Bryan Johnston > Dentons > Milton Keynes, England > Lawyer Profile


Work Department

Real estate, dispute resolution, litigation.


Bryan is a partner and deals with all aspects of property litigation. He liaises extensively with colleagues across the firm in the Real Estate, Planning, Environment, Construction, Restructuring and Insolvency, Energy, Corporate and Banking and Finance. Bryan is experienced in dealing with all of the unique aspects of real estate litigation in a contentious and advisory context. Bryan has built a specialist rights of light practice and is an expert in that field. Bryan is also highly experienced in dealing with the RE aspects of major insolvencies, the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954, tenant default, party walls, easement and covenant disputes, business rates, neighbourly disputes, service charge disputes, dilapidations disputes, professional negligence in the property context (including legal and surveying professional negligence), document construction, title disputes, negligence and nuisance.


Trained Clifford Chance LLP, qualified 2004, made partner in present firm 2013. Publications of note: Multiple articles for the commercial property and legal press. Seminars provided to various industry bodies (BPF, RICS etc) and clients.


French (intermediate).


Law Society of England and Wales; Property Litigation Association; Vice-Chair of the Property Litigation Association; Honorary Secretary of the Property Litigation Association; Law Reform Committee of the Property Litigation Association.


University of St Andrews (MA 1997); University of the West of England (pg diploma 2001); Oxford Institute of Legal Practice (LPC 2002).


Hill walking; cycling; ski-ing; ice-skating; ice-hockey; rugby.

Lawyer Rankings

London > Real estate > Property litigation

(Hall of Fame)

Bryan JohnstonDentons

The ‘technically astute‘ team at Dentons is well versed in major property litigation and also provides alternative dispute resolution services to an impressive roster of blue-chip clients across various sectors. Its recent retail sector work includes ATM rating and rights to light disputes, while freehold owners in the hospitality and leisure sectors also instruct the firm on trespass and development-related issues, among others. Led by ‘master strategist‘ Bryan Johnston, the team is also well placed to handle landlord and tenant disputes, neighbourly matters and disputes arising out of tenant insolvencies. In addition, private clients retain the practice to assist with restrictive covenants.

London > Industry focus > Retail and consumer

The ‘very knowledgeable and cohesive’ retail and consumer group at Dentons fields experienced partners from a wide range of legal disciplines, with substantial track records in the sector. Derek McCombe, in Glasgow, heads the UK team, which is particularly active in complex corporate and real estate deals and leverages the firm’s online portal, Legal Front Door, to provide clients with a single point of access to the wider firm’s legal services and specialists. The department – which advises retailers, brands, restaurants, landlords and franchises – also handles restructurings, franchising, cybersecurity, dispute resolution and employment matters. The department is a trusted legal adviser to Sainsbury’s – including Argos – across its full legal portfolio, with  Scott Singer playing a key role for the sumermarket giant. Real estate litigator Bryan Johnston and Tristan Jonckheer, whose practice revolves around technology, outsourcing and commercial contract matters, are other names to note.

London > Public sector > Local government

The team at Dentons  frequently advises local authorities on matters relating to large-scale regeneration projects. Michele Vas deals with urban regeneration projects, while in Milton Keynes, head of the property litigation team Bryan Johnston is a key resource for local authorities seeking advice regarding real estate litigation.

South East > Real estate > Property litigation

Dentons’ renowned property litigation practice is regularly sought after by numerous high-profile retailers, financial institutions, infrastructure groups and developers. It frequently appears in proceedings at the Supreme Court, High Court and First-Tier Tribunals. The team covers the gamut of contentious property work, including cases relating to landlord and tenant disputes, rights of light, nuisance, negligence, adverse possession and property insolvencies. It is also increasingly sought after for advice on rating disputes. Bryan Johnston‘s work spans a number of segments, including offices, retail, industrial and hotels. He works with David Payton and senior associate Gemma Hunter-Barnes. Another key individual is senior associate Thomas Nolan, who is noted for his residential property litigation focus.