Christopher undertakes a broad range of commercial work in both litigation and arbitration. In line with Chambers’ profile, he has a particular expertise in the areas of energy, construction, and engineering. Christopher frequently acts as junior counsel as part of large teams in high-value disputes, which are often factually, legally, and technically complex. In addition, he regularly acts as sole counsel representing and advising a range of clients in these fields, as well as in general commercial and professional liability disputes.
Recent examples of Christopher’s work in arbitration include being led in a circa 1 billion AED dispute under the DIAC rules over the alleged breach of a sub-developer’s obligations in respect of a large mixed-used project in the Middle East.
Recent examples of Christopher’s work in litigation include being led for Volkerfitzpatrick Limited in a claim against three defendants in a dispute over the defective design and installation of cladding for buildings developed for a local authority.
Christopher also has experience providing advice during the life of large projects, before parties are in dispute (including spending considerable periods abroad working on site), most recently for the employer of a hydrocracker plant project in the Middle East.
Christopher is a contributing editor to the new edition of Hudson’s Building and Engineering Contracts (13th edition) and is the editor of the TECBAR Review.
CONSTRUCTION, ENGINEERING AND INFRASTRUCTURE
Recent work has included:
- Acting as junior counsel for Volkerfitzpatrick Limited against three defendants in a dispute over the defective design and installation of rainscreen cladding at two mixed-use buildings developed for a local authority.
- Acting as junior counsel (with Martin Bowdery QC of Atkin Chambers) for Goodwood Road Racing Company in a dispute with a main contractor over the design, construction, and fitting out of an aerodrome at the Goodwood Estate.
- Acting as junior counsel for the employer of a hydrocracker plant project in the Middle East in a dispute with a main contractor over allegations of failure to make regular and diligent progress and responsibility for substantial delay.
- Acting as sole counsel in the Magistrate’s Court defending a private prosecution brought for alleged breaches of the Building Regulations, contrary to section 35 of the Building Act 1984.
- Acting as sole counsel in the Magistrate’s Court challenging the validity of a Control of Noise Notice served by a local authority under section 60(7) of the Control of Pollution Act 1974.
- Advising a sub-contractor in respect of its entitlement to payment under a contract for the design and construction of a new Docklands Light Railway station and an associated Crossrail Emergency Intervention Point.
- Advising a contractor in a dispute over its entitlement to an extension of time in a claim against an international consortium over the design and construction of a major UK bridge.
- Advising the owner of a UK rare metals mine in a dispute with its operator in respect of the latter’s alleged entitlement to additional payment for equipment and the dispute resolution process which applied.
In addition, Christopher has experience of advising on claims raising issues under PFI contracts. Recent work has included acting for a joint venture contractor with respect to potential claims arising out of construction obligations for a number of schools and drafting Particulars of Claim for an injunction restraining the employer from terminating a project agreement further to a PFI initiative.
Recent work has included:
- Acting as sole counsel for the successful respondent resisting an appeal against an arbitration award in the High Court in Resurrection Construction Limited v Mr Azar Yousaf  (HHJ Waksman QC).
- Acting as sole counsel in an arbitration under the 2014 LCIA Rules in a dispute concerning the negligent process design of four water filtration plants, including the drafting of all pleadings as well as representation at trial.
- Acting as junior counsel in an arbitration under the DIAC rules for a contractor under a dispute involving allegations of wrongful termination of a contract to construct a residential skyscraper in Dubai.
- Acting as junior counsel in an arbitration for a main contractor in a dispute over the design, construction, and commissioning of an oil commercial production facility in the Middle East, involving extensive work with expert delay analysis.
- Acting as junior counsel in a circa 1 billion AED dispute under the DIAC rules over the alleged breach of a sub-developer’s obligations in respect of a large mixed-used project in the Middle East.
- Acting as junior counsel in an arbitration under the JCT CIMAR rules for the claimant contractor in a dispute over entitlements to extensions of time and loss and expense in the construction of a new police custody centre.
PROFESSIONAL NEGLIGENCE AND INSURANCE
Recent work has included:
- Advising insurers on cover and whether a ‘claim’ had been made by a Danish local authority under a policy of professional indemnity taken out by a UK designer in respect of expert determination proceedings further to an arbitration concerning negligent design in Denmark.
- Advising on the application of an aggregation clause in a policy of professional indemnity insurance in respect of the division of liability between primary and secondary layer insurers.
- Advising and subsequently drafting pleadings in a claim for the negligent fitting, storage, and transportation of a light aircraft.
- Advising on a claim against a project manager and structural engineer for negligent certification and delay.
- Advising and subsequently drafting pleadings in a dispute arising out of the negligent design and construction of a grain storage facility.
Recent work has included:
- Advising various parties in separate cases on issues relating to the proper construction of the ABI Model Form of Guarantee Bond.
- Advising on the merits and drafting pleadings in a dispute over the validity of demands made under guarantee and indemnity documents provided in favour of the lender under a complex series of loan agreements.
- Advising on jurisdiction in a claim brought by a Monégasque bank in respect of a variety of agreements governing an FX trading facility.
- Advising on the validity of the purported termination of an importer/distributor agreement.
- Advising on the application of principles of acquiescence or waiver to the purchase by a mortgagee of charged property sold by way of public auction.
Christopher is a TECBAR accredited adjudicator. Recent cases include:
- Acting (with Jennifer Jones of Atkin Chambers) for a local authority defending an adjudication referred by a contractor seeking an extension of time and payment of loss and expense in respect of works at a school.
- Acting for an employer referring a dispute in respect of the negligent stripping of an asbestos roof and the design and installation of insulated composite profile roof sheets.
- Advising on jurisdiction and natural justice challenges to the enforceability of an adjudication award.
- Advising on the extent to which loss sustained by the employer further to an adjudication award obtained by the contractor on a Payment Notice under an amended JCT Design and Build Contract 2011 were capable of being claimed form the employer’s agent prior to the determination of the Final Statement between the employer and the contractor.
2012 Judicial Assistant to the Rt. Hon. Lady Justice Arden DBE
2011-2012 College Lecturer, Keble College, Oxford
2011-2012 Teaching Fellow, University College, London and King’s College, London
Christopher is a member of the Society of Construction Law and TECBAR. In addition, he is an active volunteer for the Bar Pro Bono Unit.