Richard Sykes > Mills & Reeve LLP > Birmingham, England > Lawyer Profile

Mills & Reeve LLP
B3 2AB

Work Department

Public law and regulatory team.


Richard is a barrister who has specialised in education law since 2001. His work covers litigation and governance matters including freedom of information and personal data. He is recognised for his work for HE and FE clients in disability discrimination and equality issues, under 18s, fitness to practise and other regulatory issues and judicial review. He also advises qualification bodies on their relationships with their regulators and equality issues.


Trained Tindal Chambers and Trinity Chambers, Chelmsford; called to Bar 1997; partner equivalent Mills & Reeve 2008.


Durham Johnston Comprehensive; Netherhall Comprehensive Cambridge; Hills Road VIth Form College Cambridge; College of St Hild and St Bede, Durham University.

Lawyer Rankings

West Midlands > Public sector > Education

Mills & Reeve LLP has a varied client base, which includes major universities, further education colleges, multi-academy trusts, schools and public sector bodies. Its range of work encompasses advising clients on student accommodation projects, Brexit-related issues and regulatory matters including those relating to the Higher Education & Research Act. Nick Abbott has over two decades of experience in the education sector and focuses primarily on complex employment matters including industrial disputes, TUPE transfers and major reorganisations. Richard Sykes, who leads the practice alongside Abbott, specialises in liability and compliance matters; he also has a wealth of experience in equality and data protection matters.

North West > Public sector > Education

Mills & Reeve LLP has a strong track record advising higher and further education institutions on a wide variety of matters. Its work ranges from day-today advice and dispute resolution to assistance with strategically-significant projects, such as campus developments. One of the names to note at the firm is Sara Barrett, who focuses on handling employment issues for clients, such as those concerning TUPE, restructurings, union recognition, grievance and disciplinary matters, among others. She co-heads the practice with Richard Sykes, whose expertise includes liability and compliance, data protection, governance and student disputes.