2 Harcourt Buildings
London EC4Y 9DB
Dx 373 LDE
Tel 0844 561 7135

Churchill House
3 St Aldate's, Oxford
Dx 96453 Oxford 4
Tel 0844 561 7135

Directories - Chambers UK Bar 2017 South Eastern


This is a summary of chambers' rankings in Chambers UK Bar 2017.




Band 1































Frances Judd QC

Band 1























John Vater QC

Band 1


















Nicholas Goodwin QC

Band 2




















Aidan Vine QC

New Silk















Fiona Hay

Band 1
















Jonathan Sampson 

Band 1
















Harcourt Chambers enjoys an outstanding reputation in the South East for children matters, and also benefits from its significant presence in London. Its pre-eminent team tackles complex proceedings, handling, among others, cases concerning physical and sexual abuse and child abduction. The set also boasts a team of financial specialists who regularly tackle high-value cross-border cases involving highly complicating factors such as trusts, company arrangements and convoluted pensions provision. Many of the cases handled by the barristers here are international in nature.

Client service: "The set is well managed by Simon Boutwood. They are always asking how they could do better, if they could be any more accommodating and accessible." "They are easy to use, the barristers and clerks are all very user-friendly, and they make sure of their availabilities."







An expert in private and public children law matters, Frances Judd QC handles cases relating to surrogacy and parental responsibility, sudden infant death and child sexual abuse. She is much admired for her knowledge of international and domestic relocation law, and is regularly briefed by guardians, parents and local authorities.


Strengths: "Frances remains our first-choice children silk. She addresses subjects with finesse and sensitivity, but is calm and reassuring with clients." "She sees the long-term, not the short-term, gain for a client and is a voice of wisdom and experience."




Focusing on public children law matters, Vater is particularly adept at handling sensitive cases containing complex medical evidence. He is skilled at representing local authorities and parents in cases concerning relocation and surrogacy, while also taking on private international adoption work.


Strengths: "He has wonderful in-depth knowledge of medical issues, he is exceptionally well prepared, and fights his client's corner." "He's a fearsome and superb advocate."




An extremely experienced silk who regularly handles public and private children law proceedings as well as financial remedy work. He is highly regarded for his participation in cases concerning non-accidental injury and infant fatalities, while also advising adopters and local authorities in international adoption cases.


Strengths: "He is cerebral and well organised, he's good on the science and medical evidence." "His attention to detail is second to none; nothing escapes him. He is a worthy silk, and client-friendly with it." 




Vine is a skilled advocate who is experienced in matrimonial finance and children cases, often with an international element. He has appeared with regularity in the High Court and Court of Appeal, and also regularly lectures and publishes on family law matters.


Strengths: "His skill lies in his intellectual approach to law." "He has an excellent manner with clients."




Senior junior who is esteemed for her expertise in financial relief and particularly sought after for her knowledge of cases involving pensions. A published expert on this subject, she wins praise for her ability to get to grips with the complexities of difficult financial arrangements.


Strengths: "Remarkably effective, she gets results." "Her strength lies in her analytical skills and expertise in pensions, which is second to none."



Specialising in high net worth matrimonial finance, Jonathan Sampson is particularly adept at handling finance cases involving significant trust and business assets, as well as those with international aspects. He also takes on public care cases relating to  children and vulnerable adults


Strengths: "He really thinks about cases and is superb in court." "Very polished but devastating in cross-examination."