Firm Profile > Hugh James > Cardiff, Wales

Hugh James
Two Central Square
CARDIFF
CF10 1FS
Wales

Banking and finance Tier 1

'Collectively a strong force in Wales', Hugh James' four-partner team has the strength-in-depth to provide lenders and borrowers 'in-depth knowledge and commercial pragmatism' across the waterfront of debt finance mandates, including as it relates to acquisition, property and energy financing. The 'knowledgeable and constructiveDominic Marshall has excellent ties with clearers and challenger banks, including Natwest, HSBC and Metro Bank, and is frequently at the forefront of the most significant mandates handled by the team, including its recent advice to a commercial lender on the provision of a £85m revolving credit facility to provide finance for a real estate loan portfolio. Rowena Downie is recommended for her work for lenders on new money financings and refinancings, while Robert Morgan  combines an active lender practice with a significant borrower side offering, particularly on behalf of registered social landlords.

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Testimonials

The team works well together, bouncing ideas of each other and collectively is a strong force in Wales.

The lawyers within the team are experts in their field and give lenders confidence throughout a transaction.

The team has strength-in-depth and its partners are all not only technically capable but, just as importantly, very decent people to deal with.

The lawyers provide commercial solutions to difficult problems and are always on time.

In-depth knowledge, which is delivered with commercial pragmatism.

Dominic Marshall is an excellent banking lawyer. His advice is focused on the key issues and provides commercially pragmatic solutions.

Dominic Marshall is pragmatic, resourceful, commercial and very helpful.

Dominic Marshall is a well regarded professional who is not only knowledgeable but also has a constructive and positive view.

 

Key clients

Metro Bank Plc

Santander UK Plc

The Welsh Government

Development Bank for Wales

HSBC Bank Plc

Lloyds Banking Group

NatWest Plc

Welsh Rugby Union

Hodge Bank

Celtic Manor Resort Limited

Clinical negligence and personal injury: claimant Tier 1

Headed by 'standout practitionerStephen WebberHugh James' claimant group is recognised as 'Wales' leading firm when it comes to personal injury work, including catastrophic injury, and clinical negligence'. With almost 70 fee-earners focused on work in the area, primarily out of Cardiff but also including some on the ground in the firm's London office, the team has the strength-in-depth to provide discrete specialisms, with 'experience ranging from claims worth many millions down to those worth a few thousand pounds'. The 'very experiencedRichard Green and 'very knowledgeableLucy Strong  head up the firm's market-leading asbestos offering that has achieved 'fantastic results' for victims and their families. 'A great man to have on your team', Simon Ellis  has developed an excellent track record handling complex and difficult military claims, including his recent high-profile work for a former marine in a case brought against the Ministry of Defence from noise induced hearing loss (Ran Inglis v MOD). Mark Harvey heads up the specialist personal injury group, within which his work encompasses product liability matters, as well as a niche expertise in travel-related claims. 'Standout partnerMari Rosser leads the firm's clinical negligence team which excels in handling cases of the utmost severity and is complemented by the ability to provide important ancillary services to clients, including a Court of Protection service which is led by neuro law expert Andrew Harding. Praised for her willingness to 'fight tooth and nail for her clients', Rhian Parsons specialises in high-value cases of the utmost severity, including brain, spinal and wrongful birth claims, and is a key member of the team that also includes the 'tough, bright and efficientSarah Davies; the 'knowledgeable and approachable' Lucy Strong ;   Katie McCraith, who has a specialist interest in orthopaedic, gynaecological and cardiac claims; and the 'very thorough and switched onKathryn Singh , who heads up the industrial disease team and specialises in group litigation.

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Testimonials

The leading firm in Wales and an exceptional stand out firm nationally.

The team is thorough, reliable and organised.

They have been innovative in advising and litigating the largest cases.

The firm has massive experience dealing with complex group litigation, catastrophic injury cases and large clinical negligence disputes and is effectively the equivalent of a top London firm in the Welsh capital.

Wales’ leading firm when it comes to personal injury work, including catastrophic injury, and clinical negligence work.

The firm has a thriving team dealing with military claims which is probably one of the larger such teams in the UK.

The lawyers are talented and committed and are true experts in their fields.

Mari Rosser and Stephen Webber are absolutely stand out practitioners.

Simon Ellis handles complex and difficult military claims – ranging from noise induced hearing loss, through non-freezing cold injury to chronic compartment syndrome.

Richard Green is a very experienced asbestos lawyer with a real feel for how a case should be conducted and won.

Gareth Morgan has led and developed a large and diverse team with outstanding training and mentoring. He has led his team in the largest and most difficult cases in the UK with determination; imagination and personal commitment.

Kathryn Singh is a very thorough and switched on personal injury lawyer.

Rhian Parsons – fights tooth and nail for her clients. She is adept at spotting a deal and knowing when to push on with a claim rather than settle.

Sarah Davies – tough, bright and efficient. You would want her on your side in litigation. She gets the very best out of her legal team (barristers and experts included).

The very knowledgeable and approachable Lucy Strong is top level lawyer.

Cari Sowden-Taylor is kind and a pleasure to work with.

Key clients

Michael Down

Dariusz Jankiewicz

Alistair Inglis

CMG

The Personal Representatives of the Estate of Maurice Hutson (deceased) and others

Robert Mervyn Pearce and others

Cohort of clients who worked at a fuel plant previously owned and operated by British Coal

Commercial litigation Tier 1

Headed by the 'brilliantRichard LockeHugh James' six-partner team provides 'commercial and realistic advice' across the gamut of commercial litigation for an enviable roster of regional public and private sector clients (Welsh Rugby Union, Welsh Water and S.A Brain & Co Limited) and UK/global corporates (Rockwool and DS Smith). 'Commercial and tough but with great judgement', Locke excels at handling complex and high-value commercial contract disputes and professional negligence matters. Although she is comfortably able to handle the gamut of commercial litigation, the 'fantastically cleverTracey Singlehurst-Ward excels at handling IP and media-related disputes and is appreciated for her client skills and 'excellent bedside manner'. Senior associate Abigail Flanagan has developed a particular specialism in relation to pension litigation and professional negligence claims.

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Testimonials

An excellent team of litigators, with a broad range of skills across various sectors.

The superb Richard Locke is brilliant with clients, commercial, tough but with great judgement.

Tracey Singlehurst-Ward: a superb lawyer, fantastically clever, very tough, but excellent with clients and a great bedside manner.

Key clients

D S Smith

Celtic Manor Resort Limited

S.A Brain & Co Limited

Cycle Solutions Ltd

ROCKWOOL Limited

Welsh Government

National Westminster Bank Plc

British Boxing Board of Control

Dwr Cymru Cyfyngedig (Welsh Water)

Welsh Rugby Union

Construction Tier 1

Benefiting from 'good experience and excellent sector knowledge', under the guidance of Ioan PrydderchHugh James regularly advises key private or public sector stakeholders on many of the country's most significant construction projects. The team has an excellent perspective, from both a contentious and non-contentious viewpoint, across the different aims and needs of a diverse array of clients that includes developers, funders, contractors, local authorities and central government. Newly promoted partner Matthew Stevens is doing 'excellent work' on the litigation front, while for transactional matters he has been particularly active in the social housing sector. Iwan Jenkins  has a core focus on non-contentious construction work and is appreciated by clients for his appetite to be at the forefront of current best practice and to reflect this in the contractual documentation utilised. As part of his broader role as head of the firm's subrogated recovery team, the 'excellentAlun Tobias  specialises in recovering outlays for insurers, with a particular focus on losses in the construction industry.

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Testimonials

The team has good experience and excellent sector knowledge.

Matthew Stevens is doing excellent work.

Alun Tobias is excellent

Key clients

Pobl

Coastal Housing/Pobl

Ely Mill Development Company Limited

SA Brain & Co

Cenin Renewables

Celsa UK

Newydd (1974) Housing Association Limited

Linc Cymru

Melin

Welsh Rugby Union (WRU)

Contentious trusts and probate Tier 1

Led by the 'knowledgeable and creativeRoman KubiakHugh James' six-strong team 'dominates the Welsh market' and has the resources to be able to handle a tremendous range and volume of mandates, for institutional and private clients, including as it relates to complex onshore and offshore trust and estate litigation. Praised for his 'thorough preparation and expert handling of opponents', Kubiak has been pivotal to the team's success in the market, not only as a result of his 'tremendous leadership' but also his willingness to take on difficult cases and to resource such mandates merging 'appropriate compassion and empathy with rigorous legal research and well placed negotiation and tactics'. Private wealth head Matthew Evans has built up a particularly strong reputation advising on proprietary estoppel cases, as has 'astonishingly hardworking' associate Vlad MacDonald-Munteanu. Senior associate Richard Adams  is a 'a safe pair of hands with excellent judgement'.

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Testimonials

The large and knowledgeable team dominates the Welsh market.

Hugh James are well-established as the market leaders in Wales for contentious probate and trusts work, handling complex international disputes. The firm has huge resources to tackle large-scale work, and a strong team of associates and partners leading that team.

The firm is not afraid of taking on cases which are obviously going to be extremely difficult and is able to merge appropriate compassion and empathy with rigorous legal research and well placed negotiation and tactics.

Roman Kubiak is knowledgeable, a creative thinker and committed to getting great results for his clients.

Roman Kubiak is affable, well-connected and at home in any level of litigation. He makes brave decisions and backs them up with hard work and good judgment.

Roman Kubiak is exacting in his desire to see cases executed with precision. His thorough preparation and expert handling of opponents is evident at all stages of his files.

Vlad Macdonald-Munteanu is a rising star in this field and works astonishingly hard for his clients, putting London competitors to shame.

Richard Adams is excellent in the field of negotiation. He will not easily give in: he knows what he wants to achieve from a particular case and will pursue it with tenacity.

Richard Adams is a safe pair of hands with excellent judgement.

Corporate and commercial Tier 1

The 'strong team' at Hugh James 'radiates a fine commercial understanding' on behalf of both high-profile regional private and public sector clients (Welsh Rugby Union, S.A. Brain), as well as international entities with a pervasive Welsh presence (including Rockwool and Qioptiq). Although the firm is active across a myriad industry sectors, it is particularly accomplished at handling media and gaming-related transactions, an area where Aled Walters  has specialist corporate and commercial expertise, gleaned not only from private practice but also by dint of his previous role as head of legal at a television network. Gerallt Jones heads up the firm’s corporate/M&A team and as well as advising on regional transactional matters, is also well-versed in handling mandates with a cross-border dimension having gained experience both in London and Hong Kong. Greg Williams 'is a pleasant guy who keeps a calm overview of lengthy and complicated UK law-based transaction documents', particularly as it relates to corporate and M&A matters in the healthcare sector.

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Testimonials

The M&A team radiates a fine commercial understanding and supports us in reaching our goal which is to conclude the transaction on reasonable terms – not creating a Rolls Royce.

It is a strong team locally with good knowledge and experience.

Greg Williams is a pleasant guy who keeps a calm overview of lengthy and complicated UK law-based transaction documents.

Aled Walters runs a tight ship with his team managing a set of very different transaction contracts, guiding us to respond in an efficient manner during hectic times.

Key clients

Welsh Rugby Union

Keolis Amey

Qioptiq

Btobet

DS Smith Plc

Cardiff Blues

Rockwool International

Celtic Manor Resort

Adjusting Associates

Novomatic

Welsh Government

Amelco Limited

Wales millennium Centre

TCS Jon Huxley

FEI Foods

Origin Sounds Limited

Spotnails

S.A. Brain & Co Ltd

Oil 4 Wales

Shaw Healthcare

Licensing Tier 1

Working on its own and in conjunction with other relevant practice groups (including commercial property), Hugh James' cross-disciplinary licensing team has a long and established track record securing the necessary alcohol, entertainment and gambling licensing approvals, for both private and public sector entities. Team head Martin Jones excels at handling large-scale licensing matters, including those pertaining to festivals and stadia, and is also noted for his ability to handle advocacy before licensing sub-committees and before appeal courts in contentious scenarios.

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Key clients

The Welsh Rugby Union

Novomatic

Welsh Government

London Property Company Limited

S.A. Brain and Co Ltd

Depot Warehouse Ltd.

Croeso Pubs Limited

Double Diamond Gaming Limited

Cardiff Metropolitan University

Jovo Investments Limited

Media and entertainment Tier 1

Led by the 'exceptionalAled Walters , who was himself formerly head of legal at S4C, Hugh James' media team 'understands the requirements of the breadth of services required by the broadcast industry'.  As well as advising on broadcasting and rights commercialisation matters, the firm is also regularly involved in corporate and financing transactions in the sector.  

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Testimonials

The team’s expertise in media is outstanding, since it understands the requirements of the breadth of services required by the broadcast industry.

Aled Walters has exceptional knowledge and extensive network contacts.

 

Key clients

Avanti Media Limited

Welsh Government – Media Investment Fund

Pensions Tier 1

At Hugh James, 'very commercial and savvy' employment head Louise Price leads the firm's non-contentious offering which provides effective pensions-related advice pursuant to corporate transactions handled by the firm, as well as on standalone matters. The firm also leverages the broad-ranging litigation expertise within the commercial  disputes group to provide contentious pensions advice and is 'meeting the challenge of more complex cases very well'. 'Outstanding' senior associate Abigail Flanagan provides 'excellent tactical advice and client care' and has developed a strong reputation for claimant professional negligence-related pensions work.

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Testimonials

The pensions offering is getting better each year and the team is meeting the challenge of more complex cases very well.

The very commercial and savvy Louise Price is a pleasure to work with.

The outstanding Abigail Flanagan is immensely hardworking and responsive and provides excellent tactical advice and client care.

 

Key clients

Shaw Healthcare

Cardiff County Council

Cardiff University

Business Wales

The Wallich

Coastal Housing Group

Hendre Group

Denbighshire County Council

Ceredigion Recycling and Furniture Team (CRAFT)

Swansea County Council

Personal tax, trusts and probate Tier 1

'Always willing and able to go the extra distance for its clients', Hugh James provides a 'consistently reliable service across a broad range of matters' within the overarching private wealth group which is headed by Matthew Evans. Despite the departure in October 2019 of Sarah Cash to Howells Solicitors, this was offset by the arrival in the same month of Elizabeth Webbe  from Trethowans LLP. Webbe has 'wide experience' across estate planning and trusts issues on behalf of high-net-worth individuals and business owners, often involving a cross-border complexion. The 'reliable and responsiveGareth Wisdom has a 'proven ability to manage volume without compromising quality' and continues to oversee and administer the firm's volume wills offering which includes work for numerous high street financial institutions. The private client offering is rounded out by Roman Kubiak, who leads on the contentious probate and trusts front, and Eleanor Evans who heads up the trusts and estates sub-group.  

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Testimonials

The firm is always willing and available to go that extra distance for its clients.

The determined and highly skilled Gareth Wisdom has a proven ability to manage volume without comprising quality.

Elizabeth Webbe is very responsive and has wide experience in this area, including on cross-border matters.

Key clients

Macmillan Cancer Support

Property litigation Tier 1

The 'rounded and well-resourced' two-partner team at Hugh James represents private and public sector entities across a range of pure disputes work (including as it relates to rights of way and landlord and tenant law), in addition to strategic land management matters. 'Very sensible and thoughtful' team head Robert  Phillips is pivotal to the firm's success in the area, as a result of his vast experience across core property litigation, including residential leasehold disputes, as well as in more niche areas, including the defence of landowners in relation to the growing area of contested mineral rights ownership. The 'extremely hardworkingJo Brown is the other partner in the team, and has particular experience advising telecoms and hospitality clients on property disputes.

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Testimonials

It is a rounded and well-resourced practice.

Robert Phillips is very sensible and thoughtful.

Robert Phillips and James Hastings have provided excellent advice and support over the past 12 months on a particularly niche piece of property litigation. Their approachable style and detailed understanding of key issues and strategy has proved invaluable to date.

Jo Brown consistently goes above and beyond to deliver in excess of expectations. She is extremely hardworking, and is always prompt and concise in her communication.

Key clients

Natural Resources Wales

Welsh Government

Witham Town Council

AP Wireless II (UK) Limited

Trustees of the Hean Castle Estate

Cardiff YMCA

Stonewater Limited

Isle of Anglesey Council

Talbot Green Developments Ltd

Walters Group

Social housing Tier 1

Hugh James' 'professional and highly respected team' has deeply entrenched ties with numerous Wales and England-based housing associations, which appreciate, not only the depth of the firm's sector specific knowledge, but also its ability to draw upon expertise from complementary practice areas from within the firm. The 'knowledgeable and helpful' Richard Macphail has vast experience handling social housing-related development work and heads a team that also includes Caroline O'Flaherty, who has been pivotal to the firm's increased exposure to English housing associations, and the 'client-focused, pragmatic and drivenBethan  Gladwyn, who heads up the housing management group.

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Testimonials

The social housing team at Hugh James knows its clients inside and out.

The team knows the market extremely well and so can advise clients appropriately, taking into account commercial and social realities.

The professional and highly respected team brings creative thinking to difficult situations.

We value the wide breadth of specialisms available to us in the law firm and their ability to provide us with a one-stop-shop.

The client-focused, pragmatic and driven Bethan Gladwyn works tirelessly to ensure the right outcomes are achieved for the client.

Key clients

Pobl Group

Charter Housing

Stonewater Limited

Hafod/Hendre Group

Coastal Housing Group

Newport City Homes

Trivallis

Cadwyn

Monmouthshire Housing Association

Linc Cymru Housing Association

Sport Tier 1

Benefiting from strong industry knowledge and also able to draw upon practitioners with sector specific expertise from across the firm's full-service offering, Hugh James has capability across the spectrum of sports-related legal matters from disciplinary and doping hearings to the construction of sports stadia, major contractual agreements, funding requirements and the governance of sporting bodies. Corporate and commercial head Gerallt Jones handles a significant amount of work for cornerstone client Welsh Rugby Union, including his work, alongside property partner Peter Hurn, on its  joint venture with Rightacres and Legal & General which will transform two of Cardiff’s most iconic buildings into Cardiff’s premier luxury hotel.

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Key clients

Welsh Rugby Union

British Boxing Board of Control

Cardiff Blues

Metro Bank

Welsh Gymnastics

Agriculture and estates Tier 2

Hugh James provides an effective service to rural/farming clients by dint of its ability to leverage strong capabilities in complementary practice areas including disputes and private client. Wealth management expert Matthew Evans is the de facto head of the team and regularly handles agriculture-related matters, specifically relating to succession planning and contentious probate. On the litigation front, property disputes head Robert Phillips has expertise advising on all aspects of agricultural tenancy law and has also developed a niche advising on litigation regarding mineral rights.

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Key clients

Natural Resources Wales

Welsh Government

Isle of Anglesey Council

Charities and not-for-profit Tier 2

Led by private wealth expert Matthew EvansHugh James' multi-disciplinary charities team has deeply rooted ties with many local and national charities, which are appreciative of the firm's ability to draw upon the expertise of lawyers from across a broad swathe of practice areas, many of which have a core understanding of the regulatory and governance issues inherent in the sector. The firm's contentious trusts and probate expertise is regularly sought out in a charities law context, with it often engaged in legacy disputes. Leveraging the firm's vast roster of housing associations, the firm is, however, most active in the social housing space with work touching on pure charity-related advice, in addition to advice on their development and employment needs.

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Key clients

Macmillan Cancer Support

Cae’r Las

The Wallich

Wales Council for Voluntary Action

Rubicon Dance

Representative Body of the Church in Wales

Pobl Group

YMCA

Coastal Housing

Linc Cymru

Wales Cooperative Centre

Commercial property Tier 2

Led by the 'excellentPeter HurnHugh James's commercial property team handles a balanced mix of work within the public (where it is on the NPS panel) and private sector. The scope of the work is broad and runs the gamut from residential development matters, an area of expertise for Hurn, through to work for institutional investors on their property portfolios, as well as mandates in the education sector, including for Cardiff University on a major campus upgrade. Caroline O'Flaherty spearheads the firm's property work in the education sector and also has considerable expertise in relation to social housing-related property matters.

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Testimonials

Peter Hurn is excellent.

Key clients

Walters Group

The International Convention Centre Wales (ICCW)

Cardiff University

S.A. Brain & Company Limited – Brewery Quarter

Coleg Gwent

DCC

BDW Trading Limited (Barratt Homes)

Welsh Rugby Union

Tirion Group

Candleston Homes Limited

Employment Tier 2

Now headed by the 'very approachableLouise Price , following Emma Price's departure to the judiciary, Hugh James provides 'high quality and accurate advice' for private and public sector entities across the waterfront of employment issues, ranging from ongoing HR training and advisory work, through to larger-scale employment projects and change management programmes. Price is particularly noted for her 'superb advice' to healthcare, manufacturing and media clients on the TUPE implications of large scale transfers of staff. Praised for her ability to 'relate the law to real practical advice', senior associate Rhiannon Dale  has a burgeoning reputation in the market across a range of contentious and non-contentious matters.  

Practice head(s):

Testimonials

One of their strengths is the quality and accuracy of their advice.

The personal service that is second-to-none.

The knowledge and expertise among the team is second-to-none.

The availability of their partners and staff is immeasurable when a company requires immediate advice or guidance, whether this is by telephone contact or written.

Louise Price provides exceptional advice.

Louise Price is very approachable and easy to speak to, and provides quality and timely advice.

Rhiannon Dale is able to relate the law to real practical advice, weighing up the pros and cons and relating it back to our business.

Key clients

Cardiff International Airport

REHAU Limited

PF Concept International

Chepstow Plant International Limited

Shaw Healthcare Limited

Keolis Amey trading as Transport for Wales Rail Services

Natural Resources Wales

Celtic Manor Resort Limited

Brace’s Bakery Limited

Coastal Housing Group

Family Tier 2

Led by 'highly organised and professional' senior associate Adrienne DonnekyHugh James has 'good depth in its team and is able to advise on all areas of family law'. Appreciated for her 'willingness to achieve a fair outcome for all concerned', Donneky has a particularly strong reputation handling complex mid to high-net-worth cases in respect of married or cohabiting couples. Associate Sara Tomaszewski sits within the firm's regulatory group and has a focus on work within the childcare sector, primarily representing south Wales-based local authorities in care proceedings.

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Testimonials

Extremely professional, with a wealth of experience dealing with high-value cases.

There is good depth in its team and the lawyers are well able to advise on all areas of family law.

Adrienne Donneky is a star in the making and partner in waiting. She displays excellent judgement, provides solid sensible advice, is a brilliant legal mind and superbly organised. Ticks all the boxes.

Adrienne Donneky provides very straight and direct advice at the outset of a case and has a willingness to achieve a fair outcome for all concerned.

Adrienne Donneky is highly organised, professional, and committed.

Key clients

Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council

Health and safety Tier 2

Led by Martin Jones, who oversees the firm's overarching regulatory group, Hugh James has expertise on both the defence and prosecution front. On the defence side, Jones is involved in risk management training for directors and managers, while his contentious expertise has seen him appearing in Coronial inquests throughout the UK where health and safety issues are usually the key issue. Solicitor-advocate Justin Davies has niche expertise in relation to fire safety work and continues to represents the South Wales Fire & Rescue Service on its fire safety enforcement.    

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Testimonials

We use the firm for its fire safety enforcement work because we know they can deliver a service that is consistently to a high standard.

Justin Davies provides advice that is timely and easy to understand, accurate and of a high quality.

Justin Davies’ track record is excellent in terms of support for case preparation and court advocacy.

Key clients

South Wales Fire & Rescue Service

O’Connor Utilities Group

Instalcom Limited

Driver & Vehicle Standards Agency

Mid & West Wales Fire & Rescue Service

Pearson Engineering Limited

PF Concept

Keolis Amey

Intellectual property Tier 2

Praised for its 'responsiveness' and provision of 'clear advice that balances legal and commercial risks', Hugh James is particularly adept at handling non-contentious matters (including IP licensing agreements) for the firm's impressive roster of gaming, tech and media clients, which have been successfully cultivated by team head Aled  Walters. On the litigation front, Tracey Singlehurst-Ward regularly represents clients engaged in copyright and trade mark infringement, breach of confidence and passing off mandates.

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Testimonials

We receive a very rapid response, as well as clear advice that balances legal and commercial risks.

Key clients

Amelco Limited

TCS John Huxley

Rockwool Ltd

International Convention Centre Wales

SJJ Service Systems Limited

Celtic Manor Resort

IT and telecoms Tier 2

At Hugh James, commercial head Aled  Walters has strong ties with numerous high-profile gaming clients, which he regularly advises on IT-related contractual issues, including software license agreements and App technology. Commercial property partner David King  has niche expertise advising on telecoms leases, the acquisition of telecoms sites by investors and operators, and in advising on the decommissioning of telecoms sites.

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Key clients

Keolis Amey

Amelco Limited

Opencell Limited

Novomatic

Transport for Wales

TCS John Huxley

Planning and environment Tier 2

Drawing from the expertise of lawyers primarily based out of the firm's commercial property and property litigation teams, Hugh James' 'approachable, professional and hardworking' multi-disciplinary planning group advises private and public sector clients across a range of contentious and non-contentious matters, including as it relates to planning advice in the context of affordable housing/mixed use schemes, compulsory purchase order matters, planning appeals and public inquiries. 'Proactive and very dedicated' senior associate Shelley Ikram is the de facto head and regularly provides the planning advice (including Section 106 agreements) associated with major projects handled by the firm's real estate and construction teams.

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Testimonials

The team is approachable, professional and hardworking.

Shelley Ikram is proactive and very dedicated.

Robert Phillips was on top of the legal issues and helpful to discuss the novel points of law which arose in the case.

Key clients

Stonewater Limited

Ely Bridge Development Company Limited

Parc Eirin Development Limited

Llanmoor Homes

Persimmon Homes Limited

Bellway Homes Plc

Dwr Cymru Welsh Water

Curo Enterprise Limited

BDW Trading Limited (Barratt Homes)

Tirion Group

Natural Resources Wales

Cenin Renewables

Newydd Housing Association Limited

Pennant Walters (Holdings) Limited and Enersyst Limited

Pobl Living

Coastal Housing Group

Ely Mill Development Company Limited

Ffos Las Limited

Professional negligence Tier 2

Led by the 'brilliantRichard Locke from within the firm's market-leading commercial litigation group, Hugh James provides an 'extremely high standard of legal analysis' for clients seeking recourse through professional negligence claims. Praised for its 'unstuffy approach', the team regularly handles complex cases brought against legal professionals, accountants and financial advisers. Associate Abigail Flanagan is recommended. The team was also recently strengthened by the arrival in May 2020 of core professional negligence practitioner Kevin O’Brien  from JCP Solicitors .    

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Testimonials

It is an excellent team which is really popular with clients and provides an extremely high standard of legal analysis, but also displays a superb bedside manner.

Completely unstuffy, but more than able to handle the big players in the market in terms of competitors.

Richard Locke is a brilliant lawyer who is superb with clients and displays excellent judgement.

Tracey Singlehurst-Ward is exceptionally bright, tough and commercial.

Key clients

Rockwool Limited

Ceredigion Recycling and Furniture Team

Transport Broker Group

National Westminster Bank

Public sector Tier 2

Overseen by Ioan Prydderch, the 'very hardworking' multi-disciplinary team at Hugh James has a longstanding track record advising public sector clients, including central government, local authorities, education authorities and housing associations, across a myriad of issues affecting their delivery of services. As head of the firm's regulatory department, Martin Jones regularly advises local authorities across Wales and south west England in relation to Public Law Child Act proceedings. Associate Justin Davies also forms a key part of the firm's regulatory offering and has attained a market leading reputation for fire safety work as a result of the 'high-quality' service he provides to South Wales Fire & Rescue Service on enforcement matters.

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Testimonials

The firm is very hardworking and willing to take on urgent cases at a short notice.

Justin Davies provides a high-quality service.

Key clients

Social Care Wales

Welsh Government

Natural Resources Wales

Witham Town Council

Cardiff Council

Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council

Torfaen County Borough Council

Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA)

Coleg Gwent

Cardiff University

General crime and fraud Tier 3

Somewhat of an outlier in the ranking, Hugh James does not operate a traditional criminal law offering, and while it does handle some defence work for private individuals and corporate clients of the firm, it is undoubtedly best-known for its prosecution work for central and local government and various non-police prosecution agencies. Team head Martin Jones has significant experience across a range of fraud work and other aspects of regulatory crime. Associate and solicitor advocate Justin Davies 'is excellent in terms of support for case preparation and court advocacy', as it relates to prosecution work for numerous Fire and Rescue Authorities.  

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Testimonials

Justin Davies’ track record is excellent in terms of support for case preparation and court advocacy.

Key clients

Welsh Government

British Broadcasting Corporation

Capita Business Services

Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency

South Wales Fire and Rescue Service

Clinical negligence and personal injury: defendant

Overseen by Stephanie Eedy  and Alun Tobias Hugh James' 'small and close knit group of defendant lawyers, work wonderfully well as a team' and handle low level fast-track cases, as well as complex multi-track work, on behalf of government departments and large insured clients throughout Wales. Senior associate Leon Lloyd  has an 'excellent legal mind' and specialises in the defence of higher value employer and public liability claims for government funded public bodies and private individuals.

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Testimonials

An excellent team catering to the Welsh market.

A small and close knit group of defendant lawyers, who work wonderfully well as a team.

Leon Lloyd always has a full grip on the case, however complex, and provides clear and detailed instructions to me as counsel.

Leon Lloyd has an excellent legal mind and is a pleasure to work with.

Leon Lloyd is a first-rate lawyer, whose grasp of the applicable law is matched by his tactical acumen.

Key clients

Calsonic Kansei UK Ltd

Product liability: claimant Tier 1

The London and Cardiff-based team at Hugh James is noted for its deep expertise in representing claimants in product liability cases; it focuses on the pharmaceuticals and medical device sectors, where the group has been involved in several prominent cases. Cardiff-based practice head Mark Harvey has a strong track record in individual and group actions. He is supported by senior associate Carlos Land and chartered legal executive Pauline Roberts.

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Testimonials

‘Vast experience of claimant product liability work. The firm covers work from individual cases to very large group litigation. The team is well resourced and knowledgeable.’

‘Mark Harvey is a real star in this field. Has worked on multiple pieces of group litigation. Knows the area inside out.’

‘The firm is unique in its unrivalled approach to managing complex litigation in particular group litigation. It has unrivalled case management skills and resources. The firm is able to produce extremely sophisticated comprehensive bundles of papers at very short notice. It has an impressive track record in product liability and has justifiably earned its reputation in this field.’

‘Mark Harvey is a stand-out practitioner. He has a phenomenal work ethic, is a fantastic team player and has huge experience as a litigator in complex healthcare related litigation, in particular complex product liability group litigation. He has been at the centre of most of the leading group actions in this field for many years, and is widely regarded as the go-to solicitor in this field. He also has an international reputation and is often called upon to address overseas conferences in the product liability field.’

‘The team is willing to take a risk and push ‘challenging’ cases forward with consistently impressive results. They are also internationally aware and liaise well with other firms across the world in this field, which gives them a real edge, especially in a claims involving multi-nationals with enormous financial resources.’

‘Mark Harvey. Top drawer. Exceptional breadth of knowledge. Brings an internal focus to the work through his European and wider links. Creative product liability lawyer who is prepared to take risks to try and push the law onwards. A genuine pleasure to work with.’

‘Pauline Roberts, very experienced PL litigator, who has been involved in many of the largest medical devices/products claims. Able to balance the ‘big picture’ element of working in large pieces of litigation with the need for the fine eye for detail to identify the winning points. Like Mark, she is an utter pleasure to work with.’

Key clients

Occulentis Lenses claimants

Superpuma Helicopter crash

PIP Claimants

Court of protection Tier 2

Under the leadership of the 'extremely knowledgeableAndrew Harding, the multi-faceted team at Hugh James consists of brain injury legal experts, a qualified social worker and an accountant. The practice deals solely with high-value complex cases arising from damages claims. It currently manages the affairs of 165 individuals, including 133 deputyships and 32 trusts with total assets (including property and large investment portfolios) exceeding £175m. The work of the 'approachable and capable' team extends from overseeing the direct employment of care teams to advising on home adaptations and managing planning and building applications.

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Testimonials

The professionalism and support I have had has been exceptional. The lawyers have been approachable, and their response times to any enquiries have been prompt and direct’

Andrew Harding, Kate Coles, Charlotte Fletcher and Joy Davies have always been very professional and helpful

Very professional, and all members of the team who I have had contact with have been responsive, putting the client’s needs at the forefront of their work. The individuals I work with are always able to help

‘The team is very professional and caring towards the clients. Kate Coles, Charlotte Fletcher and Andrew Harding have a good rapport with clients and case managers’

The team is very approachable and capable

‘Kate Coles and Andrew Harding keep us as a family in the loop and take our opinions into account when making decisions. They make home visits to keep us up to date with the finances and are always available to offer guidance and advice on every situation

‘A professional team that is extremely knowledgeable about its clients’ needs

Andrew Harding is extremely knowledgeable. Also, coming from a litigation background, he truly understands his clients. He is very ably and efficiently assisted by Kate Coles

Gaming and betting Tier 3

Hugh James, which is based in Cardiff, provides a full service to domestic and international gambling clients, and is especially active in matters relating to sports betting and licensing. Aled Walters leads the commercial side of the practice, advising operators, casinos and online gaming companies on corporate, commercial and intellectual property issues. Martin Jones is head of the regulatory department; his practice involves assisting clients in obtaining licences from the Gambling Commission and advising operators on compliance issues.

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Raffle House Limited

iBet Group Limited

Rock ‘N Rolla Management Limited

Amelco

Novomatic UK Limited

Depot Warehouse Limited

Roffles

Flying Laptops Productions Limited

7 Days Performance Limited

Clinical negligence: claimant Tier 4

With Mari Rosser and Ruth Powell at the helm, the team at Hugh James continues to handle complex clinical negligence claims, including obstetric negligence and stillbirth, fatalities, and missed diagnoses. In addition, 'the tenacity of Lynda Reynolds on inquests is a key strength in the practice'. Helen Neville is a key contact for claims relating to delays in diagnoses of cancer. Grainne Barton left the firm in July 2019.

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Testimonials

In particular the tenacity of Lynda Reynolds on inquests is a key strength in the practice.

Hugh James are particularly strong in clinical negligence and inquest work.

Ruth Powell is highly experienced in this work and has a long and distinguished track record.

Lynda Reynolds is a ferociously intelligent and energetic litigator.

Personal injury: claimant Tier 5

The personal injury team at Hugh James regularly handles catastrophic and serious injury litigation, and in particular has 'real expertise in child sex abuse claims'. This latter area of specialism is a particular focus for Alan Collins, who has the 'expertise, ferocity and sensitivity that is particularly required'. Collins heads the practice jointly with Mark Harvey.

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Testimonials

They have real expertise in child sex abuse claims and other civil damages/human rights act damages claims.

They are an extremely professional and conscientious group of solicitors.

Alan Collins is a star- he has the expertise, ferocity and sensitivity that is particularly required for sex abuse claims.

Client-focused firm, able to meet the needs of clients with different psychosocial backgrounds.

Key clients

Victims in the Philippines

The former residents of Les Chenes

30 claimants claiming damages against Gloucestershire Police

Various claimants sent to Australia and Southern Rhodesia between 1950 and 1970

Travel

Hugh James specialises in representing claimants in complex travel litigation, working in close conjunction with colleagues across various departments. The department is headed up by 'well-known and prominent travel lawyer' Katherine Allen, who handles the full gamut of mandates, including package holiday claims, foreign road traffic accidents, and aviation and cruise ship accidents, with particular expertise in serious brain and spinal injury claims. Elsewhere, senior associate Rebecca Gilmore regularly deals with complex issues of jurisdiction and applicable law, while Mark Harvey attracts praise as 'a leading practitioner from a product liability point of view'.

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‘Small but extremely punchy Travel and cross-border PI team. Excellent service, really strong on foreign accident claims.’

‘Katherine Allen – hugely experienced, a natural feel for the cases, clients always feel that they are in really great hands – and they are! Rebecca Gilmore – also very knowledgeable about the intricacies of cross-border work. Enthusiastic and tenacious in her clients’ interests.’

‘Katherine Allen is superb – excellent judgement, excellent way with clients. Her team includes Rebecca Gilmore, who is sound. Mark Harvey is of course outstanding.’

‘Katherine Allen – prominent lawyer in this area. Very well known across sector. Very active at conferences. Pragmatic and likeable lawyer. Handles a broad range of cases with great efficiency.’

‘Mark Harvey is well known as a leading practitioner from a product liability point of view who is well-versed in cross-border claims. Katherine Allen has extensive experience in handling cross-border claims.’

The firm: Hugh James is a top 100 UK law firm, employing more than 600 staff from its headquarters in Cardiff (Two Central Square) and London office (99 Gresham Street).

Hugh James has been established for more than 60 years and has built its success on offering expert advice through a personal and friendly service to its clients. A highly innovative firm, it creates a competitive advantage through a blend of excellence in client service, bespoke technical systems and the expertise of its people.

The firm handles the full range of services across a variety of industries. Business sectors where the firm has particular expertise including banking and finance, property and construction, technology, media and telecommunications, energy and sustainability, creative industries, leisure and hospitality, agriculture, insurance and health care.

In the public and not for profit sectors, the firm acts for the Welsh Government and is on the legal panels of most of the local authorities in Wales as well as a number in England. It carries out the full range of public sector work for these authorities, including childcare and inquests. The firm is also well known for its work in social housing and acts for a large number of registered social landlords and registered providers.

In addition to its transactional work, the firm has a strong commercial litigation practice that handles disputes across all areas, including commercial disputes, professional negligence, intellectual property, copyright, trademarks and passing off, defamation, landlords and tenant and contentious probate.

Unusually for a firm with a comprehensive commercial offering, Hugh James also has a highly rated private client department which advises on the whole spectrum of personal matters, including matrimonial legal advice, will writing and probate, inheritance disputes, and estate, finance and tax planning. The firm also has its own team of independent financial advisors.

Another area in which the firm excels is claimant litigation. It has nationally renowned practices in clinical negligence, catastrophic and general injury claims, as well as expertise in running large group actions for industrial disease, product liability and environmental claims.

The firm also has its specialist legal process operation, Hugh James Involegal LLP which launched in 2010. Hugh James Involegal LLP handles outsourced volume work for banks, insurance companies, retailers and other businesses.

Department Name Email Telephone
Managing Partner Alun Jones
Head of Individual Client Services Stephen Webber
Head of Business Services Ioan Prydderch
Hugh James Involegal LLP Matthew Tossell
Photo Name Position Profile
 Andrew Davies  photo Andrew Davies Andrew has been a partner in Hugh James since 1994 and specialises…
 Adrienne Donneky  photo Adrienne Donneky Adrienne Donneky is Senior Associate and heads up the family team. Adrienne…
 Matthew Evans  photo Matthew Evans Matthew is a partner and heads up the firm’s private wealth offering.…
 Bethan Gladwyn photo Bethan Gladwyn Bethan is head of the housing management team as a result of…
 Richard Green  photo Richard Green Richard is a Partner and heads a team of solicitors who specialise…
 Andrew Harding  photo Andrew Harding Andrew is head of the firm’s Neurolaw Department covering brain and spinal…
 Mark Harvey  photo Mark Harvey Mark Harvey is a Partner in the claimant division. He has obtained…
 Peter Hurn  photo Peter Hurn Peter heads up the fastest expanding real estate team in Wales. He…
 Alun Jones  photo Alun Jones Alun Jones is Managing Partner of Hugh James, taking the helm in…
 Gerallt Jones  photo Gerallt Jones Gerallt is a partner and head of the corporate and commercial team.…
 Martin Jones  photo Martin Jones As the Head of the Regulatory Department, Martin acts in a wide-range…
 Roman Kubiak  photo Roman Kubiak Roman Kubiak is a partner and head of the contested wills, trusts…
 Richard Locke  photo Richard Locke Richard is a Partner and an elected partner on the firm’s board…
 Richard Macphail  photo Richard Macphail Richard is head of our social housing team, coordinating the work of…
 Dominic Marshall  photo Dominic Marshall Dominic is a partner and head of the banking and finance team.…
 Robert Morgan  photo Robert Morgan Robert is a highly experienced partner in the banking team. Rob advises…
 Gwen Morgan-Evans  photo Gwen Morgan-Evans Gwen is head of environmental claims and one of the UK’s leading…
 Caroline O’Flaherty  photo Caroline O’Flaherty As a Partner in the Commercial Property team, Caroline O’Flaherty, specialises in…
 Robert Phillips photo Robert Phillips Rob is Head of Property Litigation at Hugh James. He leads a…
 Louise Price photo Louise Price A highly specialised lawyer, Louise is a Partner and Head of Employment…
 Ioan Prydderch  photo Ioan Prydderch Ioan is head of the firm’s business services division. This division comprises…
 Mari Rosser  photo Mari Rosser Recognised as a leader in the field of clinical negligence and known…
 Cari Sowden-Taylor  photo Cari Sowden-Taylor Cari is a partner in our neurolaw team. Representing claimants with traumatic…
 Neil Stockdale  photo Neil Stockdale Neil is an elected partner on the firm’s board of management. He…
 Matthew Tossell  photo Matthew Tossell Matthew is the chief executive of our bespoke volume services business, Hugh…
 Aled Walters photo Aled Walters Aled is a partner and is head of the commercial team. Aled…
 Stephen Webber  photo Stephen Webber Steven is head of one of the two divisions at Hugh James.…
Number of UK partners : 64
Number of other UK fee-earners : 318
Total staff : 620
Welsh

The Lex 100 Verdict

'Highly-respected Welsh firm' with 'expertise in claimant PI, location and reputation', Hugh James is a firm favourite of trainees in Wales. One trainee highlights that 'having wanted to stay in Cardiff, the firm offered high-quality work for high-profile national clients that was very attractive. The work/life balance is very good compared to other firms and everyone is very approachable'. The work on offer is impressive, with trainees particularly applauding the 'high-quality litigation work' and the responsibility given them. A trainee comments that 'the work in the clinical negligence department is first rate and I get on very well with my team'. The firm's reputation for friendliness, supportive training and work quality matches trainee feedback translating into four Lex 100 Winner awards for overall quality of work given, work/life balance, social life, confidence in being kept on, and approachability of partners and supervisors. Some trainees gained an insight into the firm by working as a paralegal or through a placement year at the firm. Highlights of the training include 'attending a full-day mediation with just partners and clients' and 'being taken to visit clients and subsequently becoming their main point of contact'. Drawbacks include a 'lack of transparency about qualification roles and process' and the pay scale in comparison with 'firms of a similar size within Cardiff and Bristol'. However, the firm's support for its trainees is applauded as well as its pro-bono and CSR opportunities. If you are looking to train in Cardiff, Hugh James is a must on your list.