Bishop & Sewell LLP > London, England > Firm Profile

Bishop & Sewell LLP

Employment > Immigration Tier 3

Real estate > Residential property Tier 4

The ‘responsive’ team at Bishop & Sewell LLP is variously praised for its ‘professional and attentive service’ and for adopting a ‘calm and pragmatic approach’. Key names to note in the residential property practice, which covers all aspects of residential real estate, are Ossie Swaine and Thom Wilkinson. The skilled team frequently advises on the acquisition of prime and super-prime central London property and country homes. Its landlord and tenant team is headed by Mark Chick.

Practice head(s):

Ossie Swaine; Mark Chick; Thom Wilkinson

Other key lawyers:

Charles Davidson; Stephen Charnock; Laurent Vaughan; Chris Macartney; Nicole Couzens


‘Our dealings with Mark Chick have always been a pleasure. Mark has extensive knowledge and is able to answer queries very quickly and extensively, and is a pleasure to deal with’.

‘Charlie Davidson is an excellent young lawyer, full of enthusiasm and pragmatism’.

‘I have worked with Stephen Charnock and Mark Chick of Bishop & Sewell for many years. I regard them both as very knowledgeable, particularly in the field of leasehold enfranchisement. They are both experienced, efficient solicitors and a pleasure to deal with on a personal level’.

‘Laurent Vaughan is exceptional, his knowledge on lease extensions and their complexities is exemplary, and my clients have been very impressed by his efficiency and knowledge’.

‘Bishop and Sewell are a highly respected firm when it comes to residential property – particular note should be taken in reference to their work on leasehold enfranchisement, with many of their senior landlord and tenant team being at the very forefront of this area of expertise’.

‘Mark Chick – a leading light for leasehold enfranchisement and landlord and tenant matters. A real authority who provides not just accurate and well considered technical advice, but also excellent at providing clients with commercially prudent advice’.

‘Ossie Swaine is only ever a phone call away. Always available to give friendly legal advice, second opinions and more importantly, his time. Over the years of working with Ossie, I can safely say he has become a good friend, not just to me, but I’m sure with every client that he has acted for. He is professional, diligent and always goes the extra mile’.

‘Ossie Swaine (partner) and his associate Nicole Couzens are both very knowledgeable in their field. They always communicate well and are quick to respond to queries. When dealing with the ‘other side’ they are firm but never aggressive. Very importantly, they were very vigilant about potential pitfalls in the apartment transaction’.

Key clients

Waverley Borough Council

Jordan International Bank

John McKendrick KC

Darren Mckoy (global creative director for Dr. Martens)

Work highlights

  • Working as one of only three of Jordan International Bank’s panel solicitors, the team regularly acts on multiple multi million-pound secured lending. Most recently it has acted on a loan of £1.3m on a property located in Brompton Road.
  • Acting for Waverley Borough Council in a groundbreaking case, claiming the freehold to multiple houses under the Leasehold Reform Act 1967. The properties are held under the terms of a single lease, and prior to serving notices in this case, there was no settled law that a claim to the freehold could proceed in this way.
  • Acting on the purchase of two off plan new build penthouses located in the new prestigious development, Chelsea Powerhouse.

Private client > Family Tier 6

Philip Rutter leads the department at Bishop & Sewell LLP, which advises clients on both financial and children matters, as well as on pre and post-nuptial agreements. Some of these cases involve substantial wealth with complex business arrangements, trust elements, and international assets. David Hodgson joined Russells Solicitors in October 2022.

Practice head(s):

Philip Rutter


‘This firm brings in the right expertise when required. They communicate very clearly to each other. They are tough and fair negotiators, make their values very clear and ensure they do what is best for the client, whilst protecting the clients well-being.’

‘Philip Rutter is tough and fair. He listens carefully and brings in the right experts when needed. Ensures others hit deadlines and communicates between all of the legal team so they are kept abreast of the current and moving situations. He looks after clients well .’

‘The family team are excellent. They are brilliant solicitors and good value for money.’

‘Philip Rutter is an outstanding lawyer. He is pragmatic in his approach and his knowledge of the law is unmatched. He is easy to have on the other side as he is straight forward and to the point. He doesn’t play games and at the same time provides a superb service to his clients.’

Based in central London, Bishop & Sewell has a reputation for excellence in fields including landlord and tenant, residential and commercial property, private client, employment, corporate and commercial work, family law, litigation and dispute resolution.

The firm: We were established in 1979 and moved to our current location in 2010. We merged with the long-established London practice of Monro Wright & Wasbrough on 1st February 2021.

The firm acts for entrepreneurs, investors and small to medium-sized businesses, together with individuals and families.

We believe that a good solicitor is approachable, innovative and open, helping to identify attainable goals and the best strategy to reach them. As a result we have built enduring relationships and continue to act for a number of our original clients. We are commercially minded and each specialist area is partner-led to ensure delivery of a client-focused, highly personalised service. Within each practice area works a team of talented lawyers with a passion for being the best at what they do. The practice has expanded steadily and as well as serving clients in London and the South-East, we are increasingly instructed by clients nationwide and internationally.

Types of work undertaken
Property: advising on property law is at the heart of Bishop & Sewell. Founded on property work, we take pride in simplifying the complex property process, providing services covering every aspect – from landlord and tenant, purchase and sale, development and financing, to rental and enfranchisement. Our advice aims to add value to owners, occupiers, investors and developers of both commercial and residential property.

Family and divorce: constructive advice is offered in all areas of family law, including matters with international aspects. Wherever possible, the firm seeks to resolve issues outside the courts, but if necessary conducts court proceedings vigorously. Expertise includes divorce and civil partnership dissolution, financial claims on divorce, pre and post-nuptial agreements, cohabitation and separation agreements, children issues, and domestic protection.

Commercial: our client’s benefit from clear advice on the day-to-day aspects of running a business including trade, commercial transactions, consumer law, contract law, data protection and intellectual property.

Corporate: our team advise on all aspects of setting up and growing a business including incorporation and formation, mergers and acquisitions, restructuring and reorganisation, raising capital, shareholders’ rights and dissolution or liquidation.

Banking and Finance: we advise financial institutions, family offices and specialised lenders on all aspects of corporate lending, acquisition finance, structured finance, project finance, commercial real estate and development finance, as well as borrowers on the best way to structure and navigate raising finance.

Sports Law: as a trusted adviser for both organisations and individuals we take care of our clients through a blend of everyday support and tailored advice on governance matters, disputes, commercial opportunities, intellectual property, brand protection, marketing, merchandise, sports finance and wealth protection.

Employment: a team that represents both employers and employees. For employer clients, services include day to day HR advisory support, contract and policy drafting and Employment Tribunal litigation. For employee clients, advice is provided on unfair dismissal, discrimination, whistleblowing, restrictive covenants, disciplinary and grievance matters and settlement agreements.

Litigation & Dispute Resolution: Our extensive litigation and dispute resolution services cover many legal subjects, but we deal only in areas in which our personnel have exceptional expertise.  These are:- Landlord & Tenant disputes; Other residential and commercial property matters; Contract and tort litigation (personal and commercial); Other company/commercial disputes: Insolvency (both personal and corporate – for both creditors and Insolvency Practitioners); Contentious probate issues (with a particular expertise in dealing with vulnerable clients); Presumption of death/missing persons cases; Professional negligence; Debt recovery

Private client: trusts, tax and estates legal services are primary areas of expertise at the firm, including giving advice on the most effective way to transfer property. The firm assists in setting up will trusts and helping with their administration, as well as the application of inheritance tax. Services cover all aspects of will drafting, tax advice, winding up and administration of estates, deeds of family arrangements, powers of attorney, and creation and administration of trusts in the UK and offshore.

Department Name Email Telephone
Founding Partner & Consultant Stephen Bishop
Head of Commercial Property Nick Potter
Residential Property & Team Leader Ossie Swaine
Senior Partner & Head of the Landlord & Tenant team Mark Chick
Landlord & Tenant Chris Macartney
Corporate & Commercial David Little
Head of the Private Client team Nicholas Barlow
Head of of Litigation & Dispute Resolution Karen Bright
Residential Property & Team Leader Julienne Coffey
Head of the Family & Divorce team Philip Rutter
Litigation & Dispute Resolution Lee Stafford
Private Client Helen Langworthy
Property team Thom Wilkinson
Head of Employment Rhian Radia
Private Client & Head of Tax Gina Fairfax
Litigation & Dispute Resolution Ian Pope
Corporate & Commercial Jeremy Sivyer
Photo Name Position Profile
Nicholas Barlow photo Nicholas Barlow Nicholas is a Partner and Head of the Private Client team
Stephen Bishop photo Stephen Bishop Stephen is Managing Partner and leads the Residential Property team.
Karen Bright photo Karen Bright Partner and head of the Litigation & Dispute Resolution team
Mark Chick photo Mark Chick Mark heads up the Landlord and Property team
Julienne Coffey photo Julienne Coffey Partner and a member of the Residential property team
Gina Fairfax photo Gina Fairfax Gina Fairfax is Head of Tax and joined Bishop & Sewell in…
David Hodgson photo David Hodgson Partner and Joint Head of the Family & Divorce team
Michael Kashis photo Michael Kashis Managing Partner – Strategy Implementation & Head of Corporate & Commercial
Mariam Khaliq photo Mariam Khaliq Partner and Head of the Immigration team
Helen Langworthy photo Helen Langworthy Partner and member of the Private Client team
David Little photo David Little Partner
Chris Macartney photo Chris Macartney Partner and member of the Landlord & Tenant team
Victoria Maxwell photo Victoria Maxwell Victoria is an Associate Solicitor in our Family & Divorce team
Ian Pope photo Ian Pope Consultant Solicitor
Nick Potter photo Nick Potter Nick heads up the business and commercial property team. Nick has gained…
Rhian Radia photo Rhian Radia Partner & Head of Employment
Philip Rutter photo Philip Rutter Partner and Joint Head of the Family & Divorce team
Jeremy Sivyer photo Jeremy Sivyer Consultant Solicitor
Lee Stafford photo Lee Stafford Partner, advising individuals and businesses, on a variety of disputes. Particular specialism in…
Ossie Swaine photo Ossie Swaine Ossie is a partner and team leader in the residential property team,…
Dipak Vaghela photo Dipak Vaghela Partner, dealing with all aspects of residential work ranging from sales and…
Rachel Waller photo Rachel Waller Rachel is a Partner and a member of our Litigation & Dispute…
Thom Wilkinson photo Thom Wilkinson Partner and a member of the Property team
Number of Partners : 18
Number of Fee-earners : 74
Chinese (Mandarin)
Law Society
Chambers & Partners

Bishop and Sewell LLP is committed to avoiding discrimination in its dealings with all its clients, members and employees and all third parties that have dealings with the firm. We are committed to promoting diversity in our professional activity and committed to equality of opportunity and upholding the principles of equality and, wherever possible exceeding the statutory requirements. The firm offers an excellent service supplied by a talented and diverse team. We recruit, retain, reward and develop our team without reference to their background, gender, marital status, ethnic origin, age, religion, belief, sexual orientation, or any disability.

We regularly conduct a diversity survey and the results of the 2019 survey are available to view on the firm’s website. Louise Barretto is the current Diversity Manager and has overall responsibility for the avoidance of discrimination and equality and diversity policy and its application across the firm.

When we start our recruitment process each applicant is invited to complete an equal opportunities form which is used in monitoring the diversity of the firm. The information on this form isl be held separately from the main application form and processed anonymously. It is not taken into account at any stage during the recruitment process.

CLIENT: Family & Divorce Client
TESTIMONIAL: “I really appreciate all of your help – I’ve really been impressed with your responsiveness and felt very comfortable with your guidance and great work.”

CLIENT: Corporate & Commercial Client
TESTIMONIAL: “Thank you for bringing about the best conclusion for us in our company share sale. Thank you also for your contactability and support out of hours, which was particularly helpful, and your straight forward communication skills.”

CLIENT: Corporate & Commercial Client
TESTIMONIAL: “David Little is very thorough – he covers every angle. He works very efficiently and keeps us well-informed on progress, interpreting the law for us, so we understand what’s happening.”

CLIENT: Landlord & Tenant Client
TESTIMONIAL: “For leasehold enfranchisement look no further than Chris Macartney at Bishop and Sewell. Combining common sense with commercial acumen, he maintains relationships amongst all shapes and sizes of central London landlords and tenants. Well respected by other professional advisors, he delivers transactional outcomes with a quiet efficiency. Chris is uniquely experienced and connected in the niche field of Crown Estate work.”

CLIENT: Litigation and Dispute Resolution Client
TESTIMONIAL: “I’d also like to take a minute to thank you on behalf of my wife and I for your diligence and sound advice, it has certainly put our minds at rest that we are proceeding in the correct manner and I am extremely glad that we engaged B&S & yourself in particular and would not hesitate to engage you again either on this or unrelating matters. You’ve provided a great service to us – thank you.”

CLIENT: Employment Client
TESTIMONIAL: “The employment team at Bishop and Sewell removed the need for me to deal with my employer directly which would have been very difficult in the circumstances. My exit was made as stress free a process as possible due in no small part to the team’s level-headed, diligent and professional

CLIENT: Employment Client
TESTIMONIAL: “I feel Rhian understood the matter at hand and was eager to get me the best possible deal. I did not receive as much attentiveness when I approached other firms.”

CLIENT: Family & Divorce Client
TESTIMONIAL: “The professionalism and level of service that I received from your firm is exemplary. I must say a big thank you to you and your team for being able to bring matters to a close. I would also like to say a big thank you for achieving outcomes better than I had anticipated, both with regard to the children and furthermore financially.”

CLIENT: Family & Divorce Client Gemma
TESTIMONIAL: “You have helped me tremendously, your advice and professionalism second to none! You have eased my stress and given my sanity back at a very desperate time, I felt, for once someone was on my side and felt protected- I thank you for that.”

CLIENT: Immigration Client
TESTIMONIAL: Mariam Khaliq and the firm have been more than helpful and made the process for my Visa as swift and easy going as it can be. Mariam has been extremely supportive and sincere, never compromising her high quality of work. I am so pleased with the work of her and her team, this is the only firm I would recommend to anyone!

CLIENT: Immigration Client
TESTIMONIAL: Best experience ever. We used their immigration department and couldn’t be more pleased with their services. Mariam Khaliq was our angel in the whole process and we are so delighted with her professional knowledge and her hard work team. Highly recommended.

CLIENT: Residential Client
TESTIMONIAL: “Stephen has dealt with every house transaction of mine, two of which were somewhat complicated, and he couldn’t have performed better at any time.”

CLIENT: Immigration Client
TESTIMONIAL: I wholeheartedly recommend Mariam Khaliq and her team. Mariam is an outstanding professional, able to understand the client’s needs and to support with solid advice and high quality services.

CLIENT: Hugh Livingstone
TESTIMONIAL: Both David Little and Charlie Davidson were extremely helpful and responsive. Had an excellent experience dealing with them in quite a complicated transaction. My thanks to them both.

CLIENT: Commercial Landlord Client
TESTIMONIAL: “Mark and team did a great job that exceeded any expectations.”