John Sharples > Chambers of Matthew White > Bristol, England > Lawyer Profile

Chambers of Matthew White
St John's Chambers

Work Department

Agriculture & Rural Affairs, Court of Protection, Highways & Rights of Way, Mediation, Professional Negligence, Real Estate, Wills & Trusts


Barrister specialising in all areas of real property and landlord and tenant law. Practice is primarily litigation-based, but he also regularly undertakes advice and drafting in non-contentious scenarios. Extensive expertise in a wide variety of property issues, including: sale of land, restrictive covenants, easements, mortgages, licences, boundary disputes, contractual disputes involving property, torts relating to land. Landlord and tenant law: business and residential tenancies, agricultural tenancies, local authority housing issues. Also regularly instructed in other matters within the commercial chancery field, including partnership disputes, probate and trusts and commercial contracts. Chambers UK (2014) describes John as ‘both good on paper and a strong advocate in complex ToLATA matters’ (Chancery) and recognises his ‘fantastic technical expertise…’ ‘leaves no stone unturned and is very intelligent.’ ‘Pound for pound, he’s one of the best barristers on circuit.’ (Real Estate Litigation). Selected cases: successfully acted for the appellant in the Court of Appeal in June 2003 in Gonthier v Orange Contract Scaffolding Ltd [2003] EWCA Civ 873, a case relating to estoppels arising in ‘subject to contract’ negotiations and the ‘clean hands’ defence; Sweet v Sommer & Neanor [2004] 4 All ER 288 – easements of necessity. He acted for successful parties in Wheatley & Smith v King [2011] EWLandRA 2011 0238 (options and estoppels) and Loveluck-Edwards v Ideal Developments Ltd & Dyke [2012] EWHC 716 (Ch) (implied and prescriptive rights of way). He is the author of ‘Land Licences’ (Jordans Publishing 2011) and was recently appointed as a regular contributor to the New Law Journal on Land matters.


Attorney at law, New York State 1989-1991; called 1992.


Chancery Bar Association; Secretary Western Circuit; Commercial Bar Association.


University of Oxford (BA); University of Cambridge (LLM); University of Pennsylvania (LLM); Thouron Scholar, University of Pennsylvania Queen Mother’s Scholar, Sachs Prize and Campbell-Foster Prize, Middle Temple.

Lawyer Rankings

Regional Bar > Western Circuit > Property and construction

(Leading Juniors)Ranked: Tier 1

John SharplesSt John’s ChambersJohn has a superb ability to identify and crystallise the issues and apply the law to them. He is thorough and decisive in his work and utterly reliable in this field.’