howell¬†and Elizabeth Bradley¬†are also highly recommended.

CMS' team, headed by Warren Taylor, handles M&A, transactions, complex regulatory and public sector work for clients including Nuffield Health, NHS Trusts and Johnson & Johnson.  Paul Smith  also advised Johnson & Johnson Finance Limited on their new and innovative long-term partnership with Guy’s Hospital in London to deliver a managed orthopaedic service. Further, Smith advised Assured Guaranty, US Bank and Lloyds Bank on refinancing of the teaching facility and Bexley Wing of St. James’s NHS Hospital in Leeds. Rachel Cooper  handles several investigation, clinical conduct and complaints handling of the General Optical Council. David Day and Candice Blackwood are also names to note.

DAC Beachcroft LLP acts for NHS Trusts, CCGs and private healthcare providers. The practice, led by Anne Crofts,  balances commercial interests with a public sector focus to deliver innovative projects such as the first London devolution project for City & Hackney CCG to commission health and social care alongside two local authorities, and for London Central and West Unscheduled Care Collaborative on its successful bid to provide integrated urgent care and 111 services across five boroughs in North London. Crofts focuses on advising public and private providers and commissioners on innovative joint ventures, she recently assisted Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust on a joint venture to establish a private patient clinic with US-based The Mayo Clinic. Hamza Drabu  advises on a broad range of commercial and public law issues. Senior associate Alistair Robertson is highly recommended for challenging public procurement decisions, as is Dean Parrett for real estate work.

Gowling WLG 's healthcare expertise spans transactions and procurement work, as well as advising care home providers on acquisitions, restructuring and outsourcing; the team also acts for public sector clients and NHS Trusts. Practice head Robert Breedon's 'experience in alliancing in the public sector is second to none’; recent instructions include advising Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust on the £39m sale of two medium secure units to its wholly-owned subsidiary Summerhill Services Ltd, and Lakeside Healthcare on its merger with six other GP practices. Andrew Litchfield  is an expert within the healthcare regulatory space and Michael Lacey is recommended for corporate work and healthcare transactions.

Hill Dickinson LLP's¬†sizeable team continues to make its mark in the healthcare sector and is regularly called on by numerous NHS and private sector clients, the team's expertise lies in complex and contentious cases, inquests and judicial review proceedings. Practice head Kiran Bhogal¬† is ‚Äėparticularly good at finding pragmatic solutions to clients‚Äô problems‚Äô and is singled out as a leading expert in complex inquests, Court of Protection cases and mental health issues; she has represented a CCG in Supreme Court proceedings raising the fundamental issue as to the dividing line between the Court of Protection (COP) and the Administrative Court. Emma Galland¬†¬†‚Äėan accomplished solicitor advocate and gives the team real depth‚Äô has a private healthcare focus and also acts in inquests; she is currently advising a healthcare professional at the inquest into the death of a young child who died following the administration of an overdose of anti-seizure medication. Sarah Brooke¬†is also recommended for commercial healthcare work Robert McGough¬†joined in August 2017 from¬†Capsticks LLP¬†¬†¬†and co-heads the Leeds office with Mike McKenna¬†.

The ‚Äėextremely proactive practice‚Äô team at Pinsent Masons LLP¬†is jointly led by Kate Orviss¬† and Joanne Ellis¬†and advises¬†national and international clients on a range of high-value M&A and joint venture transactions. Orviss ‚Äėis most innovative in her thinking and in resolving problems'; she¬†leads the global healthcare group. Highlights included acting for Indo UK Healthcare Private and UK Global Healthcare on the implementation of the Indo UK Institute of Health Programme, an Indian and British government supported venture aiming to build 11 hospitals and polyclinics with the intention of bringing NHS standard healthcare. Ellis focuses on transactions in the social care and dental space; she has advised Jacobs Holding AG on the acquisition of the Southern Dental group and Tracscare on the acquisition of the New Bridges Care Group, a specialist residential and outreach service provider for individuals who have acquired brain injury, complex needs and learning disabilities. Robert Moir‚Äôs work encompasses corporate finance and structures, joint ventures and investments.

Trowers & Hamlins LLP 's  group has extensive expertise within the private sector, with particular focus on residential and social care, advising on NHS Trust estates management, retirement villages and secondary care facilities. Kyle Holling  and Hilary Blackwell  are currently advising Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust on PPP re-development of the St Pancras Hospital site to create a new mental health facility including the Institute of Mental Health run by University College London. Corporate partner Tim Nye  advises investors on M&A and joint ventures and jointly heads the department with Holling. Paul McDermott  specializes in social care and has recently worked on the integration of social care and health services in the London Borough of Croydon, while Alison Chivers' work focuses on M&A and investments in health and social care.

Burges Salmon LLP's practice has a strong focus on advising leading suppliers and private healthcare operators on procurement, commercial contracts and corporate matters. The team counts Virgin Care, Optegra Eye Healthcare and Oxford University and Oxford University Hospital NHS Trust as clients. Mark Shepherd specialises in corporate and commercial transactions; he assisted Optegra Eye Healthcare on its acquisition of Arnott Eye Associates. Will Woodall advises investors in matters involving care homes and retirement villages. Patrick Parkin supported Virgin Care with the finalisation of its £700 m community healthcare service contract with commissioners in Bath & North East Somerset. Richard Binns is recommended for litigation work, and Paul Doherty is recommended for real estate matters.

Irwin Mitchell¬† is a leading practice specializing in representing claimants in a range of serious medical malpractice cases, public inquiries, and human rights cases. Yogi Amin¬† is ‚Äėvery good at seeing the bigger picture especially in sensitive cases‚Äô and is highly experienced in ‚Äėrunning strategic litigation in sensitive human right cases‚Äô;¬†he continues to represent Noel Conway and Dignity in Dying in appeal proceedings on the leading case on assisted dying. Amin is also advising in a judicial review relating to reconfiguration of hospital services in Huddersfield which will lead to the closure of A&E and reduction of hospital beds. Senior associate Mathieu Culverhouse represents clients in relation to their rights to medical treatment and is praised for his ‚Äėability to combine details and is very thorough‚Äô. Key highlights include acting for Lindsey Briggs on behalf of her husband Paul Briggs in a Court of Protection in regards to a the right to discontinue life sustaining treatment. Anne-Marie Irwin is also highly recommended.

McDermott Will & Emery UK LLP  has undergone a significant expansion over the last 18 months with the hire of Sharon Lamb  from Capsticks LLP  and Hamid Yunis  from Taylor Wessing LLP . The firm advises US-based and national clients on a range of matters  most notably strategic entry into the UK market and procuring contracts with the NHS, complex cross-border healthcare expansion plans, and broadly advising private sector clients and global medical equipment suppliers on range of commercial issues. Yunis is highly experienced in the commercial healthcare space and continues to advise key clients Varex Imaging, a leading supplier of x-ray tubes and image processing in relation to expansion plans and set up of European and Asian joint ventures, and Varian Medical Systems for the PPP and supply of radiotherapy equipment to healthcare facilities in multiple jurisdictions. Lamb assists Specsavers Optical Group on its optometry expansion to NHS clients including set up of its joint venture with ophthalmologists’ contracts with NHS commissioners.

RadcliffesLeBrasseur¬†‚Äôs expertise spans inquests, Court of Protection proceedings, Care Quality Commission regulatory work, and mental health law. Andrew Parsons¬† ‚Äėhas great judgment and gives advice that is ‚Äėspot on‚Äô when clients are really in trouble‚Äô; he has represented Central & North West London NHS Foundation Trust in a judicial review before the Senior Coroner for Westminster on a case concerning a fatal overdose of a mental health patient on Trust premises. Alexandra Johnstone¬† is known for her in-depth knowledge of mental health law and handles inquests for a number of care homes and mental health hospitals. Recently promoted partner Marianne Frall¬†is ‚Äėfirst-rate‚Äô and currently advices Central & North West London NHS on a number of matters relating to the Grenfell Tower fire. Julia Appleton¬† focuses on matters relating to consent, confidentiality and mental health. Graeme Irvine joined in September 2017 from an in-house position at the Royal College of Nursing and is also name to note.

The recent merger with Lockharts¬†and the arrival of commercial healthcare partner Mark Jarvis¬†from Capsticks LLP¬† has significantly expanded VWV‚Äôs capabilities; the practice specialises in advising GP‚Äôs and medical practitioners on M&A, real estate, development and corporate work as well as on contentious matters. Highlights for the team include advising on some of the largest and high-value GP mergers and developments, including for assisting Lewisham Care Partnership with the on-going merger using the Birmingham/ decentralised model. Key contacts within the team are Ben Willis¬†who is ‚Äėextremely well-connected and experienced in commercial real estate‚Äô acts as head of healthcare and is continues to advice on several national large-scale GP mergers. Oliver Pool¬†, appointed partner in 2017 is a commercial expert and regularly assists on GP mergers and contentious matters.

Weightmans LLP¬†‚Äôs team ‚Äėhas excellent knowledge of the healthcare sector‚Äô and expertise in advising a number of public bodies and NHS clients ‚Äėmeans they are well-placed to provide the type of service needed by public bodies‚Äô. The practice handles regulatory matters and healthcare litigation for public sector clients . Rachel Kneale¬†, Richard Jolly¬† and Tony Yeaman¬† jointly lead the national group and are supported by the ‚Äėexcellent and proactive‚Äô Vanessa Splaine¬† who specialises in clinical negligence. Other key contacts are¬†the ‚Äėknowledgeable and informed‚Äô Edwina Farrell¬† working on GP partnerships, transactions and real estate and Nathan East¬† gives ‚Äėsensible and pragmatic advise‚Äô to NHS Trusts, public services organisations and healthcare practitioner on commercial, governance and real estate issues. Simon Turner¬† is highly recommended for regulatory work and has acted for Professional Standards Authority for health and social care and Chelsea and Westminster Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust in highly complex litigation. Kneale represented Maidstone & Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust in an inquest involving a patient who died from a laceration to the liver following a bike accident. Farrell and East continue to advise Kent Local Medical Committee on real estate matters.

Kennedys¬† is a ‚Äėfirst-rate‚Äô practice known for advising healthcare and mental health providers, organisations and individual clients in Court of Protection proceedings, inquests and regulatory matters. The group is headed by Robert Tobin¬†, who takes on advocacy work for several NHS Trusts and Mental Health providers at inquests and highly sensitive and complex medical cases. Amanda Mead¬† specialises in matters surrounding capacity and consent in mental health. Daniel Freeman¬† acts in inquests, advises on mental health matters and training of doctors and psychiatrists on all aspects of mental health; he has recently represented North East London Foundation Trust in judicial review proceedings regarding the removal of care for a patient who suffered from several Mental Health issues including obsessive compulsive disorder, severe dyslexia and other serious disabilities.¬†The practice has recruited 3¬† practitioners from Capsticks LLP¬†¬†.

Osborne Clarke LLP¬†¬† advises public, private and third-sector clients on health-tech matters, NHS outsourcing, PPP and funding matters. The ‚Äėprofessional, extremely competent and commercially astute‚Äô team led by Simon Hancock¬† assisted John Laing Integrated Services in a contract to provide services to Tees Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust‚Äôs new mental health unit. ‚ÄėIndustry leading lawyer‚Äô¬† Catherine Wolfenden¬†specializes in regulatory and procurement work; she continues to advise GAMA Healthcare on several NHS tenders and Grifols on major NHS procurement for blood testing technology. In the life sciences arena Janita Good¬† assists international corporations on issues relating to licensing, strategic partnering, co-operative research and development, and drug supply.

Shoosmiths LLP 's team act for care providers, healthcare professionals and pharmacy groups in  corporate and M&A transactions, regulatory matters and take on advocacy work in contentious cases and inquiries. Corporate partner Paul Batchelor leads the team which includes Hayley Saunders , who focuses on  representing clients in contentious proceedings relating to CQC breaches and at inquests; she is also currently involved in a complex Article 2 inquest regarding the care provided to a young adult with severe learning disabilities. Key highlights for the team include assisting Lighthouse Healthcare Group on the group’s sale to Elysium Healthcare valued at £45m and advising PD Neurotechnology with cutting edge wearable technology to help with the treatment of Alzheimer’s.

Simmons & Simmons¬† handles complex corporate healthcare transactions and advisory work for asset management and private healthcare providers. The team has a ‚Äėhuge depth of experience‚Äô whole and practice head Jocelyn Ormond¬†is noted for his ‚Äėexcellent knowledge of the healthcare market and the legal and contractual frameworks‚Äô, his recent instructions include advising Intelligent Ultrasound and Weight Partners Capital on complex M&A matters. Corporate partner Charles Mayo¬† is highly recommended for public/private partnership arrangements.

The ‚Äėvery responsive‚Äô team a¬†Stephenson Harwood¬† ‚Äėhave an enviable knowledge‚Äô of the healthcare industry and advise private sector clients on M&A deals, corporate transactions, restructuring and joint ventures.¬† Karima Hudson¬† is singled out for her ‚Äėprofessional manner and wealth of experience‚Äô¬† in advising healthcare operators on M&A and corporate matters.¬† Recent instructions include acting for Salutem Healthcare on the acquisitions of Pathways Care Group, Modus Care and associated equity and debt financing arrangements. Jordan Hurwitz and Olivia Short ‚Äėprovide invaluable support‚Äô¬†are names to note. Jonathan Pittal¬† and Warren Allan¬† joined from King & Wood Mallesons.

Travers Smith LLP¬†'s team are an ‚Äėextremely competent and commercially astute team with a breadth of experience‚Äô with notable expertise handling large scale M&A transactions and real estate¬†in the healthcare industry. Standout cases this year include head of private equity Paul Dolman¬† and regulatory partner Doug Bryden¬† assisting Bridgepoint on the ¬£855m sale of Oasis Dental Care to BUPA. Edmund Reed¬†and Simon Rutman advised Patron Capital on the sale neuro-disability care provider The Badby Group to Elysium Healthcare. Aaron Stocks¬† in investment funds has ‚Äėcomplete understanding of corporate responsibilities and individual acquisition objectives‚Äô¬†has worked with Impact Healthcare REIT to fundraise ¬£160m on its IPO. Leigh Stockey, Madeleine Gowlett and Sarah Walker are also names to note.

Infrastructure (parliamentary)

Index of tables

  1. Infrastructure (parliamentary)
  2. Leading individuals: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next generation lawyers

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Infrastructure (parliamentary) clients in London using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact


Bircham Dyson Bell's team includes¬†four Roll A parliamentary agents. Clients include Transport for London, London Luton Airport Limited and the National Audit Office. In the past 12 months, the team has acted for a wide range of parties affected by HS2 Phase 2 including BMW, London Zoo and Birmingham City Council. The team has also promoted private bills for the New Southgate Cemetery and the Middle Level Commissioners.¬†¬†David Mundy¬† is a ‚Äėshrewd tactician‚Äô and Angus Walker¬† is ‚Äėhighly recommended‚Äô. Tom Henderson¬† and Monika Weglarz¬† are also names to note.

Stephen Collings¬†,¬†James O‚ÄôConnor¬†,¬†Stuart Andrews¬†and¬†Morag Thomson¬†head the parliamentary and infrastructure team at¬†Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP¬†. The team‚Äôs specialisms include the promotion of Bills in Parliament, legislative drafting (including Private Bills) and the promotion of or opposition to infrastructure projects. Clients include the Network Rail and the National Grid. ‚ÄėSeasoned negotiator‚Äô Stephen Collings¬† leads the team acting for The Department for Transport and HS2 on all aspects of a hybrid bill to deliver the first part of the second phase of The High Speed 2 project. Other highlights included acting for TFL and London Underground on the promotion of a TWA Order to authorize the construction and operation of upgrade works at Camden Town and Bank underground stations. Monica Peto¬†and Jessica Craven¬†are also recommended.

The team at¬†Pinsent Masons LLP¬†regularly provides advice on government policy and parliamentary legislation which affects their clients‚Äô business interests. Such clients include University of London, Port of Tilbury and Heathrow Airport.¬†¬†Robbie Owen¬†¬†is acting¬†for the University of London on a private Bill to facilitate the establishment of its colleges and research institutes as universities in their own right. He also heads the team advising TFL on obtaining statutory authorisation under the Planning Act 2008 for the Silvertown Tunnel. Also recommended are the ‚Äėhardworking and intelligent‚Äô Francis Tyrrell¬†, Richard Bull,¬†for his ‚Äėdeep knowledge of parliamentary procedure‚Äô, and Duncan O‚ÄôConnor¬†.

Sharpe Pritchard LLP's highlights included acting for Warwickshire County Council and the London Borough of Camden Council in the petition against the HS2 Bill in the House of Lords. Partners Alastair Lewis¬†and Emyr Thomas¬†are both Roll A Parliamentary agents and are commended for being ‚Äėbrilliant, personable and knowledgeable‚Äô. Aidan Dickinson¬† became a partner.

The team at¬†¬†Winckworth Sherwood LLP¬†specialises in promoting major infrastructure projects as well as drafting and promoting legislation in Parliament. It¬† ‚Äėprovides an excellent level of¬†service in terms of industry knowledge, advice, accuracy and experience‚Äô. Work highlights include working jointly with Eversheds Sutherland to advise the Department of Transport and HS2 on the promotion of Phase 1 and Phase 2A of the high speed railway line with Paul Irving¬† as the lead partner and advising on Network Rail‚Äôs project to improve rail linkage from Edinburgh to Glasgow. Partners Alison Gorlov¬†, Hazel Anderson¬† and Senior Associates Jane Wakeham¬†, Alex Dillistone¬† are others to note.

Headed by Partners Mark Richards and Adam Dann, the infrastructure team at Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP  assists a broad range of clients  across the transport and infrastructure industries including aviation, rail, road and shipping. Others to note include Deborah Greenwood and Christian Drage .

Local government

Index of tables

  1. Local government
  2. Leading individuals

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Local government clients in London using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact


The 'highly rated' Bevan Brittan LLP acts for local authorities throughout England as well as various Welsh councils advising on areas such as new housing schemes, regeneration projects, income generation models and social care in addition to procurement and contentious work involving tribunals.  It is advising the London Borough of Newham on the redevelopment of the 22 acre Carpenters Estate near the Olympic Park, work which includes a development agreement and the formation of a joint venture company. It also acted successfully for 52 Fire and Rescue Authorities defending claims brought by over 5,000 fire fighters in England and Wales in connection with claims that reforms made to their pensions following the Hutton Report were discriminatory. The well-regarded team includes David Hutton, Matthew Waters and Nadeem Arshad in Bristol, Virginia Cooper in London and Leeds-based Judith Barnes  who is advising Wirral Council on the complex procurement of a private sector partner to form an LLP for large-scale regeneration of the Council's area. Bethan Evans retired in January 2018.

Bridgette Wilcox, Paul Pugh and Huw Jones¬†are the Cardiff-based, key team members at the helm of Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP's public law and local authority practice that advises local authorities on areas ranging from¬† procurement to employment matters. It has been¬†appointed ¬†by the UK Infrastructure and Projects Authority to undertake the review and updating of the draft guidance for contracts under PF2, the successor to PFI. Its wide-ranging work includes advising the¬†London Borough of Harrow on the procurement of a technology partner to develop and exploit its "Infinity‚ÄĚ adult social care software and it¬†also has well-established expertise in¬†public sector pensions law. Jackie Heeds¬†is noted for her infrastructure procurement expertise.

A source reported that Pinsent Masons LLP can provide 'a joined-up and in-depth team service' that gives 'pragmatic and well-balanced advice.' This highly-regarded national team offers expertise across the gamut of local authority legal requirements and counts more than 160 local authorities within its client base. The team continues to advise Haringey Council on the procurement of a strategic investment and development partner on a potential £2bn regeneration project. It also advised Manchester City Council on securing an investment partner in respect of the Northern Gateway scheme. In other work it is advising councils on a regional investment fund, strategic planning and governance issues. Anne Bowden is the national head of the team, other key members include Scot Morrison, Didar Dhillon,  Adrian Eakin and David Meecham.

Local government work is a core practice area for Trowers & Hamlins LLP  which is considered by a client to provide 'excellent value for money and customer service.'  Its expert advice extends across the development of new models for delivering services more cost effectively, investment projects, PPPs and property matters as well as local authority powers and devolution issues. James Hawkins heads the team and offers extensive experience in PPPs and Birmingham-based Amardeep Gill's work included acting for three Northern Ireland authorities bidding to become the European Capital of Culture 2023. Helen Randall is noted for her 'great in-depth knowledge of the sector and trends' and for being 'well connected.'  Jon Baldwin departed in September 2017 for Winckworth Sherwood LLP  and Anna Horsthuis joined in September 2017 from Walker Morris LLP.

Richard Barlow who heads the public law group at Browne Jacobson LLP has broad expertise advising on contentious planning and environmental matters and offers especial expertise on both advisory and disputed procurement matters as well as governance. This large team, which one client called 'a trusted partner', advises an array of  local and city councils including in Nottingham, Derbyshire, Enfield, Harlow and Guildford on work ranging from procurement and joint ventures to health and safety and criminal investigations. Typical work includes advising the London Borough of Enfield on the complex matter of selecting a joint venture partner to develop the Montagu Industrial Estate. Peter Ware, Laura Hughes  and Stephen Matthews  are some of the other noted practitioners.

Infrastructure, regeneration, housing and related funding and finance are key areas of the Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP  practice. Team head Andrew Yates  has extensive expertise in these areas and counts the Greater London Authority, Homes England and the London Legacy Development Corporation as clients. Other names of note are Alan Aisbett and Lesley-Anne Avis who also have a focus on regeneration projects. It continues to advise the London Borough of Tower Hamlets and the Greater London Authority on the £500m Blackwall Reach regeneration project, involving the redevelopment of the entire Robin Hood Gardens Estate in Poplar.

Sharpe Pritchard LLP is considered to be 'excellent, knowledgeable and good value for money' in the local government arena. The team houses a number of lawyers who work exclusively for local authorities including Westminster City Council, Kensington and Chelsea,  Dudley and Dorset County Council. It handles litigation and advisory work on infrastructure and procurement projects as well as advising the Local Government Association on legislation. In representative work, it is advising Cheshire East Borough Council on its competitive procurement of a contractor for a new recycling facility for green and food waste. Roseanne Serrelli who specializes in non-contentious procurement especially for large-scale IT services is the joint head of the group with Trevor Griffiths and Julia Rudin and John Sharland are other names to note.

Simon Goacher, who is based in Liverpool, heads a team at Weightmans LLP that 'always provides that extra touch without charging for every minute that they spend assisting a client.' Some of the other key members of the team include Clive Bleasdale in Liverpool and Mark Leach in Manchester. Senior associate Morris Hill, who heads up the social care team in the North West, is noted for being 'very pragmatic, sensible and effective.' The team handles matters ranging from regeneration projects, large-scale employment work and the restructuring of service provision to devolution matters. It is acting for Liverpool City Council on a £1bn redevelopment project and on the contentious side is represented Rochdale Borough Council as a core participant in the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse.

Addleshaw Goddard 'has an excellent reputation, particularly for local government and energy-related work' according to a source. The specialists in the team are located in Manchester, Leeds and London and they are supported by the larger group on areas such as projects, healthcare, real estate and litigation. It advises on financial matters such as borrowing and investments, major outsourcing, PPPs and PFIs and contentious procurement cases. It assisted Stoke City Council on a proposed variation and refinancing of its pathfinder street lighting PFI Scheme and also advised Transport for Greater Manchester in establishing a highways shared services arrangement with three Greater Manchester local authorities. Michael O’Connor  and Andrew Pettinger  lead the team and Richard Goodfellow is another key member.

Anthony Collins Solicitors LLP serves local authority clients on a national basis from its headquarters in Birmingham. The highly experienced Olwen Dutton leads a team that advises on governance and constitutional issues, investigations, as well as models for delivery of services, health and social care matters. Some of the other names to note are Mark Cook, Matthew Gregson  and Jon Coane. It is assisting Torbay Council with advice on setting up company structures to meet financial and other objectives within the residential property market, in part to offset lost grants. It also assisted Reigate and Banstead Borough Council on a raft of diverse matters including property, pensions, funding, commercial matters and governance after it came out of a shared services agreement.

Ashfords LLP offers the full range of services to local government authorities from its West Country and London offices. It is advising the London Borough of Brent on complex development and planning matters in relation to the Wembley Park development. In other work it advises Wandsworth Borough Council, and the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames with which it has a service sharing agreement, on diverse areas including housing, employment and litigation. Elizabeth Gibson  leads the team and some of her senior colleagues include Chris Coughlan ,  Richard Voke and  Sian Gibbon .

Offering an 'excellent level of service' Bates Wells combines public law specialists with those with regulatory, procurement, state aid, employment and property expertise. Led by the highly respected Melanie Carter the local government audit team is retained by the National Audit Office advising on areas such as local authority financing issue. The team was appointed by Canterbury City Council on the spin out of the Marlowe Theatre to a charity, the Marlowe Trust. It is also advising Wirral Borough Council on the potential spin out of its leisure and cultural services.  Abbie Rumbold heads the public services and Mutuals function and Erica Crump and senior associate Augustus Della-Porta  are noted names.

Bircham Dyson Bell's public law team is lead by David Mundy and Matthew Smith and is noted as 'strong in its specialist areas.' It counts local authorities such as Slough Borough Council, Three Rivers District Council and Bristol Council and the National Audit Office among its clients and covers areas ranging from regulations and health care to the environment.  The team continues to advise East Riding of Yorkshire Council and the Bridlington Harbour Commissioners in connection with the development of a marina as part of a regeneration of Bridlington harbour.

Burges Salmon LLP's team of public law and local government practitioners is made up of a number of ex-local government lawyers. Its expertise covers advice on planning, regeneration schemes and work includes matters such as advising on waste and recycling projects. Gary Solomon and Michael Hayles head the public law group; Matthew Ramus  takes on outsourcing and PFI work; Nick Churchward  specialises in energy matters and Michael Hayles  specialises in pensions. It has been advising the Department for Education on statutory interventions in respect of local authority-run children's services in Sunderland, Sandwell and Birmingham as a result of continued failings in the provision of these services.

Specialists at Dentons provide expertise on housing, transportation, planning, procurement and environmental issues and the team stands out for the scale of the urban regeneration work that it attracts. Virginia Glastonbury, Stephen Ashworth, Mark Bassett, and Roland Gray are some of the key partners handling such work. It is advising Essex, Braintree, Colchester and Tendring Councils on their  proposals to create a number of garden communities which will provide thousands of homes; it is advising on planning policies, development vehicles as well as the delivery of commercial spaces and infrastructure. It is also advising the Greater London Authority on the complex redevelopment of Beam Park, a former Ford industrial site which would deliver thousands of homes, leisure areas and a new rail station.

Derek Adamson, Toby Askin, Denise Brosnan and Caroline Coates are some of the senior practitioners at DWF who undertake substantial work for local authorities. Multi-disciplinary teams take on matters from the Birmingham and other offices for clients such as Newcastle City Council, Somerset County Council, Bristol City Council and the London Borough of Greenwich. The team is acting for the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea in connection with personal injury claims (and the public inquiry) arising from the Grenfell Tower disaster. It is also continuing to act for Coventry City Council and Zurich Insurance on around 25 historic abuse claims relating to the alleged crimes that took place at a care home in Coventry.

Winckworth Sherwood LLP, who come 'very highly recommended', serves local authorities nationally from its London base. It advised Waveney District Council on the creation of two new Parish Councils and is assisting East Staffordshire Borough Council on a leisure procurement project. In other work it is assisting clients with employment issues and the protection and restoration of significant cultural buildings. Practice head Joanna Bussell  advises central as well as local government departments on PPPs and outsourcing as part of her broader expertise and Consultant Simon Randall CBE has considerable experience in housing, outsourcing and joint ventures. Charlotte Swift is also a name to note.

Due to its merger with Nabarro LLP,  CMS  boosted its expertise in large-scale public procurement, infrastructure and regeneration projects. Head of the planning team, Martin Evans advises local authorities and government agencies as well as major property companies on all aspects of developments, zoning and compulsory purchases. Real estate expert, Amy Norton in Edinborough also counts local authorities among her clients and Michael McAuley  advises local authorities, health boards and other clients on procurement matters including the EU procurement regime.

Davitt Jones Bould has a partner-led offering which is said to have 'excellent lawyers who are receptive to the needs of a local authority in challenging times' and is also 'efficient and discreet.' Malcolm Iley is the experienced head of the practice who has a focus on property and regeneration projects. Robin de Wreede is a planning and property specialist who is highlighted for his 'depth of knowledge and diligence in pursuing matters' and John Qualtrough has years of experience advising local authorities on planning issues. It is advising on a number of large-scale regeneration projects including Woking Borough Council on the £500m urban regeneration of Sheerwater.

The regional and national teams at Freeths LLP have considerable  geographical reach. Nathan Holden, based in Birmingham advises on real estate and commercial projects including town centre expansions and Mitchell Ball, also based in Birmingham, has extensive retail development expertise. Other key names to note are Stephen Pearson and Christopher Waumsley in Nottingham and Philippa Dempster in London. It is dealing with all the 'right to buy' work for the Royal Borough of Greenwich and is advising the London Borough of Havering on the acquisition of Havering College of Further and Higher Education’s Quarles Campus for £5.5m and the subsequent leaseback of the campus to the College for two years.

At Gowling WLG a multi-disciplinary team can offer the gamut of expertise to local authorities. Sarah Sasse heads the procurement practice and has many years of experience of outsourcing matters, especially in the IT sector. Mark Greenburgh heads up the inter-departmental local government team and is advising Bury Metropolitan Borough Council on the fall out following the leader of the council having to suspend the Chief Executive, the Monitoring Officer and the Director of Children’s Services following a critical external review of an historic child protection issue. On the procurement and regeneration front it is advising the London Borough of Barnet on the £4bn Brent Cross/Cricklewood scheme involving housing, transport and commercial units. The team was boosted with the hire of planning partner Vicky Fowler from Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP.

Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP handles a broad range of work for local authorities, especially large-scale regeneration projects. Highlight work includes advising the London Borough of Lewisham on areas such as planning and property matters relating to the redevelopment of the New Bermondsey site. This complex case includes proceedings brought by Millwall Football Club seeking disclosure of a financial due diligence report and the price under a land sale agreement between the Council and the developer. It is also advising Three Rivers District Council in respect of the South Oxhey Initiative, a mixed use regeneration project in partnership with Countryside Properties (UK) and Home Group. Martin Stacey  has a focus on redevelopment and regeneration projects, Iain Greenshields  takes on PFI, PPP, joint ventures and outsourcing matters and Jocelyn Denton handles  planning and infrastructure. The team has been enhanced with the addition of Andrew Hirst, managing associate, who joined from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP.

Interview with...

Law firm partners and practice heads explain how their firms are adapting to clients' changing needs

Press releases

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to

Legal Developments in the UK

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to

Press Releases in the UK

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to