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Leading Silks

Kate Blackwell KC – Lincoln House ChambersKate is an exceptional Silk. Always on top of every detail, always prepared, always responsive to both the solicitor and the client on a case. Judges love her - and so do clients. She will give tough advice as she is always focussed on getting the best result. One of the best criminal silks in the country and an exceptional strategic thinker.'
Simon Csoka KC – Lincoln House ChambersSimon is a truly exceptional advocate. Probably the finest exponent of the art of cross examination on any circuit in England and Wales. Frighteningly bright, masters complex briefs very easily and has a chair side manner that never fails to impress both professional and lay clients. Easily one of the finest criminal and regulatory silks in the country.’
John Jones KCExchange Chambers 'John has a stylish, smooth and unflappable demeanour in Court. His advocacy is precise, comprehensive and cogent. As a result of his thorough knowledge of the law and preparation of his cases, John is trusted by the Court and is, as a result, a very persuasive advocate. He is very agile in cross examination and reacting to the unexpected events that occur in a criminal trial. John has a great eye for detail in paper heavy cases.'
Benjamin Myers KCExchange Chambers ‘Ben is a premier league silk who has prosecuted and defended many of the gravest criminal cases to come before the English courts. He has an exceptional eye for detail and pursues his client’s case with vigour and integrity. He has an outstanding ability to explain complex legal and factual matters with seemingly effortless simplicity to judges and juries alike.’
Pete Weatherby KC – Garden Court North Chambers 'The first word that most would associate with Pete is “bright”. They might add “fiercely bright”. In an advocate, bright does not just mean “knowing the law”, but its deployment in a bold, imaginative yet apposite manner. That’s Pete’s strength. He exudes empathy and trustworthiness which appeal to a jury.'
Nina Grahame KC – Garden Court North Chambers ‘Nina is able to hold the attention of the judiciary and a jury by her thoughtful and detailed analysis of every aspect of a case; and she is always the best prepared person in the Court. Despite her formidable ability, she remains approachable and open to clients and solicitors. She is able not only to manage clients, but also ensures even the most disadvantaged are fully involved in the preparation of their case. Her paperwork is thorough and always excellent.’
Nigel Power KC – 7 Harrington Street ‘Nigel is a superb advocate, thoroughly prepared, knowledgeable and eloquent.’
Michael Brady KC18 St John Street Chambers ‘Michael has exceptional client-care and interpersonal skills. His judgement is second to none. He is a truly gifted advocate and is able to present cases, whether he prosecutes or defends, with aplomb. He is meticulous in his approach and invariably shows an unwavering commitment to achieving the best outcome for clients.’
Mark Ford KC – Lincoln House ChambersMark is one of a kind - his attention to detail is second to none and he can be relied upon to find out the material within a case which will challenge the prosecution case. He is very thorough in his case preparation and will leave no stone unturned in trying to find any areas of weakness for the Crown. He is a pleasure to work with, considerate and always open to discussions and welcoming the instructing solicitor's opinion on matters, never making decisions without asking for input first.'
Abdul Iqbal KCLincoln House Chambers ‘Abdul is extremely bright and has an incredible work ethic. His strength is in his attention to detail in a case; his written advice is exceptional and always include insightful points and they reveal that he is an astute tactician with an ability to focus on the overarching strategy of a case without being distracted by unnecessary detail. His real selling point is the fact he is so readily approachable and is very much a team player alongside junior counsel and his instructing solicitors.’

Leading Juniors

Clare Ashcroft – Garden Court North Chambers 'Clare is an outstanding advocate who cares about the work. She puts an enormous amount of effort into each case and leaves no stone unturned. As a Senior Junior, she has an encyclopaedic knowledge of the law and is not afraid to submit and pursue legal arguments in the face of adversity.'
Denise Fitzpatrick – Kenworthy’s ChambersDenise is a great barrister. She has a very calming approach and influence. She is beyond thorough and nothing is too much trouble for her. Her eye for detail is remarkable. Clients relate to her and often comment that they have the utmost confidence and faith in her and her abilities.'
Barry Grennan – Kenworthy’s ChambersBarry is committed, thorough and always has an excellent grasp of his brief. He is excellent with clients and an outstanding advocate. Particularly effective at addressing the jury.'
Andrew JebbExchange Chambers ‘Andrew is a very experienced, highly regarded advocate. He has an ability to build a good relationship with the client from the outset and put them at ease ensuring that they then listen to his advice. He meticulously prepares his cases and can get to the very crux of the issues and formulate an approach early on in a case, ultimately resulting in the best outcome possible for the client.'
Charlotte KennyExchange Chambers ‘Charlotte is a rigorous, commanding and engaging advocate, known for her meticulous trial preparation and forensic cross examination, she gets results. She has exceptional client care skills and puts people at ease. Clients really trust her to represent them.'
Damian NolanExchange ChambersDamian is a highly sought after barrister who works tirelessly for clients. A particular strength is an ability to put clients at ease and provide advice in an easy to comprehend manner. An exceptional jury advocate who commands the courtroom and has the respect of the judiciary.'
Ian WhitehurstExchange Chambers 'Ian is affable, hard-working, intellectually-forceful and an effective advocate.'
Patrick Cassidy – Kenworthy’s ChambersPatrick is a natural defence advocate. He has fine antennae for detecting the weaknesses in any prosecution. In cases where the reputation of the police is at stake, he is a first-choice. His advocacy is hallmarked by an easy charm, he communicates superbly and his submissions are fortified by his vast experience in this field.'
Mark Connor – St John’s BuildingsMark has an excellent knowledge of the law, is highly focused and hard working, and an accomplished advocate able to deal with intense levels of work of the most serious nature. He is extremely good with lay clients – approachable but clear and firm where required – and able to support them and give them excellent and realistic advice in equal measure. His service to professional clients is consistently high and reliable.’
Nicola DaleyExchange ChambersNicola is a formidable presence in the courtroom. She is a very gifted lawyer known for her ability to digest complex cases, identifying the key issues and explaining them in a straightforward manner to clients. Her preparation in all cases is meticulous. She has excellent client care skills, is vey approachable and puts people at ease.'
Richard Dawson – Lincoln House ChambersRichard is a fantastic advocate. On his feet in a trial is as strong as many counsel a great deal more senior. What really makes him stand out is the ability to get to grips with and apply technical and complex expert evidence, such as collision reconstruction, medical, tachographs data etc. This enables him to challenge prosecution experts and present defence evidence in a fluent and concise way, which translates to the jury and bench.'
Gerard Doran – Lincoln House Chambers 'Gerard is very approachable and friendly and clients quickly feel at ease with him and as a barrister who they quickly trust and rely upon. He has an eye for detail and will ensure that any defences are properly and thoroughly explored. Ged is always available to speak with whether that be for a quick call to check a legal point or for instructions or guidance.'
Rebecca Filletti – Garden Court North ChambersRebecca is incredibly thorough and leaves no stone unturned. Her dedication to her clients is exceptional and she has the perfect balance of making them feel special whilst maintaining the required level of professionalism. Her written advice is meticulous and her advocacy tenacious. She is an asset to the criminal Bar.’
Simon Gurney – Lincoln House ChambersSimon is without doubt the most able Criminal junior on the Northern Circuit. A first-class choice for heavyweight fraud cases. A peerless lawyer who finds the defences everyone else has missed. Tenacious in fighting for his clients, he puts a huge amount of work into case preparation.'
Oliver Jarvis – Exchange Chambers 'Oliver is punctual, prompt, has great client care and is thorough and very positive.'
Daniel Lister – 23 Essex StreetDaniel is a superb advocate and tactician, with gravitas in court that goes well beyond his call. More recently, Daniel has established himself as the ‘go to’ junior for serious criminal work in the north. He has achieved some fantastic results and his cool head and reassuring manner make him the perfect choice for high-profile and challenging work where the stakes are high. He is highly recommended.’
Bob Sastry – 23 Essex StreetBob is very proactive in his approach. He makes himself available for discussions about cases on a day-to-day basis and for conferences with clients. He provides detailed written advice and reports following hearings, including any follow-up actions. His manner with a wide variety of clients cannot be be faulted and he has excellent client care and advocacy skills. He has also achieved very good outcomes both in relation to sentences and acquittals following trial.’
Rachel Shenton – 18 St John Street Chambers 'Rachel is an extremely effective advocate. She is excellent with clients and particularly adept at handling cases which require sensitivity. She has a charming manner with jurors and is a first class trial advocate. She is known for her expertise in serious sex cases in particular and she has a talent for assimilating the facts and getting to the crux of a case.'
David Toal – Exchange Chambers ‘David is hard working and thorough, has excellent client care and is approachable and proactive in case preparation.'
Richard Vardon – 18 St John Street Chambers 'Richard is a fantastic advocate - he is able to dissect the prosecution experts during cross-examinations.'
Alaric Walmsley  - 7 Harrington Street  'Alaric is bright, agile and charismatic. He can be parachuted into a case at short notice, demonstrate a clear understanding of its nuances, charm the client and dazzle the jury.'
Geoff Whelan9 St John StreetGeoff is very approachable, which is very important when things need to be discussed or urgently considered. He is thorough and understanding and provides a clinical analysis of the work required on a case and how to build a successful prosecution or defence.
Barry White23 Essex StreetBarry is a formidable barrister dedicated to ensuring the best outcome for clients, always striving to act in their best interests. He provides excellent client care ensuring he meets with clients at the earliest opportunity to review the evidence with them at length leaving no stone unturned.
Waheed Baber – Kenworthy’s Chambers 'Waheed is a great advocate.'
David Birrell  – Exchange Chambers 'David's  attention to detail is extraordinary. The patience and understanding shown with sometimes difficult individuals makes him stand out from others. Nothing is ever too much trouble.'
Richard Brigden  – Exchange Chambers 'Richard is an excellent tactician. He prepares all cases thoroughly and is quick to recognise issues arising in a case. He is of course eminent in the sphere of protest work - he knows protest work like the back of his hand and speaks with such authority on the subject that everyone in Court hangs on his every word. He is also excellent in court - he excels at witness handling, especially cross examination. Everyone Richard represents is in exceedingly safe hands.'
Rachel CooperLincoln House ChambersRachel always delivers 100% of the time. She is both very able and capable and it is immediately clear to lay clients from their first meeting with her that she is totally committed and her eye for detail and preparation is faultless. It is both a pleasure and privilege to work with Rachel. She is great whether dealing with a guilty plea and mitigation to conducting a full trial.
Matthew Curtis – 9 St John Street 'Matthew is an exceptional barrister: meticulously prepared; immaculately presented; considerate to client and witnesses alike; careful in his approach and always diligent in his work. He is a delight to have before a judge and is reliable and always courteous. He stands out above his contemporaries.'
Rachel Faux – 18 St John Street ChambersMethodical, analytical and very thorough are but a few Rachel's strengths. An almost encyclopedic knowledge of the evidence and law ensures any discussions with opponents are most effective. A steady but firm approach with clients provides not only the calm in a sea of troubled water but clear and concise advice which clients are able to easily understand. A confident trial advocate. A unique ability to adjust the approach and method of cross examination and presentation of matters before a jury.'
Chudi Grant – Kenworthy’s ChambersChudi is able to easily connect with clients and establish an effective relationship with them. He prepares cases to the highest standard and ensures nothing is left to the last minute. He is a very organised and motivated individual and his passion for criminal law really shines through. Chudi is able to easily engage with a variety of different clients covering a whole host of offences. He is always staying in contact with the Solicitors to ensure that all parties are fully aware and involved throughout the process.'
Gwen Henshaw – Cobden House Chambers 'Gwen is very thorough in preparation throughout the cases. She identifies the strengths and weaknesses of the case with ease and advises accordingly. She identifies and analyses the evidence as a whole and interprets this to the client with ease. Her advocacy skills in court are excellent and she leaves no stone unturned.'
Lee Hughes – Lincoln House Chambers 'As a former solicitor, Lee really does know what a solicitor is looking for and needs from counsel. His preparation is meticulous and thorough. He is incredibly accessible and a very good advocate. Clients really warm to him due to his down to earth nature and the fact he is very good at expressing sometimes difficult points succinctly and clearly.'
David John James  – St John’s Buildings 'David is focused and extremely hard working. He has an excellent knowledge of the law and is a most diligent advocate, always endeavoring to achieve the best for his client. Of course, most barristers endeavour to achieve a good outcome, but he has a consistent focus on the legal arguments and factual points to be made that is highly analytical as well as drive by general professionalism. He is particularly accomplished in cases involving technical scientific or financial evidence.'
Erimnaz Mushtaq – Doughty Street ChambersErimnaz is a born fighter who combines hard work and thorough preparation with the willingness to stand her ground on behalf of her client. An astute tactician and devastatingly effective in court, she has the rare ability to really turn the direction of a case. She is rightly in high demand.'
Brendan O’Leary  – Lincoln House Chambers 'Brendan is always very prepared and thorough and his client care is exceptional which is important for instructing solicitors. Brendan is an experienced barrister.'
Charlotte Rimmer – Exchange Chambers ‘Charlotte is incredibly thorough and always completely prepared, down to the last detail of a case. She is unflappable as an advocate and reassuring in conference. Clients have confidence in her, because she is so obviously well prepared. She has had some excellent results in really very difficult cases.'
Gareth Roberts  – Exchange Chambers 'Gareth has a keen intellect and sound judgement. He remains calm with an eye on the bigger picture, even when under pressure. He is fantastic with clients, genuinely cares and fights for them tirelessly.'
John Wyn WilliamsExchange Chambers 'John is a master of strategy pre and during a trial. He is able to build up and maintain a rapport with clients during the legal process and is a powerful advocate.'

Rising Stars

Anna Chestnutt – Lincoln House Chambers ‘Anna has demonstrated a capacity to unflappably absorb and define voluminous and challenging instructions at short notice. She has demonstrated sound and proven abilities as a lawyer, advocate and communicator in all matters in which briefed or instructed.’
Matthew Howarth – Lincoln House Chambers 'Matthew is very professional, dedicated and extremely knowledgeable in civil POCA applications. He has an excellent style of presentation in court, is extremely well prepared before case conferences and court hearings and is very reliable.'
Helen Longworth  – 9 St John Street ‘Helen shows empathy to each client and handles even the most demanding of clients with care. She is approachable, helpful and will take up the good fight for the client and will not put on any pressure to plead in the face of overwhelming evidence, ensuring that all necessary avenues of enquiry are considered in preparing for trial. She is realistic and truthful with the clients and always makes the client feel listened to.’
Gemma Maxwell – St John’s BuildingsGemma is one of the very best. She works phenomenally hard and prepares documents before you have even asked. She was very familiar with every aspect of the case including the unused material. She is very focussed and analytical, thinking through a problem from all sides before deciding on a course of action. Gemma has great determination and is tigerish in her approach. Gemma is a real star and should be a role model for other junior barristers in how to be successful in this career.'
Thomas Sherrington – St John’s Buildings 'Thomas has a sharp intellect that cuts to the core issues on every matter. His courtroom presence exhibits an ability to advance forceful and compelling arguments.'

Crime (general and fraud) in Regional Bar

7 Harrington Street

The members at 7 Harrington Street have wide ranging expertise and act on significant and high-profile criminal law cases. Nicholas Johnson KC acts for both the defence and prosecution in cases of gross negligence manslaughter, alleged gangland executions, large-scale drug imports, fraud cases and serious sexual offences. Of recent note is his instruction from the CPS to prosecute a Chester neonatal nurse who is charged with eight counts of murder and ten counts of attempted murder, in connection with the deaths of babies at the Countess of Chester Hospital. Other notable members include Nigel Power KC, who handles high-profile murder and fraud cases. Power is prosecuting in a case involving rape and sexual assault allegations against Manchester City left-back Benjamin Mendy. In July 2022 Ian Unsworth KC was appointed to the circuit bench.

Testimonials

Set

‘Harrington Street Chambers has an exceptional reputation due to the quality of its Barristers in all disciplines.’

‘If your first choice of barrister is not available, then you have real confidence that your second choice will be of a similar quality.’

‘They regularly have training programmes to assist with legal developments, which is of a great benefit. ‘

Clerking

‘The clerks are not only hard working, but also approachable and will always attempt to assist with any queries. Rachel Kehoe will always go above and beyond in ensuring that a quality service is provided.’

‘Good, competent and amiable clerks.’

Exchange Chambers

Key areas of work for the ‘highly regarded‘ members of Exchange Chambers include murder, financial crime, sexual abuse and drug offences, and the set is praised as ‘one of the leading sets in the North of England‘. John Jones KC has an established criminal practice, and recently acted for the defendant a manslaughter case concerning a victim choking on a bone after being fed whilst asleep. The set also houses Ben Myers KC, who handles murder and money laundering cases, as well as drug trafficking and organised crime matters. Richard Littler KC is another name of note and has expertise in cases regarding terrorism, fraud and organised crime. David Temkin KC has a thriving criminal law practice and recently acted for the defendant in a case regarding the murder of a retired Liverpool Crown Prosecution Service lawyer. Charlotte Kenny  handles serious cases of fraud and sexual offences, and also recently successfully defended a man who was acquitted of attempted murder. Richard Brigden  joined the team from Garden Court North Chambers in January 2022.

Testimonials

Set 

‘Excellent set of Chambers with the most highly regarded Barristers in the city. The relationship they build with instructing solicitors is invaluable . The training programme offered throughout the year is very helpful. The newsletters are a great source of information as to recent developments in the case law.’

‘Exchange Chambers is one of the leading sets in the North of England. They do have significant strength in depth and are a chambers that provide training and seminars.’

‘Exchange Chambers is an excellent chambers for crime with quality in depth.’

‘Exchange are one of the leading sets in Manchester with a huge range of experienced Counsel.’

‘The set are very strong, particularly at the top end. They have a number of individuals that stand out due to their ability.’

Clerking

The clerks are responsive and friendly. Andy Leech is a stand out clerk with many years experience who offers a top quality service.’

‘Chambers has a very experienced, settled and skilled Criminal clerking team. The Clerks are well resourced, proactive and effective. The Clerking team are trusted by professional clients who appreciate the comprehensive service they receive.’

‘Nick Buckley leads the crime clerk room extremely well. He is very knowledgeable within the sector and maintains very good client relationships.’

‘Clerking is excellent – they are proactive, ably led in Manchester by Nick Buckley. Kate Masher in Liverpool is excellent and always honest in her assessment of counsel.’

‘The Criminal Clerks are outstanding. They are very approachable and will go out of their way to help. Kate Masher is very experienced and honest and sets the standard for others.’

Garden Court North Chambers

Garden Court North Chambers is praised as being ‘unrivalled in the north for criminal defence.’ The set is home to Mark George KC, a silk with a thriving practice in homicide and serious sex cases, especially those regarding historic allegations. Nina Grahame KC is active in representing defendants with complex mental health needs with defences of loss of control, diminished responsibility and insanity, as well as parents and carers accused of serious offences against children or vulnerable adults. Grahame KC defended in a case concerning the shooting of an bystander law student during an attempted assassination. Other notable names include Clare Ashcroft , who has a strong background representing clients with mental health illnesses and learning disabilities, and Rebecca Filletti, who also has a specialist practice representing vulnerable clients. In January 2022 Richard Brigden moved to Exchange Chambers.

Testimonials

Set

‘Garden Court North is a leading human rights set with a small but dynamic team of barristers specialising in complex criminal cases. Counsel from Garden Court North feature in the most serious and complex cases in this field, punching well above their weight and frequently appearing in the appellate courts. The set has many strengths, not least the shared expertise between the different specialist teams.’

‘Unrivalled in the North for criminal defence.’

‘The chambers provide excellent and dedicated lawyers who are committed to providing the best service to clients.’

‘They provide useful courses on a range of topics. The set provide a range of highly able and committed counsel who have a commitment to the service of clients.’

‘Garden Court North are an excellent set. The barristers provide a premium service to solicitors and lay clients. They work and plan diaries to the benefit of clients and there is an exceptional degree of care and continuity in representation.’

Clerking

Chambers is managed by a very efficient Practice Management Team which has a reputation for being approachable, efficient and straightforward.’

‘The two most senior members of the Team are women who have developed from very junior levels within chambers over many years, studying for higher qualifications and undertaking vocational training to achieve such senior status – Annmarie Nightingale (Head of Practice Management) and Nicola Carroll (Senior Practice Manager). This ‘in house’ development and promotion (continuing with more junior staff – Rebecca Rustigini is superbly efficient and progressing very quickly through the ranks) leads to excellent communication between the staff to the benefit of all clients.’

‘The clerks are efficient and well managed.’

‘Nicola Carroll is a very helpful and thorough Clerk.’

‘Clerking is efficient and responsive. Nicola Carroll is very on point and professional.’

Lincoln House Chambers

The members at the ‘excellent’ Lincoln House Chambers includes members highly experienced a wide range of criminal law matters, spanning across road traffic offences, sexual offences, violence, drug offences and financial crime. The set houses the reputable Kate Blackwell KC who has a thriving criminal law practice and Richard Dawson  has an impressive practice and has been active in multiple injury and death by dangerous driving cases. Simon Csoka KC is also notable and has considerable expertise handling cases involving organised crime, fraud, and murder. Simon Gurney  has a well established practice and has particularly expertise in defending individuals facing substantial fraud prosecutions, as well defending allegations of historic sexual abuse. Rachel Cooper  has a broad criminal law practice and is often instructed on cases where defendants have significant mental health needs. She recently represented the defendant charged with death by dangerous after a collision decapitated a back seat passenger.

Testimonials

Set 

‘Lincoln House Chambers are one of the best sets outside of London. Their choice of barristers is extremely strong and instructing solicitors feel confident in instructing their barristers in any area – crime (general and fraud), professional discipline or regulatory matters.’

‘The set is excellent – they are a preferred set of chambers and there is always a selection of experienced Counsel to choose from.  Where possible, they will strive to clear diaries to ensure counsel can be available for all hearings so clients have continuous representation.  The set has experienced and well respected barristers who can cover a wide range of criminal offences.’

‘Lincoln House Chambers is always on hand to provide cover for a hearing and will ensure they have done all they can to meet the needs of our clients. They have also on numerous occasions  allowed the use of their offices for conferences, which is most helpful.’

‘A strong set – barristers at every level of experience and wide ranging practice across criminal and regulatory work, no problems with availability. Offer topical training sessions too.’

‘Lincoln House Chambers is one of the best chambers in Manchester. In testing times of late for the profession as a whole, they continue to offer an excellent service and the quality of barristers available is second to none.’

Clerking

Instructing solicitors cannot speak highly enough of the service offered by Lincoln House Chambers. Their clerks go out of their way to help you, in particular David Wright.’

‘The clerks are very knowledgeable on the administrational side of criminal cases and have exceptional communication when it comes to instructing barristers and diary management.’

‘The Clerks are friendly yet professional. They respond immediately to queries and assist when cases need to be moved, etc. Andy Gibbons, David Wright and in fact all of the clerks are first class.’

‘David Wright leads the team and is excellent; he responds very quickly and goes above and beyond. Great too at putting forward up and coming junior members.’

‘Andy McGuinness from Lincoln House Chambers is always friendly and amenable to any request. Andy is a fantastic clerk and an asset to Chambers.’

Work highlights

    Deans Court Chambers

    Deans Court Chambers is home to barristers active across the criminal law space.. Head of chambers Michael Hayton KC is highly adept at handling serious crime and regulatory crime, as well as gang related murders and murder for reward - he defended in a case concerning the fatal shooting of innocent passer-by and law student Aya Hachem. Virginia Hayton is also a notable name in defending historic sexual offence cases.

    Kenworthy's Chambers

    The members of Kenworthy’s Chambers have significant expertise across a wide range of criminal matters, including multi-handed defence and prosecution cases involving drug-related conspiracies, mortgage fraud, murder, baby-shaking and gangland crimes, as well as serious sex and historic sex offences and regulatory crime. Barry Grennan specialises in criminal defence and has acted on cases involving death by dangerous driving, firearms and multi-handed fraud cases. Patrick Cassidy also has a defence-based practice, handling inner city gun crime and police misconduct cases. The set is also home to Denise Fitzpatrick, who has an established practice and is active in cases of fraud and sexual offences.

    Testimonials

    Set 

    ‘Chambers offers many training courses throughout the year to ensure people are kept up to date with the latest changes or amendments to the law.’

    ‘Kenworthy’s Chambers are able to offer a wide range of expertise. In particular, they have a good knowledge of Mental Health Law which is able to inform and strengthen other departments such as Crime, whereby the defendant suffers from a mental disorder.’

    ‘The chambers are an excellent set, with a wealth of experience in Criminal matters. They also have excellent availability of counsel. Kenworthy’s has a broad base in different disciplines. There is a particularly strong criminal team who are regularly instructed on the Northern and neighbouring circuits.’

    ‘In particular, there is a strong presence in the west and east midlands.’

    ‘Kenworthy’s Chambers have a great set of barristers.’

    Clerking

    A cohesive team of clerks who are headed by a very experienced practice manager, Maria Rushworth. Particular commendation to the unflappable Paul Mander as senior criminal clerk.’

    ‘The clerks at Kenworthy’s Chambers are excellent; very efficient, very helpful and very approachable.’

    ‘The clerks are extremely helpful and friendly, always going above and beyond. They are very approachable and always willing to help if possible. Paul Mander and Thomas Harrington are two of the senior criminal clerks who are an asset to chambers.’

    ‘Paul Mander always responds promptly to queries, is very helpful and ensures they provide immediate updates if there is difficulties with counsel availability.’

    ‘The clerks are always very accommodating and do their best to meet individual needs. If specific counsel are unavailable they will engage in discussions to find an alternative barrister who is equally as suitable for the matter at hand. Courtney Soden is very efficient and always responds promptly to emails allowing for matters to be dealt with swiftly.’

    23 Essex Street

    23 Essex Street has ‘fantastic strength-in-depth’. The set houses Daniel Lister, who has a strong criminal practice, and of recent note was instructed in a case stemming Operation Vinetic concerning conspiracy to supply Class A drugs and involves evidence obtained from France after the cooperation of the French, Dutch and English police. Bob Sastry is also a key member and has considerable expertise handling cases involving murder, large-scale conspiracies, serious allegations of violence and sexual offence cases. Hugh McKee and Barry White are also of note.

    Testimonials

    Set

    ‘Chambers often make efforts to keep the same barrister available for cases as it provides clients with familiarity and consistency.’

    ’23ES has provided suitably experienced counsel and the counsel and clerks work together as a team to keep the instructing solicitor informed and updated. They have also assisted in referrals to 23ES, London, as and when required.’

    ’23ES are a good set with consistent quality across the board.’

    ’23ES has fantastic strength-in-depth with a good choice of quality counsel for all types of criminal cases. The silks at chambers are the envy of many criminal sets.’

    Clerking

    The clerks room has a nice balance and go the extra mile. Wayne King and Adam Chapman are always on hand to assist – both are highly respected and responsive.’

    ‘Wayne King and Sean Hulston are excellent and very responsive.’

    ‘Excellent service provided by 23ES Sean Hulston and Kevin Ambridge, who go above and beyond to offer their support and assistance on a day to day basis.’

    ‘Both Kevin Ambridge and Sean Hulston are approachable, professional and efficient. They are able to assist at short notice and communicate well.’

    St John's Buildings

    St John’s Buildings has ‘excellent tenants equipped to deal with the most complex of criminal cases’, which include human and drug trafficking, road traffic offences, child abduction and sexual exploitation, murder, and manslaughter. The set houses Mark Connor, who is regularly instructed by both the defence and the prosecution, and has acted on cases involving death by dangerous driving and organised crime cases featuring EncroChat evidence. David John James is also of note and specialises in cases involving fatal and serious injuries. Gemma Maxwell is often instructed by the defence in cases involving murder, rape, drugs, firearms and sexual offences, and Thomas Sherrington is regularly involved in multi-handed cases. Charlotte Johnson has now moved to Lamb Building.

    Testimonials

    Set

    ‘St John’s Buildings is a wholly professional and reliable set, and has a solid foundation of excellent tenants equipped to deal with the most complex of criminal cases.’

    ‘A wonderful set that will always make counsel available even at short notice. One of the greatest strength is that they rarely let you down replacing counsel.’

    ‘The go to chambers for any matter. A wealth of talent and ability always provides a satisfactory outcome.’

    ‘SJB is a wonderful set. Will always make counsel available even at short notice. One of the greatest strength is that they rarely let you down replacing counsel. The clerks have an ability to couple counsel with clients and are always prepared to go the extra mile for example, taking calls out of hours and offering flexibility on fees where necessary.’

    ‘One of the countries leading chambers offering a wealth of experience.’ 

    Clerking

    ‘Supportive, knowledgeable clerks who are always offering assistance.’

    ‘Mark Heald is an exceptional clerk and is leading a junior team below him – you can see the culture developing .’

    ‘The clerks are always available and eager to assist. Mark Heald especially shows a wealth of experience and knowledge.’

    ‘Tom Roche provides excellent client care. He is approachable and flexible.’

    ‘Mark Heald is an excellent clerk whose client care is unrivalled. He is an asset to Chambers.’

    18 St John Street Chambers

    18 St John Street Chambers is praised as an ‘excellent’ and ‘well-established‘ set. Its members prosecute and defend in a wide range of cases, from serious sexual offences to terrorism and fraud. Michael Brady KC has been instructed on numerous high-profile murder cases. The set is also home to Rachel Shenton , who has a thriving practice defending and prosecuting serious sexual offence and violence cases, and Richard Vardon , who predominantly defends on homicides and drug importation cases.

    Testimonials

    Set

    The criminal department offers a range of practitioners and at the senior junior level they are involved in very significant criminal cases.’

    ‘They all appear client focussed and assist solicitors with the necessary pre-trial preparation.’

    ‘An excellent set in a competitive market. Tenants of varying call and expertise ensure chambers can be viewed as a ‘one stop shop’ for choice of counsel, no matter what the type of case. Counsel often go out of their way to ensure they meet their professional commitments to instructing solicitors and go over and above in the event of a returned brief.’

    ‘Chambers are well-established in the Manchester area. The more junior members of the bar at this set seem to be up and coming.’

    ‘Excellent set. Impressive variety of counsel in terms of specialist areas, seniority and skill set.’

    ‘Chambers have a wide range of barristers who specialise in a number areas of law.’

    Clerking

    ‘The chambers are proactive in communications, especially James Hotchin, who is the senior criminal clerk in Chambers.’

    ‘Outstanding clerks room. Amongst the best on the northern circuit. Particular praise of head criminal clerk James Hotchin. Professional, polite and efficient, he gets the job done!’

    ‘The Senior Clerk, James Hotchin, is very efficient and willing to help out at short notice.’

    ‘Excellent clerks’ room. Under the guidance and supervision of head Criminal Clerk James Hotchin, they provide a very responsive, dynamic and helpful service going over and above to ensure a satisfactory service.’

    ‘James Hotchin is the stand out criminal clerk in Manchester who knows everyone. He is very efficient and understands the needs of solicitors and clients which he always puts first. He manages somehow to usually get counsel to all cases in which they are instructed and solves problems which sometimes inevitably arise with busy practitioners.’