Next Generation Partners

Firms To Watch: Transport

Roose+Partners, which specialises in marine law and has an office in Liverpool, was recently joined by Phil James, who previously led the marine team at Weightmans LLP.

Transport in North West

Addleshaw Goddard

Addleshaw Goddard is heavily involved across all aspects of the transport sector, and remains a key name in rail franchising/concessions. It continues to provide leading expertise in structuring transport-based asset finance schemes, and has seen considerable growth in a range of areas including urban transit schemes, freight and logistics, stations development, transport led regeneration and airports. It also offers market leading rail disputes and regulatory knowledge. Paul Hirst heads the team, specialising in transport infrastructure projects, operating concessions and franchises, and rolling stock procurements. Sara Gilmore  is part of the projects team and has experience with bus reform, whilst Michael Rainey heads the procurement team. Ursula Gould has extensive experience in transport projects, as well as negotiating arrangements with other bodies on transport schemes.

Practice head(s):

Paul Hirst; Sara Gilmore; Michael Rainey

Other key lawyers:

Ursula Gould; Clare Dwyer; Philip Dupres


‘Deep and practical transport sector knowledge, including great detail around bus enhanced partnership and regulation. I consider them to lead the sector in this area.’

‘Sara Gilmore is approachable, knowledgeable and pragmatic, with a significant sector knowledge and a great way with clients.’

Key clients

Prologis Group Companies

VTG Rail UK Limited

London Luton Airport Limited

Eversholt Rail

Rail Operations Group Limited (“ROG”)

Department for Transport

High Speed Two (HS2) Limited

Volkswagen AG

Greater London Authority / Transport for London

West Yorkshire Combined Authority

West Midlands Combined Authority

Hitachi Rail Limited


Manchester Airport Group

HS1 Limited

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority

Freightliner Heavy Haul Limited

Ove Arup & Partners


DB Cargo

Sealink Travel Group

Transport for Greater Manchester

The Road Haulage Association (RHA)

Associated British Ports Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised the Department for Transport on the development and roll out of the new National Rail Contract (replacing franchise agreements).
  • Advising West Midlands Combined Authority in relation to its bus franchising assessment.
  • Advising GMCA and Stockport Council in relation to the regeneration of the Stockport Interchange bus station including a residential PRS scheme.

Clyde & Co

Clyde & Co offers an exceptional range of insurance expertise together with a dedicated recoveries practice, Trident, which provides a comprehensive management of subrogated recovery claims at the pre-litigation stage. The ‘commercially shrewd and tactically astute’ Emma Rice handles a range of marine insurance disputes, as well as cargo, logistics, warehousing, ports and terminals and yachting claims. Robert Muttock has extensive expertise in the areas of catastrophic injury, with over 20 years’ experience in handling complex liability claims including those with international and cross-border elements in the marine, travel and motor sectors. Meanwhile, Mark Hemsted  is the lead partner for the UK motor casualty work. Craig Rooney leads on aviation work while senior associate Liz Watton is noted as a determined litigator’ and has a track record with shipping and transportation claims ranging from international carriage of goods, logistics, P&I and charter party claims. The merger with BLM has also cemented the team's strength; the deal has seen Ruth Graham bring her considerable experience to the table.

Practice head(s):

Emma Rice; Robert Muttock; Mark Hemsted; Craig Rooney

Other key lawyers:

Liz Watton; Amie Harrison; Ruth Graham; Simon Jones; Rachael Lumb; Joanne Francis


‘They are truly expert in the area of marine and other logistics, including CMR, and warehousing issues as well as marine and other transport insurance. Very good, determined and cost-effective litigators.’

‘Emma Rice – knowledgeable, commercially shrewd and tactically astute. Very good to work with. Liz Watton and Amie Harrison – knowledgeable, hard working and determined litigators.’

‘I found them to be a very knowledgeable team with detailed technical knowledge and a thorough careful approach.’

Work highlights

    DLA Piper

    DLA Piper advises on market-leading transport transactions of local, national and international significance. Its multidisciplinary team works on infrastructure and construction projects, as well as financing matters including asset finance. Head of team Liam Cowell has extensive experience in large-scale road and rail infrastructure and related financing. Paul Giles leads the UK contentious construction team, acting for both public and private sector clients, whilst Alan Cunningham heads the asset finance practice with a particular focus on aircraft, shipping and super yacht finance. Typical of its high-value work is its role advising Transport for the North (TfN) on contracting and procurement for its ‘smart travel’ plan.

    Practice head(s):

    Liam Cowell

    Other key lawyers:

    Paul Giles; Alan Cunningham; Lorna Pattison; Maria Pereira


    ‘We have a long-standing relationship with DLA going back a number of years. This allows us to have positive conversations about our requirements with a supplier who is sensitive to our needs and objectives. It also means that although DLA provide specific specialisms, there is a high degree of collaboration and very positive support wherever we need it.’

    ‘We have worked with Liam Cowell for just over two years and he has been positive in finding us innovative solutions to difficult problems. His experience in the PFI sector is invaluable in this and being able to consider problems from all angles.’

    ‘Liam Cowell has been supported brilliantly  by Lorna Pattison and Maria Pereira who are both flexible and very focused on finding appropriate solutions.’

    ‘Still the best, worked with the team for many years, they provide realistic and pragmatic advice, an approachable team.’

    Key clients

    Welsh Ministers

    Transport for the North (TfN)

    Vinci Concessions, Vinci Highways, Implenia Schweiz AG

    Transport for Greater Manchester

    Highways England

    Work highlights

    • Advising Highways England on the procurement and construction documentation relating to the Lower Thames Crossing project.
    • Advising Transport for Greater Manchester on its proposed bus franchising scheme which seeks to reform the provision of bus services across Greater Manchester.
    • Advising the Welsh Ministers in relation to the transition away from the LIBOR financial benchmark to SONIA. The A465 project is the only UK PPP project that foresaw, accommodated, and set parameters around a transition to SONIA.


    DWF offers a range of specialist teams for transport sector clients, covering road transport regulatory, motor criminal defence, insurance, M&A and commercial work. It also provides transport compliance advice for several multinational logistics companies, as well as crisis response services for business’ transport divisions. The firm also has a strong insurance offering in the North West, being heavily involved with transport and motor related claims. Vikki Woodfine is head of road transport and logistics, specialising in transport regulatory and health and safety issues. Nigel Teasdale is an expert in motor fraud with over 20 years experience working with major motor insurers. Senior associate Joanne Witheford is deputy head of road haulage and logistics.

    Practice head(s):

    Vikki Woodfine; Joanne Witheford; Nigel Teasdale

    Other key lawyers:

    Nina Lewis


    ‘The DWF team are hands on, and go the extra mile for clients. They have strong links with experts who they can and do quickly call upon to prepare reports. Their professionalism and expertise are second to none and they have an impressive knowledge of road traffic law.’

    ‘What sets DWF apart from their competitors is the attention to detail given to each case. Each case, regardless of the client, gets the VIP treatment. Clients know full well that there is a team who is working tirelessly to look after their issues and that somebody has their back.’

    ‘Despite being a rather impenetrable area at times, DWF is at the cutting-edge of transport regulatory practice. They immediately have a firm grip of each issue despite complexities.’

    Most firms cannot match the quality of output with such time pressures whilst maintaining impeccable customer service. The sheer quality of work and regularity of contact with clients and counsel has an unintended consequence. DWF knows precisely how to get the most out of its team and brings everybody up with them – they set the pace.’

    ‘There is an obvious reason for Vikki Woodfine’s serious reputation in transport regulation. When clients are in difficulty, if they have used Vikki before, they will without hesitation be back.’

    ‘A common thread with all of these lawyers is their availability. I have never had any difficulty getting a hold of these lawyers despite their positions in DWF.’

    ‘They are a very excellent unit who clearly have the ability to work as a very effective team. One of their greatest strengths is their tenacity when dealing with a case, their manner is very pleasing and they don’t give up when exploring all possibilities that can lead down various avenues to get the right answers and therefore deliver the best service possible result for their clients.’

    Key clients

    Booker plc

    Wincanton plc

    Morgan McLernon

    WM Morrison Supermarkets Plc

    Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGm)

    BT plc

    Severn Trent plc

    NFU Mutual




    West Midlands Combined Authority

    Work highlights

    • Provided crisis management support to household name transport operations.
    • Advised Transport for Greater Manchester on the competitive procedure with the negotiation procurement process for selection of bike hire supplier for entire Greater Manchester region.
    • Advises and audits one of the country’s largest parcel delivery companies on all aspects of transport compliance.

    Hill Dickinson LLP

    Hill Dickinson LLP advises a range of clients across the the marine insurance, cargo, logistics and warehousing industries. It offers a full range of dispute resolution, risk and crisis management services, and international NVOCC/freight forwarder/warehouse operator liability claims. Adrian Marsh heads the team, with extensive experience in marine insurance, logistics and international trade, as well as drafting and advising upon global framework and service level agreements, standard trading conditions, charterparty and bill of lading terms for the logistics industry. Caroline Bridge specialises in service level agreements and standard trading conditions for the logistics industry, while Richard Allingham has specialist expertise in litigation arising from the international and domestic carriage of goods by road, sea, air and rail.

    Practice head(s):

    Adrian Marsh

    Other key lawyers:

    Caroline Bridge; Richard Allingham; Alex Bramwell; Ed Locke


    ‘They are my lawyers of reference for any matter subject to UK law. I appreciate their availability, responsiveness, and pragmatic oriented approach. Adrian Marsh and Alex Bramwell have the strengths mentioned above.’

    ‘They have the knowledge and ability to deal with the complex shipping claims without issue which allows claims to be dealt with in an efficient manner.’

    ‘Ed Locke is one of the best in his field – always on hand to solve problems and assist, help and advise in dealing with complex matters.’

    ‘Hill Dickinson are a team that works with you to find the best result on the cases they are appointed on. They are a stand out firm and their experience and knowledge of the industry is second to none. I do not believe there is another law firm who can offer the knowledge and expertise they have at the rate they charge.’

    ‘The knowledge and experience the team has makes them stand out to any other law firm in this arena. They are led by Adrian Marsh who is never to busy to provide advice and guidance on any matter. This firm is the first on my list to appoint and recommend.’

    ‘They are a very knowledgeable team, make difficult aspects easy to follow, very pragmatic and commercial approach and have a great understanding of clients needs and are happy to support where ever they can with advice or training as needed.’

    ‘Very experienced and have a great rapport with the team, are able to digest complex matters quickly and provide succinct advice in plain English.’

    Key clients


    WE Cox Claims Group/WE Cox Recoveries Ltd

    PCL Claims Ltd

    CNA Hardy

    AXA XL



    NMU (Specialty) Ltd

    DSV / Agility Logistics

    Hellmann Worldwide Logistics

    Zurich Insurance

    Kuehne + Nagel


    Agri Marine


    My Furniture



    Work highlights

    • Representing various freight forwarders and NVOCC interests (and their FSL insurers) in connection with the MV Ever Given casualty following the grounding of the vessel in the Suez Canal on 23 March 2021.
    • Represented Access World and their insurers in a claim for cargo damage (organic grain in bulk), demurrage, loss of market and recovery of charges arising out of stevedoring and warehousing services provided by the client to its customer Agropex at its terminal in Baltimore, USA in 2017.
    • Represented goods owners/insurers RSA in complex multi plaintiff and multi defendant litigation in New York.

    Pinsent Masons LLP

    Pinsent Masons LLP has a strong reputation for advising on large and complex transport infrastructure projects, with expertise covering tair, road, rail and sea. The practice has a sizable footprint in international rail projects and transport infrastructure matters. Graham Alty leads the transactional construction team and has extensive experience in managing high value projects in transport and general infrastructure sectors, as well as structuring construction finance projects. Mark Job has exceptional experience in advising on international projects. Anthony Bradley has expertise in transport projects, including airport expansion schemes, development of highway programmes and harbour projects, as well as in transport-related construction claims.

    Practice head(s):

    Graham Alty

    Other key lawyers:

    Mark Job; Anthony Bradley; Michael Hopkins; Laura Tetlow


    ‘The differentiators for Pinsent Masons is their construction and operational knowledge. They understand the challenges we face on site and the processes that are undertaken in terms of design, procurement, delivery and contract administration. They always provide the highest quality legal advisors & support, who propose practical process based legal solutions which can be practically implemented on site. They always go the extra mile to explain the legal implications/risks and what is required to successfully administer the agreements.’

    ‘What sets Laura Tetlow apart is her ability to inherently understand the construction processes, her absolute reliability in terms of achieving deadlines, and ability to draft on the spot in meetings. She always outshines the external/internal legal counsel from the suppliers that we work with and we are very fortunate to have retained Pinsents and Laura in that regard.’

    Key clients

    BAM Nuttall

    Ferrovial Construction

    Yapi Merkezi Insaat va Sanayi A.S.

    Eiffage Genie Civil

    Vinci Construction Grands Projects

    Balfour Beatty

    Vinci Construction UK


    The Manchester Airport Group

    Transport Infrastructure Ireland

    Connect Plus Services

    Work highlights

    • Advising on a number of matters relating to the HS2 project, including providing project-wide and cross-departmental support to an unincorporated joint venture between Eiffage Génie Civil, Kier Infrastructure and Overseas Limited, Ferrovial Construction (UK) Limited and BAM Nuttall Limited (EKFB JV).
    • Advising on the Dublin Metrolink project, the largest civil engineering project in the Republic of Ireland and one of the largest procurements in Europe.
    • Advised on a dispute in relation to a Mersey Gateway bridge project brought by the construction joint venture against the design joint venture.

    Backhouse Jones

    Backhouse Jones is a boutique firm specialising in road transport law, with a strong reputation in road regulatory public inquiries before the traffic commissioners of the UK. It represents a range of transport operators at every judicial level, up to the European Courts of Justice. James Backhouse has over 25 years experience representing the road transport passenger and goods industry, on inquiries concerning bus reliability, maintenance compliance, financial standing and environmental issues. Jonathon Backhouse also has extensive experience in public inquiries, including matters involving serious transport related crime. Mark Davies heads the team, with specialist experience in regulatory road transport law covering goods and passenger carriage.

    Practice head(s):

    Mark Davies

    Other key lawyers:

    James Backhouse; Jonathon Backhouse


    ‘The firm is one of the strongest firms in this field of practice in the country. It attracts good quality work and is highly respected. It has a broad range of lawyers and a strong pool of resources.’

    ‘Mark Davies works very hard to get the best possible results for his clients – and achieves very good outcomes.’

    ‘James Backhouse is very knowledgeable and develops innovative arguments to challenge established thinking. Not afraid to challenge traffic commissioners when required.’

    Key clients


    Diamond Bus

    Krispy Kreme

    Go Ahead


    Veolia UK


    Somerset Passenger Solutions Ltd

    Blackpool Transport

    Mansel Davies & Son Limited

    Day Aggregates

    Clark Brothers (Tipper Hire) Ltd

    MDS Distribution Limited

    Work highlights

    • Represented Thandi Coaches (Red) in its appeal to the Upper Tribunal in respect of setting aside the decision of the Traffic Commissioner to revoke the standard international public service vehicle operator’s licence belonging to the first appellant.
    • Acting on the Road Haulage Association collective proceedings claim in the Competition Appeal Tribunal which seeks to represent over 16,000 truck operators seeking damages arising out of an EC decision finding the major European truck operators guilty of anti-competitive practices.
    • Advising Rotala on the impact of the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) bus franchising scheme, and if instructed to do so, to challenge its implementation and prepare the clients response to the consultation. Backhouse Jones lodged a judicial review of this decision and await the Judgement.

    Weightmans LLP

    Weightmans LLP‘s core areas of strength include regulatory road transport, public inquiries, operator licence compliance, motoring offences, DVSA investigations and prosecution. The firm also has a road regulatory team that offers comprehensive advice to clients, including advising clients on commercial fleet risk and representation of drivers involved in fatal collisions. The transport and logistics practice is now led from London by Lili Oliver, a criminal regulatory specialist who joined the firm in mid-2021; key lawyers in the North West are primarily based in Liverpool, including marine specialist Mike Burns.

    Practice head(s):

    Lili Oliver

    Other key lawyers:

    Mike Burns; David Holt

    Key clients

    First Group

    National Express

    Turners of Soham

    Alstrom Transport

    Go Ahead

    Swissport GB Ltd

    Tuffnells Parcels

    Willis Towers Watson

    AXA XL

    Map Group UK

    Work highlights

    • Advising an operator investigated by the DVSA for punctuality concerns on its local bus services.
    • Advising an Operator investigated by the DVSA for two separate incidents where wheels physically came off their vehicles, one resulting in a HGV flipping on the road. A short suspension was secured.
    • Advising an Operator that was called before the Traffic Commissioner following a bridge strike to a Preliminary Hearing and conjoined Driver Conduct Hearing. The Traffic Commissioner accepted the firm’s submissions and took no action, including deciding not to issue a warning.

    Aaron & Partners LLP

    Aaron & Partners LLP, which has North West bases in Chester and Manchester, specialises in handling mandates for transport operators, advising on regulatory issues and strategic compliance matters, as well as providing representation at public inquiries. In addition, the firm also regularly advises on the acquisition, disposal and financing of transport businesses, and assists with drafting and litigating warehousing contracts. Tim Culpin leads the practice and is an experienced advocate. David Harries heads the planning, environment, energy and regulatory team, in which the transport team sits.

    Practice head(s):

    Tim Culpin; David Harries


    ‘Totally brilliant, 24/7 communication. The best legal firm I’ve worked with.’

    ‘Tim Culpin is an excellent lawyer.’

    ‘Simple billing and statements sent through. Overall very friendly and kind workers.’

    ‘Tim Culpin was exceptional from day 1. He was personable, professional and installed confidence and faith in me. Tim demonstrated that it was my life that was being affected and he was going to do what he could within his powers to help me receive the best advice and guidance. He was available for calls and emails no matter how big or small or silly the question. Without him I would not have the knowledge or made it as far as I did. In the court room he demonstrated every trait that a reliable solicitor should have.’

    ‘Their specialist knowledge is first class and have always secured the desired objectives within the timescales.’

    ‘The knowledge they have is first class and always have a proactive solution to the situation they face.’

    ‘Tim Culpin has an excellent understanding of the law and the practicality of transport regulatory practice. He has the skill and professionalism to ensure all eventualities are covered. It is quite evident he is well respected by other lawyers in this area.’

    ‘Tim Culpin was absolutely amazing. My business wouldn’t be where it is now with out him.’

    Key clients

    UK Warehousing Association

    DELTA Merseyside Ltd

    Work highlights

      Dyne Solicitors Limited

      Dyne Solicitors Limited, based in Tattenhall, Chester, specialises in road transport law and offers a range of regulatory, defence and advisory work. It also handles a large volume of operator licensing public inquiries for national and international companies, as well as dealing with ancillary contractual, commercial and non-regulatory work. The team is co-headed by Jared Dunbar, who has over 15 years experience in road transport law, and John Dyne, who has extensive experience in road transport regulatory law.

      Practice head(s):

      Jared Dunbar; John Dyne


      ‘Excellent and accurate speed of response. Very good detailed knowledge.’

      ‘Jared Dunbar has an excellent grasp of transport law and great contacts in the Department for Transport.’

      ‘Thorough and extensive knowledge of the Transport Sector. Go the extra mile to represent the client. Real specialists.’

      Work highlights

        Keoghs LLP

        Keoghs LLP offers a range of expertise in claims and risk management for transport operators, covering health and safety, personal injury, and recovery claims. The team also deals with all aspects of regulatory investigations and prosecutions arising from incidents on the road. Nerys Parry heads the transport and logistics team, specialising in fleet outsourced claims management. Chris Green leads the crime and regulatory team across Liverpool and the Midlands and specialises in adverse incidents and compliance with regulatory requirements.

        Practice head(s):

        Nerys Parry; Chris Green

        Other key lawyers:

        Graham Lynch


        ‘The team are really responsive to client needs and always available to deal with any urgent or technical issues. Management information and analysis is excellent and provides lots of insight into key trends and areas for improvement.’

        ‘Knowledgeable, trusted and friendly, Keoghs operate as a seamless extension of our company’s team.’

        ‘Graham Lynch guides us through difficult and complex cases.’

        Key clients

        Addison Lee


        Iceland Foods Ltd

        Mitie Group

        Greene King

        Quest Group




        Trent Barton


        Sainsbury’s Supermarkets Ltd

        Waitrose Distribution

        Work highlights

        • Defended BFS Group Ltd on a phantom passenger claim at trial, securing a finding of fundamental dishonesty.
        • Acted for Addison Lee, reducing a claimant’s claim by over 50%.
        • Acted for Iceland and successfully secured a reduction for contributory negligence.