Christopher undertakes a broad range of commercial work both domestically and internationally, and 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. Christopher has been a contributing editor to the 13th and 14th editions of Hudson’s Building and Engineering Contracts and was listed as a ‘Rising Star’ by the Legal 500 2021.
Recent examples of Christopher’s work in arbitration include being led in a circa 1 billion AED dispute, seated in Paris, over the alleged breach of a sub-developer’s obligations in respect of a large mixed-use project in the Middle East; and being led on behalf of a major Korean contractor in a dispute, seated in Seoul, concerning defects in the manufacture and supply of components for a large power generation and water desalination plant under the ICC Rules. Christopher is also presently instructed on a >$1 billion USD ad hoc arbitration concerning a major international airport in the Middle East.
Recent examples of Christopher’s work in litigation include acting (with Jonathan Acton Davis QC of Atkin Chambers and George Hayman QC of Maitland Chambers) for the state-owned defendant in multi-party litigation in the High Court of Trinidad and Tobago concerning four large-scale road construction projects under the FIDIC form of contract. He is also instructed (with Fiona Parkin QC and Rónán Hanna of Atkin Chambers) by a major global design consultancy on a number of disputes presently before the Technology and Construction Court.
Christopher also has a busy advisory practice and has experience of providing advice on the full spectrum of issues which arise during the life of large international projects, most recently for the employer of a hydrocracker plant project in the Middle East.
CONSTRUCTION, ENGINEERING AND INFRASTRUCTURE
- Acting as junior counsel for a major South African sub-contractor in a claim for loss and expense arising out of delays during the construction of a coal-fired power plant.
- Acting for an operation and maintenance contractor in a dispute under a PFI Interface Agreement against a number of other parties arising out of a fire at a residential care home facility.
- Acting for the state-owned defendant in multi-party litigation in the High Court of Trinidad and Tobago concerning four large-scale road construction projects under the FIDIC form of contract.
- Acting as junior counsel (with Rupert Choat of Atkin Chambers) in Anchor 2020 Limited v Midas Construction Limited  EWHC 435 (TCC), a dispute over whether (and, if so, on what terms) a contract had been concluded between the parties.
- Acting (as sole counsel) for a major UK contractor in a dispute with its specialist sub-contractor over the design, selection, and installation of cladding at a hotel and leisure development.
- Acting (as sole counsel) for a PFI Project Co (incorporated for the purpose of entering into a contract with an NHS Primary Care Trust) against a design and build contractor in respect of a defects dispute at a hospital.
- Acting (as junior counsel) in a dispute over the proper construction of the interim payment provisions (and a payment schedule containing a series of dates for interim payment) of the JCT Standard Building Contract 2011.
- 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 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 to the specific examples above, Christopher has experience of advising on claims raising issues under PFI contracts generally. 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.
- Acting as junior counsel for a Dutch offshore marine contractor in a claim for emergency interim relief under the ICC Rules.
- Acting as junior counsel for a leading global chemical company in a > EUR 350 million arbitration under the ICC Rules arising out of negligent cost/programme estimation and project management in the rebuilding of a major manufacturing plant.
- Acting as junior counsel for a major UK defence contractor in a dispute over the validity of the termination of an agreement containing an option to purchase a portfolio of commercial property.
- Acting as junior counsel in a circa 1 billion AED dispute, seated in Paris, 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 on behalf of a major Korean contractor in a dispute, seated in Seoul, under the ICC rules, concerning defects in the manufacture and supply of components for a large power generation and water desalination plant.
- Acting as junior counsel on behalf of an international architectural and project management firm in a dispute over the design, procurement, and construction of a major airport in the Middle East.
- 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 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
- Advising on a coverage dispute by a joint venture with their insurers arising out of a flood following partial possession of a major residential development in London.
- Advising and drafting proceedings (as junior counsel) in a claim for a declaration that a policy responded to cladding which did not comply with the requirements of the Building Regulations in respect of fire safety such that the insurer was liable.
- Advising and drafting proceedings in a counterclaim in the Technology and Construction Court against the claimant’s insurer under the Third Parties (Rights against Insurers) Act 2010 further to a policy of professional indemnity.
- 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.
- Advising the majority shareholder of a private limited company with respect to the validity of (and any restrictions on the exercise of the rights under) an option agreement which the company had entered into with one of its directors.
- Successfully acting for a firm of employers’ agents striking out a claim by the employer for a mandatory injunction for delivery-up of documents alleged to be in the possession or control of the agents (including advising on the employer’s claim for an interim injunction) in Leicester Bakery (Holdings) Ltd v Ridge and Partners LLP  EWHC 2430 (TCC).
- Advising the leaseholder of a residential flat (and also the leaseholder – under a separate demise – of a garage to the rear of the flat) on whether the titles to the properties could be disposed of separately from one another in light of a purported restriction against this on the title to the latter under the London Building Act 1930.
- 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 Zulfikar Khayum of Atkin Chambers) for an operation and maintenance contractor in a dispute over the validity of the termination of a portfolio of O & M contracts (and the damages which were recoverable as a result) at solar farm installations across the UK.
- 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 was capable of being claimed from the employer’s agent prior to the determination of the Final Statement between the employer and the contractor.
- Acting as an adjudicator under an Irish law adjudication with respect to a payment dispute between two parties to a joint venture.
- Acting for an employer defending an adjudication by a contractor in a substantial final account dispute relating to the conversion of a historic former flax and hemp mill, including advising on, and drafting, a jurisdictional challenge with respect to the referral of multiple disputes by the contractor.
Much of Christopher’s work is in arbitration and is therefore confidential. However, notable cases before the English courts have included:
The Leicester Bakery (Holdings) Ltd v Ridge and Partners LLP (Rev 1)  EWHC 2430 (TCC)
Anchor 2020 Limited v Midas Construction Limited  EWHC 435 (TCC)
Contributing editor Hudson’s Building and Engineering Contracts (14th ed., 2020 and 13th ed., 2015).
QUALIFICATIONS AND AWARDS
2013 Called to the Bar of England and Wales (Inner Temple)
2012-2013 Peter Taylor Scholarship (Inner Temple)
2011 Distinction, Bachelor of Civil Law (BCL), St Hugh’s College, Oxford
2010-2011 AHRC Research Preparation Masters Studentship for the BCL
2010 First Class Honours, Bachelor of Law (LL.B), University College, London
Andrews Medal (Top First Overall), University College, London and Andrews Prizes (Top First in Year, 2008 and 2009)
2010 Jolowicz Prize for Roman Law
2010 Dean’s List
2010 Sweet and Maxwell Law Prize
2009 Hurst Prize for English Law
2009 Bentham Prize for Jurisprudence
2008 Webber Prize
2008 Simon Wallace Memorial Prize for Contract Law
2005-2006 Various Prizes in Classics and Ancient Near Eastern Archaeology
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.
“Christopher is very hard working, and thorough in his approach and at the same time very efficient. Very good in cross-examination.”
Construction, The Legal 500 2022
“Definitely a junior to watch at the construction Bar.”
Construction, The Legal 500 2021