5 Essex Court is rated highly in its specialist fields in Chambers and Partners 2013

5 Essex Court is delighted to announce that it is ranked in Band 1 in Police Law in the 2013 edition of Chambers and Partners. Sources commented in particular that “all counsel are accessible and co-operative,” and that we have a “friendly and helpful” clerking team. One source described our senior clerk, Mark Waller, as ”one of the best counsel’s clerks that I have ever worked with.”


Fiona Barton QC is a “talented and dogged police law advocate” who is “calm, collected and excellent at winning the client’s complete confidence.”

“The “extremely bright” Jason Beer QC has “a commanding presence in court and an incredible ability to retain masses of information during the development of a trial.”

“The “phenomenal” Jeremy Johnson QC is “a tireless forensic analyst who has a capacity to turn around paperwork in the shortest of timescales.” “Very knowledgeable,” he is “a good team player and an excellent tactician” who is “able to undertake cases of any size and complexity.” Praised for his advocacy skills, Johnson is also “good at distilling difficult points.”

Anne Studd QC is ”highly capable,” “very decisive and intellectually very bright.” She is “a tough opponent” because she is “excellent in cross-examination”

“Steeped in police law,” Samantha Leek QC is “a charming silk who has a thorough understanding of the police service and the needs of the client.” “Impressive in conference,” she has the “ability to set clients’ minds at rest in difficult circumstances.”

Nicholas Wilcox is very experienced in police work and handles a broad range of work, proving particularly good on misconduct cases. He wins strong market approval.”

Andrew Waters is an impassioned advocate who fights his client’s corner very well.” A “good team player,” he is “excellent with witnesses” and has a “very calming manner.” He comes highly recommended for his expertise in disciplinary actions and is also “an excellent employment law adviser.”

Dijen Basu “knows his stuff” and is “spot-on in his analysis.”

“Robust advocate” Matthew Holdcroft “argues his cases fantastically very well”

The “very good”  Barnabas Branston “charms the panel,” and ”has the knack of not overplaying his hand” in cases and inquests.

Russell Fortt represents police forces in a wide range of matters, including judicial reviews, civil actions, inquests and police misconduct tribunals.

Charlotte Ventham is “always thoroughly prepared” and “offers an excellent service” with “a quick turnaround time” for her paperwork.”

Lucinda Boon, a “real hard worker who is responsive,” has “bags of enthusiasm” and is liked by clients due to her “very personable attitude.” She is building a strong reputation for her work on surveillance cases”

“up-and-comer Georgina Wolfe is ”very bright and able.” She appears in a healthy mix of civil actions and inquests”


“Fiona Barton QC…regularly acts on behalf of police forces on disciplinary proceedings, public inquiries and judicial reviews, and inquests involving deaths in custody. She is regularly instructed by police forces all over the country on cases of the utmost seriousness.

“Jason Beer QC…is “exceptionally bright” according to sources, who praise him for his technical ability, pragmatism, and proactive approach to his disciplinary work

“Andrew Waters is a lawyer who garners great admiration from his opponents. One such commented that he is “a principled lawyer who is tough but fair – all of us who are against him respect him.”


“Jason Beer QC, who “is very well known and is extremely good.” He is a defendant-only practitioner, who regularly works with government and public institutions. Beer is celebrated for handling inquiry work, and was counsel to the Al Sweady inquiry

“Jeremy Johnson QC…is instructed by the MoD in the Al Sweady inquiry, and is “very well regarded on the public law education and police side.” He is “good at distilling difficult points, and is measured in his advocacy.”


“Jeremy Johnson QC… has successfully defended the government in the higher courts on multiple occasions. In MS (Jamaica), facing an intervention from the UNHCR, he fought off a claim that the State’s fast track detention policy was unlawful. Those that have faced him in court are highly complimentary of his abilities”

John-Paul Waite…has real practical ability and a mature understanding of the merits of a case,”

Alan Payne maintains a public law-focused immigration practice, and spends the majority of his time litigating in the higher courts on behalf of state authorities. His high work rate has attracted the attention and praise of his peers”


“Ashley Underwood QC of 5 Essex Court has recently moved from Landmark Chambers and practises social housing as a part of a wider public law brief. He is particularly noted for his work on various inquiries.”