Gibson & Co Solicitors Ltd > Hexham, England > Firm Profile

Gibson & Co Solicitors Ltd
NE46 1PQ

Dispute resolution > Commercial litigation: Newcastle Tier 2

Clients praise Gibson & Co Solicitors Ltd’s ‘ability to understand a client’s business quickly’ and ‘exceptional skills in coming up with the right strategies to help with any litigation’.  While lead practitioners Toby Gibson and Jane Gibson are notable lauded for the banking litigation and international dispute expertise, acting for a broad range of lenders including Credit Suisse and ING Bank, the wider group’s work also spans mineral rights litigation, property disputes and partnership claims. Michael Reed is a key name for a wide variety of claims including IP work and shareholder issues, and Ashley Shickle excels at associate level.

Practice head(s):

Toby Gibson


‘Toby Gibson has a level of skill and experience that is rare outside of London. He is a class act with a lovely manner and a “can do” attitude. He is also not afraid to deliver difficult messages, so his advice can be trusted.’

‘A great litigation service.’

‘Toby Gibson is a star individual, Jane Gibson is a powerhouse.’

‘I think what makes Gibson and Co unique is their ability to understand a clients business quickly. I think the team have exceptional skills in coming up with the right strategies to help you with any litigation. The case that was handled by the firm was very complexed with lots of moving parts. Gibson and Co have always gone above and beyond.’

‘Magic circle quality litigation services at North East prices. The best commercial litigators in the area by some distance.’

‘Toby Gibson and Jane Gibson are commercial litigators with vast experience of substantial litigation. They also have experience of the local market and industries. Associates Ashley Shickle works closely with the partners and delivers an excellent service to clients.’

Key clients

Hughes Fowler Carruthers

Marketing Position Limited

North East Grains Ltd

Credit Suisse


The Forestry Commission

MR Finn Trust

Can-Am Chains Limited

Warcup Partnership

Altus Media

Work highlights

  • Acting for a group of 53 veterinary surgeons, all of whom are in partnership with the same entity – Medivet, which sought to impose over £10m of costs on the vets. The dispute concerns the terms of the partnership agreement and Medivet’s entitlement to impose the costs.
  • Instructed by a local farming family in proceedings based on propriety estoppel seeking declarations as to the entitlement(s) relating to the Farm and the Farming Partnership.

Private client > Agriculture and estates Tier 3

Based in both Hexham and Newcastle, the team at Gibson & Co Solicitors Ltd provides ‘insightful and succinct’ advice while also handling contentious work. The practice includes high value rural property transactions, right of way disputes, and complex Agricultural Holdings 1986 Act work. Practice head Harry Chrisp in Hexham ‘takes an informed yet pragmatic approach’, leading in a broad range of matters.

Practice head(s):

Harry Chrisp


‘A great team who communicate clearly and comprehensively. Issues are explained and dealt with in a professional manner. I have used this firm and am happy to recommend this firm.’

‘They are insightful and succinct, keeping things simple where possible.’

‘The team have a longstanding reputation for being a reliable and personable source of legal advice.’

‘Harry Chrisp is a pleasure to work with on complex cases and has that uncanny knack of being able to untangle the impossible.’

‘The firm, and all its staff, provide an efficient and knowledgeable service for their clients in the fields of agriculture and rural landownership. One can rely on prompt responses and an attention to detail.’

‘Approachable always. Delivered ahead of timeline.’

‘Good personable and knowledgeable Partners who are well known in the region. They have a willingness to work with other legal firms where specialist knowledge is needed, eg with Trust structures set up by others.’

‘Accessibility and lower cost structures than national or London based firms.’

Key clients

North East Grains Limited

Thompson family

Work highlights

  • Advised North East Grains Storage Limited in the acquisition of Swarland Grain Store.

Private client > Personal tax, trusts and probate Tier 3

Highly experienced in agricultural issues, Gibson & Co Solicitors Ltd has acted for a number of landowning and farming families. The team. based in Hexham and Newcastle handle trust matters, deal with large settlements or estates, as well as estate tax planning and aid clients with intestate situations. Derwent Gibson  heads the team while Christopher Sheppard is described as ‘patient, respectful, knowledgeable’. Kath Monteith departed for Yarwood Stimpson in May 2021.

Practice head(s):

Derwent Gibson

Other key lawyers:

Chris Sheppard


‘Great for will making.’

‘Chris Shepherd, very approachable, friendly and professional.’

‘A small but friendly team who are always helpful.’

‘Chris Sheppard has been very helpful in dealing with my late mothers estate, giving me invaluable advice and leading us through the process.’

‘Very prompt, clear and precise advice. Clarity in explanation and efficient service’

‘Chris Sheppard was engaging, efficient but with a calm and precise manner. Always superb service and advice.’

‘Great collaboration and personal service.’

‘Chris Sheppard is wonderful with clients. Patient, respectful, knowledgeable and easy to deal with.’

Key clients

M R Finn Will Trust

A well-respected firm with integrity as well as a reputation for producing high-quality work for an impressive calibre of clients, Gibson & Co. has been a quick-witted, reliable and client-focused partner for countless individuals and institutions over centuries. England’s oldest family-run law firm, it celebrated 300 years in practice in 2015.

The firm: Gibson & Co. has a long-standing pedigree of dedicated client service. It was already going strong at the time of the 1715 Jacobite Rebellion. On the scaffold, minutes before he was beheaded for his part in the rebellion, the Earl of Derwentwater turned to his lawyer and friend Jasper Gibson and asked him to draft his last will and testament. Gibson had nothing to write with. Taking a sharp instrument (the nature of which is not recorded), he made an incision on his skin and wrote Derwentwater’s final instructions in blood on the cuff of his shirt.

Gibson & Co. now operates on a global basis, resolving disputes worth many millions of pounds and representing clients at every level of court and tribunal. The firm has an impressive client list, including Credit Suisse; ING Bank N.V.; Capital One; the Arab Republic of Egypt; and Superdrug Stores plc. It also maintains its strong profile in family, property, agriculture and regional legal matters, having acted for prominent families in the north east for generations.

Types of work undertaken
Dispute resolution: partners Toby Gibson and Jane Gibson head a niche, top-end commercial dispute resolution practice, ably supported by fellow partner Michael Reed with an impressive practice of his own. Most of this side of the firm’s business is London- or overseas-based. It receives a substantial amount of referral work from Magic Circle firms of solicitors and regularly finds itself facing major London law firms in its disputes both in court and at an increasing range of international arbitrations. Toby Gibson and Jane Gibson have been ranked as leading solicitors by both Chambers and The Legal 500 for many years. The Legal 500 commented that Gibson & Co.  has earned an exceptional reputation for its financial services litigation expertise. It attracts work from high-profile regional, national and international clients. The Legal 500 also praised the firm’s ‘outstanding and personal service’, commenting that its ‘business acumen is second to none’. Gibson & Co. has been awarded band 1 ranking for banking litigation by Chambers, who commented that the team is ‘recognised for its expertise in banking and finance disputes’.

Private client: Gibson & Co.’s large and experienced team offers a traditional private client practice, providing a wide range of services to its private clients from both its offices. The team advises on matters including trusts, wills and probate. The Hexham office has a particular specialism in agricultural matters such as farm sales and purchases, and farm business matters. Derwent Gibson and Harry Chrisp in Hexham have ‘good knowledge of dealing with families and handling sensitive situations thoroughly’, according to The Legal 500.

Conveyancing: the private client team is supported by the able conveyancing teams, servicing commercial and residential clients.  The teams are based in both Newcastle and Hexham, but offer services to clients around the country including a thriving London clientele.

Other offices: Hexham

Managing partner Toby Gibson
Litigation Toby Gibson
Trust and probate Chris Sheppard
Conveyancing – residential Adam Gilbert
Conveyancing – commercial/agricultural Harry Chrisp
Private Client Chris Sheppard
Number of UK partners : 8
Number of other UK fee-earners : 11