Mr Nigel Pleming QC > Chambers of Charlie Cory-Wright QC and Richard Harwood QC > London, England > Lawyer Profile

Chambers of Charlie Cory-Wright QC and Richard Harwood QC
39 Essex Chambers
Nigel Pleming photo


Barrister specialising in administrative and public law, environmental law, human rights, regulation and tax, including VAT and C&E. Recent cases include: R v Secretary of State for Trade and Industry ex p Greenpeace [1999] Env LR, (environmental); Environment Agency v Empress Cars Limited [1999] 2 AC 22 (environment); Bournewood Community and Mental Health NHS Trust, ex parte L [1999] 1 AC 458 (human rights); Svenska International Plc v Customs and Excise [1999] 1 WLR 769 (VAT); R v Ashworth Hospital ex p Ian Brady [2000] Lloyd’s Rep Med 355 (human rights); R v Department of Health, ex parte Source Informatics [2000] 2 WLR 940 (regulation and human rights); R v North and East Devon Health Authority, ex parte Coughlan [2000] 2 WLR 622 (administrative and public law); R v The National Lottery Commission ex p Camelot plc [2001] EMLR 43 (administrative and public law); Wilson v South Kesteven DC [2001] 1 WLR 387 (administrative and public law); R v Secretary of State for the Home Department ex p Javed [2001] 3 WLR 323 (administrative and public law); R (Holub) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2001] 1 WLR 1359 (administrative and public law); R v Mental Health Act Commission, ex parte Wilkinson [2001] 419 CA (human rights); R v NASS, ex parte Westminster City Council [2002] 1 WLR 2956 (administrative and public law); Ashworth Hospital Authority v Mirror Group Ltd [2001] 1 WLR 2033 (administrative and public law); R v Secretary of State for the Home Department, ex parte Mullen [2004] UKHL 18 (human rights, and administrative and public law); Centralan Property Ltd v Customs and Excise [2002] STC 290 (VAT); R v Secretary of State for the Environment and Transport and the Regions ex p Edison First Power Limited [2001] 16 EG 101 (HL – administrative and public law); Trinity Mirror Group plc v Commissioners for Customs and Excise [2003] STC 518; Naim Ahmed [2002] 2 All ER 440 (administrative and public law); Humber Sea Terminal Ltd v Secretary of State for Transport (QBD) [2005] EWHC 1289 (environment); Ward v Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis & ors (HL) [2006] 1 AC 23 (administrative and public law); R (Colonel Munjaz) v Ashworth Hospital and Secretary of State [2006] 2 AC 148 (human rights); R (Singapore Medical Council) v General Medical Council and Simon Shorvon (QBD) [2006] EWHC 3277 (administrative and public law); Shin Wing v Director of Environment, Hong Kong [2006] HC Court of Final Appeal (environment; R Crown Prosecution Service) v Bow Street Magistrates’ Court and Samuel James and five ors (DC) [2007] 1 WLR 291 (administrative and public law); R (Edwards) v Environment Agency and others (CA) [2006] EWCA Civ 877 (environment): R [National Grid Gas plc) v Environment Agency (QBD) [2006] 1 WLR 3041 (administrative and public law, environment); R (Maile and Hardy) v Pembrokeshire County Council (QBD) [2005] EWHC 1872 (environment); Revenue & Customs v Zurich Insurance Co (ChD) [2006] EWHC 593 (VAT); R (Greenpeace) v Secretary of State for Trade and Industry [2007] EWHC Admin 15.2.2007 (administrative and public law/environment).


Called 1971; QC 1992.




London (LLM); Kingston University (LLB Hons).

Lawyer Rankings

London Bar > Civil liberties and human rights (including actions against the police)

(Leading Silks) Ranked: Tier 2

Nigel Pleming QC39 Essex Chambers

London Bar > Environment

(Leading Silks) Ranked: Tier 2

Nigel Pleming QC39 Essex Chambers An extremely experienced and powerful advocate who is able to unravel the complex and difficult.

The pre-eminent environmental set’, 39 Essex Chambers ‘has strength in depth and carries specialists in many areas of environmental law’. Environmental law is a major component of the set’s work, along with planning matters, and among its members are some of the leading practitioners in this area. Five members, including James Strachan QC and up-and-coming junior Rose Grogan, are involved in a challenge to the decision to grant consent for a tunnel under Stonehenge. Stephen Tromans QC is a leading light in matters relating to waste, nuclear energy, reservoir safety and nuisance claims, while Nigel Pleming QC has more than 30 years’ experience in environmental cases, including matters arising from the expansion of Heathrow Airport. Among the newer silks, Richard Wald QC recently acted for one of the UK’s largest minerals extraction companies in an appeal against a refusal to permit the construction of additional silt lagoons for processing extracted aggregates. Juan Lopez, who joined from Francis Taylor Building, is emerging as a force in matters concerning climate change, flood alleviation, coastal defence schemes and ecology.

London Bar > Administrative and public law (including elections)

(Leading Silks) Ranked: Tier 3

Nigel Pleming QC39 Essex ChambersExtremely experienced and powerful advocate, the very best in the field, able to unravel the complex and difficult into thoroughly convincing submissions always trusted by the court.

London Bar > Tax: corporate and VAT/indirect tax

(Tax: VAT - Leading silks) Ranked: Tier 2

Nigel Pleming QC39 Essex Chambers

39 Essex Chambers advises on a broad range of tax with a strong focus on VAT and indirect tax. Nigel Pleming QC has extensive experience representing HMRC in cases involving VAT issues, particularly in the cases where it alleges tax avoidance, while Timothy Lyons QC has a strong international taxation practice and has ‘encyclopaedic knowledge‘ of EU state aid and taxation. Senior junior Kelly Stricklin-Coutinho is a tax disputes specialist with expertise handling customs matters and VAT disputes.