Ben Derrington > Ashfords LLP > Bristol, England > Lawyer Profile

Ashfords LLP

Work Department

Business Risk & Regulation


Legal Director


Ben is a Legal Director and Head of the Business Risk and Regulation Team.

Ben works with clients in highly-regulated sectors, advising them on investigations and prosecutions; crisis management and complex compliance issues. He has particular experience in health and safety, environment, waste, food production, trading standards, data protection, anti-bribery and transport matters. He often advises in the aftermath of serious incidents, where the spotlight of the national media means that reputations are at stake.

His experience in contentious matters means that he is ideally positioned to give practical advice on compliance issues, helping clients to navigate regulatory changes, avoid breaches of the law and manage the permits and consents necessary for doing business.

Ben’s technical qualifications in risk management and environmental science distinguish him from other regulatory lawyers, allowing him to work at greater depth to find solutions to the challenges faced by his clients. He is a trusted adviser to a number of multinational businesses and has experience of conducting comprehensive regulatory audits.

Prior to qualifying as a solicitor, Ben obtained a master’s degree in Environmental Analysis & Assessment from Imperial College and worked on an OECD project to develop standardised testing in aquatic toxicology. Ben has subsequently obtained the NEBOSH National Certificate in Health and Safety Management. He is a member of the Health & Safety Lawyers’ Association and the United Kingdom Environmental Lawyers’ Association.


  • Director of a specialist construction business: Successfully defending a high-profile manslaughter prosecution in the Crown Court following a fatality in a major construction project (acquittal).
  • Multi-national Business (Food Production): Conducting a full health and safety and environmental legal audit and advising on a compliance plan.
  • National Waste Recycling and Waste to Energy Business: Managing the response to an EA investigation into a waste/contamination issue of national significance (No prosecutions).
  • National Business (Agriculture): Negotiating an enforcement undertaking with the EA following a series of pollution incidents originating from an effluent treatment plant.
  • National business (Logistics): Representation at a public inquiry into their Vehicle Operator Licence: facing a vehicle curtailment liability of £3 million (no further action).

Lawyer Rankings

South West > Employment > Health and safety

Ashfords LLP has a full service practice, advising clients on investigation management and press and media management as well as crisis response support. Clients range from public authorities to regional healthcare trusts and food production companies. Ian Manners – who recently joined from DAC Beachcroft LLP – and Ben Derrington  lead the practice.

South West > Dispute resolution > Commercial litigation: Bristol

Ashfords LLP ‘gives a real feeling of confidence’ to a variety of regional, national and international clients spanning the technology, retail, professional services, sport and financial services sectors; the group also acts in regulatory and risk-related litigation. Rory Mac Neice leads the team and excels in the technology and financial spaces, while Ben Derrington leads the firm’s risk team, which is active in the construction, waste, food and manufacturing sectors, and handles regulatory disputes. Ian Manners joined the team from DAC Beachcroft LLP in late 2021, and Joanne Saye is the key name at associate level.

South West > Real estate > Environment

(Next Generation Partners)

Ben Derrington  – Ashfords LLP

Ashfords LLP advises on the whole life cycle of environmental projects from design and implementation through to decommissioning, as well as contentious matters. The practice acts for clients from a variety of sectors including waste and recycling businesses, local authorities, statutory infrastructure undertakers and food producers. The practice is headed by a trio consisting of Brian Farrell in Exeter, Ben Derrington in Bristol, and Ian Manners, the latter who joined the firm in from DAC Beachcroft LLP at the end of 2021 and is located in Bristol.