Simon has a successful commercial practice. He has been described in the Legal 500 as “A real rising star” with “good attention to detail and a commercial approach.” The 2016-17 edition calls him "A super junior, who gets to grips with the detail and issues quickly."
Simon has a balanced workload acting both as sole counsel and as a junior to other members of chambers. He prides himself on providing advisory, drafting and advocacy services of the very highest quality, and always seeks to foster a ‘team-spirit’ dynamic with the solicitors, experts and other third parties with whom he works. He understands that clients value a cool head and a responsive approach, especially in time-pressured situations.
He strives to bring focused and strategic thinking to every matter, keeping the client’s broader commercial objectives for resolving its dispute firmly in view. He is a confident and persuasive advocate with 10 years of experience on his feet before the High Court, the Court of Appeal and other public and private tribunals.
The following current and recent instructions give a flavour of Simon’s practice:
Major Pension Trustee v Investment Consultant
With Sonia Tolaney QC, Simon acted for one of the largest occupational pension trusts in the country in a claim against its former investment consultants. The trust made a £250M investment into an emerging market currencies portfolio, and alleged that the use of USD/GBP currency forward contracts within the fund (FX ‘hedging’) diminished the returns on its investment by £10s of millions.
(1) Empirical Property Group Limited & (2) FSL Properties Limited v (1) Gateley Manchester LLP (2) Gateley LLP
With Graham Chapman QC, Simon acts for the claimant property developers in a claim against this well-known law firm. As reported in The Lawyer, the dispute concerns the redevelopment of the ‘Trafford Press’ building in Manchester. The claimants say that Gateley’s errors caused the failure of the Trafford Press development and consequentially, the failure of a number of the group’s wider projects. This is another eight-figure claim.
Carillion Construction Limited v (1) Woods Bagot Europe Limited (2) AECOM Limited (3) EMCOR Engineering Services Limited (4) EMCOR (UK) Limited
With Paul Cowan, Simon is defending EMCOR on a main contractor’s delay and defects claim, and pursuing EMCOR’s counterclaims for extension of time and £millions of loss and expense. This high profile litigation arises from the construction of the Rolls Building, now home to the Commercial Court, the TCC and much of the Chancery Division. A copy of the reported judgment on preliminary issues can be found here. The dominant first issue, on which Paul and Simon were successful, will be heard by the Court of Appeal in early 2017.
Various Claimants v (1) Unite the Union (2) EAD LLP (3) EAD Solicitors (A Firm)
With Simon Monty QC, Simon appeared for Unite the Union (the UK’s largest independent trade union) on a 4 week trial. The litigation arose from the implementation in 2005 of ‘single status’ pay for thousands of men and women employed by Birmingham City Council. The implementation was designed to eradicate gender based inequalities of pay, but gave rise to mass litigation, which the various claimants in these High Court proceedings alleged had been mishandled. The case involved highly complex questions of duty and limitation. The trial was settled during its third week.
Employer v Main Contractor
With Fiona Sinclair QC, defending a globally renowned main contractor in substantial adjudication proceedings concerning the visual appearance of rain-screen cladding on a flagship development for a very high-profile employer.
CIP Properties (AIPT) Limited v Galliford Try Infrastructure Limited v (1) EIC Limited (2) Kone PLC (3) DLG Architects LLP (4) Damond Lock Grabowski & Partners
With Fiona Sinclair QC and Sian Mirchandani, Simon acted for the architects DLG, resisting a main contractor’s £6M contribution and damages claim following the settlement of the developer claimant’s defects claim. The action related to the construction of the landmark “Broadway Plaza” development in Birmingham. The architect faced (and denied) allegations relating principally to the design, specification and inspection of the building’s drainage and water-proof membrane.
Premier League u21 Player v Premier League Club
Simon acts for the Club in a claim by a former U 21 squad player, who suffered a serious leg break in a pre-season friendly. The claim was brought in the High Court, but Simon appeared with Graeme McPherson QC and successfully obtained a stay to arbitration under of the FA Rules, on the grounds that a player-on-player tackle was caught by the arbitration clause in Rule K. Simon continues to act in the arbitration.
The Board of the Pension Protection Fund v (1) Aon Consulting Financial Services Limited (2) Aon Consulting Limited (3) Edge Ellison (A Firm)
Simon acted for Aon, defending a c.£10M claim by the PPF on behalf of the British Midland Airways occupational pension scheme following an allegedly failed Barber equalization exercise.
Simon enjoys spending time with his wife and his two blue whippets (Alfie & Rose), and with friends and family. He is an outdoor pursuits enthusiast: he successfully ascended Mera Peak in the Himalayas in November 2015, and ski-toured with a pulk through the wilds of arctic Sweden this winter. Other loves include downhill skiing (mainly après), cycling, and whenever work allows, escaping London at weekends.
- PNBA (Executive Committee Member)
MA (Hons) Jurisprudence – Oxford University; Steen Award – Gray’s Inn; Bar Vocational Course (Very competent; top 5% in year) – Inns of Court School of Law, London