Work Life Quiz: Matthew O’Regan, Burges Salmon

What was your first-ever job? S

aturday assistant at John Lewis.

What was your worst experience as a trainee?

Schlepping back across London to collect the coat of an associate who’d left it in a data room.

What time do you usually leave the office?

When I’m finished, but never early.

What’s your favourite restaurant?

Chez Marie in Brussels.

What’s your favourite film?

Cry Freedom and The King’s Speech.

What was your first record?

Fade to Grey by Visage.

What’s the toughest thing about your job?

Late nights and weekends.

What’s your biggest work/career mistake?

After an all-nighter I included another client’s documents in a submission sent to the European Commission. I learnt to check every page – twice – however tired I was.

What car do you drive?

An old and bashed-up Saab 9-5.

What book are you reading?

I’m Not Really Here by Paul Lake and Brown at 10 by Anthony Seldon.

What’s your favourite children’s book?

The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler.

What’s the most exciting deal/case you’ve worked on?

ING’s European Court challenge to the European Commission’s decision concerning state aid provided during the financial crisis. It concerned the application of new state aid rules for the financial sector and the decision had a significant impact on ING’s business. Fortunately, on 2 March 2012, the court upheld ING’s appeal.

If you were stranded on a desert island, what two luxury items would you take?

A TV with Sky Sports and a washed-up tank full of cold beer.

What’s the longest you’ve worked without sleep?

Around 40 hours.

If a movie was being made about your life, which actor would play you and why?

John Cleese. He’s tall, a liberal and some think I’m like Basil Fawlty.

Who would you least like to be stuck in a lift with and why?

Anyone from The Only Way is Essex.

Tell us two truths and one lie about yourself (in any order)

My wife’s from Brentwood (home to The Only Way is Essex); my son could play football for six countries, but Ireland isn’t one of them; I can run a half-marathon in under 80 minutes.


Name: Matthew O’Regan
Firm: Burges Salmon
Title: Partner
Lives: Bristol and Brussels


1989-92: LLB, University of Nottingham
1992-93: LLM, University of Amsterdam
1993-94: LPC, Nottingham Trent University

Work history:

1994-95: Stagiaire, Airbus Industrie, Toulouse
1995-99: Trainee solicitor, then assistant, Herbert Smith
2000-11: Associate, then senior associate, then counsel, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
2012-present: Partner, Burges Salmon, Bristol