Withers LLP

Chris Priestley

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Practice Areas

Partner in the firm's charities and philanthropy team specialising in corporate and commercial matters for domestic and international charities. Particular areas of expertise are charity governance and mergers, royal charter work and advice to educational and healthcare charities. He is advising sponsors on various academies and free school projects. Chris also advises on the structuring of arrangements whereby charities undertake to deliver public services either to or on behalf of central government or local authorities. His practice encompasses a wide variety of constitutional and restructuring work, together with the negotiation of all kinds of commercial fundraising arrangements for charities. Chris has a growing reputation for advising corporate and private donors on their philanthropy strategies. He regularly addresses conferences on charity law topics, and authored the ICSA Charity Trustee's Guide.

Professional Memberships

Charity Law Association; Charity Treasurers’ Forum; Law Society.


Qualified Scotland 1994 and England 1998. Solicitor with Robson McLean WS 1994-96; joined Withers 1996, partner 2003.


Fundraising chapter of Tolley's Charities Manual; ICSA 'Charity Trustee's Guide'. Edits the Legal notes section of Whitaker's Almanack.


Educated at George Heriot's School, Edinburgh 1974-1987; Edinburgh University 1987-1992. Trustee of St Giles Trust; Borrow Foundation; and Brooke Weston Trust.