Since joining 4 New Square in 2011, Chris has built up a commercial practice, with a particular focus on professional liability, construction and engineering, and mortgage and banking litigation.
Chris regularly acts for both claimants and defendants, and is often instructed as sole counsel in substantial High Court matters. Further information is provided below and under the links to the left of this page.
In respect of accountants, tax advisors and financial advisors, Chris is rapidly developing his practice in defending claims involving allegedly negligent tax advice, and is instructed to appear (led by Graham Chapman QC) in two trials listed for March and May 2017, concerning investments in certain Eclipse and Scion film schemes, and ‘gift aid relief’ schemes. He is also instructed as sole counsel acting on behalf of three financial advisors in a claim brought by around 60 claimants, mostly former professional sportsmen, being represented Peters & Peters LLP.
As sole counsel, Chris is presently instructed on behalf of the claimants in a Commercial Court claim likely to be quantified in excess of £1m, brought by the former owners of two well-known hotels on the Blackpool Promenade against their former insurance broker. He is also instructed in a substantial claim in the Technology & Construction Court, brought on behalf of a sub-contractor in respect of an extension and partial refurbishment of a hospital in Blackburn. The claim concerns liability to the main contractor, a joint venture between two major national contractors.
Chris has also previously been involved in a number of other high profile cases. They include:
- Led by Ben Hubble QC and Amanda Savage, acting on behalf of solicitors in lead cases in the Right to Buy litigation.
- Led by Justin Fenwick QC and Graham Chapman QC, acting on behalf of CBRE in the case of Gemini (Eclipse 2006-3) Plc v CBRE Limited and Warwick Street (KS) LLP, a securitised lender claim seeking damages in excess of £230m. The claim, which concerned a property portfolio valued by the defendants at more than £1bn, was named in The Lawyer’s top 20 cases of 2016.
- Led by Fiona Sinclair QC and Richard Liddell, acting on the Part 20 claim by Birse Developments Ltd against its structural engineer and geotechnical design specialist in Co-operative Group Ltd v Birse Developments Ltd  BLR 359.
Since joining Chambers, Chris has also completed a combined six months on secondment at three leading City firms, undertaking professional liability and construction work.
Construction and engineering
Chris has built up a substantial construction and engineering practice, acting both for and against employers, their insurers, building contractors and sub-contractors, in both commercial and residential contexts. He frequently appears in the Technology & Construction Court, and is regularly instructed in construction adjudications, both substantively and in jurisdictional challenges.
Chris was heavily involved in the drafting and preparatory work on behalf of the successful employer in Trustees of the Marc Gilbard 2009 Settlement Trust v OD Developments and Projects Ltd  EWHC 70 (TCC), concerning the conclusivity of final certificates. The employer was represented by Anneliese Day QC.
Chris was also involved in Co-operative Group Ltd v Birse Developments Ltd  BLR 359, alongside Fiona Sinclair QC and Richard Liddell, defending Birse Developments Ltd in a claim in relation to the construction of internal flooring, external hardstanding and drainage systems at a large commercial distribution centre.
Mortgage and banking
Chris has substantial experience acting for major lenders in substantial commercial disputed. He was instructed as part of the legal team led by Tim Lord QC in Property Alliance Group v RBS, a banking dispute in the Chancery Division, involving issues as to mis-selling of swaps, LIBOR-rigging, and the Global restructuring Group within RBS.
Further, Chris was led by Ben Hubble QC in a Commercial Court claim brought against a major lender, concerning contractual formation, stepped fixed rate loans, arguments concerning contracts for differences and various alleged breaches of the FSA Rules.
Prior to commencing pupillage, Chris studied Law at the University of Warwick, where he obtained a First Class degree. He then spent three months as an intern at the Cape Town office of Bowman Gilfillan Attorneys, one of the largest commercial law firms in South Africa, followed by five months as a Blue Book Stagiaire at the European Commission in Brussels.
Chris was awarded a Major Scholarship from the Inner Temple for his BVC year. During this time, he also represented the Inner Temple at the World Debating Championships 2009. Immediately before joining 4 New Square, Chris spent 6 months at the Court of Appeal, working as a Judicial Assistant to Lord Justice Mummery and Lord Justice Rix.
LLB (Warwick) (First Class)