Firm Profile > Hill Dickinson LLP > London , England

Hill Dickinson LLP

Commodities disputes Tier 1

Hill Dickinson LLP handles a vast array of commodities cases and, though it is best known as a prominent player in the soft commodities markets, the practice in London also has a strong caseload in the energy and metals sectors. In disputes involving grains, seeds, pulses, edible oils, fertilisers and cocoa, the firm is highly active both in the major trade association arbitral forums - The Grain and Feed Trade Association (GAFTA), Federation of Oils, Seeds and Fats Associations (FOSFA) and The Federation of Cocoa Commerce (FCC) - and before the High Court. The firm has the premier sugar practice, thanks to the long track record of Jeff Isaacs, who is a long-standing adviser to, inter alia, the raw and refined sugar associations. Fred Konynenburg and Darren Wall are among the other key lawyers for sugar market disputes. Paul Taylor leads the firm’s oil trading practice and the firm also acts for clients in the fuels, coal and renewable energy sectors. The London team also handles LME arbitrations and High Court litigation relating to ferrous and non-ferrous metals, ores and concentrates. The arrival in 2019 of Paul Sinnott and Mark Aspinall from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP added extensive experience in high-value claims in the trading, financing and shipping markets.

Key clients




MS Amlin / RaetsAmlin

Gerald Metals


Addax Energy


Tate & Lyle


Gunvor SA

Nibulon SA



The International Cotton Association

The Sugar Association of London

Alliance Grain Traders SA

Healthcare Tier 1

Hill Dickinson LLP continued to expand its healthcare capabilities with two lateral hires from HempsonsJamie Foster, who has 'breadth of industry experience' advising NHS organisations, private providers, and health and life sciences start-ups on commercial and public law matters, and James Lawford Davies, a 'top specialist' in healthtech and life sciences, specifically in reproductive and genetic technologies and cell and gene therapies. Key areas of expertise include commercial and procurement, commissioning, regulatory, governance, inquests and Court of Protection work. Kiran Bhogal and Emma Galland co-head the London healthcare group. Other recommended partners include Joanna Trewin in Manchester, Robert McGough in Leeds and Sharon Thomas in Liverpool.

Leading individuals


Widely respected in the market for public law, especially representing trusts in judicial review challenges

Exceptionally personable team that make you feel as though you are their most important client. They are extremely perceptive to your needs and although they have access to a wide range of expertise, they also have the confidence to advise you when they do not. Their ability to provide succinct, practical and cost-effective solutions to our problems is highly appreciated.’

Kiran Bhogal and Emma Galland both have a wealth of experience in inquests and other public law matters.’

Kiran Bhogal is highly responsive to our needs, quick to manage our expectations, and goes beyond and above what is expected to ensure that we are completely satisfied.’

Emma Galland is dynamic and provides impressive representation and solutions, often at short notice.’

Robert McGough consistently delivers cost-effective expert assistance and guides you through every step of complexity, inspiring confidence.’

Jamie Foster is approachable and skillfully translates complex situations into practical solutions.’

Key clients

Royal Free London Hospitals NHS FT

Kings College Hospital NHS FT

Oxford University Hospitals NHS FT

Royal Marsden Hospital NHS FT

Surrey Downs Clinical Commissioning Group

Clinical negligence: defendant Tier 2

Hill Dickinson LLP acts for a range of healthcare providers within the public and private sectors, with NHS Resolution standing out as its most prominent client. National head of Health Litigation Andrew Craggs splits his time between Liverpool and the capital, and is backed up by cerebral palsy and spinal injury specialist Janet McWhinney , who oversees the London department. Multi-million pound cerebral palsy cases as well as indemnity issues arising from a claim are common instructions for the team. The practice's expertise and increasing consideration of Alternative Dispute Resolution methods has also enabled a more cost-effective settlement of high-value and contentious matters.

Key clients

NHS Resolution

Medical Protection

CNA Hardy

Care UK Clinical  Services Limited

Virgin Care UK

Vantage Insurance

Shipping Tier 2

Hill Dickinson LLP is 'highly recommended' for shipping work; the 'growing' team welcomed Beth Bradley from Clyde & Co LLP and has also made several hires internationally. The London team, which is supported by its international network of experts, handles a raft of wet and dry work and has recently been instructed on several high-profile casualty claims and dry shipping disputes. Its clients include ship owners, P&I Clubs, traders, salvors and insurers. It also has a strong cruise sector following. Global head of shipping Julian Clark led advice for The Lion Group on a dispute brought by Classic Maritime Inc, which examines issues regarding force majeure and exception clauses. Head of yachts Tony Allen focuses on yacht insurance disputes and transactions, while David Pitlarge is noted for his experience in dry shipping work and Adrian Marsh, who is based in Manchester, is head of cargo and logistics. Consultant Robert Wallis specialises in admiralty law.

Key clients

Skuld P&I Club

North of England P&I Association Limited

Gard A/S (P&I Club)

UK P&I Club (managed by Thomas Miller)

Britannia P&I Club

Standard P&I Club (managed by Charles Taylor & Co Limited)

Swedish P&I Club

Norwegian Hull Club

The American P&I Club

The MECO Group (Michael Else & Co)

The Lion Group

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company

ADM Intermare

BP Shipping

Trade finance Tier 2

Hill Dickinson LLP joins the ranking having hired a respected commodities and trade finance group from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP in 2019. The team, which is built around respected partners Mark Aspinall and Paul Sinnott, brings extensive experience in trade finance transactions and disputes to a firm with a strong position in the commodities markets. The firm acts for banks and trading houses in high-value and complex structured transactions. Sinnott's work from 2018 included advising banks and traders on multiple trade finance deals up to $250m in value, and the production of bespoke commodity trade finance documentation for a leading Geneva bank. In 2018, Aspinall, while at his previous firm, won a $22m gasoline financing case against the owner of an oil trader, which resulted in the lifting of a High court freezing order.


“The advice is always clear and complete, even if it is a complicated matter, and they make bankers’ choices easy.”

“Some lawyers give you a lot of information and too many options, but not Paul Sinnott and Mark Aspinall. They answer our questions in a clear and helpful way.”

“Their advice is based on a deep knowledge of shipping, trading and banking, so we get useful advice on all of those areas through one contact.”

M&A: smaller deals, up to £50m Tier 3

Hill Dickinson LLP advises public and private companies, both overseas or UK-domiciled, on a full range of corporate matters. The past few years have seen significant growth in the team, with the most recent hire being Jonathan Morris from Thrings LLP, who has experience acting for entrepreneurs and entrepreneur-backed businesses in the lower mid-market. Sector specialisms include transport, energy and natural resources, and healthcare. The firm also has experience in emerging markets, with practice head Michael Bennett a  key name to note for this.


Extremely skilled, responsive, thorough and with a good work ethic.’ 

‘Adaptable and work around the clock to service clients’ needs

Michael Corcoran is a trusted adviser whose capacity, communication, and commitment to excellence shine through

Michael Bennett provides sound, practical and commercial advice

Key clients

ADES Group

Liquid Telecommunications Ltd

Minds + Machines Group Limited

SalvaRx Group PLC

UK Oil & Gas PLC

The Montreux Healthcare Fund PLC

Reabold Resources PLC

Emmerson PLC

Clean Invest Africa PLC

Regency Casinos

Personal injury: defendant Tier 4

Hill Dickinson LLP fields a team of specialist personal injury lawyers that handle claims within the marine sector, involving crew and passenger accidents, fatalities, sexual assault and group actions. The practice is instructed on the majority of disease claims in the ports and marine sectors, and predominantly deals with multi-jurisdictional cases where questions on choice of law are raised. The team is led by John Caddies, whose expertise spans catastrophic injury cases, stress and asbestos claims. Tony McDonach is the key point of contact for industrial disease cases concerning noise-induced hearing loss, while Laura Wilson's caseload includes brain injury cases, amputations, abuse and suicide claims.


‘Extensive knowledge in their respective areas, reliable and approachable and have a good understanding of our client needs.’

‘This is a longstanding professional relationship and, as such, this firm has a deep knowledge of our company’s business and history which enables them to provide a level of service that we would be unlikely to find elsewhere.’

‘The stand out quality of the personal injury team at Hill Dickinson is their sheer breadth of knowledge and expertise, coupled with their straightforward advice which makes them a go-to firm of lawyers.’

‘The comprehensive knowledge and the thorough analysis John Caddies provides on occupational illness claims is unrivalled.’

‘John is always extremely responsive and accessible and his advice is always thorough and clear. He has negotiated very effectively for us on settlements and always delivers the best possible result.’

‘Tony McDonach possesses a wealth of experience, specifically in the defence of noise-induced hearing loss claims, has a unique gift for setting out the weaknesses of a claimant’s case and the hurdles that they may face in pursuing their claim ensuring that many cases go no further.’

Key clients

Associated British Ports

Hutchison Ports

BP Shipping Limited



Royal Caribbean Cruises

P&O Ferries

Louis Hotels

UK P&I Club

West of England P&I Club


Maersk Shipping Company

Shipowners Mutual P&I Club


Gard P&I Club

Swedish Club

Steamship P&I Club

London P&I Club

Administrative and public law Tier 6

The public law offering at Hill Dickinson LLP has a particular focus on the healthcare and social care sectors, with a healthy list of NHS bodies and clinical commissioning groups comprising the bulk of the client roster. Advisory work regularly involves the implementation of policy initiatives and reorganisations, particularly NHS England’s flagship integrated care system legislative framework. Emma Stockwell advises on the commissioning of pharmaceutical services. Common contentious mandates include defending judicial review challenges, procurement challenges and advising on inquiries into breaches of duty.


Always goes the extra mile while providing a personal service

Esther Venning and Robert McGough take a flexible and pragmatic approach to developing and identifying solutions

Kiran Bhogal has an excellent combination of pragmatism and legal knowledge

The team always meets deadlines and gives prompt feedback in a way which is understandable without the jargon

Key clients

NHS England

Care Quality Commission

Health Education England

NHS Surrey Downs Clinical Commissioning Group

Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust

Royal Free London Hospitals NHS Foundation Tust

Kings College Hospital NHS Foundation Tust

Surrey and Borders Partnership NHS Foundation Tust

Dorset Healthcare NHS Foundation Tust

Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Tust

Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Tust

Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust

Knowsley CCG

Fareham and Gosport CCG

Midlands and Lancashire CSU

Liverpool CCG

Manchester CCG

Salford Royal NHS Foundation Tust

Sport Tier 6

Hill Dickinson LLP's sports group are particularly well known for their commercial and regulatory disputes work for clients including football clubs, sportspeople and media agencies. The team's growing commercial sports arm spans sponsorship deals, supply agreements, hospitality agreements, IP and brand licensing. Consultant Louise Millington-Roberts specialises in advising governing bodies, clubs, event hosts, sponsors and athletes on global rights and brand management issues and has specific expertise in the area of ticketing. Partner Geraldine Ryan focuses predominantly on dispute resolution and reputation management for clients such as footballers.

Key clients

Triple S Sports & Entertainment Group Limited

GB Taekwondo

Lancashire County Cricket Club Limited

The Dallaglio Foundation

Blackpool Rovers Football Club

Transport finance & leasing Tier 6

The 'small and close-knit team' at Hill Dickinson LLP has a 'wealth of shipping finance experience' and is thereby well placed to advise both lenders and borrowers across the gamut of shipping/offshore transactions, including the financing of newbuild vessels and sale and leaseback transactions. Panos Pourgourides has niche expertise for borrowers and lenders on the financing of superyachts.


The very experienced and commercially orientated Roderick Palmer is incredibly easy to work with and always very approachable‘.

Key clients

Advanced Energy


Bank of America

BNP Paribas

JP Morgan

Chailease Finance

Close Brothers

Laskaridis Shipping Co. Limited / Lavinia Corp.


Oman Shipping Company



J Marr Seafoods

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC)


Hill Dickinson LLP's cross-practice travel and leisure team handles a range of work in the sector including defendant personal injury work as well as crisis management, employment, commercial, corporate, brand protection, data protection, EU, regulatory, tax, asset management and finance mandates. With a broad base of clients, the team acts for industry bodies, cruise and ferry operators, tour operators, hotels, ports and terminals, destination management companies; it is instructed by an array of clients operating in the rail, aviation, port, terminals, road and shipping sectors. John Caddies, who is a personal injury and disease specialist, heads the travel and leisure team. Caddies led advice for Silverseas Cruises on the implementation of GDPR. Lucy Schofield has joined Miles Fanning Legal Services Limited.

Leading individuals

Key clients

Wexas Ltd

Silverseas Cruises

Louis Hotels Plc

Royal Air Maroc


Disney Cruise Lines

Carnival UK

Royal Caribbean Cruises

MS Amlin

Unipolsai Assicurazioni Spa

Celestyal Cruises

Cruise and Maritime Voyages

AIG Europe (Cyprus) Limited

P&O Cruises

Mundy Cruises

Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA)

ST & H Limited

Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust Ltd

West of England P&I Insurance

UK P&I Club UK P&I Club

The firm: Hill Dickinson LLP is an international commercial law firm with more than 1,150 people, including 190 partners and legal directors, with offices in Liverpool, Manchester, London, Piraeus, Singapore, Monaco and Hong Kong.

Types of work undertaken: As a full-service law firm, Hill Dickinson offers the full range of commercial legal services, from employment and property and construction to corporate, commercial and dispute resolution.

The firm has notable strength, experience and presence in a number of market sectors, including marine, transportation and logistics, retail, insurance, health, international trade, education, and banking and financial services.

Hill Dickinson has one of the largest maritime practices of any firm in this field, working with national and international organisations active in sea, road, rail and air transportation to offer unparalleled trade and logistics expertise, accrued through 200 years of continuous legal practice. The firm also has a specialist yachts team, acting for key parties in the yacht insurance market and advising owners, managers, brokers, designers and builders in relation to sale and purchase issues, build contracts and financing for some of the world’s biggest yachts.

The firm has a significant and growing presence in the health sector and understands the key issues and motivators facing trusts and other healthcare bodies today. With specialists in all areas of health-related law, the firm offers the complete and diverse range of legal services to health organisations and professionals.

Hill Dickinson is one of the largest insurance practices in the UK, delivering high-quality and cost-effective claims, litigation and reinsurance services across the full spectrum of insurance disciplines, including substantial experience of both conventional and non-conventional self-insured insurance programmes.

Clients: the firm’s clients include multinational companies, major corporations, UK plcs, insurance companies, UK and foreign banks and financial institutions, public sector organisations, private individuals and professional bodies.

International: the firm’s international offices include: Piraeus; Singapore; Monaco and Hong Kong.

For further information about the firm, please visit or follow the firm on twitter:

Department Name Email Telephone
Chairman David Wareing
Chief executive Peter Jackson
Business services David Chinn
Health Andrew Craggs
Insurance Ruth Lawrence
Marine, trade and energy Mara Pittordis
Photo Name Position Profile
 Kiran Bhogal  photo Kiran Bhogal
 Martin Penny  photo Martin Penny
Number of UK partners and legal directors : 190
Total number of staff : 1,050

The Lex 100 Verdict

An 'international law firm with northern roots', Hill Dickinson appealed to many because it offers training contracts in locations across England. Trainees feel that they are 'given more legal work' than peers at some other firms and enjoy 'lots of responsibility and the opportunity to be client facing' from an early stage. The northern-headquartered firm is a Lex 100 Winner for job satisfaction, living up to expectations and work/life balance. Given that 'the firm wants to retain all trainees as NQs', trainees are also often lucky enough to enjoy the feeling of job security. There is a 'relaxed atmosphere' at Hill Dickinson and colleagues are described as down to earth: 'from the CEO to security, everyone is treated equally and is as approachable as the next person – it is a very comfortable and happy working environment'. That there is no canteen in some offices annoyed trainees. Others grumbled that the Manchester office is 'getting rather old and tatty' and that there is a perceived 'lack of transparency in terms of firm strategy and recruitment' when it comes to trainees. Worst moments included 'driving the Hill Dickinson van to London to serve papers and arriving at 1am', 'making a mistake due to taking on work despite being at full capacity' and 'working late on a Friday night – because it rarely happens, when it does it's horrible'. On the contrary, 'winning a landmark case I worked on with solely a partner', 'a client specifically requesting that I deal with their work' and 'attending a settlement meeting' exceeded trainees' expectations. For 'great work in a relaxed environment' in a firm where the 'attitude is supportive and accommodating', take a closer look at Hill Dickinson.