Stuart Catchpole KC

Silk 2002

“Truly a star of the Construction Bar."
“If I had a bet-the-farm case, I’d go to Stuart Catchpole QC.”

Chambers and Partners

Stuart Catchpole KC is recognised as one of the leading advocates at the modern Bar, both internationally and in the UK. He has been consistently identified in the domestic and international legal directories as one of the best dispute lawyers in a variety of different fields including energy & natural resources, international commercial arbitration, construction & engineering, insurance and professional negligence. He is a Fellow of the Australian Centre for International Commercial Arbitration and an Adjunct Professor of Law at Notre Dame University, Sydney, Australia.

Stuart has a proven track record of exceptional intellectual and analytical ability, leadership, decisiveness, hard work and excellent judgement; all of which is underpinned by an ability rapidly both to assimilate large quantities of information and quickly to gain a detailed understanding of new (and usually highly complex) legal, technical, commercial and factual situations. He is a formidable and highly persuasive advocate who can simplify and explain the most complex issues to a Tribunal. He has a well-deserved reputation as being highly effective in cross-examination, particularly of experts. Clients appreciate the fact that he takes ownership of their problem at an early stage, understands the bigger picture and gives clear advice based on a thorough review of the relevant material. He is user-friendly and is very much the type of advocate who, where appropriate, prefers to work from the client’s offices, as part of an integrated team since this is, in his experience, the way in which the best results are usually achieved.

The foregoing is reflected in the quotes set out at the beginning of this CV. A more detailed selection quotes from the Chambers & Partners’ Directories (UK Bar, Asia Pacific, and Global) and The Legal 500 has been set out below. The feedback that the Directories’ independent researchers have consistently received from clients and professional opponents over many years speaks for itself.

The majority of Stuart’s practice involves and has always involved substantial and complex litigation, arbitrations or mediations principally concentrated in the construction, engineering, mining, energy (mainly power generation, oil and gas, LNG and renewables) and infrastructure sectors, together with related areas such as shipbuilding (generally fixed production platforms, FPSOs and Semi-Submersible Drilling rigs), insurance / reinsurance and commercial disputes (again mainly connected to the principal areas of his practice).

Stuart Catchpole KC is a foreign resident member of Atkin Chambers and practises from Jersey.


As one would expect for an international practitioner, Stuart has extensive experience of all of the major UK domestic and international standard forms of contract and of arbitral rules and institutions worldwide. In the last few years, for example, these have included substantial international arbitrations conducted under the rules of ADCAC, DIAC, HKIAC, ICC, KLRCA, LCIA, LMAA, SIAC, the Swiss Chamber and UNCITRAL. Over a similar period, he has acted either as Counsel or Arbitrator in disputes where the relevant contracts were governed by or subject (wholly or partly) to the laws of Australia, Abu Dhabi, Azerbaijan, Chile, Dubai, France, Gibraltar, Hong Kong, Ireland, Jersey, Jordan, Malaysia, the Maldives, Nigeria, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Scotland, Singapore, Switzerland, and Turkey as well as England & Wales.

Although the majority of Stuart’s practice involves substantial and complex international private law disputes, particularly in Asia, Australia and the Middle East, he has also acted in a wide range of public law, public procurement, public international law, regulatory, environmental and health & safety matters, extradition and public international law cases. This work has been undertaken mainly for central governments or other public authorities (both in the UK and internationally), including acting in a variety of sensitive cases involving national security issues. He has also been involved in various public inquiries in the UK (including the Hillsborough Inquiry, the BSE Inquiry, one of the Inquiries into the Foot and Mouth crisis, and as adviser to various UK Government agencies in relation to civilian deaths during the Troubles in Northern Ireland and the Grenfell Tower Inquiry).

Stuart has advised and acted on behalf of clients in relation to nearly all forms of dispute resolution procedures. In addition to acting as Counsel, he acts as an international arbitrator and mediator, although he limits the number of appointments that he accepts to ensure that the majority of his work is as Counsel. As noted above, he is a Fellow of the Australian Centre for International Commercial Arbitration. Most of Stuart’s domestic cases and a proportion of his international cases involve mediations, early neutral evaluations, dispute boards or some other form of ADR. Stuart is a CEDR-qualified mediator and a TecBar-qualified adjudicator. Prior to moving to Jersey from London in 2012, Stuart sat as Deputy High Court Judge (in both the Administrative Court and Queen’s Bench Division), a Crown Court Recorder (in criminal cases) and was a part-time member of the Proscribed Organisations Appeals Commission which hears appeals against the designation by the UK of organisations as terrorist organisations. He is currently one of the two Deputy Chairmen of the States of Jersey Complaints Panel (the equivalent of the Ombudsman) and, until December 2019, was a trustee of a substantial charity, Jersey Hospice Care, which provides end of life care to terminally ill patients.


Stuart was one of six silks shortlisted for Barrister of the Year at ‘The Lawyer’ Awards 2008, 2009, 2011 and 2012. He was awarded the Construction Silk of the Year 2008 at the Chambers & Partners Awards and was one of three silks shortlisted for the same Award in 2006, 2009 and 2010. He was one of three silks shortlisted for the International Arbitration Silk of the Year 2016 at the Chambers & Partners Awards. Chambers & Partners also included him in the “Chambers 100”, a list of the top 100 Silks practising at the Bar across all practice areas.


Panel of Arbitrators of the BVI International Arbitration Centre: 2022

Visiting Fellow, Durham Law School, The University of Durham: 2021

Adjunct Professor of Law, Notre Dame University, Sydney, Australia: 2020

Fellow of the Australian Centre for International Commercial Arbitration: 2020

Trustee of Jersey Hospice Care: 2015

Deputy Chairman, States of Jersey Complaints Panel: 2014 States of Jersey Complaints Panel: 2013

Deputy High Court Judge (England & Wales): 2010

Governing Barrister Bencher of the Honourable Society of the Inner Temple: 2008

Crown Court Recorder: 2004

Queen’s Counsel: 2002

Part-time Legal Member of the Proscribed Organisations Appeal Commission (one of 5 in the UK) to hear appeals under the UK Terrorism Act 2000: 2001

Attorney-General A Panel: 1999 Attorney-General B Panel: 1998

Treasury Supplemental Panel (Common Law): 1992


The Administrative Law Bar Association

The International Bar Association

The London Commercial & Common Law Bar Association

The Chartered Institute of Arbitrators


The Technology & Construction Bar Association

The Commercial Bar Association


TECBAR Accredited Adjudicator: 2007

CEDR Accredited Mediator: 2002

Inner Temple Examination Scholarship: 1988 Maxwell Law Prize: 1986

BA Hons (Dunelm), Law, First Class (ranked 1st in year): 1986 Durham University: 1983-1986

Colchester Royal Grammar School: 1975-1982


The following are a selection of the quotes from clients as reported in, principally, the Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners Bar (UK, Asia and Global) directories in the last few years. A full list, with relevant sources, can be provided on request:


“Stuart’s advocacy is particularly impressive. He is incredibly well-prepared and a devastating cross-examiner.”

Construction, The Legal 500 2024

“Stuart is a devastating cross-examiner. He is incredibly well prepared and has an extremely impressive and persuasive advocacy style.”

Energy, The Legal 500 2024

Stuart is a very powerful gifted advocate and a devastating cross-examiner.”

International Arbitration, The Legal 500 2024

Stuart has an excellent command of professional negligence. He is a ferocious cross -examiner and very hard working.”

Professional Negligence, The Legal 500 2024

“He is my go-to silk for anything and everything.”

“Stuart is fabulous.”

“He is definitely the key guy out of London.”

International Arbitration: Construction & Engineering, Chambers UK Bar 2024

“Stuart Catchpole is an excellent advocate and a great team player. His attention to detail is second to none.”

“A leader at the construction Bar. If you’ve got a big fight on your hands, he’s the one to go to.”

“He is my go-to silk for anything and everything. I get him involved in the big cases. He’s superb. He’s an excellent cross-examiner, gets stuck in and is well liked.”

Construction, Chambers UK Bar 2024

“He has an extremely effective advocacy style, where it comes across as there just could be no other answer.”

“Stuart Catchpole is superb and a pleasure to work with.”

“He understands engineering and technical issues very well. He’s very on top of the detail.”

Energy & Natural Resources, Chambers UK Bar 2024

“Stuart is very good at handling clients. He has excellent depth of emotional intelligence and knows how to say things that land the right way with clients.”

“Stuart is incredibly good – very detailed, thorough and incredibly hard-working.”

Professional Negligence, Chambers UK Bar 2024

“Stuart is top-notch with crazy attention to detail. He is one of the best, if not the best, in arguing complicated contract matters. Construction arbitration is something he was already doing but now especially he is with Atkin which is a specialist construction set.”

“I rate Stuart highly. He’s got the skill of making a case that’s not necessarily powerful sound good and that’s a skill few of us have got.”

International Arbitration – The Bar, Chambers Asia Pacific 2024


“Practical and thorough. He has a great ability to build a strong relationship with instructors and clients. A great strategic thinker.”

Construction, Energy & Infrastructure, The Legal 500 Asia Pacific 2023

“He’s really an excellent advocate.”

“He’s a great advocate and a team player with a meticulous eye for detail, and he’s always completely prepared.”

His written submissions are an absolute tour de force and his advocacy is also very clear.”

Construction, Chambers UK Bar 2023

“His written submissions are a tour de force and he’s also able to present in a way that is clear and very easy to understand.”

Energy & Natural Resources, Chambers UK Bar 2023

“He’s outstanding – very clever and an extremely good advocate.”

“He’s really an excellent advocate.”

“He’s a team player with a meticulous eye for detail, and he’s always completely prepared. He’s a standout in this space.”

International Arbitration: Chambers UK Bar 2023

“He was excellent in his ability to get through a very significant amount of data and to distil it into very helpful strategic and commercial advice.”

International Arbitration, Chambers Asia Pacific 2023

He is without question a pre-eminent construction silk, with vast specialist experience. He is a persuasive advocate, renowned for his attention to detail, preparation and devastating cross- examination. He is a great team player with commercial and strategic insight.”

Construction, The Legal 500 2023

“A fearsome advocate, renowned for his attention to detail, preparation and devastating cross- examination, he is a great team player with commercial and strategic insight.”

Energy, The Legal 500 2023

“Stuart is very thorough, legally astute and commercially savvy. He conducts proceedings very fairly and gains the confidence of the parties. His award drafting is excellent.”

Arbitrators, The Legal 500 2023

“Stuart is an outstanding advocate who is always thoroughly prepared and his cross-examination of witnesses is second to none. His reputation as being one of the leading silks in construction and international arbitration is well-deserved.”

Counsel, The Legal 500 2023

“Stuart is tremendously intelligent. He is always able to see the wider picture, and his work ethic is ferocious.’ ‘A spectacular advocate. Stuart always gets to grips with the detail of the case, while retaining a strategic overview and giving clear commercial advice. He has it all.”

Insurance and Reinsurance, The Legal 500 2023

“Stuart Catchpole is a spectacular advocate. Watching him cross examine is like peeling an onion – each layer causes his opponents to cry a little more! Stuart always gets to grips with the detail of the case, while retaining a strategic overview and giving clear commercial advice. He has it all.”

Professional Negligence, The Legal 500 2023


“Truly a star of the Construction Bar.”

“He’s one of the top of the list for advocacy.”

“The silk of choice for heavyweight disputes. He’s a great team player, commits to the case and prepares thoroughly. His forte is cross-examination, and he’s outstanding at it.”

“Stuart is a phenomenally skilful barrister, with an exceptional ability both to seize the high-level points in a given dispute and to capture the most granular details in issue. He is relentlessly commercial in his approach, combined with a remarkable ability to persuade, at both the level of the client and the tribunal. He is one of the finest barristers of his generation.”

“He has an assured advocacy style.” “He is absolutely brilliant and very hard-working.”

“An outstanding advocate, probably the best cross-examiner in the energy field, his preparation is always outstanding and his work ethic is ferocious.”

“Tremendously intelligent and with exceptional judgement; Stuart is always able to see the wider picture, and to anticipate the court’s reaction to any line of argument. He is legally knowledgeable, his ability to master technical issues is nothing short of awe-inspiring, he is tremendously collegiate, and he always utterly masters his brief. Lay and professional clients absolutely love him – and with good reason.”


“Masterful construction silk extolled for his courtroom presence and intellectual prowess. He has a renowned domestic practice and is widely respected for his international arbitration work.”

“Decisive, authoritative and excellent with clients.” “If I had a bet-the-farm case, I’d go to Stuart Catchpole KC.” “A master cross-examiner.”

“He’s very good at pressing clients and shaking the tree before getting to the hearing.”

“Extremely capable, charming and a tough advocate.” “He is top drawer, and a very reasonable and measured advocate who is very thorough and detail-hungry.”

“Stuart understands the commercial and technical details of construction matters. He knows how construction projects proceed and is able to home in on the issues to get to the bottom of a matter. He is personable, easy to work with and incredibly hard-working.”

“…a star of the London construction Bar and “a go-to for complicated international arbitration” in the construction and infrastructure sphere across Asia generally.”

“He is a fearsome cross-examiner and a huge intellect. His ability to work as part of the large teams of lawyers also stands him out as one of the very best.” “He is very bright and analytical, a great strategist and a formidable presence in court. He combines a superb understanding of the law with a very commercial approach.”

“One of the premier construction silks at the bar, he is diligent and personable with deep commitment to achieving the best result.”

“Unbelievably hardworking and thorough, he leaves no stone unturned in finding solutions to complex issues and exceptionally well prepared for hearings.”

“He’s an advocate that the judge wants to hear from because his views are respected. He is also very meticulous.”