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Legal 500 2018 Rankings

Legal 500 2018 Rankings

Set rankings

We are recommended as a set for:

  • Construction
  • Insurance and Reinsurance
  • Personal Injury
  • Professional Negligence
  • Property Litigation
  • Social Housing


Set Overview

The ‘fantastic’ Hardwicke is ‘a first division operation with great strength in depth’. The chambers is ‘out on their own for construction and insurance’ matters, is ‘an excellent commercial litigation set’, well regarded in property law, and ‘the clear leader’ in franchising work. Counsel are ‘responsive and make clients and solicitors feel part of the team’. Chambers’ style ‘means its approach to the lay client is friendly, clear and approachable’. ‘Trustworthy’ chief executive Amanda Illing is ‘the shining star of the team’; she has ‘taken chambers to a new level’ and ‘puts the quality of service at the heart of everything she does, while making sure we all feel like a member of her family’. The praise for the chief continues, with one solicitor explaining how Illing has ‘brought a bit of Matrix Chambers into the set, in the sense that they are user friendly and not stuffy’. Thanks to the leadership of practice director Deborah Anderson, the ‘top-drawer’ clerking team is ‘always efficient and client focused’ and ‘willing to go the extra mile’. Anderson, ‘who ensures that key relationships are kept and built upon’, is assisted by ‘superb’ senior practice managers Richard Sumarno and James Duncan-Hartill, who are ‘quick to respond and active in resolving queries’. Also of note, both Natasha Devlin-Clingham and Rhian Hiscocks are ‘efficient, personable and approachable’ and ‘know their barristers really well’.



Administrative and Public Law (including Local Government)

Alison Meacher

‘Her drafting is thorough and she is a firm advocate in court and in negotiations.’

Civil Liberties and Human Rights (including actions against the police)

Alison Meacher

‘Innovative, very knowledgeable and very competent in Court of Protection cases.’

Clinical Negligence

Charles Bagot QC

‘Has great attention to detail and his measured approach is appreciated by clients.’

Commercial Litigation

Nigel Jones QC

‘Brilliant at breaking down complex legal and factual issues and putting them in simple terms.’

David Lewis

‘Very easy to work with and the lay clients love his punchy style.’

 Sarah McCann

‘Dynamic advocacy and an all-hands-on-deck approach.’

Charles Raffin

‘One of the best and most user-friendly juniors. It isn’t easy to find barristers with real franchise specialism and he is one of them.’

Company and Partnership

Nigel Jones QC

He is able to spot points not visible to others.


The Set

Hardwicke ‘has good depth in construction and a good diversity of barristers’. Key cases include Carillion Construction Ltd v Aecom & Emcor, a high-profile dispute led by Paul Reed QC concerning the Rolls Buildings, and leading case on concurrent delay; and in Ashe/Elim v DGT & HTS, David Pliener led a multi-million pound four-party TCC dispute arising out of the collapse of the City Gates Christian Centre in Ilford.

Nigel Jones QC

Fantastic with clients, brilliant at breaking down complex legal and factual issues and putting them in simple terms.

Paul Reed QC

‘Really impressive.’

Sarah McCann

‘Impressive in fire-related property damage cases; she regularly appears in the TCC.’

Catherine Piercy

Simply exceptional: very bright, understands complicated technical issues and is very good at cross-examination.

David Pliener

‘Very capable advocate, offering great strategic and commercial advice and excellent knowledge of the law.’

Michael Wheater

‘Knows construction law, procedure and technicalities inside out – his drafting and written legal submissions are second to none.’


PJ Kirby QC

‘Has a good academic and commercial blend in relation to costs issues.’

Court of Protection and Community Care

Alison Meacher

‘Very skilled on mental capacity and mental health law.’


Shazia Akhtar

‘An extremely efficient and competent advocate whose paperwork is excellent.’


Paul Strelitz

‘He has an excellent breadth of knowledge and a hands-on approach.’

Mark Stephens

He has a fantastic ability to get to the heart of the case.

Matthew Hodson

A go-to guy who knows how to extract pertinent points in cross-examination.’


Sarah Clarke

‘An excellent commercial litigator.’

Wendy Parker

‘Extremely knowledgeable and always composed.’

Charles Raffin

‘Very commercial, very sharp and a delight to work with.’

Jonathan Titmuss

‘Great technical ability; sound commercialism.’

Alaric Watson

‘A hands on practical approach to problem solving.’

Insurance and Reinsurance

The Set

The ‘consistently very good’ Hardwicke is ‘a really bright and knowledgeable set’. ‘Every member is a real specialist in their field and is nice to work with’, such as Nigel Jones QC, who is involved in high-profile claims relating to the insolvency of Enterprise Insurance, and Paul Reed QC, who regularly acts for leading insurance firms.

Nigel Jones QC

Very thorough with an incredible knowledge of insurance.

Paul Reed QC

‘The go-to London authority for contentious construction insurance and all risks matters.’

David Pliener

‘Approachable, accessible and impressively marshals the case details.’

Intellectual Property

Mark Engelman

Very personable but tenacious and valued for his ability to think outside the box.

Ian Silcock

‘He is a meticulous researcher, a careful and elegant draftsman and a supportive addition to any team.’

Personal Injury, Industrial Disease and Insurance Fraud

The Set

Hardwicke’s ‘boutique personal injury team’ handles a wide variety of claims including brain injury, career-ending limb and back injuries, spinal fractures, fatalities and road traffic accidents. Charles Bagot QC, ‘who always gets to the heart of the matter’, enhanced the team’s strength after taking silk in 2018.

Insurance Fraud

Gemma Witherington

‘Her attention to detail is exceptional.’

Personal Injury

Charles Bagot

He is a superb barrister who has the rare skill of having his eye to the future of litigation; ably assists clients on how to manage a large loss portfolio.

Jasmine Murphy

‘She shows an excellent ability to get to the heart of the matter quickly and argue her case persuasively.’

Colm Nugent

‘He has an unerring eye for a winner and is prepared to back his assessments to the hilt. He has a staggering appetite for work.’

Henry Slack

‘He always provides robust advice; clients respect his opinion.’

Gemma Witherington

‘She is a rising star and a real fighter.’

Professional Negligence

The Set

Hardwicke is a ‘progressive and agile set that wants to give practical solutions rather than getting hung up on technical arguments’, and it is active in commercial, construction, technology, property, financial services, insurance and insolvency claims. Paul Reed QC is involved in Carillion Construction Ltd v Aecom & Emcor and John de Waal QC is representing housebuilder Barratt in relation to a claim for damages following the discovery of asbestos at a site for residential development in South Wales.

Nigel Jones QC

A superb advocate.

Paul Reed QC

Very impressive.

John de Waal QC

‘User friendly and sensible.’

Thomas Bell

‘Able to distil complex legal arguments for lay clients..’

James Hall

‘He is able to take in immense amounts of detail, distil that knowledge and then summarise it in a way which is easily accessible.’

Sarah McCann

“Determined, results-driven and a joy to work with”

Laurence Page

An intelligent lawyer with a good grasp of the legal principles and how they are applied.

Catherine Piercy


David Pliener

‘Very clear and concise, and his written work is exceptional.’

Jonathan Titmuss

‘Excellent knowledge and experience.’

Michael Wheater

‘Incredibly bright, but very user friendly and down to earth.’

Property Litigation and Agriculture

The set

At Hardwicke, there is a ‘wide range of excellent counsel from juniors up to the impressive silks’. Areas of specialism for the set include boundary disputes, transaction-related property negligence and easements, as well as niche knowledge in tower block cladding and fracking. Brie Stevens-Hoare QC and John de Waal QC are acting on TST Millbank v Resolution Real Estate Ltd, a multi-million pound claim at Millbank Tower in relation to outstanding service charges.

Brie Stevens-Hoare QC

Concise in summarising her legal arguments and able to adapt her advocacy when questioned.

John de Waal QC

Puts a lot of thought into strategy and is very easy to work with.

Simon Allison

‘He has a very sharp intellect and a deep understanding of the property industry.’

Alexander Bastin

‘He is clear and thorough in his advice and goes beyond for clients.’

Emily Betts

She will not back down when a point is worth pursuing.

John Clargo

‘A tenacious advocate with strong technical skills.’

Andy Creer

A very technical lawyer with a commercial approach.

Jamal Demachkie

‘Remarkable with clients, putting them at ease and explaining complex ideas very simply.’

Amanda Eilledge

Very competent, stern when needed and great with clients.

Daniel Gatty

Knowledgeable about property and installs confidence.

Peter Petts

‘He is outstanding.’

Edward Rowntree

‘Proactive and provides detailed and logical analysis.’

Laura Tweedy

Helpful, efficient and accessible, she goes the extra mile.

Social Housing

The Set

Hardwicke’s presence in the social housing space comes primarily through the set’s property litigation work and social welfare capabilities. Chambers is well known for representing housing associations in disrepair and possession claims. Recent stand-out work has included Alison Meacher representing a local authority in a case concerning the proper interpretation of a clause in the Housing Benefit Regulations 2006.

Morayo Fagborun Bennett

‘Excellent in every respect; one of the housing Bar’s most consistent performers.’

Alison Meacher

‘Pairs well-researched briefs with clear, confident and straightforward advocacy.’

Laura Tweedy

‘A compelling and persuasive advocate; nothing is too much trouble for her.’

Travel Law (Including Jurisdictional Issues)

Charles Bagot QC

‘Instructed in an increasing number of international injury work that involves cross-border issues.’