DEPARTMENT PROFILE

3 Raymond Buildings

Inquests & Public Inquiries

9 ranked barristersBand 2London (Bar)UK Bar 2021 View ranking table
DEPARTMENT PROFILE

3 Raymond Buildings

Inquests & Public Inquiries

9 ranked barristersBand 2London (Bar)UK Bar 2021 View ranking table
chambers review
Ranked Barristers
chambers review
Ranked Barristers

Chambers Review

This content is provided by Chambers based on our research. Learn more about our methodology.

Offers considerable expertise in handling inquests as a result of its longstanding practice in this area. The set draws strength from its criminal and regulatory experience. Recently the members have been involved in the London Bridge inquests and the Grenfell Tower Inquiry. The barristers act on behalf of police officers, and fire services and other state agents. The set has considerable knowledge of handling issues involving emergency service failings and criminal and terrorist activities. They receive plaudits from commentators, who note: "They have unrivalled experience in this area."

Client service:

"3 Raymond Buildings is an outstanding set of chambers both in terms of the counsel we instruct, and the way in which the clerks conduct their business and the chambers is administered. In three words: competent, professional, outstanding." Eddie Holland is the senior clerk.

Strengths:

Clair Dobbin QC
Consistently involved in the most high-profile inquests and inquiries. She chiefly counsels state agents, including police forces and government departments, and also has experience serving as counsel to the inquiry. Her practice has a particular emphasis on inquests relating to prison and police custody deaths.
"Absolutely excellent. She is a delightful person but also a really hard-working and excellent barrister." "She is a force of nature: I have rarely known anybody to work as hard as she does. She has got a phenomenal practice and is frighteningly sharp and formidable." "A master advocate and a master of detail."
Recent work: Acted as counsel to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse. Conducted the investigations into Lambeth Children's Homes and Rochdale.

Strengths:

Hugh Davies QC
Strong choice to represent individual police officers facing considerable scrutiny in inquests and public inquiries, often involving parallel professional discipline proceedings. He is especially experienced in inquests involving police shootings. 
"Hugh is a formidable force in relation to matters surrounding police discipline and public law. His client care is first-class, and he will engage through any medium to suit the instructing solicitor and client. When available, Hugh should be a police officer's first choice."
Recent work: Acted on behalf of former police officers in the new Birmingham Pub Bombings inquests. The officers were involved in the investigation and prosecution of the Birmingham Six.

Strengths:

Hugo Keith QC
Frequently represents individuals, state agents and other participants in sensitive public inquiries and inquests, usually under considerable media attention. His broad expertise includes sensitive police law, terrorism and national security issues. As a renowned criminal silk, he is a particularly popular choice for inquests which involve parallel criminal proceedings. 
"He can turn his hand to anything, and no one in the courtroom knows the papers better than him."
Recent work: Instructed to represent the Metropolitan Police at the inquests following the terror attack at Westminster Bridge in 2017.

Strengths:

Matthew Butt QC
Respected practitioner with a wide-ranging inquests and inquiries practice. He demonstrates notable strengths in proceedings concerning police conduct, clinical negligence and education. He specialises particularly in the representation of Silver Commanders in inquests relating to police firearms use. His capabilities also include advising on parallel disciplinary and criminal investigations. 
"He is really thorough and forensic in his preparation, and doesn't take bad points. He's very straightforward to deal with."
Recent work: Acted on behalf of the former undercover officer Mark Kennedy in the Undercover Policing Inquiry.

Strengths:

Patrick Gibbs QC
Strong track record of being instructed in the highest-profile inquests and inquiries, particularly where police conduct is under scrutiny. He is well suited to handling inquests which might result in criminal liability or disciplinary action. He routinely appears on behalf of all participants, including state agents and bereaved families.
"He is brilliant at everything he does and you cannot fault him. If I were ever in deep trouble I'd go to him – he is terrific."
Recent work: Represented the non-commissioned officers, including the sergeant in charge of training, in the Sean Benton inquest. This was an investigation into the suicide of a recruit at Deepcut Barracks, following incidents of bullying and abuse.

Strengths:

Richard Horwell QC
Predominantly represents police forces in sensitive and politically charged public inquiries. He offers guidance on related developments in counter-terrorism policing. He is also instructed by other state agents, including NHS trusts and educational institutions.
"Richard is excellent, very well respected, very senior and very well established."
Recent work: Acted on behalf of the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police at the inquests following the terror attacks on London Bridge and at Borough Market in 2017.

Strengths:

Saba Naqshbandi
Represents police forces in proceedings arising out of criminal investigations and deaths in custody. She is also instructed by businesses, hospitals, fire authorities and other parties involved in inquests.  
"Her advocacy style is very precise, clear and concise. She also has insight from sitting on the other side of the Bench." "She is extremely good for inquests and she has a sensitive touch." "Saba is very strong, she has a heavy amount of inquest and public inquiry experience and she has a really nice touch with the Bench and with jurors alike. She also has great attention to detail."
Recent work: Acted as sole counsel to the London Fire Commissioner at the inquests into deaths during the terror attack at London Bridge in 2017.

Strengths:

Sarah Le Fevre
Represents clients at all stages of the coronial process and in public law challenges arising from the conduct of inquest proceedings. Her expertise encompasses cases concerning health and safety law, police and hospital-related deaths. She has also made a number of notable appearances in public inquiries.
"A sublime advocate, who knows how to pitch things and fights her client's corner fiercely and sensibly." "She is a beautiful advocate and she obviously knows her stuff really well. People stop and listen because her voice craft is great."
Recent work: Acted on behalf of the London Fire Commissioner in the Grenfell Tower Inquiry.

Strengths:

Stephen Walsh QC
Recognised in the market for his track record of handling difficult briefs in high-profile inquests and public inquiries. He is routinely instructed by a broad range of core participants, including professional associations, fire brigades and private companies. Walsh's expertise includes health and safety legislation, and the handling of inquiries into major disasters.
"Provides calm, clear advice under significant pressure. Always thinking of the bigger picture."
Recent work: Instructed to represent the London Fire Brigade in the Grenfell Tower Inquiry in the Phase 1 hearings.

Inquests & Public Inquiries Department

3 Raymond Buildings

firm
Department location

3 Raymond Buildings

Gray's Inn

London

Greater London

UK

WC1R 5BH

View Firm Profile

Ranked Barristers

This content is provided by Chambers based on our research. Learn more about our methodology.

Silks (QC)

London (Bar)

Inquests & Public Inquiries


Clair Dobbin QC
New Silks
Hugh Davies QC
Band 1
Hugo Keith QC
Band 3
Matthew Butt QC
New Silks
Patrick Gibbs QC
Band 2
Richard Horwell QC
Band 3