Robert Clay successfully acted for social landlord Lewisham Homes in an adjudication enforcement enforcing an adjudicator’s decision that the contractor […]
18th May 2021
Robert specialises in litigation and arbitration, domestic and international, in the construction, civil engineering, energy, and oil and gas sectors.
He handles cases for a wide range of clients, including governments, local authorities, main contractors, developers, manufacturers, energy companies, and professional firms.
He has extensive experience in arbitration both domestically and internationally. He is regularly involved in arbitrations in foreign jurisdictions including Hong Kong, Singapore, and the Middle East, and in long running London arbitrations between non-UK parties.
He is familiar with all forms of dispute resolution, including mediations (he is an accredited mediator) and expert determinations. He regularly acts in construction adjudications, both before adjudicators and in enforcement and other court proceedings. His practice has included numerous and frequent adjudications since the statute requiring adjudication first came into force.
Robert is recommended in The Legal 500 and Chambers and Partners as a leading junior in the field of Construction.
He has conducted many complex, long-running or high-value international commercial arbitrations for clients all over the world, including in Asia and the Middle East. Cases include:
He practises regularly in the Technology and Construction Courts and all types of UK construction litigation and arbitration. He is expert in the problems of law raised by the building and engineering standard forms of contract. He is very experienced in handling difficult technical evidence, and in the case management of complex long-running cases. Examples include:
Robert has been acting in construction adjudications since the statute imposing adjudication procedures on construction contracts first came into force. His cases include:
He has broad experience acting for a wide range of clients in disputes arising out of the design and construction of a variety offshore installations all over the world. Examples include acting for:
Robert’s construction practice requires detailed knowledge of the law relating to professional liability and he regularly acts in cases in the High Court and in arbitration where all issues are essentially issues of professional negligence. In addition to many of the cases mentioned above he acted in the following cases where professional negligence and related areas of the law formed the subject matter of the main claims:
He has experience advising in connection with IT and telecommunications disputes. Recent experience includes acting on disputes arising out of a joint venture to computerise a national revenue collecting system and database.
In addition to the specialist areas above Robert is regularly instructed on other commercial disputes (often international arbitrations). He also has a well-established practice advising and acting for both contractors and public authorities in the area of public procurement. Examples of his work in these areas include:
Freeborn & Anor v Marcal (t/a Dan Marcal Architects)  EWHC 454 (TCC)
IPM Energy Trading Ltd v Carillion Energy Services Ltd  EWHC 1399 (Comm)
Triuva Kapitalverwaltungsgesellschaft v Galliford Try Construction Ltd  EWHC 275 (TCC)
Borough of Milton Keynes v Viridor (Community Recycling MK) Ltd (No 2)  EWHC 239 (TCC)
Van Oord UK Ltd and SCIM Roadbridge Ltd v Allseas UK Ltd  EWHC 3074 (TCC)
Multiplex v Honeywell  BLR 195
Essex CC v Premier Recycling  BLR 233
Paddington Churches Housing Association v Technical and General Insurance Co Ltd.  BLR 244
Austin Hall v Buckland  BLR 272
Harmon CFEM Facades (UK) Ltd v The Corporate Officer of the House of Commons (No 2)  72 ConLR 21
1987-1988 Diploma in Law, Polytechnic of Central London
1984-1987 Doctorate in history for a thesis on the political theory of the French Wars of Religion, New College, Oxford
1984-1985 Henry Fellow, Harvard
1983 First Class in Ancient and Modern History, Oxford. Scholarship to New College Oxford.
2010 – 2020 General Editor Hudson on Building Contracts
2011-2014 General Editor 1st to 4th supplements of Hudson
1998-2002 Editor of the Technology and Construction Law Reports
1994-1998 Editor of the Building Law Reports
1992 Contributor to Halsbury’s Law of England, 4th Edition. Reissue: Building Contractors, Architects, Engineers and Surveyors. Procurement
Robert is a member of TECBAR and the SCL. He is also on the Panel of TECBAR Adjudicators and is an accredited mediator.
“He quickly gets to grips with and focuses on the key elements within a case, however substantial the documentation. His drafting is precise, he has a great eye for detail and he is a very strong advocate who is persistent in his cross-examination.”
Construction, Chambers & Partners UK Bar 2021
“Robert has the ability to quickly evaluate the key issues from all the facts and set these out in a clear and logical form.”
Construction, The Legal 500 2021
“Extremely thorough and very strong on detail, he is also hard-working and quickly picks out the material issues. His strong drafting style goes down well with clients.” “He is very sharp and able to cut through complex legal issues very quickly.”
Construction, Chambers & Partners UK Bar 2020
“An extremely talented and sharp junior.”
Construction, The Legal 500 2020
“Produces well thought out written advice that is very clever and concise.” “He explained everything very clearly and calmly to clients. He has a very patient bedside manner and is really bright.”
Construction, Chambers & Partners UK Bar 2019
“Recommended for construction adjudications.”
Construction, The Legal 500 2019
“Quickly grasps complex issues, produces excellent drafting and has a good manner with clients.” “Very considerate and easy to work with.”
Construction, Chambers & Partners UK Bar 2018
“He demonstrates tremendous capacity for analysis and impressive grasp of legal complexities.”
Construction, The Legal 500 2017
“Excellent, well-thought-out written advice.”
Construction, Chambers & Partners UK Bar 2017
“He’s very thorough and very client-friendly.”
Construction, Chambers Global 2017
“He has an excellent track record in international arbitration.”
Construction, The Legal 500 2016
“He thinks one step ahead and advises on strategy accordingly” “He is very clever and concise”
Construction, Chambers & Partners UK Bar 2016
The above are a selection of recent client endorsements from the leading legal directories, both UK and internationally. For a complete list of endorsements, please contact the practice management team at Atkin Chambers.