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5 Stone Buildings is one of the pre-eminent traditional chancery sets in London and is notable for its strength and depth. A source says: "There really are no weak links, from the youngest pupil to the oldest silk." This extremely strong group of silks and juniors regularly handles some of the most high-profile and high-value matters in this field.
Client service: "The clerks are accommodating, practical and helpful. They bend over backwards to help and make things as easy as possible," says one commentator. Another praises the "helpful, approachable clerks." Paul Jennings is the head clerk.
Highly respected and well-established junior who focuses her traditional chancery practice on contentious probate and trusts matters. She is also highly respected for her work in the Court of Protection.
Strengths: "She is unique and brings a welcome element of calm to matters. She's so knowledgeable and always serene." "Very eloquent and kind when dealing with clients." "She is very diligent in her work and is also a good mediator."
Christopher Tidmarsh QC
Established silk with a broad traditional chancery practice which includes estates and tax advice as well as an array of contentious matters. He is noted for his depth of experience in trusts matters.
Strengths: "He's accessible, user-friendly and very, very able. Technically his work is spot on."
Frequently instructed in cases concerning wills, trusts, and estates, and is particularly respected for his non-contentious advice. He has noted expertise in matters with some taxation element.
Strengths: "Extremely clear in his advice and very client-friendly."
David Rees QC
Regularly instructed in both contentious and non-contentious matters, and is highly respected for his work on inheritance matters and those with a capacity question.
Strengths: "A leading authority on trust law," who is "utterly excellent, utterly thorough and very approachable for clients, as well as professionals." "He is very good at wills and trust litigation, and also very skilled at Court of Appeal work, so he is very good on his feet as well."
Has a respected traditional chancery practice, regularly handling both contentious and non-contentious matters both domestically and abroad. He further handles a number of Court of Protection cases.
Strengths: "Great at things with a tax angle, he's succinct and to the point." "He's user-friendly, his response times are amazing, and you can pick up the phone and just talk things through with him - he's a brilliant sounding board." "His advice is always sensible, and clients like him."
Rising star who is building a highly regarded traditional chancery practice. He regularly handles wills and trusts, and is also taking on art and cultural property matters.
Strengths: "He's incredibly thorough, which is very reassuring. His advice is pragmatic, client-focused and realistic. He's always on top of the case."
Henry Legge QC
Renowned silk who has an extremely strong reputation at the Chancery Bar for his handling of a wide variety of work, including both onshore and offshore matters. He is also noted for his particular expertise in matters with an art or cultural property aspect.
Strengths: "One of the go-to lawyers in this area." "His availability is such a strength, as is his willingness to answer questions on the hoof and give off-the-cuff advice." "Brilliant and really easy to work with."
Developing a strong reputation among solicitors for his traditional chancery work. His recent notable work includes HMRC v Parry, which saw him acting for the appellant taxpayers in the Supreme Court.
Strengths: "Very subtle and intelligent, he has a lovely manner with his client." "Approachable and writes in clear language that clients can understand. He gives good, comprehensive advice."
Frequently instructed in complex, high-profile and high-value matters. He handles cases across the full breadth of traditional chancery, including those relating to trusts, estates, wills, probate and other contentious matters. Holland also handles Court of Protection cases and advises on art and cultural property matters.
Strengths: "He always has fresh ideas."
A well-established junior whose practice includes both contentious and non-contentious matters across the full scope of traditional chancery. He has a particular strength in matters with some tax crossover.
Strengths: "He's accessible in the extreme, and particularly brilliant for tax crossover work." "Extremely efficient, really approachable, and so human and easy to deal with."
Has a well-established traditional chancery practice with a particular depth of expertise in private client disputes and art and cultural property matters.
Strengths: "He's fantastic - the other side didn't know what hit them. He's astonishingly efficient and thorough, a resounding champion." He is "excellent for complex cases, and particularly good at technical issues."
His particular strengths within a respected traditional chancery practice are contentious probate and Inheritance Act cases. He also handles Court of Protection work.
Strengths: "Proactive and efficient. He seems to know everything - he has a truly encyclopedic knowledge of trust law." "He's incredibly easy to work with, and his advice is always in plain English."
Regularly instructed in matters across the full breadth of traditional chancery. He has a depth of experience in both contentious and non-contentious matters.
Strengths: "Very good at Court of Protection work and will disputes." "He is very good on his feet and calm in the way he handles things. He's also very good at tax and has a gravitas about him." One fellow barrister stated: "He's the one I'd use if I needed one personally, because he just gets it done."
A well-regarded junior with a wide-ranging traditional chancery practice which includes contentious trusts, disputed wills, and matters with some matrimonial finance or other family aspect. She also acts as a mediator in inheritance, trust and probate disputes.
Strengths: "A real go-to for complex ’75 Act claims." "She is unflappable and has a good bedside manner. She knows her stuff and is a very safe pair of hands."
Penelope Reed QC
An exceptionally well-respected silk whose broad chancery practice includes contentious probate, disputed wills and the administration of estates. She handles the most complex and high-profile matters and is also noted for her mediation practice in this area.
Strengths: "Her reputation precedes her. Her written advice is incredibly comprehensive and absolutely on the money," "She is very well grounded and very knowledgeable, and also extremely clever. She's quietly dogged in the way that she achieves results for clients."
A member of the Attorney General's B Panel who has a wide-ranging traditional chancery practice, with a focus on trusts, tax and Court of Protection cases. She appeared unled in the Court of Appeal in Quan v Bray, a divorce case where the wife was seeking to break a Mauritian trust for the benefit of the endangered South China tiger.
Strengths: "Intelligent and devoted to her clients," she is "an honest and realistic barrister."
Handles onshore and offshore chancery matters, tackling cases relating to pensions, trusts and probate. He also has a strong Court of Protection practice.
Strengths: "An exceptional young barrister." "A reliable junior with an eye for detail, he's great with clients and highly insightful - a pleasure to work with."
A well-liked junior who is commended for her calm and pragmatic approach. She is noted for her work on Inheritance Act cases and probate and the administration of estates.
Strengths: "Extraordinarily bright and so easy to speak to."
Shân Warnock-Smith QC
Exceptionally well-regarded silk who is a particular expert in offshore matters, maintaining chambers in the Cayman Islands as well as practising from 5 Stone Buildings. She is also regularly sought after for international matters.
Strengths: "The doyenne of the trust world." She is regularly instructed in the most significant trusts and estates matters, including those in offshore jurisdictions. "She has an amazing reputation in the offshore world and is involved in some of the biggest pieces of litigation globally." "She has a huge amount of authority and gives very robust views. She has been top of her game for quite a while, and she gives straightforward answers on big, complex matters."
Has a strong following among solicitors, who value his traditional chancery expertise and his client-handling skills. He specialises in succession and trust disputes including contentious probate, 1975 Act claims, the removal of personal representatives, the administration of estates and trusts, proprietary estoppel, constructive, resulting and express trusts and issues of domicile.
Strengths: "He is excellent with clients - they all just adore him as he exudes a lot of confidence." "Incredibly technical and well read on the law, he is excellent both on his feet and on paper." "His written advice is always excellent."
Tracey Angus QC
A well-known silk who is regularly instructed on the most high-profile traditional chancery cases and has a depth of expertise in trusts and contested wills.
Strengths: "Very commercial, bright and insightful, she can cut through a huge amount of information." "She's very down to earth, straight-talking, pragmatic, easy to deal with, and good on her feet."
Noted junior who has a broad traditional chancery practice and is regularly instructed in cases concerning wills, trusts, probate and estates. He also handles chancery matters with some family crossover.
Strengths: "A very good junior in relation to probate and succession disputes." "He is very good in court, has a calm manner and is loved by clients because of that." "Very good, very clear, responsive, strong, stable and capable."