Firm Profile > Charles Russell Speechlys LLP > London, England

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

Contentious trusts and probate Tier 1

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP has been involved in some of the largest and most high-profile cases domestically and offshore including a heavily contested hearing overseas and a privately heard matter for a very well-known person in the English Court of Protection. It has also been involved in the recently published decision of Cowan v Foreman. There is a particular focus on attracting complex high-value cross-border disputes work often involving multiple jurisdictions. Graeme Kleiner heads the team and advises trustees, executors and beneficiaries on a broad range of disputes. In addition Kleiner has a growing practice in IFA disputes and also handles fraud and professional negligence cases relating to trust, tax and succession matters. Other key team members include Duncan Elson, Tamasin Perkins, Aimee West, Oliver Auld and Jessica Stafford.


The team at CRS has all the skills and experience you could ask for but combines this with a no-nonsense approach that makes it a pleasure to work with and explains why it gets so much referral work from its peers‘.

The team has an impressive head in Graeme Kleiner. He is a great tactician and whilst always being ready to fight when required he always keeps his eye on the best commercial outcome for the client‘.

The team has a creative attitude to solving litigation problems, and a good grasp of the different requirements of offshore legal regimes‘.

Graeme Kleiner has an excellent knack of pouring oil on troubled waters. He fights hard when he needs to but is always out to get the best for his client. His judgment is excellent‘.

The team is known for the quality of partners and associates and is always a pleasure to work with. Graeme Kleiner has a huge and well deserved reputation‘.

Graeme Kleiner has great technical knowledge‘.

‘Tamasin Perkins does not raise the temperature during discussions, she remains calm‘.

Oliver Auld is clever and calm in a crisis. Duncan Elson has years of experience and fights his clients’ corner hard‘.

Oliver Auld is a stand out associate and a rising star‘.

Jessica Stafford –  a clever and assertive rising star, who is certainly going places’.

Key clients

Cancer Research UK

Alan Shearer CBE

Trustees of the Bathurst Estate: the Earl’s Fund

Family Tier 1

Under the leadership of Sarah HigginsCharles Russell Speechlys LLP has a focus on high-value and multi-jurisdictional cases. The excellent team covers a wide range of specialist areas in family law from complex divorce and finance cases through to international children related cases under the Children Act and the Hague Convention. Other areas of expertise lie in advising on adoption, surrogacy, civil partnerships and drafting marital agreements. In addition the team has a detailed knowledge of onshore and offshore trust structures and complex family business structures. Another focus of the practice is advising people in the sports and media sectors – it acts for premier league footballers as well as other sports and media professionals. Sarah Anticoni has a particular focus on mediating complex financial claims and children related matters. It remains a solid team despite a number of departures.


Charles Russell Speechlys has a large outstanding team which allows them to provide a first-rate service in the biggest cases’.

Sarah Whitten is one of the stars of her generation for her top drawer expertise in both financial and children cases‘.

‘William Longrigg is an extremely well-respected senior lawyer‘.

‘Sarah Higgins is exceptionally bright. Miranda Fisher is a tough negotiator who is very tactically astute‘.

‘Jamie Kennaugh is really sharp and a delight to work with‘.

‘It has lost five partners over the past 12 months. Despite this it remains one of the largest family teams in London and its biggest hitters remain – certainly it still has the capabilities to work on the biggest and most complex cases‘.

M&A: smaller deals, up to £50m Tier 1

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP covers corporate M&A, private equity and equity capital markets work, primarily within the lower and mid-market space. The firm's focus on private wealth means the team is most active in advising entrepreneurs and owner-managed businesses, as well as family offices and high net worth individuals, both from the UK and overseas. It has also seen notable growth in acting on inbound investment from the US to the UK, in addition to increased activity in Africa. The firm's corporate M&A team works in tandem with its private equity team, with certain individuals spanning both practices. The 'superbMalcolm MacDougall is one such individual - he co-heads the practice alongside Chris Putt, a specialist in corporate finance.


‘Concise and to the point. Very well informed

Malcolm MacDougall is what makes the firm unique. His strengths are a big legal brain, very commercial, great customer relationship skills and being fun to work with

Mark Howard and Nicola Baird are both worth their weight in gold, always available, always able to keep good humour and to sort the important points from those that are emotionally charged. service. He is always very quick to respond

Malcolm MacDougall is a superb leader and partner at the firm. Commercially savvy, technically very competent and fun to work with

Key clients



International Tennis Federation (ITF)

Bellway Homes

Crest Nicholson


IT Lab Ltd

Charterhouse Voice and Data plc

Zenium Technology Partners Limited

Duco Technology

Personal tax, trusts and probate Tier 1

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP fields a large team that advises the wealthiest families globally and routinely advises them on complex cross-border and multidisciplinary projects. Clients range from prominent UK families to internationally mobile wealthy individuals. The London offering in conjunction with its other offices in Cheltenham and Guildford also represents some of the UK's leading landed estates (both rural and urban). Bart Peerless and William Begley head the team. Robert Blower has particular expertise in lifetime tax and estate planning, and issues relating to offshore assets/trusts as well as UK landed estates. Piers Master has a particular focus on Middle Eastern clients, and acts for many ruling family members and billionaires often with US links.


‘The team is an extraordinary collection of lawyers who have real depth of expertise in this area’.

Cross-disciplinary team work, superb technical knowledge and sound advice by experienced partners whose experience and network spans most jurisdictions‘.

Andrew Cameron is the consummate private client lawyer, very client focused and great on detail’.


Residential property Tier 1

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's international team of residential property lawyers stands out for its work on time pressured, high value transactions, covering elements such as construction, planning, Shariah financing and secured borrowing and lending. Practice head Thomas Moran - 'undoubtedly one of the finest lawyers in the business' - is noted for his problem-solving abilities on on high value property deals, while senior associate Tristram van Lawick is particularly active on estate and farm sales, as well as acquisitions and refinancing deals across the country.


‘The team is very thorough and responsive. They are very professional yet with a human touch.’

‘A great team that work extremely well together and that communicate with clients in a very efficient and useful manner.’

‘Consistently good service and advice – whether its conveyancing work or planning advice. The property team are first rate and have done nothing but impress me. I value working with the firm enormously.’

‘Thomas Moran is undoubtedly one of the finest lawyers in the business. His relaxed approach belies an ability to problem solve like few of his peers – a true pragmatist and wonderfully easy to deal with because his communication is so good.’

Key clients

British Land Plc

Regent’s Crescent Property Holding

Sport Tier 1

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP’s large sports practice, which gained a significant boost through its merger with leading sports boutique Couchmans in 2018, acts for international governing bodies, Premier League football clubs, sportspeople, e-sports companies, broadcasters, media and betting companies. The team’s wide-ranging expertise spans regulatory matters, governance, data and IP, media rights, commercial agreements, private investment and contentious matters such as anti-doping investigations and employment disputes. Sports marketing partner Jason Saiban is retained by Nike to manage all of the brand’s legal needs in relation to sports law; work this year has included advising Nike on sponsorship and commercial agreements with the FA and Chelsea FC and handling numerous promotions for Nike’s Brand and Digital teams, including influencer deals. Partner Darren Bailey, a specialist in governance and commercial sports law, advised the International Tennis Federation on its contract with Kosmos Investments to restructure the Davis Cup, assisting with every stage of this groundbreaking multi-billion investment deal. Mark Hill, who specialises in commercial branding and structuring, joined the firm’s Dubai office in 2018. Couchmans founder Nic Couchman is also highly regarded for sports business and rights law.


“The team at Charles Russell Speechlys have an extremely long history of working in sports law with a huge internal knowledge of how it works.”

‘The group can call on the expertise of a number of consultants with specific knowledge in sports disputes and are prepared to work across the world for their clients.’

‘Great team players who are excellent with clients.’

‘Jason Saiban’s judgement and case preparation is very good and he manages risk very well.’

‘The team is always on the ball. They are sharp lawyers, looking for solutions and quick turnarounds.’

Key clients

The International Tennis Federation


Ascot Racecourse Limited

CSM Sport and Entertainment Limited

Leicester City FC

Cyclone Promotions

Rapha Racing

City Racing

World Rowing

The British Horseracing Authority

World Pro Surfers


Agriculture and estates Tier 2

Through its offices in Cheltenham, London and Guildford, Charles Russell Speechlys LLP represents some of the UK’s leading landed estates. The multi-disciplinary group advises on a myriad of issues from tax and estate planning on land sales/transfers, to providing agricultural law advice to land agents in relation to farms and rural businesses. The team also advises on family law matters as well as on all aspects of heritage assets and valuable art works. Henry Fea heads the rural businesses and landed estates team and specialises in heritage property taxation advice for the owners of landed estates and the administration of complex estates. Bart Peerless is another key member of the team who is well-regarded for his succession and estate planning advice for substantial landowners.


Bart Peerless is very well regarded and experienced in advising on major landed estates‘.

Art and cultural property Tier 2

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP has been expanding its team with the recent additions of Tim  Maxwell and Rudy Capildeo from Boodle Hatfield LLP. Head of team Suzanne Marriott has considerable experience in advising individuals, landed estates and charitable trusts with sizeable art work as part of their assets. Art litigator Ludovic de Walden is another key member of the team that frequently handles a wide range of both contentious and non-contentious art matters. The practice is also renowned for its experience on complex cross-border issues. Robert Blower is another recommended member of the team who specialises in lifetime tax and estate planning for individuals, their trusts and companies. Blower has carried out a great deal of UK heritage tax work.


Ludovic de Walden is an outstanding litigator‘.

Key clients

The Sir Denis Mahon Charitable Trust

The Gilbert and George Centre


Brand management Tier 2

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP acts for a diverse range of brand owners in the  media, sports, retail, and food and drink industries; Nike, wagamama and World Rowing are among its active clients. The arrival of Nick White and his team from Couchmans LLP has significantly bolstered the brand management practice, particularly in the sports and leisure arena, with further expertise in licensing and franchising, e-commerce, broadcasting and marketing. Mary Bagnall leads on the soft IP side and is particularly noted for her extensive experience in the protection and enforcement of trade marks and design rights; she is continuing to act for Cadbury in attempting to trade mark its iconic purple packaging against opposition from Nestle. Kate O'Rouke moved to Mewburn Ellis LLP.

Key clients





Chocoladefabriken Lindt & Sprüngli AG

Charities and not-for-profit Tier 2

Under the leadership of Lynn Povey at Charles Russell Speechlys LLP the team continues to represent high-profile national and international charities on the full range of legal issues including fundraising, data protection and employment matters. The team’s private wealth team also assists with various issues such as the establishment of charitable trusts and other philanthropic ventures. The group routinely advises private clients on making large charitable donations and on the establishment of charitable foundations. Mike Scott acts for a large number of charities that are governed by Royal Charter. Newly promoted partner Sarah Rowley advises on governance structures and on other matters such as the relationship between charities and commercial partners.

Key clients

Cancer Research UK

Save the Children


The National Museum of the Royal Navy

Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund

The Royal Marines Charity

Centrepoint Soho

City & Guilds

LHR Airport Communities Trust

Commercial property: corporate occupiers Tier 2

The team at Charles Russell Speechlys LLP was recently bolstered by the arrivals of Melville Rodrigues and David Paxton from CMS and Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP respectively. Rodrigues joined as head of the real estate funds team, while Paxton has bolstered the team’s development transaction offering. International and domestic institutional private investors, HNWs, asset managers and property funds routinely instruct the team for matters including urban renewal and mixed-use developments, PRS schemes and modular housing. The corporate occupier workload includes disposals, acquisitions, HQ relocations, exit strategies, restructuring, sales and leasebacks as well as portfolio management. Mark Smith heads the practice which includes recommended senior associate Eddie Richards, a specialist in secure lending and development projects. The group, which is highly regarded for its sector expertise, provides expert understanding of the charities, education, retail and leisure, healthcare and residential markets.


Professionalism, diligence and integrity‘.

Very professional, very rigorous, smart, ethical and results-oriented‘.

Key clients

David Lloyd Leisure Limited

Janus Henderson Investors

Lowell Group

Silver Lake Europe LLP

Ferroglobe PLC

HKS Architects

Samena Capital Management LLP

Stonegate Pub Company


P&O Estates


Rathbone Brothers PLC

Link Theory

Dean & DeLuca

INEOS Industries

Shaw Industries

ZS Associates Inc.

Direct Line Group

Court of protection Tier 2

The team at Charles Russell Speechlys LLP works across a large geographical area through its offices in London and Guildford. Suzanne Marriott is a member of Solicitors for the Elderly and the STEP special interest group on mental capacity. Sally Ashford is also a member of the STEP special interest group on mental capacity. Marriott specialises in cross-border and UK mental capacity and Court of Protection work as well as tax planning, wills, trusts and other contentious trusts and probate matters. She regularly acts as the independent deputy for property and affairs and health and welfare cases in situations where the family is in dispute about residency and the tax implications of losing non-UK residency and domicile.


The firm is highly respected for the work that it does with vulnerable clients – it is particularly recognised for the high-net-worth vulnerable clients that it represents and also for the breadth of knowledge that it has in the international field of Court of Protection work.’

Suzanne Marriott is very well-known and really excellent. Very popular as an interim deputy.

‘Suzanne Marriott is a superb practitioner and the person to handle difficult deputyships. She is the stand-out star and well supported by junior members‘.

‘Suzanne Marriott is highly respected by her peer group for her knowledge and expertise. I know that her clients put great faith in her and that she is very much a trusted adviser to them‘.

Employment: senior executives Tier 2

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's practice is spearheaded by Nick Hurley, who handles both contentious and advisory employment law issues. Also notable are project management expert Trevor Bettany, corporate employment lawyer Michael Powner, charity and not-for-profit sector specialist David Green and Emma Bartlett. In recent highlights, the group provided TUPE and related collective bargaining advice to an international retailer to avoid UK-wide industrial action, and also helped a surgeon to secure his reappointment following his dismissal from one of the UK’s largest NHS trusts.

Family: mediation Tier 2

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP has nine partners who are trained mediators and many of the team are collaboratively trained. Sarah Anticoni is a skilled family mediator in both finance and children. Sarah Whitten is also well-regarded for her work as a successful mediator. Its mediation practice covers a wide range of specialist areas in family law including high-value divorce and finance cases through to international children related cases and civil partnerships.

Fraud: civil Tier 2

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP is adept at handling a range of civil fraud matters, including asset tracing and worldwide freezing orders. The firm works with clients including multinational businesses, regulators, professional advisers and high-net-worth individuals in sectors such as financial services, government, energy and natural resources. Stewart Hey, who heads the practice was admitted to the Cayman Bar in relation to the high-profile, multibillion-dollar AHAB/SAAD Cayman trial. Charlotte Pender has a track record on high-value cross-border banking and fraud cases.


‘Stewart Hey manages a large team well and has a good eye for strategy and tactics’.

‘Charlotte Pender always has a pragmatic approach’.

Caroline Greenwell is highly intelligent, very personable, has great insight into the detail and is a real pleasure to work with’.

‘An extremely talented team with a wealth of experience’.

‘They have excellent judgement and make sensible decisions that advance their clients’ interests’.

‘They invariably punch well above their weight and deliver a focused and often brilliant work product.

‘The team is very hard working with a good eye for detail and impressive knowledge’.

‘They compare excellently to other teams: they are well-informed, ambitious and think laterally’.

Key clients


FRP Advisory LLP

Central Bank of Bahrain

Fica Frio Limited

Gulf Air

Morris Homes Group

Grant Thornton

CVR Global


Credit Suisse

Ooredoo Q, s.c.

Aldemore Bank plc

Healthcare Tier 2

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's healthcare team is made up of 'highly accomplished lawyers with strong expertise' across a broad range of healthcare-related matters, notably in corporate and real estate transactional and financing work, and private equity investments in and buyouts of healthcare service providers, with key expertise in care homes, primary care and pharmacy law. Noel Wardle is the key figure for healthcare and pharmacy regulatory advice, while Tim Jenkins supports public sector and family-owned dental, veterinary and pharmacy businesses in corporate and commercial transactions. Michael Lingens is likewise recommended for financial transactions in the healthcare and care home space. David Reissner retired in May 2018.


Charles Russell Speechlys provides a comprehensive service within the pharmacy sector, supported by regulatory, employment and property teams, offering a one-stop shop for legal advice.’

The team has a unique position as the specialist regulatory firm advising pharmacists. This gives it an insight into policy issues and developments that allows it to stay ahead of the game.

Tim Jenkins has a through understanding of the pharmacy sector, advising a wide range of clients from independent contractors to large multiple operators.’

Noel Wardle is one of the leading advisers in relation to pharmacy regulation‘.

Key clients

CareTech Holdings plc

Country Court Care

Juno Health Ltd

Dentex Healthcare Group Ltd

Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain

Goddard Veterinary Group

Media and entertainment (including media finance) Tier 2

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP offers expertise across advertising, marketing, film, TV, gaming, social media, interactive content, music, sports, publishing and theatre work. The team's advertising and marketing department is a core focus, where it is instructed by a number of household-name brands, media agencies and celebrities on sponsorship, influencer engagement, copy clearance, ASA compliance, disputes, brand partnerships and media buying agreements, as well as digital, social media and consumer matters. For gaming, social media and interactive content, the team is engaged by global publishers and games studios, and it is increasingly active in the esports arena. Senior associate Jaclyn Wilkins specialises in digital media and gaming matters. The film and TV practice is engaged by independent UK broadcasters and it is experienced in sports rights and media rights matters.


The team is very commercially aware, and it provides excellent, timely advice.

Key clients




Made By Many





Falmouth University


Property litigation Tier 2

Handling commercial and residential property litigation, Charles Russell Speechlys LLP acts for an extensive client roster, including commercial investors, developers and high-net-worth individuals as well as commercial, retail and leisure occupiers. The 'proactive and commercially aware' team led by Robert Highmore has a specialism in leasehold enfranchisement and, based on its expertise in the Electronic Communications Code, telecommunications sector work. Handling regeneration projects and rights to light matters are other key areas of expertise as are dilapidation claims, rent reviews and service charge disputes. The recommended Emma Humphreys handles the full range of commercial and residential property matters including contractual and development disputes involving the removal of telecoms masts and communications cables.


‘Real experts in the property litigation field.’

‘Emma Humphreys’ no-nonsense style helps to get results.’

Key clients

Aberdeen Standard Investments

Ballymore Group

Berkeley Group

Church Commissioners for England

Derwent London

Eton College


Howard de Walden Estates

London & Cambridge Properties

Manhattan Loft Corporation

Stonegate Pub Company

The Merchant Taylors’ Company

Workspace Group

Westfield Europe

Commercial contracts Tier 3

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP provides commercial support for clients ranging from international brands and specialist public tech companies to financial institutions and tech solution providers. The firm has regional and international reach, including in Switzerland and Dubai. Jason Saiban leads the practice and focuses on the sport, retail and technology sectors. He can call on the expertise of Megan Paul, who specialises in complex outsourcing transactions in domestic and global markets. Also notable is associate Caroline Swain, who works closely with retail clients. The team advises Nike on commercial contracts, including sponsorship, sports marketing, regulatory and data protection issues.


‘The team have great sector knowledge coupled with excellent and, where appropriate, challenging advice’

‘They are always on hand and respond in a timely manner with a fee structure that works for everyone’

‘Good attention to detail and good availability’

‘They work well as a team’

‘Jason Saiban has exceptional knowledge and is always focused on the client’

‘Megan Paul stands out. She brings energy and dynamism alongside great competence. A good problem solver who can see things from all sides’

Key clients



International Tennis Federation


Morgan Stanley


Caffe Nero


Ascot Racecourse


1Spatial Plc

Swiss Post Solutions

Commercial property: development Tier 3

The team at Charles Russell Speechlys LLP was recently bolstered by the arrivals of Melville Rodrigues and David Paxton from CMS and Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP respectively. Rodrigues joined as head of the real estate funds team, while Paxton has bolstered the team’s development transaction offering. International and domestic institutional private investors, HNWs, asset managers and property funds routinely instruct the team for matters including urban renewal and mixed-use developments, PRS schemes and modular housing. The corporate occupier workload includes disposals, acquisitions, HQ relocations, exit strategies, restructuring, sales and leasebacks as well as portfolio management. Mark Smith heads the practice which includes recommended senior associate Eddie Richards, a specialist in secure lending and development projects. The group, which is highly regarded for its sector expertise, provides expert understanding of the charities, education, retail and leisure, healthcare and residential markets.


Professionalism, diligence and integrity‘.

Very professional, very rigorous, smart, ethical and results-oriented‘.

Key clients

Berkeley Homes

Derwent London

BioMed Realty L.P

Caring Homes Group

City of London Corporation

Crest Nicholson

Eton College

Leicester City FC

National Museum for the Royal Navy

Bellway Homes Limited


Royal Marines Charity

Taylor Wimpey

The Church Commissioners

Howard de Walden Estates Limited

London & Cambridge Properties Limited

The Merchant Taylors’ Company

Greenwich Millennium Villages Limited

Countryside Properties

Commercial property: investment Tier 3

The team at Charles Russell Speechlys LLP was recently bolstered by the arrivals of Melville Rodrigues and David Paxton from CMS and Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP respectively. Rodrigues joined as head of the real estate funds team, while Paxton has bolstered the team’s development transaction offering. International and domestic institutional private investors, HNWs, asset managers and property funds routinely instruct the team for matters including urban renewal and mixed-use developments, PRS schemes and modular housing. The corporate occupier workload includes disposals, acquisitions, HQ relocations, exit strategies, restructuring, sales and leasebacks as well as portfolio management. Mark Smith heads the practice which includes recommended senior associate Eddie Richards, a specialist in secure lending and development projects. The group, which is highly regarded for its sector expertise, provides expert understanding of the charities, education, retail and leisure, healthcare and residential markets.


Professionalism, diligence and integrity’.

Very professional, very rigorous, smart, ethical and results-oriented’.

Key clients

Aberdeen Standard Investments

BioMed Realty L.P

Berkeley Group

Caring Homes Group

City of London Corporation

David Lloyd Leisure Limited

Octopus Property

Derwent London

Elan Capital Management LLP

Eton College

Henderson Global Investors (now Janus Henderson Investors)

Howard de Walden Estate Limited

National Museum for the Royal Navy

Stonegate Pub Company

The Church Commissioners

Leicester City FC

London & Cambridge Properties Limited

Construction: contentious Tier 3

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's contentious team advises contractors, subcontractors and employers on both domestical and international matters. Steven Carey heads up the team, working alongside the 'unflappable' Kevin Forsyth, who recently advised a cladding contractor on defect-related disputes arising from the construction of tower blocks in Manchester. Rupa Lakha, a specialist in dispute avoidance, acts for developers and subcontractors, while Michael O’Connor, who acts across the spectrum of construction issues domestically and internationally, is also recommended.


‘The team demonstrates a practical understanding of the challenges associated with complex construction contracts.’

‘The practice has a unique ability to share information among key team members and provide coherent and joined up advice regardless of who one was discussing the matter with.’

‘Kevin Forsyth has the ability to provide clarity to complex decision making processes where it is challenging to see the wood from the trees. He is also unflappable and able to work under extreme pressure and short timescales.’

Key clients


Bouygues Construction


Ferrovial Aggroman

Dover Harbour Board


Contruction: non-contentious Tier 3

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's non-contentious team acts for contractors, developers and user occupiers on residential developments and mixed use developments and energy work. The team is led by Steven Carey who recently advised Permasteelisa on several developments such as Shard Place and Bankside Yards. Fiona Edmond is also a notable name within the team, and has been advising Derwent London on recent developments including Soho Place and the Brunel Building. Edmond has advised commercial developers on office and mixed use developments, hotels and data centres. Duncan Salmon is noted for his work in the regeneration and development sectors, while newly promoted partner James Worthington is also recommended.


‘James Worthington’s elevation to partner is well deserved.’

Key clients

Permasteelisa UK Limited

Derwent London

Countryside Properties

London and Regional Properties

BioMed Realty

Reynolds Polymer technology

Salamanca Group

Manhattan Loft Corporation


Education: schools Tier 3

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's education team is led by Lynn Povey and is known for its advice to private schools on matters such as mergers, restructurings, data protection and sensitive staff issues. The practice also draws on the expertise of the firm's private wealth team to advise education clients on establishing charitable trusts. Mike Scott has specialist expertise in the area of educational institutions and charities, while newly made-up partner and deputy head of charities Sarah Rowley has advised on a variety of projects for educational institutions.

Key clients

Westonbirt Schools

City & Guilds

Eton College

Emerging markets Tier 3

'The team stands out as being really enthusiastic about the sector, interested in its clients, and motivated to make the transactions work for its clients', remarks one client of Charles Russell Speechlys LLP. The firm acts for large companies, growth companies and family businesses, as well as creators and owners of private wealth, their families and advisers. In emerging markets, it is best known for advising on investments in sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East and the Caribbean, notably in the financial services, real estate, infrastructure and agribusiness sectors. The practice, led by the 'technically very knowledgeable and very solutions-orientedAdrian Mayer, handles debt and equity transactions for borrowers and lenders, as well as advising on the debt finance elements of private equity and fund investments. Head of financial services Jon Bond and head of the firm's Caribbean group Hamish Perry are also recommended.


“The work has always been delivered to budget, on time and, most importantly, to a very high standard.”

“Adrian Mayer and his team are highly professional, client-worthy and have an excellent grasp of finance in the context of emerging markets.”

“Adrian Mayer is highly attuned to his clients’ needs and is very detail-oriented, which makes him a great performer for his firm.”

Key clients


Amatheon Agri


Fastjet plc

Ag DevCo Limited

Zenium Group



Government of Trinidad and Tobago

Government of The Bahamas

Employment: employers Tier 3

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's practice is spearheaded by Nick Hurley, who handles both contentious and advisory employment law issues. Also notable are project management expert Trevor Bettany, corporate employment lawyer Michael Powner, charity and not-for-profit sector specialist David Green and Emma Bartlett. In recent highlights, the group provided TUPE and related collective bargaining advice to an international retailer to avoid UK-wide industrial action, and also helped a surgeon to secure his reappointment following his dismissal from one of the UK’s largest NHS trusts.

Equity capital markets – small-mid cap Tier 3

Fueled in part by the firm-wide focus on private wealth, Charles Russell Speechlys LLP has developed expertise in advising shareholders and growth companies on public company transactions. Led by Andrew Collins, the practice group has relationships with some active nomads and brokers, but its extensive experience acting for corporate issuers across a huge range of industry sectors makes it a particularly attractive choice for companies seeking to grow through the capital markets. Clients have singled out Paul Arathoon as 'an excellent partner, who is very easy to work with'.


Thoroughly professional and approachable firm with a sound understanding of legal and commercial issues.

Strong team with a number of experienced operators, who are commercially minded and easy to work with.

Key clients

Alpha FX Group plc

Caretech Holdings  plc

Europa Oil & Gas (Holdings) plc

India Capital Growth Fund Ltd

fastjet plc

Liberum Capital Limited

MayAir Group plc

W H Ireland Limited

N+1 Singer LLP

Taptica International

Fintech Tier 3

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's fintech team is particularly invested in the areas of blockchain, regtech and payments technology, where it acts for a wide range of start-ups, software companies, and p2p lending platforms. On the corporate side the group handles sales, management buyouts and private equity fundraising, while on the commercial end it manages contractual arrangements including partnership agreements and software licensing agreements. The team has further expertise acting for cryptocurrency and blockchain developers in the launch of new platforms in the UK and the EU. In a recent matter, financial services regulatory partner William Garner advised Coinbase on various elements of setting up its operations in Europe, including contract negotiations with third party service providers. Mark Bailey, the group's resident technology expert, specialises in IT-sector contracting, cloud computing, outsourcing and data centre operation, and has additional expertise in the area of blockchain technology. Bailey is working with Konsentus to produce a white paper on the impact of PSD2 on the banking sector.

Key clients


OneRagtime Platform Ltd

Duco Technology



Nxtera Ltd

Cheshire Datasystems Limited

IT and telecoms Tier 3

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP counts customers and suppliers of IT services, and leading telecoms operators among its client roster. It handles a range of corporate, commercial and contentious matters with particular experience in the retail and financial services sectors, and the computer games industry. Mark Bailey, who focuses on technology and infrastructure matters and has particular expertise in IT sector contracts and data centre projects, jointly leads the team with corporate transactions partner Mark HowardMegan Paul also handles a range of outsourcing agreements, and Paul Stone is a specialist in EU and competition issues.


Charles Russell Speechlys is super responsive and acts as an extension of the client’s in-house team.

The technology practice at Charles Russell Speechlys has genuine experience and expertise in the industry sector, such that the advice is not just technically accurate but invaluably informed by sector trends and latest developments.

Mark Bailey is first rate, a true leader in his field and very good at producing complex work to tight deadlines with a sure hand.

David Coates on the corporate side is excellent and extremely responsive and well informed.

Caroline Young is dependable and very capable.

Key clients

Pure Data Centres

Global Cloud Exchange

IT Lab




Zenium Data Centres





Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Bahrain


Gamma Telecom

Emirates Telecommunications Company (“Etisalat”)

Global Cloud Exchange (“Reliance”)

The Government of The Bahamas



Novus Communications Limited


Listed funds Tier 3

'Always available, pleasant to deal with and clear at communicating' is how one client describes Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's investment funds department, which is jointly led by Jonathan Bayliss  and Keir Gordon. The group was strengthened by the addition of real estate funds expert Melville Rodrigues, who joined from CMS in April 2018. A varied client list is a key feature of the practice, which regularly assists both major institutional fund management groups and smaller boutique managers. The firm's charity-sector group works hand-in-hand with the funds practice, attracting a number of charity fund managers. Victoria Younghusband is recommended for her 'extremely responsive manner'.


A very capable practice boasting reasonable fees and competent, helpful staff‘.

Melville Rodrigues has exceptional market knowledge and is always keen to help‘.

Victoria fully understands our expectations, provides valuable insights into the industry, and helps solves legal issues pragmatically and efficiently‘.

Key clients

Resonance Limited

Vistra (UK) Limited


Mithras Investment Trust Plc

Alecta Investment Management

The Biotech Growth Trust Plc

Liberum Capital Limited

Chelverton UK Dividend Trust plc

Fidelity Asian Values PLC, Fidelity China Special Situations PLC, Fidelity European Values PLC, Fidelity Japan Trust PLC

Ocean Dial Investment Funds plc

Private equity: transactions – mid-tier – up to £250m Tier 3

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP works with a roster of buyout house clients such as Elysian Capital, which Malcolm MacDougall and senior associate Chris Manning advised on its acquisition of Key Travel. In addition to investment houses, the firm also acts for management teams, investee companies and  high net-worth family offices. Venture capital and growth capital PE are some other key areas of activity. Adam Crossley, who advised the management team on the £1.2bn sale of MRH to Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, is another name to note. McDougall heads up the practice together with Adrian Mayer.


Excellent client focus with fast turnaround and twenty four hour support when needed‘.

Adam Crossley has outstanding commercial understanding and excellent client support skills. He was with us 24v hours a day when necessary‘.

Malcolm MacDougall makes CRS unique. He is an exceptional leader and an engaged partner. Besides a highly legal brain, he is very commercial and has great customer relationship skills while being fun to work with‘.

Key clients

Elysian Capital

FPE Capital

Business Growth Fund

Kreos Capital

Rockpool Investments

Apposite Capital

Civica Group (investee company of Partners Group)

Limerston Capital

Mobeus Partners

Duet Private Equity

Professional discipline Tier 3

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP 'has years of experience in this sector, with a deep understanding of the relevant regulatory regimes'. The healthcare team is best known for its advice to pharmacists and pharmacy owners; it also assists doctors and dentists with professional discipline matters. The practice is also highly regarded for its advice to sports governing bodies on disciplinary proceedings. Noel Wardle in Guildford heads the healthcare regulatory team and London's Edward Craig has niche expertise in equine matters, including horse racing and polo, and legal director Rachel Warren has particular expertise in advising clients appearing before the Fitness to Practise panels of the GPC, GMC and NHS Performance and Fitness to Practise committees. David Reissner retired from the firm.


The team has unparalleled experience in professional disciplinary matters; it deals with cases from cradle to grave, and always adopts the best possible strategy for clients‘.

The practice’s attention to detail and its work ethic are second to none – its lawyers really know what they’re doing‘.

Noel Wardle’s expertise, diligence and excellent advocacy and communication skills stand out‘.

Rachel Warren always advises on the most diverse issues with tact and diplomacy‘.

Key clients

The British Horseracing Authority

Greyhound Board of Great Britain

Ascot Racecourse

Reputation management Tier 3

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP fields a team with unique knowledge of the commercial television sector led by the 'incredibly helpfulDuncan Lamont. The 'absolutely brilliant' firm acts for claimants and defendants alike and therefore boasts a genuine understanding of both sides of the table. Senior associate Claire Greaney, who is also admitted to practise as a barrister and solicitor in New Zealand, provides key support in on-going phone hacking litigation and regularly assists businesses in GDPR-compliant reactions to data breaches. Matters or clients with a sports aspect are often covered by associate Hannah Kent.


Duncan Lamont has been incredibly helpful, providing pragmatic and accessible advice at short notice.’

‘The team we deal with at Charles Russell Speechlys handle our work absolutely brilliantly. They are unfailingly helpful and quick to sort things.’

‘Duncan Lamont has been an absolute rock for us. His understanding of the law, combined with his flawless understanding, means that he is able to tailor his advice perfectly. You couldn’t ask for someone more in tune with your thinking. A delight to work with.’

Key clients

Tina O’Brien

Ryan Thomas

Jimmi Harkishin

Chris Herbert

Samantha Janus

Mark Womack

Les Dennis

Kym Marsh

Kate Ford

Samia Ghadie

Alan Halsall

Lucy-Jo Hudson

Ben Freeman

Oliver Kamm

ITV plc

Channel 4 News

ITV News

Russia TV Today Limited

Financial services: non-contentious/regulatory Tier 4

Private banking and wealth specialist Charles Russell Speechlys LLP has experience in a range of financial services work, including regulated lending, structured products and matters with a cross-border element. Jonathan Bayliss leads the practice and has a particular focus on advising institutional clients. He can call on the expertise of Kate Troup, who handles investment management and private banking issues; and William Garner, who leads the firm’s broking, trading and markets practice.


‘Partner led, great sector knowledge’

‘William Garner has a strong financial services practice. He is very commercial in his approach, has deep market knowledge and is highly responsive’

Key clients

St James’s Place

Julius Baer AG

Sarasin and Partners

Credit Suisse A.G.



Royal Bank of Canada


EFG Private Bank

Mariana Capital Markets

Partnership Tier 4

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's team has strength in the financial services, professional practices and property development sectors. Non-contentious work includes transactional, corporate, tax structuring matters and change management, which bring together expertise from other departments in the firm. The group is also noted for handling disputes both for partnerships and individual partners. Financial services expert David Hicks leads the team, utilising experience in complex structures, conversions to and transactions involving LLPs, governance issues and restructuring.


They have strength and depth to deliver whatever complexity is needed.

David Hicks has very sound technical knowledge and is extremely pleasant to deal with.

David Hicks is incredibly responsive.

Key clients

Members of Turner Parkinson LLP

Civica Group Limited

Pensions (non-contentious) Tier 4

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP counts a number of high-profile charities, not-for-profits and livery companies on its client list, alongside a number of key trustees, sponsors and individual scheme members. Recent highlights for the team include assisting with scheme buy-outs, scheme rule interpretations, governance reviews, restructurings, corporate acquisitions, risk reduction and regulatory advice. Practice head Michael Jones’ private client offering focuses on issues surrounding pension transfers, fixed protection issues and overpayment issues. Jones also receives praise for his expertise in auto-enrolment matters.


Charles Russell Speechlys has the ability to mobilise fast to bring a successful outcome to cases in a short time period

Provides reliable advice and an outstanding service

Demonstrates a client-oriented commitment

Michael Jones is calm and orderly in his approach to matters

Key clients

City & Guilds

Westminster Abbey

Smith & Williamson Trustees Ltd

DST Systems

Dalriada Trustees Limited


Atkin Trustees Limited

Planning Tier 4

The planning team at Charles Russell Speechlys LLP has recently enjoyed a solid flow of London-based mixed-use development and regeneration projects for an expanding client base of commercial clients, developers, property managers, and housebuilders. Claire Fallows has niche expertise with handling the challenges facing the retirement living space with a number of major new projects included on the mandate portfolio. Helen Hutton has significant experience in the field of hydrocarbon planning. A significant client, the Church Commissioners for England, has instructed the team on a wide suite of matters that have encompassed urban extensions and garden village projects.


The team’s advice is consistent and clear.

The team provides an interesting approach to difficult situations and is very responsive to client’s problems.

Claire Fallows is extremely responsive to the challenges of the planning market.

Key clients

The Church Commissioners for England

Howard de Walden Estates Limited

Derwent London


All England Lawn Tennis Club

Bellway Homes Limited

Crest Nicholson

Countryside Properties

Big Yellow

Europa Oil and Gas

Greenwich Millennium Villages Limited

Barratt Homes


David Lloyd

Power (including electricity, nuclear and renewables) Tier 4

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP is best known for its corporate, commercial and project advisory skills, particularly in the waste energy and offshore wind sectors. Key partners in the team are construction specialist Kevin Forsyth, the corporate finance-focused Chris Putt and commercial lawyer David Berry. The practice was bolstered in 2018 by the arrival of associate Edidem Basiekanem, who has brought experience of private M&A and private equity transactions in Africa.

Key clients


Perpetuus Tidal Energy Centre Ltd

Encor Power plc


Bellway Homes

Guernsey Electricity Ltd


Commercial litigation Tier 5

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP 'has an excellent understanding of its clients' objectives and their industries'. The team advises on complex, high-value corporate and commercial disputes for clients that range from multinational corporations to high-net-worth individuals. Recent cases include disputes in the technology, telecoms, financial services, mining, energy, aviation and retail sectors. Stewart HeyEdward CraigJohn Sykes and Rhys Novak are all highly rated practitioners; Charlotte Pender was made partner.


Excellent domestic and international lawyers who are at the top of their game for complex disputes.’

Stewart Hey is an excellent lawyer with massive experience of the biggest claims‘.

John Sykes is a great lawyer with effortless interpersonal skills’.

Edward Craig has an excellent understanding of the issues faced by clients and is a reliable contact‘.

Key clients

Central Bank of Bahrain

National Bank of Greece


Norsk Titanium

Employee share schemes Tier 5

The team at Charles Russell Speechlys LLP is experienced in both HMRC approved and unapproved share option plan work, including bespoke employee share plans for multinationals. The team has a specialism in advising on the introduction of UK share plans to other jurisdictions and the adjustment of overseas plans, particularly US-based plans, for UK and European operations. James Carter is the key contact. Martin Griffiths left for Addleshaw Goddard.

Intellectual property Tier 5

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's department is singled out for its brand management and disputes expertise, which spans soft IP matters including trade marks, copyrights, designs and internet and advertising issues. Practice head Mary Bagnall has developed notable expertise in the protection and enforcement of non-traditional trade marks including colour or shape marks; she is advising Cadbury on its efforts to protect 'Cadbury purple' as a registered trade mark. Other names to note include Nick White, who excels in the sports, food and beverage, and retail sectors, and Jennifer Pierce, who focuses on technology and brand issues. Trade mark expert Kate O’Rourke left to Mewburn Ellis LLP.

Key clients

Essity Hygiene and Health (formerly SCA)



Moore Stephens



Chocoladefabriken Lindt & Sprüngli AG


Rapha Racing




Childrensalon Group

Vindavinci Beverage Company

Australian Manuka Honey Association

World Rowing

Honest Burgers

Itsu grocery

Howard de Walden Estates

Mining and minerals Tier 5

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP fields a multidisciplinary mining team, comprising capabilities in corporate, commercial, banking, litigation and real estate. Corporate partner Andrew Collins sits at the head of the sector group which covers a wide range of issues including farm-in and farm-out agreements, financing transactions, private placings and IPOs, as well as competition and regulatory matters.

Property finance Tier 5

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP acts for a mix of lenders and borrowers; the firm’s client base includes major banks and private banks, property developers and high-net-worth individuals, and new market entrants such as debt funds and challenger banks. Areas of strength include healthcare, student accommodation, industrial and residential property, and data centre financing. The team also has experience in sharia-compliant transactions. Paul Kay, who counts an increasing number of Asian investors among his clients, leads the team.


Paul Kay is highly rated: he provides a hands-on service, explaining the complexities of the transactions and providing pragmatic advice.

The team is pragmatic with quick turnaround times.

We receive prompt and helpful advice from the team.

Charles Russell Speechlys provides exactly what we need to conclude transactions as quickly as circumstances permit.

It is a very user-friendly team – its proactive, commercial and generally sensible approach helps to cut through issues quickly and with minimal fuss.

Key clients

Lloyds Bank

Octopus Property

Topland Jupiter Limited

Metro Bank

Lombard North Central

Royal Bank of Canada

Northridge Capital

Aeriance Investments SA

Henley Investments Limited

Puma Investments

Country Court Care Homes Limited

Ekistics Property Advisors

OakNorth Bank

Salamanca Group


Caring Homes Group

Venture capital Tier 5

As part of the firm's overarching private equity capabilities, Charles Russell Speechlys LLP handles a significant amount of work for venture and growth capital investors, as well as investees, across the spectrum of the investment lifecycle (where clients also benefit from the ability to leverage the expertise of lawyers with complementary practice area knowledge in tax, IP and finance). Tapping into the firm's private wealth prowess, the team also has strong market traction among the growing family office investor class, as well as for high-net-worth individuals on their venture capital investments. Chris Putt is a key member of the team whose range of expertise includes traditional venture capital work, as well as venture debt matters. Putt has recently handled numerous matters for Kreos Capital, including its €20m investment in Dutch biopharmaceutical company Kiadis Pharma.


The firm provided invaluable assistance to us on our first go at raising seed capital funding.’

Key clients

Kreos Capital

Bestport Ventures

Shore Capital

IDG Capital

Business Growth Fund

Mobeus Equity Partners

Ace & Co


Zeal Networks SE


EU and competition Tier 6

The team at Charles Russell Speechlys LLP assists clients with merger control issues, market investigations and inquiries, and contentious matters. The department is jointly headed by Paul Henty and Paul Stone, who are both highly praised by clients. The pair have a longstanding client base including telecoms clients, with recent work including handling instructions from the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Bahrain as well as Gamma Telecom. Other sectors of focus for the team include media, e-commerce, consumer goods and pharmaceuticals.


Very knowledgeable in relation to public procurement work

Extremely incisive and commercial legal advice

‘Approachable and always happy to help

The team at Charles Russell Speechlys is able to combine a real depth of experience in competition law with a real depth of experience in EU law. This is due to the double-act provided by Paul Henty, who brings personal experience of having worked in Brussels and knowing his way around the Commission, and Paul Stone, who is a very practical competition lawyer

Paul Stone is bright, attentive and practical

Paul Henty and Paul Stone are both excellent and complement each other’s sets of legal skills very well

Key clients


Consultant Eye Surgeons Partnership

Gamma Telecom

Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Bahrain



WisdomTree Investments

WS Atkins

Corporate restructuring & insolvency Tier 8

The 'incredibly diligent, knowledgeable and approachable' five-partner team at Charles Russell Speechlys LLP 'can deal with everything from complex, cross-border restructuring and insolvency issues to more straightforward, domestic insolvency matters'. Although the firm also handles restructuring and transactional-based matters, it has a particularly strong reputation in relation to contentious insolvency matters, including misfeasance claims brought against directors. Simon Ridpath provides 'very commercial and highly technical advice'.


The team is able to combine real world practical advice with commercial application.

A well-balanced team of talented lawyers with strong technical skills.

The partners are hands on and the entire team is made up of lawyers who have the necessary skills and expertise to deal with cases at all levels.

Simon Ridpath has an impressive knowledge of insolvency law and displays an excellent attention to detail.

Hanh Nguyen is always commercial and pragmatic, balancing technical excellence with a clear understanding of the client’s practical goals and limitations.

Hanh Nguyen is fiercely intelligent and a calm and thoughtful lawyer.

Jason Freedman is calm, rational and commercial, providing excellent legal advice focused on achieving the desired outcome.

Key clients

Central Bank of Bahrain

Octopus Property

Adrian Hyde of CVR Global LLP in his capacity as Special Administrators of Advalorem Value Asset Fund Limited and D B Holdings Limited

IN ’n’ OUT Limited

Kevin Brown (in his capacity as the liquidator of TN Recruitment Limited (in liquidation))

BBK Partnership – Joylan Sunnassee in his capacity as the liquidator of Douglas Care and Staff Limited (in liquidation) and Douglas Staff Centre Limited (in liquidation)

Allan Graham and Geoffrey Bouchier (in their capacity as the liquidators of Designer Ideas Limited (in administration))

Nick Wood and Geoffrey Bouchier as trustees in bankruptcy of the deceased estate of Peter David Benstead (deceased)


Charles Russell Speechlys LLP handles a spread of immigration work for both individuals and corporate clients. The team is instructed by a raft of high-profile multinational clients on PBS and non-PBS matters, and also utilises its international presence to handle complex immigration issues, often advising Chinese and Russian clients. It is also increasingly acting for US nationals and is instructed by a growing number of start-ups. Advising high-net-worth individuals on personal immigration issues is also a key focus of the department. Team head Rose Carey has a 'wealth of experience' of advising financial services sector clients and handles a raft of sponsor compliance issues. Senior associate Paul McCarthy is experienced in business and personal immigration work; he advises on various PBS visa categories and has advised clients on applications for Tier 2 sponsor licences.


The team is exceptional on business immigration issues.

Rose Carey is a well-known figure in the immigration field.

Key clients





City & Guilds

Agriculture and estates Tier 1

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP covers tax and real estate planning in the context of land sales and purchases. The firm also advises on succession planning, ownership structuring and regulations concerning residential development. Senior associate Tristam van Lawick is experienced in the negotiation of tenancy and partnership agreements. Practice co-head Christopher Page advises estate and private land owners on the legal aspects of strategic investments in the agricultural sector. Clients also include trustees, charities and financial institutions.


The team has a depth of experience

The firm is thoroughly professional and a real expert in the country house, farm and estate market

The practice is efficient and communicative with a strong and high-quality work ethic

A great with great all-round knowledge

The team consists of excellent problem solvers

Exceptionally user-friendly, knowledgeable and prepared to go the extra mile

Christian Massey is always available for clients and able to move quickly when required. He is respected by buying and selling agents which is crucial on complex transactions and gives clients very sensible advice without overcomplicating matters

Commercial litigation: Kent, Surrey and Sussex Tier 1

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's Guildford team is hailed for being able to compete with City practices whilst maintaining a personal service and sensible costs. Whether advising large corporates or smaller businesses, Stephen Burns is especially highlighted for these qualities and Jamie Cartwright  is noted for his expertise in the TMT and automotive sectors. The team is home to a number of high-performing associates including  Charlotte Healy, Katy Ackroyd and Katie Bewick.


The Guildford office has high-quality work and delivers a hard-hitting litigation service where needed.  Despite this the CRS is commercially minded and focused on the cost to the end client.  The team works seamlessly together, is very responsive and communicates well.’

They have the ability to adapt and access a wide range of knowledge across a number of different people within the firm but still managing to balance this with a close relationship with one or two key members of the firm so that we know we always have someone to go to who supports us and knows our business.’

CRS are comfortably able to take on the City firms in large and medium litigation matters. They give sensible and cost-effective advice.’

Stephen Burns is responsive and hands-on as a partner. Katie Bewick is a very impressive junior associate.’

Stephen Burns and Charlotte Healy have been exceptional in dealing with us. We are a small business, so cost is an issue for us and they have both managed to balance that incredibly well whilst providing sound legal advice. They have provided the right level of comfort that we are legally supported and their knowledge and understanding of the case is really good.’

Steve Burns is to the point and articulate.  He gets to the heart of legal issues and puts unnecessary detail to one side.’

Katy Ackroyd works incredibly hard and is very on the ball.’

Key clients

Fiat, Chrysler, Jeep and Alfa Romeo


BCA/We Buy Any Car

Teletrac Navman

Swiss Post

Day Lewis plc

eToro Group


Walkers Chocolates


Commercial litigation: M4 Corridor and Gloucestershire Tier 1

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's Manoj Vaghela specialises in handling complex insurance disputes, which often have a cross-border flavour. His experience includes Bermuda Form arbitration, cyber liability and D&O cases. The firm's insurance caseload is a mix of insurer, bank and manufacturer-led work, covering sectors such as financial services, construction, engineering, energy and natural resources and TMT. Outside of insurance disputes, the firm is noted for acting for clients in regulatory investigations, shareholder disputes and civil fraud cases. Claudine Morgan is experienced in contractual disputes, professional negligence cases and sale of goods disputes.


They offer a rapid response and action to all queries

They stand out for their excellent ability to work effectively as a team and communicate with both counsel and the client very clearly. This ensures a coherent approach and engenders a genuine feeling of collaboration between all involved

Claudine Morgan is commercially aware of any situation and provides commercially relevant advice

I would particularly recommend Claudine Morgan, who has an excellent manner with clients and always goes the extra mile

Ben Moore is also a very good lawyer and perceptive when formulating strategy

Key clients

National Bank of Kuwait (International) Plc

Tsokkos Hotels Public Limited

George Nianias

Argo Real Estate Opportunities Fund Limited

Sports Supplements Ltd t/a Bulk Powders

Oxford Plastic Systems Limited

Trustees of the Harrowby’s Discretionary Will Trust

The Trustees of the Earl Bathurst 1963 Settlement

Cynergy Bank Limited (formerly Bank of Cyprus UK Limited)

Executors of James McNeile (Deceased)

Argo Group International Holdings Ltd

Commercial property: M4 Corridor and Gloucestershire Tier 1

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP has a particularly strong profile undertaking strategic land work for landowners, but it also acts for developers as well. The scope of its work in this space includes advising on land promotion, landowner collaboration, the acquisition and sale of sites, the planning process, infrastructure works and land disposals, among other matters. The strategic land team is led by the ‘superbIan Brothwood, who is active in both residential and commercial development schemes. Nigel Morton, who is ‘very experienced in portfolio sales and purchases’, serves as a principal contact for multiple specialist residential funds, national and regional housebuilders, charity investors and corporates. Naomi Nettleton’s practice focuses on property investment, with particular emphasis on the Specialist Supported Living sector. Jonathan Wilkinson and recently promoted senior associate Julie Sharpe are also recommended.


The practice offers a City-quality service

All team members are very knowledgeable, accessible and highly professional

The client can benefit from the feeling of intimacy of a smaller firm but the practice has the depth and experience of a much larger one

Naomi Nettleton goes out of her way to look for solutions to problems, efficiently and effectively

Ian Brothwood and Naomi Nettleton approach their work with the focus and the work ethic of experienced City solicitors

Key clients

The Crab Hill Partnership/ Crab Hill Developments

Trustees of the Grove Airfield Pool Trust

Topland Henley Healthcare Investments

Topland Jupiter

Hearthstone Residential Fund 1 L. P.

Kout Advisory

Swiss Land Group

Construction Tier 1

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's team 'does not disappoint', as is reflected by it generating work from construction sector clients, as well as those active in the healthcare, transport, energy, education and not-for-profit arenas. Practice head David Savage, who is dual-qualified as a solicitor and barrister, is knowledgeable about the gamut of construction issues; he advises on matters arising from the earliest procurement strategy discussions through to dispute avoidance/resolution, the close out of major final accounts. Recently promoted partner Andrew Keeley advises on construction and engineering contracts for commercial and prime residential projects, as well as professional negligence claims.


The team is experienced in construction and has knowledge of  sector-specific best practices, and, in particular, is able to present FIDIC contracts and adapt them so as to apply to different jurisdictions‘.

We value the consistently-delivered expertise and prompt assistance‘.

David Savage and associate Jack Horsley take personalized approach based on the client’s specific circumstances and provide well-judged and timely legal solutions‘.

David Savage and associate Jack Horsley are very attentive and responsive; both are skilled in translating legal terminology for the layman‘.

Andrew Keeley deals with our requirements efficiently and promptly‘.

Key clients

Ministry of Transport & Telecommunications, Government of the Kingdom of Bahrain

Church Commissioners for England

The Energy Technologies Institute

Eton College

Caring Homes Group

Westminster Abbey

Aberdeen Asset Management

Northvale Construction Limited

Margaret Howell Limited

Contentious trusts and probate Tier 1

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP has a strong profile among high net worth individuals. It also handles contentious trusts and probate matters for several not-for-profit organisations; recent work included defending clients against a number of Inheritance Act claims, representing charities in trust disputes, and also acting in a rectification claim and a proprietary estoppel claim. Elsewhere, the group deals with matters involving offshore trust jurisdictions, such as Guernsey, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. Duncan Elson heads up the team, which includes Samantha Ewing, who is recommended for complex will validity claims and multifaceted Inheritance Act claims.

Key clients

The Public Trustee of the Bailiwick of Guernsey

Investment One Financial Services Limited

Corporate and commercial: M4 Corridor and Gloucestershire Tier 1

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP handles national and cross-border work for leading companies, including listings, corporate M&A and takeovers. It has notable specialisms in the aviation and renewables industries. In addition, the firm is increasingly active in matters connected with the Middle East and Africa, such as investments and acquisitions. Richard Norton is a key figure in the team.


Their service stands out as exceptional, they are extremely attentive to clients’ needs and extremely responsive

Delivered an excellent work product for very good value

Adrian Mayer is always extremely helpful and solutions-oriented; he knows the market well

Matthew Hobbs is not only very responsive and efficient, but also a pleasure to work with

Key clients

Trifast Plc

Dunkerton Family Office

A Tsokkos Public Limited

Gulf Air

Actis LLP

Argo Group

BMI Regional

Battery Ventures

Robert Hitchins Group Limited


Employment: Kent, Surrey, Sussex Tier 1

The Charles Russell Speechlys LLP employment, pensions and immigration group is headed by Nick Hurley who is highly rated for contentious work in addition to advising on areas such as reorganisations and business transfers. The team counts an impressive list of international and national companies among its clients with a growing focus on those in the finance and TMT sectors. Ben Smith is in demand for his broad skills in HR matters including redundancies and dismissals and TUPE matters and Andy Williams' ' sound judgement is always valued on all HR issues'. Emily Chalkley is one of a number of associates who also garners appreciation.


CRS is undoubtedly one of the best regional and City practices, combining the right partners and associates with the right skill levels to match client requirements.’

Andy Williams and his team are excellent. Always client focused and attentive and they totally understand my commercial needs.’

Andy Williams is extremely practical and does not over complicate issues. His sound judgement is always valued on all HR issues. I have no hesitation whatsoever in recommending him to private individuals or multi-national companies.’

Ben Smith will always go the extra mile for his client.  He is obsessive about getting his clients the best deal.’

Nick Hurley is a real fighter, Nick is the man you want on your side when you are going to high stakes litigation.’

Associate Emily Chalkley has incredible attention to detail and leaves no stone unturned.’


Key clients


Photo-Me International Plc

Amundi Asset Management

National Museum of the Royal Navy

Zenium Technology Partners Limited/CyrusOne, Inc.

Goodwin Procter LLP

DST Financial Services International Ltd

Lord Wandsworth College

Employment: M4 Corridor and Gloucestershire Tier 1

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP undertakes day to day general HR work, corporate reorganisation advice, business and TUPE transfers, as well as employee tribunal and High Court litigation. Clients range from local SMEs to both national and international corporations. The firm retains an especially strong client base in the retail and leisure, charities and agricultural sectors, acting primarily for employers and high net worth individuals. Practice head Sara Wilson has notable experience in the healthcare sector, as well as a particular interest in advising trusts, charities and family-owned businesses on employment strategy and the enforcement of post-termination restrictions.


There is a breadth of experience and consistency of approach and standards with everyone you deal with at Charles Russell Speechlys. The advice is always practical, commercial and legally sound – it is very reassuring to know they are there

Very professional, proactive and helpful. Highly responsive

A broad team that is able to offer advice across all an organisation’s needs. Quick to respond to problems and professional in their approach

I particularly want to note the help and support we have had from Sara Wilson, Syma Spanjes and Claudine Morgan. I value their candour, responsiveness and advice

Sara’s approach is personable, attentive and thoughtful. To the point and practical, we always feel confident that Sara understands our business and approach to handling people issues and gives us sound advice accordingly. We without fail, come off the phone having a way forward that is a relief and support to us when dealing with challenging issues. We have complete confidence in the advice we are given and have never been let down. Sara is outstanding

Key clients

Cats Protection


Neal’s Yard

Pennant International Plc

Trifast Plc

1E Limited

Ambrell Corporation

Reynolds Catering Supplies Limited

The Garland Company Limited

Executive Jet Charter Limited

Gulf Air B.S.C (c)

B&M Babbage & Co Limited

Family: Kent, Surrey, Sussex Tier 1

The Charles Russell Speechlys LLP team offers outstanding expertise in challenging children cases including international relocations, child protection  and abuse allegations and domestic and international adoptions. This is in addition to financial disputes over business assets, trusts, pension and tax issues. Karen Wilsher and Shona Alexander lead the team; William Rollin  has a focus on financial disputes side of divorces and the breakdown of civil partnerships and the 'well thought of' Felicity Chapman has significant expertise in areas including nuptial and cohabitation agreements and children and domestic abuse cases. The team is further boosted with the return of Claire Devine  following maternity leave.


An excellent firm all round. The family lawyers are all efficient, well versed in this area of the law and approachable. Some other firms take on clients without appearing to give them a realistic opinion on the merits of their case and appear to be happy to run it just for the fees. This is never the case with CRS.’

The family team work tirelessly for their clients, providing a thorough and detailed approach to case management and sensitive yet robust advice where needed. The presentation of their cases is second to none and yet they remain a very friendly and approachable team as a whole.  Their problem solving approach is to be commended.’

I particularly rate Karen Wilshire. She is a very able and experienced lawyer.  She is both knowledgeable and practical and gives sensible and realistic advice to clients. She also has a very caring and empathetic manner which clients warm to.’

Claire Devine has recently returned to CRS.  She is also approachable and knowledgeable.’

Shona Alexander is a great leader of the family team.  Her technical knowledge is fantastic but she is equally approachable and easy to work with.’

Felicity Chapman is also a very experienced solicitor who deals with some complex work.  Whilst the team will always push for the best outcome for their clients, they are also realistic and sensible in their approach, searching for the compromise where one is possible.’

Insolvency and corporate recovery Tier 1

Described as 'an insolvency and restructuring team at the top of their game', Charles Russell Speechlys LLP 's Guilford based team carries out a full range of contentious and non-contentious work, acting for insolvency practitioners, lenders and financial institutions, companies, directors and stakeholders. The team specialises in a number of sectors including pharmacy, retail, sport, private wealth and real estate. James Hyne heads the practice and holds significant international insolvency expertise. Senior associate Daniel Moore is another key name to note.


‘The team is technically good, very commercial and responsive to the needs of clients. The advice is couched in language that makes it accessible to non-lawyers and addresses the issues and questions raised.’

‘Highly commercial and practical, giving clear advice promptly and backing this up with solid law!’

James Hyne is exceptionally gifted, bright and great with clients. He has a wide range of knowledge and an ability to get to the heart of the problem…then find the answer.’

‘Dan Moore is a real one to watch for the future.’

‘Prav Reddy is exceptional: he is very knowledgeable, has excellent contacts and is a real pleasure to work with. He is hard working, yet gives off an air of sublime confidence which translates into sturdy and robust advice.’

‘Hanh Ngyuen is very responsive and actively involves the team in engagements. She can always be relied upon to put in the time to get the right result’

Key clients

Alix Partners Services UK LLP

Credit Suisse (UK) Limited

Turpin Barker Armstrong

Grant Thornton UK Limited

Alvarez & Marsal

Leonard Curtis Business Recovery

James Cowper Kreston

MBI Coakley Restructuring and Insolvency

RSM Restructuring Advisory LLP

Central Bank of Bahrain

Personal tax, trusts and probate Tier 1

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP combines expertise in family businesses, landed estates, heritage property and international tax. Practice head Christopher Page advises estate and private land owners, family business entrepreneurs and trustees on tax strategy, succession planning. Associate Tabitha Collett assists with asset protective and ownership structures. Julia Cox and Henry Fea count both domestic and foreign residents to their client base.

Property litigation Tier 1

Jointly led by Peter Levaggi and David HainesCharles Russell Speechlys LLP's property litigation department combines 'exceptional legal talent with the sheen of a cheerful can-do attitude'. It generates a regular flow of both commercial and residential landlord and tenant disputes, and also has experience of property insolvency, leasehold enfranchisement and compulsory purchase order claims. Richard Flenley is a name to note.


Good at listening, tactful when dealing with the other side and always puts the client at ease‘.

Charles Russell Speechlys has a full-service property litigation team capable of handling disputes ranging from landlord and tenant to complex claims involving banking elements‘.

David Haines is without competition at both the national level and regionally; he is super bright, a great communicator and has a legal brain second to none‘.

Natalie Deuchar is bright, ambitious and on a stellar trajectory. She has a great rapport with clients and can think outside the box when unusual solutions are required‘.

Richard Flenley is able, personable and able gets down to work without a fuss‘.

Peter Levaggi is a great strategist‘.

Key clients

County Enforcement Group

CitySprint (UK) Limited

Charles Terence Estates Limited

NEC (UK) Limited

Bard Group

The Ernest Cook Trust

HW Fisher

Save the Children

National Crime Agency

wagamama Limited

Banking and finance Tier 2

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP has carved out an excellent reputation handling loan and security transactions for specialist lenders, such as hedge funds and private equity funds. The banking practice also stands out due to its extensive experience of advising on aircraft finance, as well as on loans used to fund projects in the renewables sector. Another distinguishing feature of the department is the cross-border nature of its work, which is facilitated through its special Middle East and African practices. Practice head Richard Norton, who has a substantial international practice, has expertise in Loan Market Association (LMA) documents and swaps. Naomi Nettleton specialises in real estate finance.


An excellent local team which provides advice at local prices, with access to the London counterpart, if necessary

The team provides straightforward advice and delivers good results even under tight deadlines

Key clients

Awal Bank B.S.C.

Bank of Cyprus

Argo Group

Gulf Air

National Bank of Kuwait

Clydesdale Bank

Ahli United Bank

BMI Regional

Charities and not-for-profit Tier 2

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP handles the establishment and registration as well as mergers and restructurings of charitable institutions. The practice also assists charities with the sale and purchase of assets, estate tenancy and lease agreements. Associate Penelope Byatt’s areas of expertise include the provision of regulatory advice on constitutional and governance matters. Clients include educational, religious and grant-making charities.


The firm has excellent knowledge of daily charity business. The team is personable and willing to support the charity’s intent

The team is very approachable, clear and prompt. Its solutions are practical and carefully tailored to specific requirements

Charles Russell Speechlys is a firm with an excellent reputation

Commercial property: Kent, Surrey, Sussex Tier 2

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP offers the gamut of real estate expertise to clients across areas including retail and leisure, charities, industrial and energy sectors. Ingrid Saffin has notable experience of complex transactions in the healthcare sector and also advises investors and corporate occupiers. Gavin Partridge joined the team in April 2019 from Mundays LLP.


The team came highly recommended and did not disappoint.’


Key clients

Nike Retail BV/Nike (UK)

Converse Retail (UK) and Converse Netherlands BV

Octopus Property


CareTech Holdings Plc

Optima Care Limited

Dentex Healthcare Group

Pivotal Housing Group

Juno Health UK and Bregal Freshstream

Westlin Bearsted

Corporate and commercial: Kent, Surrey, Sussex Tier 2

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP attracts clients from a broad range of industries and has an impressive roster of healthcare, pharmacy and veterinary clients, as well as private equity houses. It provides a full service in addition to its corporate expertise, working in tandem with its London colleagues. Geoffrey Sparks leads the team; Tim Jenkins is especially noted for his healthcare focus and Catherine Drew's broad corporate expertise includes the healthcare sector. Associate Jonathan Steele is noted for his client handling abilities and practical advice and Rebecca Burford is highly rated.


Very accessible, responsive, measured and adept at explaining complex legal issues in straightforward terms, providing an excellent service to their clients. A London-quality practice in Guildford.’

They are technically very competent and they have particular expertise in pharmacy matters. They offer a genuine alternative to the London marketplace.

Jonathan Steele is especially good with clients and a joy to work with. He is very hardworking, easily accessible at all times, and delivers high-quality, practical advice.’

Tim Jenkins has an ingrained culture of practicality, whilst giving very sound legal advice.’

Tim Jenkins has unique experience on pharmacy matters and is able to cut through the regulation to find pragmatic solutions.’

Key clients

discoverIE Group plc

Unique Secure


London Irish Holdings

Goizper S.Coop

Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain

Sellers of Xstrahl Limited and Phoenix Objectives

Goddard Veterinary Group

Juno Health

Trusted Housesitters

Personal tax, trusts and probate: Kent, Surrey, Sussex Tier 2

Sally Ashford heads the non-contentious private client team at the 'excellent all round firmCharles Russell Speechlys LLP and has extensive experience assisting high-net-worth individuals, family business owners in relation to their estates and succession planning, including inheritance tax mitigation and trusts. The practice also undertakes Court of Protection matters including deputyship and statutory will applications and works with colleagues in other practice areas such as corporate, litigation and real estate. It also provides a range of services to major charities including Cancer Research UK. Senior associate Gareth Walliss is noted for his tax and trust planning skills.

Charities and not-for-profit Tier 3

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP advises charitable trusts, charitable incorporated organisations, royal charter companies and community benefit societies on all areas of commercial, employment and real estate matters. The firm has significant experience advising military, religious and educational charities as well acting for individuals on all aspects of charitable giving and philanthropic activities. Guildford- based Duncan Elson is the main contact.

Debt recovery Tier 3

The debt recovery practice of Charles Russell Speechlys LLP sits within the commercial litigation department and focuses on disputed and international debt claims on behalf of clients in the automotive, media, financial services and property sectors, where the team handles contentious matters related to licensing, unpaid fees, finance default and service charge arrears claims. Litigation partner Jamie Cartwright is the lead adviser.

Key clients

Fiat, Chrysler and Jeep

Walkers Chocolates

British Car Auctions

We Buy Any Car


Professional negligence Tier 3

The lawyers in Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's largely claimant-based practice frequently litigate claims against city-based insurers and within the accountancy and financial services sector. Stephen Burns and David Savage are crucial figures in the team and have recently acted for Icon 1992 in a dispute against an insurance broker pertaining to the recovery of sums. Duncan Elson is another name to note, and has vast expertise in trust and estate-based litigation.

Key clients

Cancer Research UK

Royal National Institute of Blind People

Zenium Technology Partners Limited

Lab Lateral Limited

Icon 1992 Limited

Property litigation Tier 4

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP’s team operates nationally and acts for a varied client base in a wide range of property-related disputes. It advises large landed estate clients on adverse interests in land, landlord and tenant matters and issues concerning possession of agricultural holdings. In the commercial property space, recent highlights included lease termination disputes and other disputes connected with property contracts. The group's other strengths are in the retail and the property management sectors, and also in representing private individuals in contentious property matters.

Key clients

Europa Oil & Gas

Woodchester Valley Freehold

Hackney Joint Estate Charity

Charles Russell Speechlys is known as a leading adviser within the world of dynamic, privately owned businesses and among the world’s leading creators and owners of private wealth and their families. Major corporates and institutions find the firm’s more considered and personal approach a refreshing alternative to larger, conventional business law firms.

Charles Russell Speechlys is a law firm headquartered in London with offices in the UK, Europe, the Middle East and Hong Kong.

The firm: The firm is focused on securing the growth of its clients. With an unusually broad range of skills and experience across the full spectrum of business and personal needs, the firm has a wide perspective, clear insight and a strongly commercial long-term view.

Types of work undertaken: 

Banking and finance: focusing on borrower work in all sectors, particularly real estate finance and projects, bank lender work in the Middle East and elsewhere, and non-bank lender work, including mezzanine finance, corporate finance support, and structured finance.

Commercial: focusing on complex work from corporate organisations requiring regular commercial contracting support, including compliance and corporate risk, EU, competition and trade, IP transactions, and licensing and outsourcing.

Commercial dispute resolution: undertaking all types of litigation, arbitration and mediation both in the UK and internationally, and has particular expertise in commercial disputes, corporate recovery and insolvency, judicial review and fraud.

Construction, engineering and projects: focusing on commercial clients across a wide range of business sectors, but with a particular emphasis on real estate developers, property investment companies, contractors, and major engineering consultancies. The firm also advises high-net-worth individuals when undertaking high-value residential construction projects.

Corporate: advising on a wide range of issues, including flotations, mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, private equity and venture capital financings. Specialist teams provide advice on all types of commercial contracts and outsourcing arrangements and have particular expertise in data protection issues, competition matters and tax.

Corporate recovery and insolvency: undertaking both contentious and transactional work for insolvency practitioners, often with an international component.

Employment, pensions and immigration: providing corporate clients with strategic insights and practical solutions for all their employment, pensions and immigration issues as well as advising senior individuals on a personal basis.

Family: advising individuals and intermediaries on matters concerning family breakdown, children and relationship agreements.

Financial services and tax: assisting clients with their everyday regulatory and legal issues, as well as focusing on advising on transactional and strategic matters.

Healthcare: providing a comprehensive range of transactional, regulatory and advisory expertise to deliver an integrated service to clients in the social care, primary care, dental and veterinary sectors.

Intellectual property: advising on all types of contentious and non-contentious work, including copyright, patents, trade marks, registered designs, database rights, passing off and confidential information.

Private property: working with international banks, private investment companies, and private individuals from the UK and overseas, advising on UK and international investment property transactions.

Property litigation: advising major institutional land and estate-owning clients, in particular in London, the South East, and the South West and for property insolvency-related work.

Real estate: advising on every aspect of commercial property, including the structuring and financing of property transactions, planning a development, advising on landlord/tenant issues or managing a property portfolio.

Tax, trusts and succession: advising individuals, trustees, beneficiaries, entrepreneurs and landowners on the establishment and management of trusts and on the tax implications associated with the establishment and running of the structure.

Other offices: Doha, Dubai, Geneva, Hong Kong, Luxembourg, Manama, Paris, Zurich.

Department Name Email Telephone
Senior Partner Christopher Page
Managing Partner Simon Ridpath
Charities and not-for-profit Sarah Rowley
Construction and infrastructure David Savage
Financial services Jon Bond
Healthcare Michael Lingens
Healthcare Noel Wardle
Private wealth Piers Master
Real Estate Simon Ewing
Retail and leisure Edward Craig
Sport Jason Saiban
TMT Mark Bailey
TMT Mark Howard
Commercial dispute resolution Stewart Hey
Corporate Malcolm MacDougall
Corporate restructuring and insolvency James Hyne
Employment, pensions and immigration Nick Hurley
Family Sarah Higgins
Intellectual property Mary Bagnall
Cheltenham Richard Norton
Doha Simon Green
Dubai Simon Green
Geneva Michael Wells-Greco
Guildford Duncan Elson
Hong Kong Tom Shaw
Luxembourg David Louis
Manama Patrick Gearon
Paris Frederic Jeannin
Zurich Mark Summers
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Number of UK partners : 145
Total UK fee earners : 510

CLIENT: Geoff Carton-Kelly, Partner
TESTIMONIAL: “A brilliant legal team with an unshakeable focus and total command of the complex subject matter. They are willing to make personal sacrifices and remain good-humoured, even under huge pressure during the trial, where their clear strategy, adaptability and impressive co-ordination delivered a masterclass.”

CLIENT: Alan Shearer CBE
TESTIMONIAL: “The team at Charles Russell Speechlys provided me with outstanding legal advice and have shown real professionalism and integrity throughout the dealings I have had with them.”

CLIENT: Richard Cherry, Group Deputy Chairman
COMPANY/FIRM: Countryside Properties
TESTIMONIAL: “Our relationship with Charles Russell Speechlys goes back many years, spanning each of the defining steps in our corporate history. The team is able to deploy experts across the full range of disciplines required for the deal. Their commercially based advice, strong sense of commitment to us and to the achievement of the transaction made them once again much valued members of our team.”

CLIENT: Mahesh Patel, CEO
COMPANY/FIRM: Minster Care Group
TESTIMONIAL: “Having advised the family for nearly 30 years on business and personal matters, the team at Charles Russell Speechlys was perfectly placed to support us in this innovative transaction which allowed some family members to exit, and others to remain involved, in the business which will now be backed by a publicly-traded real estate investor”.

CLIENT: Kelly Fairweather, Chief Operating Officer
COMPANY/FIRM: International Tennis Federation
TESTIMONIAL: “We were delighted to have the Charles Russell Speechlys team on side, whose sport sector expertise, multi-disciplinary service, global footprint and combined unique regulatory and commercial insight were vital to completing the deal.”

At Charles Russell Speechlys, we believe in creating equal opportunities for everyone. Not only do we want to attract and keep the best talent, we want to create a culture and workplace that allows individuals to thrive irrespective of gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital or civil partnership status, nationality, colour, race, ethnic or national origin, religion or belief, age, disability, or background. By working with people from different backgrounds or with different experiences, we get a different perspective and that helps us to think more broadly, question more and share our skills, knowledge, and experience as part of a collective intelligence.

We believe that creating a diverse and inclusive workplace allows our people to be the best they can be, and do the best for our clients who can expect a firm that understands their needs and delivers advice that considers their commercial and personal needs.

Firm networks

Our Diversity Partner Emma Bartlett is supported by a full time Diversity & Inclusion Manager and four active employee networks. The networks focus on events and initiatives to promote and raise awareness relating to their specific area but also in collaboration across the networks. The networks are also involved in firm projects and assist with reviewing policies and procedures to ensure they are inclusive.

Our networks are:

· CAPability (Collaborating And Promoting ability)

· Gender


· Religion, Belief and Ethnicity

Within the CAPability network, there is a Carers Group and a strong focus on mental health. Age-related initiatives fall within the remit of all networks.

The network initiatives vary from year to year, but achievements and milestones so far include an increase of 98 places on the Stonewall Equality Index, training of over 60+ mental health champions and 10 mental health first aiders, launch of a #ThisIsMe video with seven representatives at the firm talking about their experience of mental health issues, formal multi-faith rooms introduced, employability events, launch of a transgender policy and gender neutral toilets available in all UK offices, and the launch of a new mentoring scheme.

Diversity & Inclusion programmes

We are committed to further developing our Diversity & Inclusion Strategy and identify key, longer term, programmes to help us achieve that. For example, our Achieving Balance initiative aims improve the gender balance at Partnership level and in leadership roles across the firm, while our social mobility programme aims to extend and develop our engagement with individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds to increase their employability and to further improve the diversity of our employees.

For more information regarding our initiatives, or vacancies, please check our website,

The Lex 100 Verdict

A 'prestigious firm with a human side', Charles Russell Speechlys offers a 'unique mix of private client and commercial work'. The London-headquartered firm also has offices in Cheltenham and Guildford and is a 'market leader in sports, media and technology law'. Trainees are 'really valued' and 'encouraged to take on responsibility' by 'partners who do what they can to help you get the most out of your training contract'. Indeed, colleagues will 'usually find time to go through work you've done and advise how you can improve'. There is a 'good work/life balance in most departments' thanks to a 'positive approach to a life outside of work'. All this without compromising at all on high-quality work, 'often with an international element'. Client secondments are also on offer; one trainee particularly enjoyed their time at ITV, where they were 'exposed to interesting work across a variety of disciplines' and even 'managed to spot a few celebs'. Some respondents reported 'a bit of a divide between the regional offices and London'. Others pointed to the fact that there are 'limited training seats in some of the areas which are strongly marketed by the firm'. 'Working long hours on a deal which then fell through' was lamented, whilst 'signing the wrong part of a document and the client having to come back in to re-sign' was embarrassing. Proud moments included 'realising I was the team's go-to on a specific technical area of law which I had researched' and 'meeting counsel on my own and attending a hearing'. For a friendly firm with a 'breadth of practice areas' where everyone 'wants you to succeed', consider Charles Russell Speechlys.