BARRISTER PROFILE

New Square Chambers

George Laurence

London, UK UK Bar Guide 2021 Ranked in 4 departments
Ranked in : Agriculture & Rural Affairs , Local Government , Chancery: Traditional , Real Estate Litigation
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Barrister profile for UK Bar 2021

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UK Bar 2021
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High Net Worth 2021

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UK Bar
Agriculture & Rural Affairs - London (Bar)

Band 1

Content
George Laurence QC
A public law and real property silk with a sterling reputation in town and village green applications. His recent caseload has largely involved issues of contested access, often over unusual types of land, such as railway lines and river banks. Sources recognise his longstanding experience handling very complex rights of way issues.
Strengths: "He is the absolute pre-eminent silk in town and village greens." "He has almost single-handedly made the modern law on village greens and is also the leading authority on the law relating to public rights of way and open spaces. He has an encyclopaedic knowledge of these subjects."
Recent work: Instructed by Hampshire County Council to quash a decision of the Secretary of State ordering deregistration of a 115 acre area of common land under Paragraph 6 of Schedule 2 to the Commons Act 2006.
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Local Government - London (Bar)

Band 4

Content
George Laurence QC
A well-regarded silk, noted for his expertise in cases involving novel points of law. He draws significant praise for his handling of cases concerning village greens and public rights of way. He is regularly instructed to act on behalf of the public, landowners and local authorities.
Strengths: "Very knowledgeable on village green matters." "Very experienced."
Recent work: Instructed Open Spaces Society v Dorset County Council, the first case to test the ambit of Section 19(2)(a) of the Commons Act 2006 as permitting deregistration of land resisted as common land.
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Chancery: Traditional - London (Bar)

Band 2

Content
George Laurence QC
Noted for his unusually strong offshore expertise within a broader traditional chancery practice. He is regularly trusted with high-value matters, and requently handles trusts, estates and probate matters. Laurence is especially well known for rights of way and village green cases.
Strengths: "One of the finest silks around, who is committed to winning." "Can do anything well."
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Real Estate Litigation - London (Bar)

Band 3

Content
George Laurence QC
Handles a range of real property law issues, but is particularly highly regarded for his work on rights of way and village greens. He has also acted on cases concerning rights of navigation.
Strengths: "He is a serious heavyweight. He's highly intelligent and highly experienced."
Recent work: Acted in an appeal seeking to restrain Cumbria County Council from making a modification order adding 44 new footpaths to the definitive map and statement crossing the appellant's land.
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Practice Areas

Specialises in real property disputes; also has special interest and expertise in the public and administrative aspects of property law, in particular concerning access to the countryside, minor highways, commons, village greens and, latterly, in connection with the English coastal path being created under the Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009. He frequently appears at public inquiries and before both Houses of Parliament, notably when dealing with the High Speed 2, Channel Tunnel, Crossrail and the Channel Tunnel Rail Link hybrid bills. He has frequently appeared in the higher courts. George Laurence was retained for the successful appellant in the important Lancashire/NHS village green case in the Supreme Court [2020] 2 WLR 1.

Career

Called to the Bar 1972. Silk 1991. Former Deputy High Court Judge and Recorder (resigned to pursue career as advocate). Bencher of the Middle Temple (1999).

Professional Memberships

Parliamentary Bar; Planning and Environmental Bar Association; Administrative Law Bar Association; Chancery Bar Association; Fellow of the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies.

Publications

Many articles in Rights of Way Law Review and Waymark (the publication of the Institute of Public Rights of Way Officers).

Personal

Educated at University of Cape Town (BA) and University College, Oxford (MA). Rhodes Scholar. Harmsworth Scholar.

UK Bar

This individual is also ranked in:

High Net Worth 2021
George Laurence

New Square Chambers

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