Chambers UK Bar Awards 2019 – Monckton Chambers and its members in the shortlists for Competition and Tax

The shortlists for Chambers UK Bar Awards 2019 have been announced and Monckton Chambers and its members are up for multiple awards across two categories.

Monckton Chambers is nominated for the Set award for Competition with Paul Harris QC in the final three for Silk of the Year and Rob Williams for Junior of the Year for the same category.

Monckton is also in the running for the Set award for Tax with Melanie Hall QC shortlisted in the final three for Silk of the Year in the category.

The winners will be announced at a ceremony on Thursday, 31st October The London Hilton on Park Lane.

The aim of the awards is to recognise, reward and celebrate both sets’ and individual barristers’ pre–eminence in key practice areas. The awards are based on the research for the 2020 edition of Chambers Bar and reflect notable achievements over the past 12 months including outstanding work, impressive strategic growth and excellence in client service.

Attorney General’s Panel – new appointment for Imogen Proud, elevation to A Panel for Ewan West and successful A Panel retention for Raymond Hill, Andrew Macnab and Peter Mantle

The members of Monckton Chambers are pleased to announce that in the recent round of Attorney General Panel appointments, Ewan West has been elevated to the A Panel and Imogen Proud has been appointed to the C Panel.

In addition Raymond Hill, Andrew Macnab and Peter Mantle have all been successful with renewed A Panel applications.

All appointments commence from 2nd September for five years.

The Attorney General maintains four advisory panels of junior counsel to undertake civil and EU work for all government departments. There are three London panels (an A panel for senior juniors, a B panel for middle juniors, a C panel for junior juniors) and a regional panel. In addition there are three Public International Law Panels.

In total 21 members of Monckton Chambers are on the AG’s panels:

A Panel: Raymond Hill, Anneli Howard, Alan Bates, Ben Lask, Andrew Macnab, Peter Mantle, Brendan McGurk, Rob Williams, Ewan West

B Panel: Eric Metcalfe, Azeem Suterwalla, Fiona Banks

C Panel: Anneliese Blackwood, Tarlochan Lall, Julianne Kerr Morrison, Conor McCarthy, Michael Armitage, Jack Williams, Imogen Proud

Public International Law B Panel: Anneli Howard, Thomas Sebastian

Public International Law C Panel: Nikolaus Grubeck

Frank Mitchell to be admitted to the Inner Bar in Ireland

Monckton tax specialist, Frank Mitchell, has been granted Patents of Precedence entitling him to admission to the Inner Bar in Ireland and the status Senior Counsel (SC).

Frank is one of thirteen Irish barristers to be appointed, this month, by the Irish Government on the recommendation of an advisory committee currently consisting of the Chief Justice, the President of the High Court, the Attorney General and the Chairperson of the Bar Council. The date for these barristers to be called to the Inner Bar will be fixed by the Chief Justice. See Irish Government news release.

Frank has specialised in VAT, Customs Duty and direct tax issues since 2000 when he worked in PricewaterhouseCoopers in Dublin and then London working in tax consultancy and litigation.

Frank read law in Trinity College Dublin (1994-98) before completing his Barrister-at-Law Degree in the Honourable Society of the Kings Inns, Dublin in 2000. He was admitted as an associate of the Irish Tax Institute in 2001 and will become President of the Irish Tax Institute in September this year.

Frank has been a member of the European Commission’s VAT Expert Group since its inception. He was called to the Bar of England and Wales in 2010 and joined Monckton Chambers in the same year as a result of his specific interest in the European law aspects of indirect taxes. He spreads his time between the UK and Ireland according to clients’ needs.

The Lawyer Awards 2019 – Monckton Chambers is first winner of Specialist Chambers of the Year

Sandi Toksvig was the Master of Ceremonies at last night’s The Lawyer Awards at the Grosvenor House Hotel, presenting joint Head of Chambers, Philip Moser QC and Senior Clerk, David Hockney with the award for Monckton Chambers, winner of the new category, “Specialist Chambers of the Year”.

Judges commended in particular Monckton’s high profile cases, its record turnover for 2018/19 and its three new Silks, two of which are women.

David Hockney was thrilled with the specialist award: “This is a new category which rightly recognises the excellence of those sets that are known for key specialist areas; in our case Competition, EU Law, Public Procurement, Indirect Tax, Public Law & Human Rights, whilst still offering a wider range of services. The award applauds strategic focus and the achievement of excellence in core areas and Monckton Chambers is delighted to be its first recipient.”

Celebrating its 25th year, The Lawyer Awards commend excellence in the profession across private practice, the public sector, commerce and industry, and the Bar.

FCA appoints John Swift QC to review the redress scheme for Interest Rate Hedging Products

The FCA has appointed John Swift QC as one of two Independent Reviewers for the lessons learned reviews commissioned by the FCA’s Board. One review will cover the redress scheme for Interest Rate Hedging Products and the other will cover the regulation of firms involved with the Connaught Income Fund Series 1.

John Swift QC will carry out the review of the redress scheme for Interest Rate Hedging Products, which is expected to last 15 months.

See full FCA press release.

John Swift QC is a non-practising barrister specialised in competition and regulatory issues. He was Head of Monckton Chambers from 1999-2002. He now practices as a domestic and international Arbitrator based at Monckton Chambers.

Who’s Who Legal Competition 2019: Lawyers – Monckton in most listings table; Daniel Beard QC, Jon Turner QC and George Peretz QC recognised as “Global Elite”

WWL has once again collaborated with Global Competition Review to produce the 20th edition of WWL: Competition, featuring 1,068 lawyers from over 400 firms across 55 jurisdictions who stand out as the foremost legal practitioners in the competition space.

Monckton Chambers is one of only two sets to appear in the table: “Most listings in WWL: Competition 2019”. The rest of the rankings are international law firms.

In addition, Daniel Beard QC, Jon Turner QC and George Peretz QC are the only three barristers amongst 14 specialist individuals who received the highest number of nominations from peers, corporate counsel and other market sources this year and who are recognised as “The Global Elite Thought Leaders”.

This what the researchers say about Monckton Chambers and its members:

“A top-tier set at the UK Bar that sees 12 barristers identified here for their expertise.

Global Elite Thought Leader Daniel Beard QC is “the best out there”, effuse sources who add he stands “head and shoulders above the rest”. They consider him a “clever and effective” advocate and praise his “amazing” work on matters such as damages actions and appeals.

Jon Turner QC sits among “the best of the Bar”, say sources who consider him “one of the very best advocates in the field”. He is “in high demand” for his profound ability in abuse of dominance and collusion cases.

George Peretz QC is a prominent figure for state aid work, where he stands out for his remarkable work advising public and private sector clients.

Josh Holmes QC is “a very skilled barrister” who sources “would certainly instruct”. He is credited with an “encyclopaedic knowledge of competition law”.

The “excellent” Anneli Howard is a well-established figure in the competition sphere who enjoys a strong reputation for her handling of complex matters involving both EU and UK regulations.

Meredith Pickford QC is a “favourite” among market commentators. He is “a top-flight competition QC” who excels when it comes to damages actions and regulatory appeals proceedings.

Kassie Smith QC is a “terrific and well-thought of” advocate who stands out for her work on complex competition damages actions, and for her “strong grasp of competition economics”. Other Monckton members identified for this specialist area are: Tim Ward QC, Mark Brealey QC, Paul Harris QC, Ronit Kreisberger QC, Alistair Lindsay, Alan Bates and Alison Berridge.

Three Monckton members appointed to the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) Panel

Eric Metcalfe, Steve Broach and Michael Armitage have all been appointed to the panel of counsel which is the EHRC’s list of preferred providers of external legal services, including representation and advice. These legal services support the EHRC’s equality and human rights work, including strategic litigation in domestic and European courts.

Having been a member of the B panel since 2015, Eric has been promoted to the A panel, to which Steve has also now been appointed. Michael has been appointed to the C panel. All appointments are for 2019 – 23, a duration of four years.

Click here for the full panel of counsel.

The Lawyer Awards 2019 – Philip Moser QC shortlisted for Barrister of the Year and Monckton for Specialist Chambers of the Year

Monckton is on the shortlist in two categories for this year’s The Lawyer Awards.

Philip Moser QC has been nominated as “Barrister of the Year” and Monckton Chambers is in the running for the new category “Specialist Chambers of the Year”.

Celebrating its 25th year, The Lawyer Awards commend excellence in the profession across private practice, the public sector, commerce and industry, and the Bar. The winners will be announced at a ceremony at the Grosvenor House Hotel on Tuesday 25th June.

Melanie Hall QC recognised as one of Accountancy Age’s “Women in Finance”

Accountancy Age celebrates excellence in accountancy with the publication of rankings, which pinpoint professional development and exceptional achievement in practice and industry across the UK.

One such ranking is “Women in Finance” which was launched in 2018 to turn the spotlight on influential women across various sectors, including government, business, finance and accountancy, who are all leaders, trailblazers and transforming their respective fields. The 2018 list of twenty “Women in Finance” attracted so much interest that this year the list was extended to 35, all individuals ranked by an audience vote.

Monckton Chambers’ Melanie Hall QC enters the rankings for the first time this year, convincingly positioned by voters in the top half of the tables. She is the only QC ranked – indeed the only practising lawyer recognised in this elite grouping which includes CEOs, CFOs, Managing Partners, Government Ministers and leading academics.

This is what the researchers say about her:

“When Annie Lennox wrote ‘Sisters are doing it for themselves’, she may have had barrister Melanie Hall in mind. The pair co-founded charity The Circle in 2008. Hall is also on the editorial board for the Tax Journal and is a trustee of Somerset House.

Hall has been an acknowledged leader in the field of VAT for many years. She is part of Monckton Chambers, itself renowned for its indirect tax work. Hall is famous for the depth of her research. Her cases have made legal history, working for both HMRC and private clients.

She has defended the legality of the existence of VAT on hot takeaway food, the Aggregates Levy, the UK’s VAT Grouping legislation and the Landfill Tax.”

For further information of the Accountancy Age Women in Finance rankings click here.

Who’s Who Legal UK Bar 2019 – Monckton Chambers in top eight leading sets and members recognised for nine practice areas.

Nearly 120 sets have barristers listed in WWL: UK Bar 2019. However, the members of 12 top sets account for over 40 per cent of the listings between them and Monckton Chambers with 50 listings, appears eighth in the table “Most listings in WWL: UK Bar 2019

Monckton Chambers is represented by members across nine practice areas:

Practice area                   Number of listings

Arbitration                                               1
Competition                                          19
Corporate Tax                                         2
Environment                                           3
Government Contracts                         9
International Trade & Commodities  1
Media & Entertainment                        2
Sports                                                       2
Telecoms                                                11

The WWL overall research of the UK Bar highlights the following members at Monckton Chambers:

“Standout names at the set include George Peretz QC and Rob Williams who are recognised as top names in the competition arena. Daniel Beard QC, Josh Holmes QC and Jon Turner QC rank highly for competition law, as well as telecoms matters – an area in which Stefan Kuppen is also regarded as a leading junior. Michael Bowsher QC and Ewan West are applauded by sources for their top-tier government contracts practices.”

In addition, this what the research concludes about the members listed in the following key areas:


Monckton Chambers’ Thomas Sebastian receives much applause for his “excellent drafting and industry knowledge” with respondents describing him as “a leading practitioner in public international law and WTO matters”.


Monckton Chambers performs highly this year in the competition rankings, with 11 silks listed. Four of those silks are recognised in “Most Highly Regarded” table of just five Silks: Daniel Beard QC, Josh Holmes QC, Jon Turner QC and George Peretz QC . Rob Williams is one of only two Juniors awarded the same accolade.

These are the researchers’ comments

Daniel Beard QC is one of the foremost competition silks at the Bar who is described as “a brilliant technician, a very talented advocate and fantastic in court”.
Josh Holmes QC draws acclaim from respondents as “a highly skilled, personable, thorough and clever barrister” and “one of the very best as the bar”. He is well versed in competition regulations pertaining to the communications, energy and financial services sectors.
Tim Ward QC is a “thorough, knowledgeable and highly personable” advocate who excels on cartel, damages and judicial review proceedings.
Jon Turner QC is “a real star at the bar and a very established name” say sources who applaud his “razor-sharp intellect” and praise his “astonishing mastery of any case he takes”.
Mark Brealey QC ranks highly this year for his extensive experience appearing before English and Welsh courts, as well as the Competition Appeal Tribunal and the Court of Justice of the European Union.
Kassie Smith QC is an “extremely good barrister” and “a real team player”, say sources. She stands out for her extensive experience handling competition-related matters.
Meredith Pickford QC  is held in high regard by peers as “a tireless and skilled advocate” who is “a tremendous asset to any team”. He is particularly experienced in matters pertaining to the telecommunications sector.
Paul Harris QC receives recognition from respondents as “a very strong advocate in court” and “a standout on sports-related issues”.
Ronit Kreisberger QC is “rated very highly indeed” by instructing solicitors who “recommend her for pharma sector matters in particular”.

Monckton Chambers achieves eight listings for its juniors this year.

Rob Williams is distinguished as one of the leading competition juniors at the bar. He is described as “insightful, approachable, thorough and a joy to work with”.
Anneli Howard is applauded by market commentators, who “rate her very highly indeed” as a competition specialist. Her practice encompasses a wide range of competition matters, including abuse of dominance, state aid and cartel matters.
Ben Rayment draws acclaim from peers as “a brilliant and dependable practitioner in the field”. He has over 20 years of experience in cartels, state aid, abuse of dominance and merger investigation matters.
Alan Bates has significant expertise in acting for or against major economic regulators in the EU in relation to complex competition damages claims cases.
Ligia Osepciu is “a hard-working and clever advocate” whose practice spans state aid and damages claims matters before domestic and EU courts for clients in the technology and energy sectors.

Corporate Tax

Monckton Chambers has two leading figures recognised.
Melanie Hall QC is a well-known silk in the field who excels in VAT matters, EU law and complex corporate tax litigation.
Valentina Sloane QC is “a highly persuasive advocate” say peers who commend her impressive practice. She appears in domestic and international courts on high-value tax disputes.


Gerry Facenna QC at Monckton Chambers has considerable experience representing private and public sector clients as well as individuals and campaign groups on waste management, air quality and noise pollution matters.

Government Contracts

Monckton Chambers sees three lawyers recognised for their work in the field.
Michael Bowsher QC and Ewan West appear in the “Most Highly Regarded” table.

This is what the researchers say:
Michael Bowsher QC is “extremely knowledgeable” in government contracts matters. He is a key name in the field, and is highlighted as “very bright” and strong on procurement matters.
Philip Moser QC is recognised for his superb practice and is considered a leading lawyer in the public procurement space. One source notes that “many would go straight to Philip” for government contracts matters.
Valentina Sloane QC is also recognised for her considerable experience handling complex public contracts matters relating to EU procurement Monckton Chambers performs very well in this year’s research with six juniors listed.
Ewan West is a highly experienced government contracts junior who is highlighted as an expert in advising on commercial solutions to procurement issues.
Rob Williams is an “extremely knowledgeable” government contracts junior who stands out for his excellent work advising contractors, public authorities and utilities companies.
Anneliese Blackwood’s work in the field of government contracts is “outstanding” say peers. She is a key name in the field, and has appeared before the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal.
Fiona Banks is recognised for her superb government contracts practice. One source remarks that she has “in-depth legal knowledge combined with analytical skills, and the ability to crystallise complicated arguments into clear and sensible advice”.
Ligia Osepciu “is very experienced in the field”, according to our research. Sources say: “She has an excellent brain, and always presents the case in a very clear manner.”
Ben Rayment draws high praise from market sources who consider him “intellectually very astute, knowledgeable, approachable and pragmatic”.


Paul Harris QC at Monckton Chambers is “hugely well regarded” in the sports space. He is described by peers as “a very bright and strong advocate”, and wins praise for his work on arbitration and litigation proceedings.
Fiona Banks at Monckton Chambers “always inspires utter confidence in her knowledge, approach and work” say peers who commend her “clarity of thought and pragmatism”.


Monckton Chambers also performs strongly this year, with six of its silks listed for their excellent work in the sector. Daniel Beard QC, Josh Holmes QC and Jon Turner QC are recognised in “Most Highly Regarded” table of just five Silks. Stefan Kuppen is one of only two Juniors awarded the same accolade.

This is what the researchers say:
Daniel Beard QC is singled out as one of the Bar’s leading lights when it comes to telecoms. Respondents effuse that “clients love him and his ability to turn around a losing point in court”.
Josh Holmes QC is “a true gentleman of the bar with a near-unrivalled knowledge of the area”. His speciality lies in competition law and regulation of the EU and the UK.
Jon Turner QC draws high praise from peers who note he is “unflappable in court, which reflects the many hours of preparation he devotes to the case”.
Meredith Pickford QC is a highly regarded name at the UK bar, whose expertise lies in competition and regulatory law before the UK courts and the EU Commission.Monckton Chambers sees five juniors recognised for their impressive work in the telecoms field.
Stefan Kuppen is “an incredibly bright barrister, who is imaginative and great with clients”, say peers. He is well versed in competition and regulatory matters pertaining to the telecoms sector.
Alan Bates is “very much in demand” for his impressive expertise in telecoms disputes, which spans related regulatory and competition law matters.
Anneli Howard is held in high esteem by sources who say “her reputation precedes her as an outstanding barrister in the field”. She has nearly two decades of experience in regulatory and competition disputes before EU and UK courts and authorities.
Fiona Banks is “an excellent barrister in the field” who is well versed in acting for telecoms providers and regulators in a range of tribunal and court proceedings.
Ligia Osepciu also gains recognition in this chapter for her excellent work handling a range of telecommunications and regulatory disputes.