Firm Profile > Russell-Cooke LLP > London, England
Russell-Cooke LLP Offices
2 PUTNEY HILL
Russell-Cooke LLP > The Legal 500 Rankings
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.
‘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.’
Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Trust
Breast Cancer Now
World Wildlife Fund UK
British Heart Foundation
Voluntary Service Overseas
Youth Hostel Association
Tall Ships Youth Trust
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.
‘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‘
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 brilliant' Jae 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.
‘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.
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.
‘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‘
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.
‘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.
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.
‘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.’
Patrick Heneghan OBE
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.
‘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’
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.
Pret a Manger
Tipi (Quintain’s PRS subsidiary at Wembley Park)
Alexander Devine Children’s Cancer Trust
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.
Other key lawyers:
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.
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
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.
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 lawyer' Sarah 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 5Alex 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.
Newable Property Developments
Graham Oates Associates
Pret A Manger
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.
‘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.’
Sky UK PLC
Sport Resolutions UK
Surbiton Hockey Club
Barnes Rugby Football Club
Thames Ditton Cricket Club
Old Elthamians Rugby Club
‘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 LLP > Firm Profile
Russell-Cooke is a top 100 London legal firm with around 200 partners and lawyers. Its highly regarded specialist lawyers, breadth of expertise and mix of commercial, private and public sector clients reflect the complex legal needs of contemporary London. Many of the firm’s teams are leaders in their fields, with peer-group accolades in areas as diverse as commercial property, professional regulation, crime and children law.
The firm: Pursuing its strategy of sustainable development, the firm has expanded through a combination of organic growth and acquisitions. It has extended its breadth but retained a strong focus on service quality.
London’s demanding businesses, public organisations and professionals are attracted by the firm’s combination of serious expertise, unstuffy style and value-for-money fees. Its clients are hugely diverse, reflecting its range of work. The firm has a reputation as the ‘lawyers’ lawyers’, with a client base including the Solicitors Regulation Authority, The Magistrates Association, ILEX and many barristers’ chambers. Russell-Cooke’s ability to tackle complex, multi-dimensional cases means that a significant proportion of its work comes from referrals by other solicitors.
Russell-Cooke is one of a select group of broad-based practices in the top 100. There are few other substantial London firms offering such a full range of legal services.
Types of work undertaken: The firm handles virtually the whole range of contentious and non-contentious corporate and commercial work, with its M&A, real estate and property litigation teams enjoying a particularly high reputation.
The charity and social business team is amongst the top three legal teams in the sector and advises over 600 charities and not-for-profit organisations.
Russell-Cooke offers a full range of services for private clients including highly-regarded children law, family, employment, immigration, conveyancing/residential property, clinical negligence, personal injury and criminal litigation services. Private clients also benefit from the firm’s highly specialist contentious probate, tax, French law and cross-border estates expertise. Additionally, the firm has a principled commitment to an element of publicly funded work.
Russell-Cooke has a substantial international dimension with a dedicated international group facilitating cross-border activities for a diverse range of clients. Clients are drawn from all sectors, and include multinational and overseas corporations, public sector bodies, entrepreneurs and individuals.
Other offices: Putney, Kingston upon Thames
|Senior partner||John Gould|
|Managing partner||Jonathan Thornton|
|Administrative law and solicitors||John Gould|
|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|
|Criminal litigation and fraud||Jae Carwardine|
|Cross-border estates||Andrew Godfrey|
|Family mediation||James Carroll|
|French law||Dawn Alderson|
|Personal injury and medical negligence||Janice Gardner|
|Property litigation||Jason Hunter|
|Professional regulation||Michael Stacey|
|Real estate||Matt Garrod|
|Trusts and estate disputes||Alison Regan|
|Health and safety||Kizzy Augustin|
|Dawn Alderson||Partner and head of French private client team. Dual qualified. Advises in…||View Profile|
|Alex Bearman||Alex is a partner in the employment team, acting for both employers…||View Profile|
|Rita Bhargava||Partner in private client team. Head of Court of Protection and capacity…||View Profile|
|Deborah Blythe||Consultant specialising in clinical negligence and personal injury; main areas of practice…||View Profile|
|Jae Carwardine||Jae has over twenty years’ experience; renowned as a tenacious and tactically…||View Profile|
|Alan Edwards||Alan is a consultant in the conveyancing team with extensive experience in…||View Profile|
|Rebecca Fisher||Partner specialising in private client law. Areas of expertise include advising clients…||View Profile|
|Graham French||Graham is a consultant in the property and housing litigation team now working principally…||View Profile|
|Richard Frimston||Consultant in the private client team. He advises clients in relation to…||View Profile|
|Janice Gardner||Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence – both High Court. CICA and Inquests…||View Profile|
|Matt Garrod||Matt is a partner in the real estate team, advising clients on…||View Profile|
|Andrew Godfrey||Partner in private client team. Specialises in cross-border tax, succession and estate…||View Profile|
|Mr John Gould||Senior Partner whose particular expertise is regulation and public law. He specialises…||View Profile|
|Alex Ground||Alex is a partner in our planning team and specialises in the…||View Profile|
|Peter Kitson||Peter is a partner in the real estate team, and has specialised…||View Profile|
|Jane Klauber||Partner in the charity and social business team. Employment law specialist undertaking…||View Profile|
|Gareth Ledsham||Partner specialising in all types of trust and estate/succession-related litigation, including will…||View Profile|
|Scott Leonard||Specialist expertise in M&A, joint venture agreements and partnership law.||View Profile|
|Donall Murphy||Donall is a partner in the conveyancing team. Donall advises both buyers…||View Profile|
|Lee Ranford||Partner and licensed insolvency practitioner specialising in contentious insolvency (corporate and personal)…||View Profile|
|Fiona Read||Solicitor, mediator, collaborative family practitioner and family arbitrator; undertakes all aspects of…||View Profile|
|Alison Regan||Partner specialising in contentious trust and succession disputes including will and probate…||View Profile|
|Rachael Rigamonti||Consultant in real estate. Rachael advises on a wide range of property…||View Profile|
|Anthony Sakrouge||Partner specialising in contentious employment law. Has acted for a wide range…||View Profile|
|James Sinclair Taylor||Partner in the charity and social business team dealing with charities, social…||View Profile|
|Andrew Studd||Advises charities, social businesses and other not-for-profit organisations on the corporate and…||View Profile|
|Howard Swindall||Howard is a partner in the real estate team. Howard advises private,…||View Profile|
|Jonathan Thornton||Head of corporate and commercial; workload encompasses MBOs, MBIs, share and asset…||View Profile|
|Edward Wanambwa||Partner in the immigration and employment teams; head of the immigration team.…||View Profile|
|David Webster||Partner in the corporate and commercial group. Areas of expertise include corporate…||View Profile|
|Guy Wilmot||Business start-ups; branding and intellectual property; commercial contracts; e-commerce and IT. Specialisms…||View Profile|
Staff FiguresNumber of UK partners : 61 Number of other UK fee-earners : 148
Student (The Lex 100 )
The Lex 100 VerdictThe breadth of work on offer at Russell-Cooke means that 'there is greater scope for trainees to find the right area of law for them'. From family to corporate, recruits have the opportunity to 'explore their various interests' in an 'open atmosphere' where there is 'hardly any hierarchy' and 'everyone is friendly, sociable and welcoming'. On the one hand, trainees at RC are 'involved in more substantial elements of cases and given responsibility, whilst still being supported through superb supervision'. On the other hand, training can be inconsistent because of each department being independently managed; some trainees felt as though they were 'working for a completely different firm when [they] changed seats'. Nonetheless, Russell-Cooke has amassed four Lex 100 Winner awards this year. One for its 'very good work/life balance – there is no culture of staying late to be seen', another for its 'amazing social life, including sports teams and film club nights', and two for the vacation scheme and confidence of being kept on post qualification. Several trainees pointed to the fact that Russell-Cooke is a 'sustainably-growing firm which is not afraid to do things differently'. This 'even extends to keeping our own bees on the roof (with the added bonus of honey being available to staff)'! 'A week where the deadlines were really highly pressured in a way I hadn't experienced before' was a worst moment, whilst 'attending a swanky completion lunch after a difficult matter' and 'working on the sale of a high-value property from start to finish' were highlights. To train at a firm which is 'prominent enough that you get to work on prestigious cases and small enough that you do real, meaningful work', consider Russell-Cooke.
Top Tier Firm Rankings
- Charities and not-for-profit
- Clinical negligence: claimant
- Court of protection
- Crime: general
- Education: individuals
- Family: mediation
- Personal tax, trusts and probate
- Professional discipline
- Senior executives
- Contentious trusts and probate
- M&A: smaller deals, up to £50m
- Property litigation
- Social housing: tenant
- Commercial litigation: mid-market
- Fraud: white-collar crime (advice to individuals)
- Health and safety
- Personal injury: claimant