Hall Of Fame

Firms To Watch: Health and safety

Aberdeen-based solicitor advocate Martin Sinclair heads up Mackinnons' practice, which has particular expertise in disputes pertaining to the shipping and marine sectors.

Health and safety in Scotland

Brodies LLP

With the Glasgow-based Clare Bone, who joined the firm from BTO Solicitors LLP in September 2022, at the helm, Brodies LLP is a regular fixture on police, HSE and Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) investigations and related enforcement actions, prosecutions and fatal accident inquiries. This expertise enables the group to assist clients from an equally broad spectrum of industries, including construction, oil and gas, shipping and marine, and transport, among others. The Aberdeen-based Malcolm Gunnyeon, who joined from Dentons in October 2022,  complements the team's sector expertise with experience in the energy, and food and drink sectors. Other recommended individuals include corporate crime and investigations specialist Paul Marshall and senior associate Victoria Anderson, who is experienced in high-profile fatal incidents.

Practice head(s):

Clare Bone

Other key lawyers:

Malcolm Gunnyeon; Paul Marshall; Laura McMillan; Victoria Anderson; Ramsay Hall


‘Victoria Anderson is a formidable health and safety lawyer. She is bright, knowledgeable and always committed to getting the best results for her clients, leaving no stones unturned.’

‘Brodies is always on hand to take calls, answer queries and assist with anything that is needed, and conversely they are always strong in dialogue.’

‘I have to give special praise to Victoria Anderson for her outstanding assistance and knowledge.’

‘Clare Bone and Victoria Anderson are experienced and highly regarded practitioners in the health and safety field.’

‘The team is responsive, hands-on and provides well considered practical advice.’

‘Paul Marshall is an expert in his field and guided us through an urgent issue.’

‘Paul Marshall and Ramsay Hall both have a sound, thorough and robust knowledge in all matters concerning health and safety law.’

‘Their strength and depth of knowledge and experience is second to none.’

Key clients

Network Rail Infrastructure Ltd

Cameron House Resort (Loch Lomond) Ltd

INEOS Chemicals Grangemouth Ltd

Loch Awe Boats

Pentland Ferries

Work highlights

  • Acting for QA Fish in a fatal accident prosecution, securing a plea to a reduced charge under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.
  • Representing a UK hotel owner in a prosecution following a fire at a 5-star luxury hotel that led to the death of two guests.
  • Representing a ferry operator following the grounding of its vessel, providing response and on-site assistance with MAIB and MCA investigations.

BTO Solicitors LLP

Covering the full spectrum of health and safety work, BTO Solicitors LLP has a standout reputation in regulatory prosecutions and fatal accident inquiries by the police, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA), local authorities and the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA). With Glasgow-based solicitor advocate Vikki Watt at the helm, the group represents various blue-chip insurers and is often instructed on a private basis; recent work encompasses the construction, oil and gas, healthcare, and food and drink sectors. Former prosecutor and senior associate Lindsay MacNeill is noted for her specialism in regulatory prosecutions.

Practice head(s):

Vikki Watt

Other key lawyers:

Lindsay MacNeill; Jaimie McGready


‘Very responsive, often at short notice.’

‘Lindsay MacNeill is streetwise and very capable of managing external bodies.’

‘A knowledgeable and professional team that demonstrates exceptional client care.’

‘Vikki Watt and Lindsay MacNeill are both excellent.’

Key clients

Andrew Grant

Larchwood Healthcare (North) Ltd

Akela Construction Ltd

Broomhall Ltd

FABB Scotland Ltd


NFU Mutual Insurance Society Ltd

CHUBB European Group Ltd

Tokio Marine

Axis Capital

Work highlights

  • Successfully defended an individual charged with culpable homicide in relation to health and safety failings at trial.
  • Assisted Larchwood Care Homes North Ltd with a fatal accident inquiry concerning the death of a resident.
  • Assisted Akela Construction, who was jointly charged under CDM Regulations, successfully mitigating the fine below the expected benchmark.

Pinsent Masons LLP

Pinsent Masons LLP's broad client roster spanning various high-risk sectors, such as construction, manufacturing and transport, reflects the team’s wide-ranging expertise in police, HSE and Environmental Health Officer (EHO) investigations, enforcement actions, inquests and prosecutions. Building and fire safety matters are an area of particular strength, where litigator Katherine Metcalfe (Glasgow) is the first port of call, while the Aberdeen-based Bruce Craig anchors the firm’s energy and shipping sector offering. Glasgow-based team head Laura Cameron has extensive experience advising household names in regulatory investigations.

Practice head(s):

Laura Cameron

Other key lawyers:

Bruce Craig; Katherine Metcalfe; Willie Park; Natalie Walker; Charlotte O’Kane


‘They are able to see and balance the legal arguments with commercial realities and put the interests of clients first.’

‘Katherine Metcalfe and Charlotte O’Kane are always proactive, going the extra mile to manage cases and situations. I have a very high degree of trust in the advice and professionalism of both.’

‘One of the best health and safety practices in Scotland.’

Key clients

BP Exploration Operating Company

Shell UK

Balfour Beatty Group

BAM Nuttall Ltd

Peel Ports

Galliford Try

University of Edinburgh



Diamond Offshore Drilling

Celtic Plc

Kier Construction Ltd

MacFarlan Smith

City of Edinburgh Council


British Marine

TT Club


Petrofac Facilities Management

Work highlights

Burness Paull LLP

Working in close collaboration with the firm’s dispute resolution and shipping practices, Burness Paull LLP‘s health and safety and crisis response team has substantial energy sector expertise, while handling matters in the construction, healthcare and marine sectors constitutes another area of strength. Aberdeen-based team head Lynne Gray is frequently instructed by corporate clients to assist with regulatory prosecutions and investigations by the police, the HSE and the Offshore Major Accident Regulator (OMAR), including those arising from offshore helicopter accidents. Director Lynne Moss‘ expertise spans fatal accident inquiries and compliance.

Practice head(s):

Lynne Gray

Other key lawyers:

Lynne Moss


‘The team has provided timely and effective support to our business over a number of years in relation to the management of safety investigations.’

‘Lynne Gray is business-minded and understands the internal pressures associated with conducting a health and safety investigation efficiently in a large organisation. She has provided us with a steady, guiding hand when things have gone wrong.’

‘Lynne is very knowledgeable, approachable and has vast experience of dealing with the HSE.’

‘Lynne Moss is knowledgeable and approachable, ensuring a seamless service is provided to her clients.’

Key clients

Repsol Sinopec


Apache North Sea

Royal Rosyth Dockyard


Sunderland Marine

The Republic of Cyprus

Work highlights

  • Represented Rosyth Royal Dockyard in a fatal accident inquiry.
  • Advising an offshore energy company in the defence of a criminal prosecution for health and safety failings at an offshore installation.
  • Advising a global medical technology company on regulatory matters and a potential enforcement action following an investigation by Police Scotland into adverse reactions to products by multiple patients.

Clyde & Co

Under the leadership of Aberdeen-based solicitor advocate Mark Donaldson, Clyde & Co has a notable profile among insurers, companies and individuals in matters involving fatalities and serious injuries in the working environment. This enables the practice to assist clients from various hazardous industries with regulatory investigations, prosecutions and fatal accident inquiries by the police and the HSE as well as the MCA, Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) and SEPA. Other recommended individuals include legal director and road traffic prosecution expert Ann Bonomy and senior associate Kimberley Mitchell, who is well placed to provide compliance advice.

Practice head(s):

Mark Donaldson

Other key lawyers:

Ann Bonomy; Kimberley Mitchell


‘They are able to respond very quickly, which gives the client great comfort.’

‘The team is led by highly experienced partners, who always work hard to deliver good outcomes for clients.’

‘Mark Donaldson and Ann Bonomy are both highly experienced partners in the field of health & safety.’

Key clients

Core Cut Ltd

Global Energy Nigg Ltd

Edmundson Electrical

A & R Services

Orkney Islands Council

Leiths Scotland

O’Mac Construction

Work highlights

  • Assisted Orkney Islands Council with a fatal accident inquiry involving the death of one of its employees.
  • Acted for a construction company in relation to an investigation and a prosecution following an accident resulting in the death of two employees.
  • Acted for Global Energy Nigg Limited in relation to an investigation and a prosecution by the Crown.

Anderson Strathern

Acting for regulators, including the HSE and the Scottish Prison Service (SPS), on enforcement notice appeals and fatal accident inquiries is a particular strength for Anderson Strathern's practice, while also providing other public bodies and corporate clients with regular compliance advice. Edinburgh-based directors Laura McCabe (solicitor advocate) and Sarah Phillips (litigator and personal injury expert) lead the group, whose expertise spans the construction, transport, and oil and gas sectors.

Practice head(s):

Laura McCabe; Sarah Phillips

Other key lawyers:

Mitchel Bell


‘Anderson Strathern has in-depth knowledge of health and safety matters. They have always provided good advice, strong court representation, and are very well respected within the HSE.’

‘Laura McCabe is knowledgeable, experienced and her communications are frequent and detailed. I would have no hesitation in recommending her.’

‘The team is very knowledgeable and highly responsive.’

Key clients

Sailors Society

Scottish Prison Service

Marine Accident Investigation Branch

Health and Safety Executive

The Scottish Government

Office of the Advocate General

Zot Engineering Ltd

Merchiston Castle School

Isle of Arran Distillers Ltd

Scottish Water

Scottish Midland Co-operative Society Ltd

European Union Aviation Safety Agency

McAlpine Plumbing Products

Crown Estates Scotland

Merlin Entertainments Group

The University of Strathclyde

The University of St Andrews

Royal College of Nursing

Inverness College UHI

Ineos FPS Ltd

Scotwest Seafoods Ltd


CMS’ environment, health and safety practice is routinely retained by multinational companies and individuals in prosecutions, fatal accident inquiries and investigations undertaken by inspectors and the police. The team, which has a notable reputation in the oil and gas sector, also provides clients with regular compliance advice. Aberdeen-based Rosalind Morgan, who was promoted to partner in May 2022, is the main contact in Scotland.

Practice head(s):

Rosalind Morgan


‘Long-standing experience in the offshore oil and gas sector.’

‘Rosalind Morgan is excellent. A pragmatic and client-focused practitioner.’

‘Diverse and strong team that delivers quality.’

DAC Beachcroft Scotland LLP

While DAC Beachcroft Scotland LLP‘s practice is led from Leeds, criminal motor defence expert Karen Railton (Glasgow) is the main point of contact in Scotland. She handles regulatory investigations, prosecutions and fatal accident inquiries, and often represents clients at police stations and in courts across Scotland. Much of her recent work stems from the construction, transport, charity and healthcare sectors. In recent developments, Zoe McDonnell, a specialist in fatal accident inquiries, joined from Clyde & Co in November 2022, while former team head Jamie Varney left in August 2022 following the appointment to the office of sheriff.

Practice head(s):

Karen Railton

Other key lawyers:

Zoe McDonnell; Alasdair Irvine


‘Strong in depth and individual ability. Their organisational skills, client relations and communication skills are excellent.’

‘Dedicated regulatory team in Scotland with a wealth of experience in health and safety cases.’

‘Karen Railton and Zoe McDonnell are highly experienced and bring a wealth of knowledge. Karen is highly responsive and pragmatic in her approach, whilst Zoe masters every detail of a case and is always on top of a brief.’

Key clients


AXA Corporate Solutions





Zurich Municipal




NFU Mutual

Liberty Global

HDI Global

Tesco Underwriting

Ageas Insurance

Police Scotland

Scottish Police Authority

HC-One Limited


Scottish Water

Norbord Europe Ltd

Robertson Group

Glasgow City Council

Covea Insurance

Work highlights

  • Acting for a large UK care home operator, in relation to various fatalities.
  • Represented Norbord Europe Ltd in a health and safety trial centered around issues regarding safe systems of work.
  • Represented Barratt Developments plc, a national construction and residential property developer provider, in relation to a prosecution raised on indictment proceedings for breaches of health and safety legislation and construction design regulations.


With solicitor advocate and legal director Alastair Gray (Glasgow) at the helm, rradar is well placed to assist companies with regulatory investigations and prosecutions, such as those involving road traffic offences, in addition to fatal accident inquiries. Associate Robbie Cole is another key member of the team, and a regular fixture on HSE, EHO and Scottish Government Rural Payments and Inspections Directorate (SGRPID) investigations. Much of the team’s recent work stems from the manufacturing, housing and construction sectors.

Practice head(s):

Alastair Gray

Other key lawyers:

Robbie Cole


‘They are strong in their fields, clear in their communication and responsive to the needs of clients in dealing with cases of all sizes.’

‘Alastair Gray is a highly experienced court practitioner and lawyer in the field of health and safety law. He relates well with clients and instills confidence in them through his clear understanding of the case he is instructed in.’

‘High-quality team of specialists, who have a strong understanding not only of their own areas of expertise but also how their clients operate from a governance and leadership perspective.’

‘Alastair Gray is an extremely thoughtful and composed professional. His calm and measured approach in challenging situations has been important as we have worked through a number of difficult situations.’

‘I have always found rradar go above and beyond what one expects from a firm of solicitors. This usually results in a good outcome and experience for the client, which might not otherwise have been the case.’

‘Alastair Gray has outstanding legal skills in the area of health and safety.’

‘Their collaborative approach and specialist knowledge mean that we continue to work closely with rradar.’

‘They were very responsive to requests and they rigorously kept us up to date with progress at all times.’

Key clients

Ark Housing Association

River Clyde Homes

Stevenson Bros (Avonbridge) Ltd

Work highlights

  • Represented an employee of River Clyde Homes in a matter investigated by the HSE for breach of health and safety law; the breach finding could not be challenged, and the client was not prosecuted.
  • Represented an employee of Stevenson Bros (Avonbridge) Ltd in a matter investigated by the HSE; an improvement notice suggesting the client’s risk assessment was deficient was successfully appealed.
  • Acting for Ark House Association on negotiations with the Prosecutor Fiscal following the death of a service user.

Shepherd and Wedderburn

Shepherd and Wedderburn's health and safety work involves investigations and related enforcement actions by the police, Health and Safety Executive (HSE), Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA), local authorities and the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA); this is due in large part to the extensive experience of practice head and solicitor advocate Kevin Clancy in this space. The team primarily acts for clients operating within the energy, construction, transport and hospitality sectors.

Practice head(s):

Kevin Clancy


‘The service received has been great, with prompt and attentive responses to requests for advice.’

‘Kevin Clancy has a depth of knowledge and experience enhanced by time spent by him in the past at the Procurator Fiscal service.’