Crown Office Chambers

Health & Safety Department

London (Bar)
Current View:

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

Crown Office Chambers is described by instructing solicitors as "a titan in the health and safety arena." It houses a strong bench of senior and junior barristers who are experienced in the handling of prosecutions arising from a wide range of health and safety offences. Areas of expertise for the team include food safety prosecutions and cases brought under the HSWA. Members are noted for their expertise in corporate manslaughter and gross negligence manslaughter cases, and regularly appear in inquests and major inquiries such as the Grenfell Tower Inquiry. The team is well regarded for its representation of major corporations and their directors, and also routinely acts for the HSE.

Client service: Senior criminal regulatory and environmental clerk Toby Sparrow is "extremely focused and works well with all of his barristers." "The clerks get back to us very quickly and they're very responsive." "The clerking team is so efficient and well organised. The head clerk, Toby, is fantastic - there's no query too big or too small."

Alice Jarratt

Criminal regulatory expert who specialises in health and safety matters and complex inquest proceedings. She is instructed to represent directors, employees and major companies in the most high-profile and severe health and safety prosecutions.
Strengths: "She's really impressive and works well even under huge pressure." "Always robust and knows when to fight an issue and when to concede to achieve the best outcome."
Recent work: Acted as sole counsel for Kensington and Chelsea Tenant Management Organisation at the Grenfell Tower Inquiry.

Dominic Kay QC

Handles a large volume of health and safety prosecutions, regularly undertaking corporate and individual manslaughter prosecutions for clients from various industry sectors including the retail, construction and agriculture sectors. He has particular expertise in multi-fatality accident cases.
Strengths: "He is one of the leading health and safety barristers in the country." "He's extremely intelligent and really gets into the detail on cases. He's very good both on paper and on his feet in court." "He is absolutely amazing - fantastic in court and his wealth of knowledge is second to none."
Recent work: Acted for Wood Treatment in a police investigation following the explosion and fire at Bosley Mill which led to the deaths of four employees. The company was charged with corporate manslaughter.

Harry Vann

An experienced barrister with a respected health and safety practice which entails handling cases of serious injuries and death. He has a wide client base consisting of those in the transport, construction and manufacturing sectors, whom he regularly represents in HSE prosecutions and various other regulatory matters.
Strengths: "His attention to detail is excellent and he's a strong advocate." "He's excellent on his feet and his subject knowledge is astonishingly good." "He's a calm, thoughtful and organised barrister. I have been impressed by his cross-examinations and he's very analytical."
Recent work: Successfully acted on behalf of DJT Surfacing in an HSE prosecution concerning the death of a member of the public who was run over at Bedford Bus Station.

James Ageros QC

Specialist health and safety silk handling an array of defence and prosecution work. He has a number of enviable clients including construction companies, hospitals and local authorities, which he has represented across the full spectrum of health and safety matters. He is particularly expert at undertaking complex inquests and high-profile inquiries.
Strengths: "He's a go-to barrister for the heavyweight work; he's excellent in terms of how he deals with clients and has a great presence in court." "He is a superb jury advocate and an excellent barrister." "His technical grasp of detail is very, very strong."
Recent work: Represented Roy Gotham, a Thames tugboat captain, in a case involving the fatality of a crew member who drowned after a boat capsized and sank.

James Maxwell-Scott QC

Advises clients on both civil and criminal matters pertaining to fatal and non-fatal accidents, and represents a wide range of clients from private individuals to large organisations. He has been involved in some of the most high-profile public inquiries and inquests involving multiple fatalities, including the Croydon Tram disaster and Grenfell Tower fires. His clients include major companies such as Serco.
Strengths: "He is very professional, has good judgement and is very organised. He's a bright lawyer and a real pleasure to work with." "The content of what he says in court is fantastic and his construction of arguments is brilliant. He's very effective at what he does." "I have enormous respect for him, he's very bright and his integrity shines through."
Recent work: Represented Howard Civil Engineering in a prosecution arising out of the death of a seven-year-old boy on a construction site in 2015.

John Cooper QC

Hailed for his extensive knowledge and expertise in the health and safety and regulatory arena. He is praised for the volume of inquests and trial work he undertakes on behalf of major companies and directors. Cooper gained much credit for his pivotal role in defending Maidstone NHS Trust in the first prosecution of an NHS trust for corporate manslaughter.
Strengths: "An excellent strategist - he is really innovative and strategic in his approach to difficult cases." "He is no less than excellent. He is tenacious and exactly the sort of person you want to be instructing in a significant health and safety case." "A forceful advocate who is very effective and fights his client's corner very hard."
Recent work: Acted on behalf of the Priory Group following the death of Amy El- Keria, who was found hanged in her room at the Priory in Ticehurst, East Sussex.

Julia Kendrick

Regularly receives instructions covering the full spectrum of health and safety law. She handles health and safety prosecutions arising from serious and fatal accidents, and is also regularly sought after for cases relating to food safety, fire safety and road traffic offences. Kendrick is an expert in cases arising out of accidents on construction and demolition sites.
Strengths: "She stands her corner and clients really like her." "Very respectable and hard-working."
Recent work: Acted for a stonemasonry company in an HSE prosecution relating to an accident involving a five-tonne stone-cutting saw. The saw toppled over during installation and hit a passing employee.

Malcolm Galloway

Specialises exclusively in health and safety and is instructed to undertake high-profile investigations on behalf of a wide range of clients including local authorities, transport companies and multinationals. He is particularly sought out by commercial clients facing prosecution and is an expert in corporate manslaughter investigations. 
Strengths: "He's very thorough, fantastic in court and gets great results." "He's impressive on his feet and in conference with clients."
Recent work: Acted on behalf of Bureau Veritas UK, a certification company that inspects lifting equipment, in an HSE prosecution.

Mark Balysz

A high-quality health and safety law junior who defends clients in highly complex prosecutions. He is experienced in the handling of both individual and corporate manslaughter cases.
Strengths: "An amazing jury advocate - he has a brilliant charm and he's very personable. He really empathises with clients." "Mark is an exceptional barrister. Clients really like him and he delivers a high-quality client service."
Recent work: Successfully defended Ace Waste Haulage and its sole director in relation to charges of corporate manslaughter and breaches of the HSWA following the death of an employee.

Mike Atkins

A leading practitioner in the criminal regulatory field who represents individuals and companies facing charges of corporate and gross negligence manslaughter. He also possesses expertise in fire safety cases and food safety law. His clients include multinational corporations, company directors, public bodies and employees.
Strengths: "He works phenomenally hard and is a confident and highly intelligent advocate." "An extremely thorough and strong advocate."
Recent work: Represented a senior manager at Wood Treatment who was charged with serious health and safety offences in relation to the Bosley Mill explosion.

Sandesh Singh

Represents clients in various health and safety-related matters which include HSE and police investigations, prosecutions and inquests. He handles sensitive cases concerning on-site accidents resulting in death and serious injury to employees, hospital patients and members of the public.
Strengths: "He's incredibly diligent, hard-working, and his attention to detail is second to none. A brilliant junior." "He is very smooth, pragmatic and efficient." "He's organised, meticulous and very good at getting into the details of a case and working through a large amount of documents."
Recent work: Represented Fedex in relation to a prosecution for a health and safety offence after an employee was injured in a fork lift truck accident.

Simon Antrobus QC

Represents companies in high-profile health and safety prosecutions and corporate manslaughter cases, and is considered a go-to barrister for a long list of major corporations and private individuals. He is regularly instructed to undertake the most serious fatality cases. Antrobus acted in the high-profile inquest concerning the terrorist attack on BP's gas refinery in Algeria.
Strengths: "He is tremendously knowledgeable about health and safety." "He's top class and an extremely good lawyer. He has a real eye for detail and a great understanding of the subject matter." "His written work is brilliant, his cross-examination skills are very, very good and he's a brilliant trial advocate."
Recent work: Represented Graham Mackrell, the Sheffield Wednesday club secretary and safety officer, who was charged with three criminal offences relating to the Hillsborough disaster.