Set Profile > Matrix Chambers > London, England
Matrix Chambers Offices
GRIFFIN BUILDING, GRAY'S INN
Matrix Chambers > The Legal 500 Rankings
At the 'impressive' Matrix Chambers, Tim Owen QC appeared in R (AL) v Serious Fraud Office, regarding the Serious Fraud Office's (SFO's) failure to challenge a company's assertion of legal professional privilege although it was subject to a deferred prosecution agreement after it had self-reported wrongdoing; the key issues concerned the scope of the SFO's disclosure duty towards a defendant in criminal proceedings who had previously been employed by the company.
For some, Matrix Chambers is 'the best set for human rights' work with its members representing an array of clients including NGO's and companies on public law, immigration, detention, and data protection matters. The 'standout' Phillippa Kaufmann QC acted for the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants in its judicial review of the government’s hostile environment policy, specifically, the Immigration Act 2013 which obliges private landlords to take measures to ensure those whom they rent to are legal immigrants. In a separate case, Kaufmann QC acted in a judicial review brought against the Director of Public Prosecutions for refusing to prosecute an undercover police officer who had a relationship with an environmental protester he was deployed to spy on. In proceedings before the Privy Council, Tim Owen QC acted for Jay Chandler in bringing an appeal against his murder conviction and death sentence in Trinidad & Tobago. The case raised an important issue on the admissibility of fresh evidence in criminal appeals, specifically in relation to the defence of diminished responsibility. Meanwhile, in ZV v Secretary of State for the Home Department, Samantha Knights QC acted for a Lithuanian national trafficked into prostitution in the UK. A case concerned the interface between EU refugee law and trafficking, and unlawful detention of victims of trafficking in immigration detention. International crime specialist Clare Montgomery QC is leading the team instructed in Belhaj v DPP concerning the judicial review of the police decision not to prosecute security service personnel over the rendition of asylum seekers to Libya. Meanwhile, in the Supreme Court, Daniel Squires QC represented the Secretary of State for Education in a challenge brought by an opposite-sex couple challenging the bar on their entering a civil partnership; the court held that the bar was unlawful. Elsewhere, Helen Law was lead counsel for the claimant in R (Bridges) v South Wales Police, the first test case on the use of automatic facial recognition software by the police, and its interference with Articles 8, 10, and 11 of the Human Rights Act 1998, as well as breach of the data protection law.
Employment Tier 1
Matrix Chambers has 'a formidable array of talent and expertise' with its members 'offering tremendous strength in employment cases'. James Laddie QC represented the employer in Supreme Court case Egon Zehnder v Tillman, the first employee restraint of trade case to reach the top level of the court system for more than a century. Karon Monaghan QC acted in Gilham v Ministry of Justice, in which the Court of Appeal held that judges are not workers and therefore cannot be covered by protections for whistleblowers. Elsewhere, Thomas Linden QC successfully acted for British Cycling, which was being sued by former track cyclist Jessica Varnish, who was found not to be an employee of the governing body or UK Sport, which funds elite athletes.
Matrix Chambers' members are active in the ongoing case concerning India's request for the extradition of Vijay Mallya, co-owner of the Force India Formula One team and chairman of United Breweries Group, following charges of fraud; Clare Montgomery QC is representing Mallya, while Mark Summers QC acts for the Indian government (via the Crown Prosecution Service). Mallya's extradition was initially approved in February 2019, although the defendant was granted permission to appeal the decision in July 2019. James Stansfeld and Florence Iveson have joined from Furnival Chambers and The 36 Group respectively.
Public international law Tier 1
Matrix Chambers provides a 'smooth and professional' service, and when it comes to public international law it has some of 'the best barristers in the UK'. Members also have strong expertise in related areas of international criminal, humanitarian, and environmental law. The set has members involved in several disputes before the International Court of Justice, including the Mauritius v UK UNCLOS case, in which Philippe Sands QC is acting as counsel. Blinne Ní Ghrálaigh was also involved in in the high-profile naming dispute between North Macedonia (as that state is now known) and Greece.
IT and telecoms Tier 1
For some 'the best set for public law and human rights', Matrix Chambers has members instructed, both for government and claimants, in agenda-setting matters. Phillippa Kaufmann QC represented two victims of "Black Cab rapist" John Worboys in a challenge to the Parole Board's decision to release him after serving ten years of an indefinite sentence for public protection – Daniel Squires QC represented the Mayor of London. Karon Monaghan QC represented a gay Hong Kong civil servant, who married his husband in New Zealand, in a challenge to the Hong Kong government's policy of denying same-sex spouses employee benefits. In the Court of Appeal, Claire Darwin, unled, represented the University of Leicester in judicial review proceedings following its disciplinary decision to expel a student who sent a threatening message and Taken meme via Facebook to a classmate.
Data protection Tier 2
Matrix Chambers ‘has it all’ and is ‘incredibly strong in defamation, privacy and data protection law’ and ‘an increasing force in the new media law landscape’ thanks to ‘a group, which has the brains, energy, flexibility and quality’. Recent highlights include Antony White QC and Hugh Tomlinson QC acting for the defendants and claimants respectively in the milestone NT1 and NT2 v Google case, the first right to be forgotten claim tried in the UK; and White defending Associated Newspapers in Stunt v Associated Newspapers Ltd, a case concerning the compatibility of the pre-publication stay provisions of the Data Protection Act 1998 with EU law. Catrin Evans QC and Ian Helme joined from One Brick Court creating further strength in depth for the set.
Defamation and privacy Tier 2
The multi-disciplinary Matrix Chambers fields a growing media team and is recognised as 'an increasing force in the new media law landscape'; over the course of 2018, both Catrin Evans QC and Ian Helme joined chambers from One Brick Court. Of note, the set was instructed on two landmark cases: Gavin Millar QC represented the BBC in Sir Cliff Richard v BBC; Hugh Tomlinson QC acted on the claimant side in NT1/NT2 v Google, while Antony White QC and Evans QC represented the tech giant. Solicitors say the set creates a 'direct personal relationship with the clients' and is known to be the home of privacy injunctions.
Education Tier 2
'Excellent for public law and education law', Matrix Chambers has 'a good roster of experienced counsel who are expert in their fields'. Its members have wide-ranging experience in education cases, ranging from First Tier Tribunal hearings through to Supreme Court appeals. Significant recent cases include R (Interim Executive Board of Al Hijrah School) v Ofsted, which established that gender segregation in schools without express statutory authority constitutes direct sex discrimination; Helen Mountfield QC acted for Ofsted in its successful appeal. Elsewhere, Mathew Purchase represented a professor of chemical biology in Edwards v University of Oxford (University Appeal Court), which concerned the university's compulsory retirement age.
EU Law Tier 2
Matrix Chambers handles a number of EU law matters, many of which cross over with its traditional public law strengths. Helen Mountfield QC represented a Latvian citizen in both the Court of Appeal and subsequently the Supreme Court in Secretary of State for Work and Pensions v Gubeladze; the court found the UK's 2009-11 extension of the Workers' Registration Scheme for citizens of the eight member states that joined the EU in 2004 was a disproportionate violation of EU free movement rights. Aidan O’Neill QC represented an Italian resident in R (Simonis) v Arts Council England, a judicial review of the Arts Council's refusal of an export licence for Giotto's "Madonna con Bambino", which raised issues of free movement of goods. More commercially, Nicholas Gibson is advising a Jersey company on a potential Francovich damages claim concerning the UK's application of VAT on products imported from Jersey after the termination of low-value consignment relief.
Inquests and inquiries Tier 2
Matrix Chambers 'continues to be a leading set' in inquests and inquiries and regularly receives instructions from leading claimant firms, the government and interveners. Hugh Southey QC represents the maternal grandfather of Ellie Butler in the inquest into her death; the 6-year-old girl died in 2013 despite a number of earlier interventions into the family by the criminal justice system and family courts (her father, who was ultimately convicted of her murder, had a 2009 conviction for shaking her as a baby overturned). Danny Friedman QC represents the "G4 Group" of survivors and bereaved represented by among others in the Grenfell Tower inquiry, instructed by firms including Bindmans LLP and Hodge Jones & Allen Solicitors.
Matrix Chambers ‘is an increasing force in the new media law landscape where the focus is on privacy and data protection’ and benefits from ‘excellent barristers’ who ‘offer a high level of expertise delivered in a practical and pragmatic manner’. In an example of a case straddling the entertainment sector and privacy, Antony White QC and Hugh Tomlinson QC acted for the defendant and claimant respectively in a high-profile privacy claim relating to a Channel 5 series which showed enforcement officers during evictions and repossession of belongings.
Competition Tier 3
At Matrix Chambers, Rhodri Thompson QC represents "UK Trucks Claim", a Calunius Capital-backed class action follow-on damages claim based out of the trucks case; Christopher Brown is involved in representing, among others, Veolia and Suez, in their follow-on damages claim in the trucks case.
Matrix Chambers is filled with ‘barristers who are unstuffy and ooze expertise’. Members act for individuals (through the Official Solicitor), local authorities, and NHS bodies in the Court of Protection, in many cases involving deprivation of liberty issues and the safeguarding of vulnerable adults. David Wolfe QC acted for the Equality and Human Rights Commission in the leading Supreme Court case of D v Birmingham City Counsel, which concerned the extent to which the parents of a teenager with learning disabilities could lawfully consent to their child being detained without any court supervision.
Crime Tier 3
'All super clever lawyers', Matrix Chambers 'is a quality set, with a vast array of able barristers at all levels – either stars now or stars in the making'. Chambers handle a number of matters, including many politically charged and involving criminal appeals, the interface between the criminal law and civil liberties, and public order matters concerning protests. Clare Montgomery QC is scheduled to represent two Parachute Regiment veterans due to be tried in Northern Ireland for the murder of Official IRA member Joe McCann in 1972. Blinne Ní Ghrálaigh is a specialist in cases involving protest – she represented a number of demonstrators who blocked access roads to the DSEI defence industry trade show at the ExCeL Centre.
Environment Tier 3
Matrix Chambers has 'intellectually and strategically skilled barristers and non-stuffy ways of working’, according to one client. Among its members are recognised specialists with extensive experience in international, EU and domestic environmental law. Some have appeared before the International Court of Justice (ICJ) and the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS), as well as international arbitrations. 'Matrix is a class act with a good clerking team that has strength in depth and an easy manner'. In Bille and Ogale Communities v Royal Dutch Shell, Richard Hermer QC is handling a claim for compensation for two communities in southern Nigeria arising out of extensive damage caused by oil spills. David Wolfe QC is acting for an anti-fracking campaign in Claire Stephenson (Talk Fracking) v Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government.
Fraud: crime Tier 3
Matrix Chambers has been kept busy handling money laundering and tax fraud cases, and is well known for its strength in acting in cross-border instructions. Helen Law acted in a multi-defendant boiler room fraud case worth £3.5m. In August 2019, Jamas Hodivala joined the team from 2 Bedford Row.
Harbouring 'some excellent juniors', Matrix Chambers' 'reputation in complex immigration cases keeps growing', according to its instructing solicitors. The set is increasingly handling sports and business immigration matters and clients benefit from members' crossover expertise in immigration detention, equality, mental health, and community care. Team head Raza Husain QC represented the claimants in a high-profile judicial review challenge to the Home Secretary's refusal to permit a group of refugees to enter the UK mainland from the UK's Sovereign Base Areas in Cyprus.
Sport Tier 3
Health and safety Tier 4
Planning Tier 4
Commercial litigation Tier 4
The ‘swanky’ Matrix Chambers is ‘full of stars and stars in the making’ with ‘some of the cleverest barristers around’ who ‘work in a modern collaborative way and get results’. Or as one source commented: ‘Amazing breadth of coverage. Horses for courses, but they have a thoroughbred for every kind of case.’ ‘There can be very few landmark decisions in the last decade that have not involved one or other side represented by chambers,’ said another. Strengthening the crime team, chambers has welcomed Jamas Hodivala from 2 Bedford Row, Florence Iveson from The 36 Group, James Stansfeld from Furnival Chambers, and, most recently, Adrian Waterman QC from Doughty Street Chambers. Making the set ‘an increasing force in the new media law landscape focusing on privacy and data protection’, chambers also welcomed Catrin Evans QC and Ian Helme from the now defunct One Brick Court, while the employment team has been bolstered by the arrival of Nathan Roberts from Cloisters. Leaving chambers, Ben Emmerson QC joined Monckton Chambers and Aaron Watkins moved to Cloth Fair Chambers. Split into three teams, the clerks are ‘highly organised, efficient, and easy to get hold of’. Practice director Jason Housden and practice manager Simon Gardner are ‘a dream team to work with and just get things done – any member of the Bar would kill (or at least maim others) to be clerked by them’. Senior practice manager Allison Scanes ‘goes out of her way to ensure the availability of barristers and that their services are competitively priced; you feel that you are in a safe pair of hands’. ‘Dapper’ senior practice manager Paul Venables is ‘fantastic – responsive, commercial, proactive, charming, and always follows up’. Senior Practice manager Elizabeth Bousher is ‘highly regarded’ by solicitors. Also of note are Simon Gardner (‘just brilliant!’); Zoe Mellor (‘enormously helpful’); and Chris Beard (‘friendly and responsive’); while ‘well-regarded’ practice manager Rhian Hiscocks has joined from HARDWICKE and practice manager Gary Collins has arrived from New Square Chambers. According to one source: ‘Chambers as a whole, from the front desk to their excellent print department, takes pride in their work and in running cases successfully.’ Rachel Holmes is chambers chief executive. Offices in: London, Geneva, and Brussels
Matrix Chambers > Firm Profile
Matrix is a barristers’ chambers located in London, Geneva and Brussels. Described as “professional and forward thinking”, Matrix is an approachable set that is proud of its record of innovation and focus on excellence. Core values govern the way it works and outline its commitment to operating within an environment where diversity, accessibility and client care are widely championed.
Matrix’s depth of experience and expertise in a range of practice areas allow it to provide a unique offering at the Bar. Matrix has an established international presence, acting in more than 114 countries for governments, international corporations, legal firms and individuals.
|Chief Executive||Rachel Holmesemail@example.com|
|Practice Director||Jason Housdenfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Members of Chambers||AFEEVA, Mark (1997)|
|Members of Chambers||ARMSTRONG, Nick (2001)|
|Members of Chambers||BAILIN QC, Alex (1995)|
|Members of Chambers||BLAKE, Sir Nicholas (1974)*|
|Members of Chambers||BODNAR, Andrew (1995)|
|Members of Chambers||BOISSON DE CHAZOURNES, Prof Laurence*|
|Members of Chambers||BRENNAN QC, Lord Daniel (1967)*|
|Members of Chambers||BROWN, Christopher (2002)|
|Members of Chambers||BUCKLEY, Joanna (2011)|
|Members of Chambers||BUTLER, Michelle (2007)|
|Members of Chambers||BUTTLER, Chris (2004)|
|Members of Chambers||CHINKIN, Prof Christine (2003)|
|Members of Chambers||CHOO, Prof Andrew (2002)|
|Members of Chambers||CHRISTIE, Ayesha (2014)|
|Members of Chambers||CLAPHAM, Prof Andrew (1985)*|
|Members of Chambers||COOK, Kate (1990)|
|Members of Chambers||CRAVEN, Edward (2007)|
|Members of Chambers||DARWIN, Claire (2005)|
|Members of Chambers||DAVIES, Anita (2011)|
|Members of Chambers||DESAI, Raj (2010)|
|Members of Chambers||DOUGLAS QC, Prof Zachary (2006)|
|Members of Chambers||EVANS QC, Catrin (1994)|
|Members of Chambers||FOUBISTER, Emma (2016)|
|Members of Chambers||FRIEDMAN QC, Danny (1996)|
|Members of Chambers||GEARTY, Prof Conor (1995)|
|Members of Chambers||GIBSON, Nicholas (2009)|
|Members of Chambers||GLASSON QC, Jonathan (1996)|
|Members of Chambers||GONZÁLEZ GARCÍA, Luis*|
|Members of Chambers||GREAVES, Mark (2016)|
|Members of Chambers||HANNETT, Sarah (2003)|
|Members of Chambers||HELME, Ian (2005)|
|Members of Chambers||HERMER QC, Richard (1993)|
|Members of Chambers||HODIVALA, Jamas (1998)|
|Members of Chambers||HOOPER, Sir Anthony (1965)*|
|Members of Chambers||HUDSON QC, Anthony (1996)|
|Members of Chambers||HUNT, Murray*|
|Members of Chambers||HUSAIN QC, Raza (1993)|
|Members of Chambers||HUTCHEON, Darryl (2014)|
|Members of Chambers||IVESON, Florence (2012)|
|Members of Chambers||JABER, Tamara (2013)|
|Members of Chambers||JAMES-MATTHEWS, Tim (2018)|
|Members of Chambers||JONES, Jessica (2013)|
|Members of Chambers||KAUFMANN QC, Phillippa (1991)|
|Members of Chambers||KENTRIDGE, Janet (1999)|
|Members of Chambers||KIBLING, Thomas (1990)|
|Members of Chambers||KNIGHTS QC, Samantha (1996)|
|Members of Chambers||LADDIE QC, James (1995)|
|Members of Chambers||LAW, Helen (2005)|
|Members of Chambers||LEVENTHAL, Zoë (2002)|
|Members of Chambers||LINDEN QC, Thomas (1989)|
|Members of Chambers||LOGAN, Rachel (2008)*|
|Members of Chambers||MACDONALD QC, Alison (2000)|
|Members of Chambers||MACDONALD QC, Lord Ken (1978)*|
|Members of Chambers||MANSOORI, Sara (1997)|
|Members of Chambers||MARKS, Prof Jonathan H. *|
|Members of Chambers||MCCALLUM, Zoe (2016)|
|Members of Chambers||MILLAR QC, Gavin (1981)|
|Members of Chambers||MITCHELL, Eleanor (2015)|
|Members of Chambers||MITROPHANOUS, Eleni (1999)|
|Members of Chambers||MONAGHAN QC, Karon (1989)|
|Members of Chambers||MONTGOMERY QC, Clare (1980)|
|Members of Chambers||MORRIS, Prof Gillian (1997)|
|Members of Chambers||MOUNTFIELD QC, Helen (1991)|
|Members of Chambers||MURPHY, Prof Sean *|
|Members of Chambers||NÍ GHRÁLAIGH, Blinne (2005)|
|Members of Chambers||NICHOLLS QC, Paul (1992)|
|Members of Chambers||O'NEILL QC, Aidan (1996)|
|Members of Chambers||OWEN QC, Tim (1983)|
|Members of Chambers||PARKER, Raj (1983)|
|Members of Chambers||PRINCE, Laura (2003)|
|Members of Chambers||PURCHASE, Mathew (2002)|
|Members of Chambers||RANDALL QC, Nicholas (1990)|
|Members of Chambers||ROBERTS, Nathan (2014)|
|Members of Chambers||RYDER QC, Matthew (1992) *|
|Members of Chambers||SANDELL, Adam (2008)|
|Members of Chambers||SANDS QC, Prof Philippe (1985)|
|Members of Chambers||SILVERSTONE, Ben (2009|
|Members of Chambers||SIMOR QC, Jessica (1992)|
|Members of Chambers||SJOVOLL, Kirsten (2012)|
|Members of Chambers||SKINNER, Lorna (1997)|
|Members of Chambers||SKINNER, Paul (2010)|
|Members of Chambers||SMITH, Andrew (2008)|
|Members of Chambers||SOUTHEY QC, Hugh (1996)|
|Members of Chambers||SQUIRES QC, Dan (1998)|
|Members of Chambers||STANSFELD, James (2008)|
|Members of Chambers||SUMMERS QC, Mark (1996)|
|Members of Chambers||TAMS, Prof Christian *|
|Members of Chambers||TEMPLE, Booan (2001) *|
|Members of Chambers||THOMPSON QC, Rhodri (1989)|
|Members of Chambers||TOMLINSON QC, Hugh (1983)|
|Members of Chambers||TRIDIMAS, Prof Takis (2000)|
|Members of Chambers||VASSALL-ADAMS QC, Guy (2000)|
|Members of Chambers||WELSH, Angeline (2015)|
|Members of Chambers||WHITE QC, Antony (1983)|
|Members of Chambers||WILLS, Aidan (2015)|
|Members of Chambers||WOLFE QC, David (1992)|
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|Claire Darwin||View Profile|
|Catrin Evans QC||View Profile|
|Nicholas Gibson||View Profile|
|Jonathan Glasson QC||View Profile|
|Sarah Hannett||View Profile|
|Jamas Hodivala||View Profile|
|Florence Iveson||View Profile|
|James Laddie QC||View Profile|
|Ben Silverstone||View Profile|
|Hugh Southey QC||View Profile|
|James Stansfeld||View Profile|
|Mark Summers QC||View Profile|
|Adrian Waterman||View Profile|
In line with Matrix’s core values, it invests into the realisation of equal opportunities at work and at the Bar. Matrix is a committed advocate of equality in all aspects. It takes a three pronged approach to equality and diversity with support for staff and members, networking/consultancy groups and outreach projects, to ensure that Matrix is identifying and addressing early barriers. Matrix has a dedicated Equality and Diversity Manager (non-barrister) and two Equality and Diversity Officers (barristers) to make sure it is doing its utmost to improve diversity at the Bar. Below are just some of the projects Matrix has been involved in to contribute to the progression of diversity at the Bar.
- LGBT+: Matrix is one of the few barristers’ chambers that is a member of Stonewall, the LGBT+ charity, as part of their Diversity Champion Programme. Matrix takes part in the Stonewall yearly index and has been able to greatly improve policies and practices as a result. Matrix hosts LGBT consultation meetings for all staff and members to input into its LGBT+ strategy and both members and staff sit on the legal LGBT+ network committee FreeBar.
- Partnership with Mind: Matrix is proud to be one of the first legal organisations to sign up to the Mind Workplace Wellbeing Index to benchmark what it does to promote mental health support and wellbeing. In March 2019, Matrix was awarded Silver in the Index. Initiatives include wellbeing action plans, wellbeing policies and resilience workshops featuring innovative stress management techniques. CEO Rachel Holmes takes a keen interest in the wellbeing of staff and members and is a member of the Thriving of Work Leadership Council.
- Work experience and mentoring
Matrix has a year round work experience programme for young people aged 14-18, with half of placements reserved for people from backgrounds underrepresented in law, including BAME candidates, those of the first generation in their family to attend university and candidates with disabilities. From the success of this programme Matrix is now launching a longer term mentoring project.
- Promoting gender equality
Matrix is dedicated to the promotion and advancement of women both in the workplace, and specifically at the Bar. Matrix regularly host events that tackle issues facing women across different backgrounds and across the world. Matrix has an internal women’s network for both members and staff to discuss gender issues. Its members have also commented on gender issues facing the Bar and the judiciary in the media.
Top Tier Set Rankings
- London Bar Business and regulatory crime (including global investigations)
- London Bar Civil liberties and human rights (including actions against the police)
- London Bar Employment
- London Bar International crime and extradition
- London Bar Public international law
- London Bar IT and telecoms
- London Bar Administrative and public law (including local government)
- London Bar Data protection
- London Bar Defamation and privacy
- London Bar Education
- London Bar EU Law
- London Bar Inquests and inquiries
- London Bar International arbitration: arbitrators
- London Bar Proceeds of Crime Act and asset forfeiture
- London Bar International arbitration: counsel
- London Bar Media and entertainment (including art and cultural property)
- London Bar Competition
- London Bar Court of Protection and community care
- London Bar Crime
- London Bar Environment
- London Bar Fraud: crime
- London Bar Immigration (including business immigration)
- London Bar Sport
- London Bar Professional disciplinary and regulatory law
- London Bar Tax: corporate and VAT/indirect tax
- London Bar Health and safety
- London Bar Planning
- London Bar Commercial litigation
- London Bar Personal injury, industrial disease and insurance fraud
- London Bar Set overviews: England and Wales