Juniors in name only

When it comes to juniors, the professional negligence bar is weighted with talent.

Talented juniors can be found at a wide range of chambers. A concentration of them can be found at 2 Crown Office Row, where most got a mention. Singled out for particular praise are Roger Stewart – “an absolute star”, Mark Cannon, who is “a tough achiever” and can “get to grips with a vast amount of detail”, Fiona Sinclair, described as “exceptionally bright” and “pragmatic”, and Sue Carr, who “always puts her back into cases”. Jamie Smith is rated as a “safe pair of hands”.
Four Paper Buildings is well served with juniors. The “ingenious” Michael Pooles is recommended “whole-heartedly” by several people for being “exceptionally intelligent and able”, and “very user-friendly”. Patrick Lawrence is “absolutely first rate”. Derek Holwill, meanwhile, is “academically top-notch”, “gets to the point quickly” and “has a sense of humour with it”. Spike Charlwood is seen as “up and coming”, while Francis Bacon is also rated.
At 4 Pump Court, it is said Jeremy Nicholson “leaves no stone unturned”, and David Sears is “very approachable and sensible”. Rachel Ansell is also praised as “absolutely marvellous”. Simon Henderson “performs well” and is another “up and coming” junior.
Bankim Thanki, Stephen Moriarty and Timothy Howe are commended at Fountain Court, as is Craig Orr, who is called “quite cerebral” and “extremely good with clients”.
At Brick Court Chambers, Tom Adam is described as a “leading junior”. Cyril Kinsky is “particularly good at delving into the detail”.
Andrew Goddard in Atkin Chambers is relied upon for his “sound judgement” and “in-depth experience” in professional negligence construction work.
For construction-related negligence, Peter Coulson at Keating Chambers is rated and “very able to hold his own corner”. At the same set, Marcus Taverner is held to be a “most incisive junior” and “ferocious in cross-examination”. Paul Darling also gets a mention.
At Monckton Chambers, Andrew Macnab is seen to be “very adept at cross-examination, in pleadings and in conference”. Melanie Hall is “good on her feet” and “very approachable”.
Over at Littleton Chambers, Ian Gatt gets a seal of approval and is “pleasingly down to earth” with it. Timothy Higginson and Jeffrey Bacon also come in for praise, as does Mark Lomas, who has “vast experience” and is a “pleasure to work with”.
At 12 New Square, Christopher Russell is “painstakingly meticulous” and “excellent at staying in the loop”. In New Court Chambers, John Wardell is praised for his “lack of pomposity” and “realistic and inventive approach”.
Michael Pryor at 9 Old Square has a “practical mentality” and “very well reasoned opinions”. At 11 New Square, Tom Dumont's role as junior counsel for SIF in a landmark case on solicitor negligence wins him plaudits, while at No 1 Serjeants' Inn, Alastair Hammerton is said to have a “calm, measured approach” and an impressive combination of “flair and empathy”. One solicitor says he is “not too pricey” either.
Malcolm Stitcher at 199 Strand has “a very hands on approach” and is prepared to spend time with you” and “give that little bit extra”.
In Wilberforce Chambers, Jonathan Seitler is singled out as a “competent all-rounder” and “very entertaining – a factor which never goes unmissed,” according to at least one instructing solicitor.