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Stephanie Barwise QC Barrister Atkin Chambers

Stephanie Barwise QC

Silk 2006

“A top drawer silk... Brings an enormously energetic and enthusiastic approach to her work and is very much liked by clients. Her advice is clear and she understands the commercial context."

Chambers and Partners

Stephanie Barwise QC is widely regarded as a leader in her field, her expertise lies in civil engineering and construction disputes.

Stephanie’s practice is broad-based and comprises construction, civil and geotechnical engineering involving landslip/subsidence and augured/bored piles, mechanical and electrical engineering and infrastructure projects, including roads, bridges, mass transit railroads, on and offshore refineries and biofuels plants, shipbuilding and refits, wind farms, IT problems in computer automated cranes and trains, procurement including major PFI projects such as hospitals and schools. Her practice also extends to military equipment such as man-portable, automated bomb diffusing equipment, battleships and nuclear bunkers.

Stephanie appears as an advocate in the Technology & Construction Courts, the Commercial Court, the Chancery Division and the Court of Appeal as well as in international and domestic arbitrations. She also has considerable experience in alternative dispute resolution methods including adjudication and mediation.

Stephanie has represented the UK Government and foreign Governments as well as a wide variety of other clients in high-value and complex claims. Key cases include Vivergo v Redhall [2013] EWHC 4030(TCC) establishing grounds for wrongful termination of contract based on inadequate contractual notices having been given. Also R& C Engineers v Shaylor [2012] EWHC 1254: establishing entitlement to set off against an adjudicator’s Decision and seminal case establishing an adjudicator has no right to adjudicate an account of any net balance due on set-off  under rule 4.90 of the Insolvency rules: Enterprise Managed Services v Tony McFadden Utilities [2009] EWHC 3222(TCC). A seminal case in the Court of Appeal on the ability to preserve a right of set-off despite settlement as cited in Foskett on Compromise: London & Regional (St Georges Court) v MOD[2008] EWCA civ 1212.Stephanie appeared for the manufacturer of both trains and the signal in the Ladbroke Grove crash public enquiry.

Amongst the first of the 1988 call to take silk, Stephanie has consistently been recognised as a leader in her field in legal directories such as Chambers & Partners UK Bar Guide, Chambers Global, The Legal 500 and Legal Experts.

Stephanie Barwise QC – appointment re: The Grenfell Tower Public Inquiry.

Stephanie Barwise QC is representing a group of core participants (including survivors, bereaved relatives and former residents of Grenfell Tower) represented by five firms of solicitors. Please click here for further details.



Stephanie’s experience spans every aspect of disputes within this sector. She has been instructed in claims for defects/variations and claims for acceleration and prolongation across various disciplines: civil engineering including road and bridge building, military installations and vehicles for use in war zones, marine engineering shipbuilding (including QE2 refit) hotel development, industrial units and mechanical and electrical engineering as well as chemical process design and biofuel plants. Her experience extends to problems in structures caused by poor design or specification of concrete, Glass Reinforced Plastic panelling/elements and many other materials/structural elements. She has also conducted disputes as to defective design or manufacture of printed circuit boards and other equipment.


Her practice in this sector includes disputes regarding the design and construction of oil rigs /conversion of former vessels into floating production units, on and offshore pipe laying, offshore wind farms and waste to energy plants including hospital incineration units and sewage treatment plants as well as commercial boiler units and heating systems, and petrochemical plants.


Stephanie’s experience includes claims for and against the range of professionals involved in the construction sector: architects, engineers of all disciplines, quantity surveyors, valuers and project managers. She has advised local authorities and others regarding claims against project managers appointed under NEC3 for failures to manage the Compensation Event process and failures in risk reduction exercises.


She has extensive experience of advising governments and contractors on issues arising from the design and construction of rail and mass transit projects and infrastructures, as well as defects in the design and construction of the locomotives themselves and individual components such as engineers and gearboxes. She has acted in disputes involving a variety of communication and signalling systems on overground and underground rail networks, including defending a claim by contractors against London Underground for allegedly varied works to the signalling upgrade of the Jubilee and Piccadilly line. Stephanie also represented the manufacturers of both locomotives and the signal passed at red in the Ladbroke Grove Rail Crash Enquiry.


Stephanie has advised public bodies and unsuccessful tenderers in the UK and overseas on all aspects of procurement. She has advised UK utility companies as to the proper procedure for procurement of pipework repair Framework Agreements. She also advises NHS trusts as to the procurement of new hospitals under PFI agreements and as to subsequent defects/a variety of operational issues, and has advised a contractor in its negotiation of a framework agreement for consultancy services to be provided to BAA.


Stephanie has acted in cases concerning defects in the design /specification of hardware/software and integration issues. Examples include the fully automated gantry cranes in Hong Kong Harbour and the software used on the signalling upgrade of the Jubilee and Piccadilly line on the London Underground.


1986 Downing College Cambridge Honours degree in law (MA).

1987 Master of Laws degree (LLM).

2006 Appointed Queen’s Counsel.

Languages: Speaks German and French.