Pinsent Masons has boosted its nuclear group with the hire of former government adviser Ian Downing as a consultant.

Downing was director of international nuclear policy and programmes for the Department of Trade and Industry for eight years before his retirement this summer.

In the late 1980s Downing was principal policy adviser on the staff of government chief scientific advisers Sir John Fairclough and Sir William Stewart.

He is currently chairman of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development’s nuclear safety account, and will retain that post.