Firm Profile > Russell-Cooke LLP > London, England

Russell-Cooke LLP
SW15 6AB

Charities and not-for-profit Tier 2

Russell-Cooke LLP has a large specialist team which regularly advises charities on the full array of matters, from governance to grant-making, employment and fundraising issues. Under the direction of Andrew Studd, the group has particular expertise in advising on charity mergers, demergers and restructurings. In addition, it is skilled in the establishment of new charities and is well known for its advice to corporate foundations. Other strengths include advising charities on property matters and social financing, as well as its work with educational institutions. Chris Rowse is also recommended, along with James Sinclair Taylor, who is recognised for his experience in sensitive contractual and funding issues and risk management matters.

Practice head(s):


‘Andrew Studd has a reassuring manner and through his corporate background has a very good understanding of the commercial realities on any given matter’

Chris Rowse has excellent availability and is very familiar with the sector. He acts as a business partner for us with very good turnaround on work product

‘Prompt, pragmatic and creative advice. A full-service firm with an excellent specialisation in charity law. Wide-ranging knowledge of the sector helps them anticipate issues and give proactive advice.’

‘Chris Rowse showed a real interest in our charity and I greatly valued his support and pragmatic advice.’

‘Andrew Studd provides excellent, timely and practical advice. He always meets our timelines.’

‘They are responsive, diligent and honest. We get their frank assessments, even if they have criticisms of us. They are also very open to feedback and to improving our collaboration. It is a good partnership.’

‘Excellent knowledge of the charity sector. Thorough and detailed responses, include raising awareness of linked issues that may be relevant. Range of specialisms provided. Awareness of cost constraints for charities when dealing with us. Provision of free seminars.’

‘Very responsive and working within good timeframes. They listen and take the time to understand our requirements and to translate legislation into useable working policies or documents relevant to our organisation.’

Key clients


Borough Market

Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Trust

Breast Cancer Now

World Wildlife Fund UK

British Heart Foundation

Voluntary Service Overseas

Youth Hostel Association

Anthony Nolan

Tall Ships Youth Trust

Clinical negligence: claimant Tier 2

The clinical negligence team at Russell-Cooke LLP brings a 'wealth of medical knowledge' to the full spectrum of medical malpractice claims, including claims concerning injuries sustained at the time of birth, head and spinal injuries, and delays in treatment. The practice is jointly headed by Janice Gardner, who is currently pursuing a claim in the Supreme Court which challenges the law on compensation arising from acts of illegality occurring following negligence; Dominic Fairclough, who frequently advocates at inquests; 'exceptional' practitioner Sarah Towler; and Lucy Wilton, who handles cases of high value and complexity. Gardner also has a particular interest in infection and sepsis, and regularly acts in matters relating to hospital acquired infections.


They are utterly committed and have a wealth of medical knowledge which gives them the edge on other practitioners in this field.

Janice Gardner is a leader in her field.

Dominic Fairclough has the experience to be able to manage a huge caseload with ease.

Sarah Towler is quite exceptional and deserves all the plaudits she receives.

Court of protection Tier 2

Russell-Cooke LLP has a broad range of experience, advising on both contentious and non-contentious Court of Protection matters. It acts for a variety of private clients as both applicants and respondents, as well as not-for-profit organisations whose users do not have capacity to manage their own property and financial affairs. Other strengths include advising on statutory will applications, applications in relation to lifetime gifts, health and welfare applications and applications for deputyship (both contested and agreed). It also has specialist cross-border expertise and regularly assists clients in cases involving foreign assets and with the enforcement of lasting powers of attorney and orders abroad. Rita Bhargava and Gareth Ledsham are the key figures in the team.

Practice head(s):


Russell-Cooke is highly experienced in Court of Protection matters. The lawyers have in-depth knowledge, are very responsive, and highly organised.  They are committed to and sensitive to the needs of vulnerable clients, and I think they deliver an excellent legal product to them. I think Rita Bhargava is an excellent partner; she is responsive, knowledgeable and handles sensitive, complex matters in an astute manner

The team has a great knowledge of property and affairs matters particularly. Gareth Ledsham is so clever and diligent and really cares about the clients’

Gareth Ledsham works tirelessly. He shows true compassion and builds a great relationship with clients – he shows he truly cares and goes above and beyond to get the best outcome possible, ensuring the balance between risk and reward is always highlighted so clients can make an informed decision

‘It is a smallish, very close-knit team, with a real sense of common ethos and approach

‘It is a really sensible and practical team. You know the lawyers will fight their clients’ corner and they understand the area inside out and can see the bigger picture for their client. Every member of the team shows excellent instincts and is really practically minded, focused on achieving the best possible result for the client

‘An excellent team, with real strength in depth and cross-disciplinary experience. Gareth Ledsham is excellent and inspires great confidence. Russell-Cooke is a titan in the sector and really understands the Court of Protection

‘I think it is the team’s wide-ranging, specialist expertise across private client and family law, as well as contentious and non-contentious matters, that makes it unique. The lawyers all have membership of relevant specialist groups like STEP and ACTAPS

As well as specialising in all matters of practice relating to mental capacity, if you have a family member or loved one who is vulnerable, you want Rita Bhargava in your corner

Key clients

Russell-Cooke Trust Company

Crime: general Tier 2

Having attracted Martin Rackstraw to join from Bindmans LLP , the general crime offering at Russell-Cooke LLP has significantly bolstered its expertise in complex extradition work. The team is led by the 'absolutely brilliantJae Carwardine and has a strong reputation  for its work, as well as its ability to minimise media scrutiny for clients. Matters pursued include sexual assault allegations, murder, conspiracy to supply class A drugs, assisted suicide and counterfeit currency issue, as well as accusations of kidnap and blackmail.  Senior associate Marie Bourke continues to impress clients with her 'exceptional' approach to preparatory undertakings.

Practice head(s):

Other key lawyers:


Russell-Cooke’s crime team is an outstanding blend of experience and talent. For all round expertise and commitment they are as good as it gets‘.

A first rate firm, highly professional and competent’

Jae Carwardine is driven, determined and forensic – absolutely brilliant.  An absolute star and someone I would want in my corner’

Marie Bourke is exceptional. She works tirelessly and never leaves a stone unturned, ensuring that every avenue is explored.

Jae Carwardine and Martin Rackstraw are two outstanding solicitors who routinely go the extra mile for all their clients‘.

Education: individuals Tier 2

Russell-Cooke LLP acts for SEN clients on education provision matters and also has a strong capability representing transgender and non-binary pupils in discrimination claims. The team is led by recently promoted partner Eva Akins, who is described by clients as 'excellent'. She has notable experience of Equality Act claims against schools involving discrimination over access to school facilities. Samantha Little, who leads the children and education law team, acts for children, parents and carers.

Practice head(s):


‘Eva Akins is an excellent solicitor.’

‘Tightly managed team led by star counsel Eva. Incredibly dedicated, professional and passionate individual. She singlehandedly changed my life when she took over our support’

Family Tier 2

Russell-Cooke LLP's 'very dedicated team of excellent lawyers' has expanded even further with the arrival of Miranda Green, the former head of Mundays LLP's family team, in March 2020 and two internal promotions to senior associate. Various members of the team are Law Society children's panel lawyers and Resolution-accredited specialists in areas including complex financial provisions, cohabitation claims, abduction and public and private children matters. The children team acts for a broad range of clients, from those with substantial wealth through to those who are entitled to legal aid, with team members undertaking a lot of their own advocacy. James Carroll, Kate Hamilton, Fiona Read and Sarah Richardson are also recommended.


‘It is a sought-after firm for cases of non-accidental injury, often where there is a high volume of complex medical evidence, and has a growing practice in “alternative parenting” disputes

Kate Hamilton is a lawyer with real integrity. She combines rock-solid advice with an efficient and dynamic manner. Thoroughly recommended’

‘Attention to detail, personal relationships with clients, balanced, sensible advice, strength when needed. James Carroll is firm but fair, extremely personable but a heavy hitter when needed, with natural flair and intelligence. Jemma Pollock is particularly attentive to clients’ needs, detailed and thorough, diligent, technically very able and particularly strong on children’s issues

Sarah Richardson was very strong and creative when faced with a difficult children’s case and a difficult parent to deal with. She is clearly very experienced, with great ideas on how to overcome adversity. She had great communication and time management, and gave clear instructions and assistance to the client. She was extremely supportive and caring in a very difficult situation’

Samantha Little deals with extremely complex cases and is always able to get to grips with very complex medical evidence quickly. She is also regularly sought after in difficult wardship proceedings which are heard in the High Court. She has a superb reputation for hard work and sensitivity which is well deserved

Sam Little is a smart, thoughtful, dedicated family lawyer. She worked pro bono for intended parents in an international surrogacy case and was tireless in her efforts on their behalf. Her in-depth knowledge of children law combined with her compassion and determination to help her clients make her stand out

Miranda Green is an excellent, hardworking family lawyer with very good judgement. Her attention to detail is superb and she keeps calm in difficult situations. Her fellow professionals like and respect her as she is a worthy adversary for anyone in the business. Miranda handles high-value, complex matrimonial finance cases with apparent ease

‘Hannah Field is passionate about her work – cool, calm on the outside but with absolutely steely determination to do the best for her clients

Family: mediation Tier 2

Russell-Cooke LLP's 'exceptionally strong mediation team' has four Family Mediators Association-accredited mediators who mediate in a variety of family and children-related cases involving marriage, civil partnership, cohabitation and property ownership, as well as children-related matters. Mediation is a core part of the practice, which 'has a reputation for being sensible, conciliatory and experienced'. Fiona Read, who is a part-time district judge and also a family arbitrator, is at the helm. James Carroll, who is 'capable of mediating the thorniest of cases', Louise Connolly and Anna Keat are also recommended.

Practice head(s):


Russell-Cooke has an exceptionally strong mediation team and is highly regarded in this sector. It is probably one of the strongest mediation teams in London and offers clients a holistic approach in the resolution of both financial and children disputes

Russell-Cooke is increasingly known as a go-to firm for mediation in the family law world.  It has a reputation for being sensible, conciliatory, experienced and value for money. Kate Hamilton is an excellent mediator, and has a rightly growing reputation in the field. She is bright, to the point, and has a no-nonsense approach to her mediation work which delivers excellent and efficient results for the clients. James Carroll is capable of mediating the thorniest of cases with confidence and achieves sensible outcomes

James Carroll’s love for mediation and his belief in the process is infectious. Clients talk of being energised by his hard work to help them solve their issue

Fiona Read is fantastic. She is incredibly skilled and clients love her. A good pair of hands for any mediation, however complex

For clients in West London, Fiona Read and Anna Keat are always top of my list of recommended mediators

Kate Hamilton is an excellent mediator. She has done wonders with some difficult cases where I had thought there was little chance of any progress being made. She was able to find the common ground and build on that

I am very happy to refer my clients to Louise Connolly for mediation. She has a pragmatic, no-nonsense approach and can guide clients to reach appropriate outcomes which are workable solutions for the separating couple

Anna Keat does not blow her own trumpet but just gets on with it and will resolve cases you thought were impossible

Personal tax, trusts and probate Tier 2

Russell-Cooke LLP's 'exceptionally approachable' team is skilled in advising on complex tax planning and succession planning mandates, with key specialisms in the EU Succession Regulation, matrimonial property regimes and family investment companies, to name but a few. It is also uniquely placed to advise on French succession and property matters, as Dawn Alderson has a wealth of experience in Anglo-French issues. Rebecca Fisher heads the family office team, which advises wealthy clients on all aspects of their wealth and succession planning. Key clients include family businesses, entrepreneurs and members of the legal profession, as well as accountants, celebrities and politicians. They range from the substantially wealthy to longstanding clients and their families. Consultant Richard Frimston is also recommended.

Practice head(s):


Rebecca Fisher was assured in her knowledge of matters relevant to our needs and commanded good colleague interaction when necessary across Russell-Cooke’s other disciplines

Exceptionally approachable. Advice is easy to understand and yet very sophisticated. Excellent responsiveness to clients’ questions. We feel very much supported

Rebecca Fisher is an exceptionally professional lawyer who remains very approachable. I feel that I can pick up the phone to her any time and she will walk me through the issues at hand in a calm and to-the-point manner so that I fully understand them. Nothing is too much trouble for her. The quality of her advice is excellent from a technical point of view but also very digestible

Outstanding expertise in cross-border estate planning and knowledge of material law of foreign jurisdictions. Christopher Salomons is hands-on and efficient

We are always confident in referring our clients to the team at Russell-Cooke as we know they are experts in their field and will provide solutions that are practical. The lawyers are always very approachable and available and it is clear that they have a passion for their area of expertise

‘Rebecca Fisher’s attention to detail and depth of knowledge is really exceptional, and she is well regarded by all clients who I have referred to her

The team has great strength in this area. Given that the firm has a dedicated French law department, the team is able to deal with clients who have assets not only in the UK but also in France, thereby providing a comprehensive service. Additionally, the private client litigation department at Russell-Cooke is excellent, so that if matters do become contentious there is support there’

Rebecca Fisher in particular has excellent tax and trusts knowledge. She is also very easy to deal with and good with clients. She is reassuring, knowledgeable and also practical

Professional discipline Tier 2

Russell-Cooke LLP's 'team has been at the forefront of professional discipline for at least the last two decades'. It acts for a mix of professional and regulatory bodies, regulated businesses and individuals. The work spans a wide range of regulated professions, including solicitors, barristers, healthcare professionals, architects, accountants, financial services professionals, charity trustees and teachers. Clients benefit from the team's ability to work with the firm's highly rated criminal law group in matters where professionals are accused of criminal offences. Senior partner John Gould has particular expertise in regulation and public law. Matt Bosworth is consistently retained by regulatory bodies, as well as individual members of professions. Michael Stacey, who made partner in 2019, specialises in regulatory advice and litigation, particularly in relation to legal services, architects, accountants and charity trustees. Also highly regarded is senior associate Andrew Pavlovic, who has substantial experience of professional discipline matters, having assisted the SRA in reported cases.

Practice head(s):

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

The Law Society of England and Wales

Solicitors Regulation Authority

Architects Registration Board

British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy

Dr Zakir Naik

Soldo Financial Services Limited

Lidl Great Britain (GB) Limited

Farriers Registration Council

Taxation Disciplinary Board

The Chartered Institute of Legal Executives

General Dental Council

Senior executives Tier 2

Russell-Cooke LLP has particularly strengths in the areas of professional regulation and personal injury. Team head Anthony Sakrouge is highly active advising senior executives, especially in relation to high-value settlement agreements and executives who wanted to change role. Other key names are Alex Bearman, who specialises in complex whistleblowing and discrimination cases, and Edward Wanambwa, whose practice spans employment and immigration law.

Practice head(s):


‘The phrase that stands out is professional and pragmatic. I received good, realistic advice that allowed me to make informed decisions about the available courses of action.’

‘I have found Anthony Sakrouge to be a careful listener and a very clear thinker. His ability to understand the situation and focus on the most important elements is excellent.’

‘Attention to detail, bespoke advice, excellent client service.’

‘Alex Bearman was diligent, patient and professional. My case was complicated with various moving parts, yet he was able to help me navigate my grievance and every step of the process to achieve a good outcome. I would highly recommend Alex’s services.’

‘Anthony Sakrouge is very knowledgeable and resolutely transparent and realistic. His advice is consistently focused on my best interests as the client. The service provided is responsive, efficient and straightforward even though the contents of issues can be complex.’

‘I felt in safe hands with Russell-Cooke. I had total trust in their dealings with my case.’

‘Alex Bearman handled my case, and kept me grounded during a difficult period. He was calm and collected.’

Key clients

Stephen Imber

Patrick Heneghan OBE

Munira Parkar

Contentious trusts and probate Tier 3

Russell-Cooke LLP handles a wide range of trusts and estate litigation and is increasingly known for its cross-border expertise, covering jurisdictions such as the BVI, Canada, Jersey and Belgium. The department is also well known for its family offering, and team head Alison Regan regularly deals with matters involving trusts litigation and family law. Other strengths include handling will challenges due to a lack of testamentary capacity and undue influence, as well as claims under the Inheritance Act involving novel applications for cohabitants or minor children. Gareth Ledsham has considerable experience of dealing with civil law jurisdictions.

Practice head(s):


‘The team always tries to deal with things in a cost-effective manner and its advice really is to the point, professional and invaluable. Alison Regan is extremely professional and her knowledge within her field is second to none

Specialist trust and private client knowledge. Gareth Ledsham is super dedicated and knowledgeable, particularly with regard to conflicts and foreign issues

It is a quality outfit. It combines a detailed knowledge of the law with a common-sense and practical approach. Alison Regan and Gareth Ledsham are seasoned campaigners with a great track record. Tom Deely is a rising star’

Alison Regan is a committed and skilled litigator who strives for her clients and engages forcefully in her cases. Gareth Ledsham is a thoughtful and analytical lawyer with an impressive command of the scope of a big case

‘Russell-Cooke offers an exceptional boutique service. Alison Regan is hugely experienced in this field and has a fantastic instinct for the right answers. Tom Deely is fast emerging as a very impressive senior associate and will go far’

‘Alison Regan is very capable and straight talking. She is particularly good at identifying the key issues quickly and focusing on how best to address them. Alison is a good strategist. Gareth Ledsham is smart, efficient and reliable.  He is a pleasure to work with

‘A first-class team. Highly professional but very engaging and commercially minded’

‘Alison Regan has a very pleasant manner but is also a first-class lawyer and absolutely committed to her clients. Tom Deely and Susannah Foden are both excellent, each performing well beyond their years

I have a great deal of time for Tom Deely. His analysis is excellent, and I trust him to get things right. He has admirable experience of the sector, is really easy to get on with, and I highly recommend him to other lawyers’

M&A: smaller deals, up to £50m Tier 3

Russell-Cooke LLP's client roster includes a mix of large corporates, high-net-worth individuals, entrepreneurs and SME's which are experiencing significant change driven by the digital revolution and globalisation. Examples include technology businesses focused on cloud-based technologies, marketing and PR companies adapting to the rise of social media, and travel and leisure businesses adjusting to changing consumer requirements. The team also works closely with the firm's real estate group and has developed a reputation for advising on joint ventures. Jonathan Thornton leads the department.

Practice head(s):


‘They are all very approachable, commercially sensible and legally knowledgeable.’

Key clients

The Ilchester Estate

Phrasee Limited

Beavis Morgan LLP

G Adventures

mQube (Spring Financial)

Property litigation Tier 3

Russell-Cooke LLP's broad expertise translates into a steady flow of residential and commercial property dispute work for high-net-worth individuals, freehold owners, management companies and tenant associations. It is particularly strong in neighbourly matters, disputes arising from developments and landlord and tenant disputes, where clients benefit from the team's expertise in the private rented and build-to-rent sectors. Although Graham French retired from the partnership in October 2019 (but remains with the firm as consultant), the practice has been on a growth trajectory, with four associates joining in spring 2020. In addition, Edward Cracknell (key contact for the renewal and termination of telecoms leases) and Stephen Small (private rented sector expert) made partner. Practice head Jason Hunter regularly handles neighbourly matters (most notably those pertaining to party walls), as well as disputes between landlords and tenants.

Practice head(s):

Key clients

Goldcrest Land

Borough Market

Pret a Manger


UK Finance

Alexandra Palace

Tipi (Quintain’s PRS subsidiary at Wembley Park)

Alexander Devine Children’s Cancer Trust

Ilchester Estate

Clipstone Investment Management

Social housing: tenant Tier 3

Russell-Cooke LLP’s clients are ‘guaranteed a good service’ when they consult the firm for advice on possession and disrepair claims. Graham French has recently retired from the partnership but remains as a consultant to advise the victims of the Grenfell fire and their families, both as part of the official inquiry and on issues of rehousing. Associate Caroline Brosnan is ‘prepared to go the extra mile for her clients’ in homelessness cases, in particular section 204 appeals, and has provided training to local agencies. Jason Hunter is the team head.

Practice head(s):

Key clients

Arneway Housing Co-Operative Limited

W11 Housing Co-Operative Limited

Portobello Housing Co-Operative Limited

Commercial litigation: mid-market Tier 4

Russell-Cooke LLP's 'highly professional, efficient and sensible commercial litigation team' comprises several specialist dispute resolution practitioners, who act for companies, regulators, partnerships, charities and individuals. Of note, the firm operates an in-house electronic disclosure platform to undertake effective investigations and manage the majority of electronic disclosure exercises internally. Senior partner John Gould specialises in commercial litigation, regulation and public law disputes, and Lee Ranford is insolvency team head. Elliot ElseyMichael Stacey and Mark Fletcher have all recently been made partners. Andrew Pavlovic and Emily Mitcheson provide further support at senior associate level.

Practice head(s):


Highly professional, efficient, friendly and sensible.

John Gould is a very experienced litigator. Michael Stacy is an acute commercial lawyer, friendly and efficient.

Always on top of the material and 100% engaged in the case, creating a collaborative process with counsel. Excellent client management, leading to clear and helpful instructions.

Mark Fletcher: a great eye for arguments that will persuade the Court.

Ricky Cella: always on top of the material and 100% engaged in the case, creating a collaborative process with counsel.

Customer service and focus genuinely exceptional. Excellent balance between specialists within the firm.

Andrew Pavlovic: excellent anchor for the team representing us, produced stand-out work for us.

The litigation team at Russell-Cooke have a very commercial and pragmatic approach to litigation. They take the time to get to know their clients, and are always aware of the commercial context in which they are advising. They never lost sight of the need to manage the litigation and secure an outcome which preserved our commercial interests. They are responsive and easy to deal with, and they have ensured that the case has been managed in a way which has kept costs proportionate to the dispute.

Andrew Pavlovic is pragmatic, on top of the detail, and is able to explain complicated legal concepts succinctly and clearly.

Diligence, attention to detail, availability, custom made service, friendly environment, making client feel safe and comfortable.

Good communication, availability, fast response to our needs, ethical, good understanding of our business, trustworthy and reliable, good expertise in many fields around our business; resourceful.

Highly professional responsive team who have breadth and depth in their competency base.

Andrew Pavlovic has been supportive and extremely helpful throughout. He is diligent and very knowledgeable and achieves a good balance of commerciality.

A great value alternative to larger, more expensive firms. They have an exceptional atmosphere at the firm, which means they attract a continuous stream of top-quality associates.

Elliot Elsey: Clever, calm and with judgment well beyond his years.

A fantastic team of lawyers who really know what they are doing, are great at dealing with difficult and demanding clients and get things done.

The team, led by John Gould, provides excellent, and commercial, advice and a top-notch service. They provide creative solutions to problems so are the go-to team with anything out-of-the-ordinary.

John Gould has an unparalleled knowledge of legal services – he literally wrote the book on it – which is invaluable when it comes to dealing with commercial disputes in this area. John is well supported by Michael Stacey who is efficient, thorough and responsive.

Key clients

Law Society of England and Wales

Solicitors Regulation Authority





Voluntary Service Overseas

Youth Hostels Association


British Gas Energy Trust

Venson Automative Solutions Limited

Architects Registration Board


FRP Advisory

MX Sports

Fraud: white-collar crime (advice to individuals) Tier 4

Russell-Cooke LLP acts for companies and individuals in relation to fraud investigations and regulatory matters. It has recently seen an uptick in instructions relating to the defence of private prosecutions. The firm is well-versed in advising clients caught up in regulatory investigations, including those brought by the SFO, FCA, CPS and HMRC. Head of team Jae Carwardine is recommended for restraint issues, tax offences and confiscation proceedings. Nicola O’Connor left the firm for Bird & Bird LLP.

Practice head(s):

Key clients

Lucinda Barton

Gary Lawless

Amy Olding

Health and safety Tier 4

The health and safety team at Russell-Cooke LLP has a strong offering for clients in the construction, real estate, retail and charity sectors, as well as for trustees and insolvency practitioners. Kizzy Augustin provides both contentious advice stemming from incidents and preventative consultancy advice. The team regularly handles investigations by the regulatory authorities.

Personal injury: claimant Tier 4

Russell-Cooke LLP is a 'well-established and expert firm' which brings 'significant expertise' to the full gamut of personal injury work, including stress at work claims, historical sex abuse cases, and multi-party actions. The team is jointly headed by Janice Gardner, whose current caseload includes a high-value overseas catastrophic injury claim; 'brilliant and dedicated lawyerSarah Towler; fatal claims expert Dominic Fairclough; and Lucy Wilton, who regularly handles catastrophic injuries.

Other key lawyers:


‘Well-established and expert firm dealing with PI claims of all types and with significant expertise.’

‘Sarah Towler is the sort of solicitor you want on your side and not against you – a brilliant and dedicated lawyer.’

‘RC deal in a variety of high-end claimant personal injury claims.’

Planning Tier 5

Alex Ground leads the growing practice at Russell-Cooke LLP, assisting clients on all issues in the planning sphere, covering highways, compulsory purchase, planning applications, appeals and negotiating section 106 agreements. The team are also becoming increasingly strong on the contentious side, notably receiving recent new instructions from high net-worth individuals.

Practice head(s):

Key clients

Perenco UK

Woodcock Holdings

Newable Property Developments

Copperwood Developments


Graham Oates Associates

Fairfax Properties

Triplerose Properties

Pret A Manger


Quantum Developments

Imperial London Hotels


Sport Tier 5

Representing big names such as Chelsea Football Club and British Fencing, Russell-Cooke LLP advises on regulatory matters, disciplinary issues, reputation management as well as the protection of IP rights. Matthew Bosworth focuses on the aforementioned areas; his work as a litigator extends to leading the private prosecutions team as well as possessing Higher Rights of Audience to appear as an advocate in all courts.

Practice head(s):


‘A wealth of under-the-radar experience as well as high-profile cases. They are discreet and resist the urge to brag about their client base. ‘

‘They advise across the full range of sporting disputes and club ownership issues, as well as doping, real all rounders.’

‘Matt Bosworth is hugely experienced in a range of sporting disputes from boxing to paralympic athletes.’

‘Peter Cadman is the first port of call for a number of Premier League club owners. Astute, tough and uncompromising. No one is as good at handling the media as he is.’

Key clients


Chelsea FC

British Fencing

Sport Resolutions UK

Surbiton Hockey Club

Barnes Rugby Football Club

Thames Ditton Cricket Club

Old Elthamians Rugby Club


The business immigration department at Russell-Cooke LLP has extensive experience in corporate support work, with particular expertise in the immigration implications of transactions and reorganisations. Department head Edward Wanambwa assists multinational businesses with the full spectrum of immigration services. The practice has a strong offering for clients in the financial services and healthcare sectors. Associate Nisha Patel leads on individual and non-business related immigration matters; her private client practice includes advice for high-net-worth individuals, complex immigration appeals and applications outside of the immigration rules.

Practice head(s):

Other key lawyers:


‘Ed Wanambwa is excellent – concise, user-friendly, commercial, clear and charming. He really knows his stuff, is great with clients and inspires confidence with his calm manner and delivery.’

‘Nisha Patel is an excellent solicitor. Very helpful and knowledgeable.’

‘Nisha Patel worked with great patience and attention to detail to bring our application to a successful conclusion.’

Russell-Cooke is a leading London law firm comprised of highly regarded specialists across a vast breadth of expertise. Its mix of commercial, private and public sector clients reflects the complex legal needs of contemporary London. The firm’s legal experts are leaders in their fields in areas as diverse as commercial property, professional regulation, crime and children law.


Russell-Cooke is an unusually broad-based practice spanning commercial and private client, civil and criminal, contentious and advisory work.

The firm’s large real estate team has a wealth of experience including in investment and development, in sectors including hotels and leisure, logistics and retail. Its specialist planning and construction lawyers and its highly regarded property disputes team complement its capabilities in this space.

Russell-Cooke offers a full range of services for private clients including highly regarded children, family, wills and probate, employment, clinical negligence, personal injury and criminal litigation services. Private clients also benefit from the firm’s specialist expertise in probate disputes, French law, tax and cross-border estates.

The charity and social business team is amongst the top legal teams in the sector and has an impressive roster of clients. The team covers the full spectrum of issues from governance and commercial to property, employment and disputes.

The Russell-Cooke family office team is made up of recognised experts from a range of legal disciplines, enabling them to help with an unusually broad mix of issues. Whether it be regarding family interests and assets, Wills, pre-nuptial agreements, the family business or property portfolios, the team provides clear, practical advice to help high net worth families.

The specialist corporate and commercial team handles the whole range of contentious, non-contentious and transactional work, with a recent focus on supporting startups from inception through funding rounds to onward growth and/or sale.


The firm has built an outstanding client base including The Law Society, Prêt a Manger, Sky UK, Chelsea FC, Lendlease and the British Heart Foundation. Russell-Cooke’s ability to tackle complex, multidimensional cases means that a significant proportion of its work comes from referrals by other solicitors and many of its clients are solicitors, barristers and judges.


The firm advises a wide range of businesses, individuals and charities on their cross-border matters. Russell-Cooke acts as part of clients’ professional inner circles and has a wide network of international advisers allowing them to seamlessly project manage transactions involving other jurisdictions. The firm is the sole UK member of international legal networks Legus and LexUnion.


As a modern business, Russell-Cooke is aware of its impact on the environment and its place within the local community. As part of its 2019-2022 strategic plan “to improve the environmental sustainability of the firm and take significant steps towards carbon neutrality,” Russell-Cooke has already offset its 2020 and 2021 emissions and has committed to do so in the future. The firm’s Putney office not only boasts solar panels which push energy into the local grid, it is also home to two hives of Buckfast bees.

Other offices: Putney, Kingston upon Thames

Department Name Email Telephone
Senior partner John Gould
Joint Managing partner Alison Regan
Joint Managing Partner James Carroll
Administrative law and solicitors Michael Stacey
Charities and social business Andrew Studd
Child abduction Fiona Read
Children law Samantha Little
Commercial and construction litigation/ADR Mark Fletcher
Corporate and commercial Jonathan Thornton
Conveyancing Donall Murphy
Construction Peter Kitson
Criminal litigation and fraud Jae Carwardine
Cross-border estates Andrew Godfrey
Employment Anthony Sakrouge
Education Eva Akins
Immigration Edward Wanambwa
Insolvency Lee Ranford
Family James Carroll
Family mediation James Carroll
French law Christopher Salomons
Personal injury and medical negligence Janice Gardner
Property litigation Jason Hunter
Professional regulation Michael Stacey
Real estate Matt Garrod
Sports Matt Bosworth
Tax Scott Leonard
Trusts Rebecca Fisher
Trusts and estate disputes Alison Regan
Start-ups Guy Wilmot
Health and safety Kizzy Augustin
Photo Name Position Profile
 Dawn Alderson  photo Dawn Alderson Partner and head of French private client team. Dual qualified. Advises in…
 Shabnam Ali-Khan  photo Shabnam Ali-Khan Shabnam is a partner in the enfranchisement team. She specialises in lease…
 Alex Bearman  photo Alex Bearman Alex is a partner in the employment team, acting for both employers…
 Rita Bhargava  photo Rita Bhargava Partner in private client team. Head of Court of Protection and capacity…
 Deborah Blythe  photo Deborah Blythe Consultant specialising in clinical negligence and personal injury; main areas of practice…
 Pieter Boodt  photo Pieter Boodt Pieter is a partner in the real estate team. He advises developers,…
 Jae Carwardine  photo Jae Carwardine Jae has over twenty years’ experience; renowned as a tenacious and tactically…
 Alan Edwards  photo Alan Edwards Alan is a consultant in the conveyancing team with extensive experience in…
 Rebecca Fisher  photo Rebecca Fisher Partner specialising in private client law. Areas of expertise include advising clients…
 Graham French  photo Graham French Graham is a consultant in the property and housing litigation team now working principally…
 Richard Frimston  photo Richard Frimston Consultant in the private client team. He advises clients in relation to…
 Janice Gardner  photo Janice Gardner Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence – both High Court. CICA and Inquests…
 Matt Garrod  photo Matt Garrod Matt is a partner in the real estate team, advising clients on…
 Andrew Godfrey  photo Andrew Godfrey Partner in private client team. Specialises in cross-border tax, succession and estate…
 John Gould photo John Gould Senior Partner whose particular expertise is regulation and public law. He specialises…
 Alex Ground  photo Alex Ground Alex is a partner in our planning team and specialises in the…
 Peter Kitson  photo Peter Kitson Peter is a partner in the real estate team, and has specialised…
 Jane Klauber  photo Jane Klauber Partner in the charity and social business team. Employment law specialist undertaking…
 Gareth Ledsham  photo Gareth Ledsham Partner specialising in all types of trust and estate/succession-related litigation, including will…
 Scott Leonard  photo Scott Leonard Specialist expertise in M&A, joint venture agreements and partnership law.
 Donall Murphy  photo Donall Murphy Donall is a partner in the conveyancing team. Donall advises both buyers…
 Lee Ranford  photo Lee Ranford Partner and licensed insolvency practitioner specialising in contentious insolvency (corporate and personal)…
 Fiona Read  photo Fiona Read Solicitor, mediator, collaborative family practitioner and family arbitrator; undertakes all aspects of…
 Alison Regan  photo Alison Regan Joint Managing Partner of Russell-Cooke and partner specialising in contentious trust and…
 Rachael Rigamonti  photo Rachael Rigamonti Consultant in real estate. Rachael advises on a wide range of property…
 Anthony Sakrouge  photo Anthony Sakrouge Partner specialising in contentious employment law. Has acted for a wide range…
 James Sinclair Taylor  photo James Sinclair Taylor Partner in the charity and social business team dealing with charities, social…
 Andrew Studd  photo Andrew Studd Advises charities, social businesses and other not-for-profit organisations on the corporate and…
 Howard Swindall  photo Howard Swindall Howard is a partner in the real estate team. Howard advises private,…
 Jonathan Thornton  photo Jonathan Thornton Head of corporate and commercial; workload encompasses MBOs, MBIs, share and asset…
 Edward Wanambwa  photo Edward Wanambwa Partner in the immigration and employment teams; head of the immigration team.…
 David Webster  photo David Webster Partner in the corporate and commercial group. Areas of expertise include corporate…
 Guy Wilmot  photo Guy Wilmot Business start-ups; branding and intellectual property; commercial contracts; e-commerce and IT. Specialisms…
Number of UK partners : 63
Number of other UK fee-earners : 109

The Lex 100 Verdict

Known for its ‘culture’, ‘better hours’ and ‘work/life balance’, Russell-Cooke impresses with glowing reports from its trainees. A Lex 100 Winner for job satisfaction, vacation scheme, remuneration and inclusiveness, Russell-Cooke deserves its ‘good reputation for quality of work, small trainee intake, training, and for being a nice, inclusive firm’. Trainees enjoyed the vacation scheme and particularly the ‘mix of people from different backgrounds’. As one trainee highlights, Russell-Cooke ‘seeks out those with previous careers, plus it did not see my uncertainty as to where I might like to qualify as a negative’. The firm offers a ‘wide variety of practice areas with opportunities to work with both private and corporate clients, a lack of hierarchical structure, plus a sense of corporate social responsibility’. Russell-Cooke’s intake size and focus on training earns high praise; with ‘lower chargeable time targets than City firms, and a greater level of responsibility, combined with a greater level of client contact’, trainees feel they are getting an excellent training experience. ‘I get so much time with my supervisor and other partners at the firm giving me feedback and really good quality work’. Negatives include ambiguity around newly qualified salaries in different departments and Covid-related restrictions. High points were ‘being involved in an intermediate trial in a family law case, and assisting in the negotiation of a financial settlement’ and ‘the chocolate-making event with a Michelin-starred chocolatier'. A firm that values work/life balance and provides thorough training, Russell-Cooke is a great option.