Firms To Watch: Commercial litigation: Hull and East Yorkshire

Wilkin Chapman LLP recently expanded its commercial dispute offering with the arrival of consultant George Coyle; the team acts for businesses, institutions and high-net-worth individuals in East Yorkshire.

Commercial litigation: Hull and East Yorkshire in Yorkshire And The Humber

Andrew Jackson Solicitors LLP

The ‘personable, accessible, knowledgeable and honest‘ team at Andrew Jackson Solicitors LLP covers a wide range of disputes, ranging from professional negligence and insurance cases to regulatory and business crime matters, debt recovery work and shareholder disputes. Practice head Hugh Smith has, beyond his commercial activity, additional experience in proceedings relating to food law, and Nick Dean is a name to note in property litigation. Another key practitioner is Mike Wilson, who is highlighted for being ‘calm under pressure and having excellent judgement‘.

Practice head(s):

Hugh Smith

Other key lawyers:

Nick Dean; Mike Wilson; Peter Duffus


‘The team members have excellent judgement. They run rings round the opposition by focusing upon the core issues with an incredible attention to detail not matched by other firms. They have an ability to foresee the direction of litigation which places them a step ahead of their rivals. The team are always accessible and enquiries promptly resolved. Client care is 2nd to none and compares most favourably to those firms who get back to you when they feel like it.’

 ‘Good spread of legal knowledge and skills and they take time to get to know their client which is very important.’

‘The team is highly experienced in disputes concerning ex-employees, including the enforcement of restrictive covenants and the protection of confidential information. That experience gives it good judgement, and enables it to litigate with the swiftness required when urgent injunctive relief is sought or resisted.’

‘The team are personable, accessible, knowledgeable and honest.’

‘Nick Dean has such a strong level of expertise and pushes to get things sorted out before you go to court, so it’s always as painless as possible.’

‘Mike Wilson is an excellent litigator. He is calm under pressure; he has excellent judgement; and he is highly efficient. He is a top choice for commercial disputes concerning ex-employees.’

‘They have a wide range of expert solicitors available and will put the person best suited to each activity on the case.’

‘The individuals I work with are extremely knowledgeable and are quick to grasp the key issues and then plot a course to bring the best possible results.’

Work highlights


    Gosschalks fields a sizable team of dispute resolution specialists in Hull; they are regularly engaged in contractual, professional negligence, and director/shareholder litigation and property matters as well as an increasing number of compulsory purchase claims. The group also has experience in the construction, insolvency and utilities sectors, particularly the electricity and telecoms spaces. Team leader Matthew Fletcher has expertise in construction and real estate disputes, and Phil Osborne is the key contact in director/shareholder and partnership disputes as well as claims for breaches of restrictive covenant. Steve Dillon specialises in insolvency and banking matters.

    Practice head(s):

    Matthew Fletcher

    Other key lawyers:

    Phil Osborne; Steve Dillon; Ben Marsden; Abigail Milner


    ‘The litigators that I work with are all very competent layers and they understand what is meant by acting in a client’s best interests. They will fight hard for the client when that is what is necessary but they will also advise a client as to the true risks that they are running in any litigation, and where necessary, give advice that the client might not like but is nonetheless in that person’s best interests.’

    ‘Matthew Fletcher – continues to be an extremely hardworking lawyer on behalf of us. We appreciate his attention to detail and his considerable knowledge of the sector in which he deals. That said, he is always commercial and keen to ascertain a client’s desired outcome prior to giving advice. He is aggressive when needed but mercurial – he can tailor his style and approach to whatever the client requires for the matter in hand. His advice is always given in an honest and straightforward manner and one of the greatest compliments we can give is that he always deals with your matter as though it is the only file on his desk.’

    ‘This is a great litigation team offering London-quality service at provincial rates. Great client care.’

    ‘Abigail Milner – continues to impress with her ‘can-do’ attitude and is widely viewed within our business as a potential star of the future.’

    ‘Gosschalks’ Commercial Litigation department is effectively an ‘in house’ team for us. They have made huge efforts to understand our business and how we do things, meaning that they tailor their approach to us, and have a full and hugely effectively understanding of us and the Group as a whole. That has made a huge difference to us. This truly collaborative approach is innovative in our experience – we see lots of large firms talking about doing it, but rarely achieving it.’

    ‘Matthew Fletcher and Ben Marsden. We achieved an outstanding result as a consequence of their hard work and skilled advice.’

    Key clients

    Ei Group Limited

    William Hill Group plc

    Kingspan Group plc

    KCOM Group Limited

    DFDS Logistics Special Cargo B.V.

    Svenska Handelsbanken – Hull Office

    Wilko Retail Limited

    Costcutter Supermarkets

    Arnold White Estates Limited

    C Spencer Limited

    TFG Security Limited

    Scientific Laboratory Supplies Limited

    Vossloh Cogifer UK Limited

    MKM Building Supplies Limited

    Northern Trains Limited (formerly Arriva Rail North)

    Bridlington Harbour Commissioners

    Work highlights

    • Advised Executors of an Estate in relation to a claim for undue influence and fraud obtaining a judgement of £3m plus indemnity costs.
    • Advising Arnold White Estates Limited in relation to a judicial appeal claim against the Forestry Commission concerning the implementation of a planning permission worth £15m at a development site located in Newton Abbot, Devon.
    • Advising William Hill Organization Limited and its subsidiary on a £2.6m claim for compensation in the Upper Tribunal Lands Chamber following the compulsory acquisition of one of its betting offices by Liverpool City Council.

    Bridge McFarland LLP

    Bridge McFarland LLP handles a range of commercial, contractual and shareholder disputes. Besides litigation, the team is also active in other forms of alternative dispute resolution. The practice is led by Rob Ripley.

    Practice head(s):

    Rob Ripley

    Work highlights

      Rollits LLP

      Rollits LLP has a considerable track record in a variety of contentious matters spanning shareholder and partnership disputes, sale of goods and product liability cases, business protection matters and commercial contract disputes. The practice is also well versed in the education sector. Chris Drinkall heads up the dispute resolution department and focuses his practice on property litigation, contentious probate and a wide range of commercial disputes. Ralph Gilbert is well versed on matters spanning commercial and property dispute, and construction specialist Caroline Hardcastle is also noted. George Coyle joined Wilkin Chapman LLP in June 2021 and Jennifer Sewell left the firm at the end of 2021.

      Practice head(s):

      Chris Drinkall

      Other key lawyers:

      Ralph Gilbert; Caroline Hardcastle; Andrew Digwood

      Key clients

      SMC (Superstadium Management Company Ltd)

      Stoneacre Motor Group

      J.R.Rix & Sons ltd

      Jordans & Co (Hull) Ltd

      Bonus Electrical Ltd

      Colten Care Ltd

      Goodwin Development Trust

      Ideal Standard UK Ltd

      Walker Modular Ltd

      Luminate Education Group

      Hull College

      York College

      Work highlights