Firm Profile > Browne Jacobson LLP > Exeter, England

Browne Jacobson LLP

Education Tier 2

The education team at Browne Jacobson LLP generates work from clients such as schools, academies, maintained and independent schools, as well as further and higher education institutions. The group handles a large volume of academy conversion work, which is a field of specialisation of the ‘excellent’ practice head Julia Green. The department also advises on HR issues, school governance, and various contentious matters. Senior associate Rachel Billen is recommended for education-focused employment advice.


Everyone on the team gives their best to deliver outstanding service

True education specialists with excellent knowledge on academy trusts

Responses are always quick, well considered, and reliable

Friendly, professional and highly committed, the team always goes above and beyond to support clientsdevelopment by providing them with the most up-to-date and accurate information

Julia Green goes the extra mile and clearly has superb knowledge of our sector

Julia Green is of great help with property matters

Julia Green understands the business of education and the challenges which schools face

Rachel Billen provides pragmatic and client-focused advice

Key clients

Weston College

Leading Edge Academies Partnership

Lion Academy Trust

Wessex Learning Trust

Westcountry Schools Trust

Education South West

Learning Academies Trust

Exmouth Community College

Coast Academies Trust

The Oak Partnership Trust

Atlantic Centre of Excellence Multi Academy Trust

Penryn College

Health and safety Tier 2

Browne Jacobson LLP advises both public and private sector clients on all health and safety aspects of fatal and non-fatal accidents. Its team's public sector experience includes prosecuting cases for local authorities and fire authorities, as well as appearing in inquests and investigations. The group also provides regulatory advice to clients on food safety, the environment and the care sector. Exeter-based Dale Collins, who had more than ten years of experience serving as a prosecutor advocate for the HSE, is a name to note.


The key features with this practice are that it combines a genuine national reach with a truly intimate knowledge of business, government and regulation across the south-west. It brings an unusual combination of astute muscularity to its client’s needs – identifying what needs to be done – and getting it done! There is no other firm in the region that comes close to what Browne Jacobson has to offer

The partners heading up this operation, Nigel Lyons and Dale Collins, bring their enormous and diverse skills to bear on solving and sorting the client’s needs. They have a unique combination of commonsense and excellent legal judgement, which marks them out from every competitor. Clients who have them on their side feel confident and they are right

Key clients

Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue

Derbyshire Fire and Rescue

Health Tier 3

Browne Jacobson LLP's fast-growing healthcare offering encompasses health and social care work. Its practice notably stands out in relation to regulatory matters, as well as litigation and investigations, where matters often involve issues such as abuse and negligence, obligations arising from the duty of care, and confidentiality/data protection breaches. The ‘extremely knowledgeableMark Barnett handles clinical negligence claims for the NHS, including cases brought against mental health providers.


Very approachable as well as very efficient in responding to queries and concerns in an extremely timely manner

Every team member is extremely helpful and lovely to work with

The team has great expertise in clinical negligence matters

Although the team is relatively new in the region, it is one of the best in the sector

Mark Barnett provides invaluable legal advice and always completes a task to an excellent standard

Associate Becky Wyld is always helpful and communicates in a way that is easy to understand

Key clients

NHS Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group

South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust

Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust

Dorset County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

NHS Dorset Clinical Commissioning Group

Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Devon Partnership NHS Trust

Local government Tier 3

Browne Jacobson LLP acts for more than 200 local authorities, either directly or through their insurers. It also advises central government departments, as well as police, fire and rescue services. The scope of its wide-ranging practice includes corporate and commercial work, regeneration projects, housing, state aid and employment matters. In addition, contentious work is another driver of activity for the group. Peter Ware advises all types of public sector clients on public procurement, state aid and alternative service delivery models.

Key clients

London Borough of Croydon

Devon County Council

Staffordshire Moorlands District Council

High Peak Borough Council

Dorset County Council

Cornwall Council

Exeter City Council

Plymouth City Council

Personal injury: defendant Tier 3

Browne Jacobson LLP regularly advises insurers, local authorities and NHS trusts. Practice co-head Joanne Pruden is experienced in advising on employer liability claims involving allegations of bullying and harassment, as well as claims against public institutions. The firm also deals with occupier liability claims and advises on industrial diseases such as asbestosis. The team additionally assists with claims arising from deafness and occupational stress.

Key clients

Ageas Insurance

Cornwall Council/Cormac

Arthur J Gallagher/Plymouth Community Homes

Dorset County Council

Bristol City Council

Plymouth City Council


Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service


Isle of Wight Council

East Devon District Council/Gallagher Bassett

Devon County Council

Somerset County Council

Torbay Council



The firm: Browne Jacobson offers a comprehensive range of quality legal services, straightforward advice, pricing and product innovation and exceptional client service. We work in close partnership to deliver tailored strategic solutions to our diverse client base which includes:

  • UK based and international blue chip corporates;
  • local and owner managed businesses;
  • major insurers;
  • education organisations;
  • local and central government and other public bodies;
  • NHS trusts.

We take our commitment to corporate social responsibility very seriously and to us this means being a great place to work, a great partner to work with, supporting our local communities and thinking about the impact we have on the environment.

Over the last 10 years the firm has seen consecutive organic growth which can be attributed to its successful sector based strategy and a UK network of five offices in Birmingham, Exeter, London, Manchester and Nottingham.

Type of work undertaken:

We work with a broad range of businesses across various sectors and service lines including: real estate, construction & engineering, leisure, logistics, automotive, commercial services, corporate services, litigation, banking services and international in addition to the below:

Insurance: The insurance team are trusted legal advisors to insurers, brokers and policy holders. We have clients across the London insurance and reinsurance markets. Specialist teams provide a complete range of services to insurance sector clients across all lines of business and in commercial, corporate and FCA regulatory matters.

Technology: The technology team advises on a wide spectrum of IT disciplines, such as, digital transformation, disruptive technologies (e.g.; AI, blockchain, IOT), online and apps, cloud computing, ERP and PSA transactions, mobile devices, e-commerce, licensing, cyber and data security/protection, GDPR, IT disputes and tech corporate transactions. The team’s expertise is across sectors, in particular insurance, health, central and local government, retail, financial services, education, construction and manufacturing. It has a strong and innovative ‘Grow’ programme for start-ups that it advises, supports and mentors. The team is also known for its long standing track record of advising on large scale, critical, complex IT transactions, implementation and outsourcing projects, including high profile transaction involving national critical infrastructure systems.

Retail: Our retail team is renowned for dealing with complex, time-challenging matters and making them happen – a great reputation to have and one which really benefits our retail clients in this challenging, ‘two-tier’ market. Our market leading luxury retail practice, boasts some of the world’s leading luxury brands and is known as the ‘go to’ firm in this area, assisting with IP and brand enforcement work, information technology, real estate, employment and commercial dispute resolution.

Financial Services
Browne Jacobson’s Financial Services practice provides specialist strategic advice across the FS markets. The regulatory part of the team works with senior managers, in-house legal and compliance advisers on business-critical conduct, prudential and governance matters, as well as ‘perimeter issues’ affecting FS and other firms. The practice also boasts a dedicated disputes team that is recognised as a leader in litigation funding and finance and focuses on cross-border advisory and contentious services, including insolvency. The team’s current most high profile role is as UK Counsel to the Trustee of the Liquidation of Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC.

Widely regarded as a true heavyweight in this area. The firm is one of the few national law firms that has a genuinely dedicated public law practice. Serving an enviable array of public and third sector clients and well known for advising on corporate governance and compliance issues, judicial reviews and large scale procurement, and planning and regeneration projects. Other specialisms include employment, health and safety and liability litigation.

The firm has a long standing nationwide reputation for providing expert legal advice to education clients across the full range of legal practice areas. Regarded as a genuine heavyweight and retained by many of the country’s most influential and well-known education providers. Often the first port of call for clients seeking advice and support on matters which are highly sensitive and attracting political and media attention and additionally has now advised on over 2000 academy projects.

Independently rated as one of the leading healthcare firms in the country, the health team provide specialist contentious and non-contentious legal advice to both the public and independent sectors. The team has been involved in a number of high profile national issues in the sector. The defendant clinical negligence team continues to be ranked nationally as one of the UK’s leading teams.

Department Name Email Telephone
Senior partner Caroline Green
Managing partner Iain Blatherwick
Academies and education Mark Blois
Academies and education Nick Mackenzie
Automotive Declan Cushley
Automotive Giles Parsons
Banking/security Paul Ray
Banking/security Emma Hinton
Branding and marketing Cerryg Jones
Branding and marketing Alex Watt
Clinical negligence Lorna Hardman
Commercial litigation Jonathan Tardif
Commercial litigation Nick Pontt
Company/commercial Gavin Cummings
Competition Matthew Woodford
Construction Tim Claremont
Corporate finance Nigel Blackwell
Corporate finance Richard Cox
Corporate finance Gavin Cummings
Counterfraud Paul Wainwright
Data protection Ros Foster
Dispute resolution Nick Pontt
Employment Peter Jones
Energy Selina Hinchliffe
Environmental Richard Barlow
Financial Services Nick Pontt
Financial Services Jeremy Irving
Fraud and asset recovery Nick Pontt
Fraud and asset recovery John Adams
Health law Gerard Hanratty
Independent health Clare Auty
Information technology Anthony Nagle
Intellectual property Declan Cushley
Leisure Caroline Green
Leisure Sarah Parkinson
Life sciences Giles Parsons
Personal injury Bridget Tatham
Personal injury Susan Mabbott
PFI/projects Craig Elder
Planning Laura Hughes
Procurement Peter Ware
Professional indemnity Derek Bambury
Professional indemnity Jonathan Newbold
Property and development Sarah Parkinson
Government Richard Barlow
Retail Caroline Green
Retail Sarah Parkinson
Social housing Barry Sully
Taxation/trusts Lucy Worwood
Transport and logistics Caroline Green
Transport and logistics Sarah Parkinson
Photo Name Position Profile
 Mark Barnett  photo Mark Barnett
 Rachel Billen  photo Rachel Billen
 Michael Chambers  photo Michael Chambers
 Dale Collins  photo Dale Collins
 Claire Cornish  photo Claire Cornish
 Julia Green  photo Julia Green
 Victoria Hatton  photo Victoria Hatton
 Richard Johnson  photo Richard Johnson
 Nigel Lyons  photo Nigel Lyons
 Gary Oldroyd  photo Gary Oldroyd
 Joanne Pruden  photo Joanne Pruden
 Angela Williams  photo Angela Williams
Number of UK partners : 150
Number of other UK fee-earners : 380

The Lex 100 Verdict

Browne Jacobson undertakes 'good quality work for impressive clients in both the private and public sector'. The 'integration between senior and junior employees' is discernible, with 'staff at all levels friendly and approachable'. Some respondents mentioned working at the firm beforehand, which fuelled their desire to apply for a training contract; further proof that the 'people are very enjoyable to work with'. There is a 'good work/life balance without losing out on quality of work', so that trainees are 'trusted to assist with large and complex matters' and allowed to 'get involved in more varied work'. The firm is a Lex 100 Winner for its social life and its vacation scheme, which was described as 'really enjoyable'. On the flip side, there were complaints about the seat rotation process, as well as the 'lack of communication about changes within the firm', plus slightly 'disorganised support for trainees'. Among the worst moments were 'reviewing transcripts of an inquiry which went on for days', 'non-chargeable administrative tasks' and 'being thrown in at the deep end in the first two weeks of one of my seats with very little understanding of what I was doing'. But, on the plus side, high levels of responsibility have allowed trainees to 'complete an acquisition I had worked on throughout my seat', 'independently interview and then have day-to-day client contact on a £1.5m claim'. If a firm with 'expertise in public law' and 'very interesting work' with a 'strong reputation in the Midlands' appeals to you, research Browne Jacobson.