Our people

930 professionals at Knights service 12,000 clients across the full spectrum of legal & professional services.

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Richard Allan

Partner
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Richard Allan

Partner

Richard is a Partner in the Construction team.

With a degree in civil engineering and past experience as a consulting engineer in the industry, Richard provides risk management advice and dispute resolution for UK and international construction projects.

This includes dealing with claims arising out of the installation of defective or dangerous cladding or glazing; defects in works of construction, heavy engineering and power generation; and allegations of architect’s/engineer’s negligence.  He also routinely handles disputes relating to payment, delayed performance and project disruption.

Richard is experienced in the use of adjudication, mediation, arbitration and litigation before the Technology and Construction Court (TCC) and with a wide variety of standard construction and engineering contract forms, including JCT, ICE, NEC, FIDIC, and LOGIC.

Richard’s clients include national and international contractors and sub-contractors, land and building owners, power companies and local authorities.  Most of his work is for businesses based in the UK, Europe, Russia, the Middle East, Africa and the USA.

Recent examples of how Richard has helped clients include:

  • advising and representing an engineering company contracted to build an electrified mass transit system in Saudi Arabia, in its claims for a significant fee increase and extension of time to complete its works;
  • settling a dispute through mediation for a European bridge equipment supplier, achieving a satisfactory outcome whilst avoiding the significant cost and uncertainty of protracted TCC proceedings;
  • acting for the owner of several high rise buildings following the installation of defective cladding and spontaneous glazing failures, by pursuing claims against product manufacturers, installers and insurance companies and via the government’s removal and replacement of unsafe cladding scheme;
  • acting for a local authority in serial adjudications relating to issues of payment and a multitude of defects in a high profile new school building; and
  • successfully acting for a main contractor in multiple adjudications concerning defects, valuations and payment obligations under a contract for the construction of a landmark building in Manchester.
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Joe Bellhouse

Partner
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Joe Bellhouse

Partner

Joe is a Partner in the Construction team.

Joe advises on the procurement and structuring of  construction and engineering projects.  He negotiates and drafts agreements to cover all aspects including development, construction and engineering works, professional appointments, project security, supply arrangements, operation and maintenance, utility supply.

Joe works regularly with JCT building contracts in connection with commercial property projects and other standard form agreements, including NEC, FIDIC and MF/1 contracts for the supply and installation of electrical and mechanical plant and civil engineering projects.

With a background in dispute resolution, Joe is able to steer clients around potential problems and suggest strategies for early management of contract problems and disputes before they throw a project off-track.  He can also provide support in connection with formal proceedings including adjudication and arbitration .

Joe’s focus is on (i) commercial property projects including offices, hotels, sports stadia, business parks, distribution facilities and warehouses, data centres and mixed-use developments, and (ii) engineering projects including civil works, infrastructure and process plants in renewable energy generation projects involving solar and hydropower.

Joe works for a range of clients, including McDonald’s Restaurants, Arcadia Group, Body Shop International, SMEG (UK) Ltd, Frasers Property UK, MEPC, Topland, 3M, London & Argyll Group Nuffield College Oxford and Christ Church College Oxford.

Recent examples of how Joe has helped clients include:

  • drafting and negotiating the main works contract for a real estate investment company in the development of a 15 megawatt solar park near Aylesbury;
  • advising on procurement and drafting and negotiating a number of works and maintenance contracts and professional appointments for building works and the installation of an advanced garment handling plant for a fashion retailer at a large warehousing facility in the Midlands;
  • drafting and negotiating professional appointments and design & build works contracts and security documents in relation to a complex major refurbishment of Cheltenham House in Cheltenham with multiple existing and new tenants.;
  • drafting and negotiating professional appointments and design & build works contracts and security documents on a large number of commercial developments on Milton Park Oxfordshire for MEPC including a development to be occupied by cancer immunotherapy specialists, Immunocore; and
  • negotiating utility infrastructure agreements with  independent distribution network operators in respect of gas and electricity upgrades and supply to land at Silverstone Park Northamptonshire and also electricity upgrade and supply at Milton Park Oxfordshire, in each case for MEPC.
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Henry Bowman

Partner
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Henry Bowman

Partner

Henry is a Partner in the Construction team.

Henry drafts and negotiates bespoke and standard form building and engineering contracts (including JCT, NEC and MF/1), provides advice on the construction aspects of property finance and security arrangements and creates project-specific contracts to deal with procurement, professional appointments and supply chain management.

Henry also negotiates and drafts collateral warranties, advises on third party rights, Party Wall Act issues and other concerns over neighbouring land.

Henry acts for property owners, developers, funders, personal and corporate buyers and personal and corporate landlords and tenants. His clients are based throughout the UK and Europe and he has a particularly strong following in the East Midlands, London and the North.

Recent examples of how Henry has helped clients include:

  • drafting and negotiating the construction documents for the redevelopment of a private residence in London, worth in excess of £100 million, on behalf of an overseas client;
  • drafting and negotiating the construction documents for a £75 million mixed-use development, which required the inclusion of decanting and re-occupation provisions to cater for a national retailer who would be in situ for the duration of the project;
  • drafting and negotiating the construction documents for a £35 million office and retail development and for the subsequent letting of the completed development;
  • advising a property owner on Party Wall Act issues raised by an urban redevelopment project and negotiating a special foundation agreement, a support agreement and a scaffold and crane-over-sailing agreement to address neighbour concerns and to enable the development to proceed;
  • advising a development lender on the construction documentation for the funding of a £300 million office block development in central London; and
  • advising a national retailer on third-party rights available to it under construction documents for a refurbishment project relating to premises it had agreed to occupy.
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RIchard Brackenbury

Partner
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RIchard Brackenbury

Partner

Richard is a Partner in the Construction team.

Richard advises on contentious and non-contentious matters throughout the construction process life cycle, acting for all parties; lenders, developers, contractors and professionals.

Richard’s experience encompasses disputes arising between contractors and subcontractors, contractors and employers related to breach of contract claims, problems with payments, application for variations of payment, applications for extensions of time, and defects.

Richard acts for specialist subcontractors. Besides advising on disputes he provides strategic advice on contracts, bespoke and standard JCT and NEC forms; compliance with contractual obligations; and how contracts work in relation to payment issues.

Richard provides guidance on all forms of dispute resolution, adjudication and arbitration, appeals and enforcement proceedings, as well as commercial litigation and defendant insurance.

Recent examples of how Richard has helped clients include:

  • successfully enabling a developer to realise their investment on a commercial site by obtaining a significant award against asbestos remediation contractors for breach of contract and non-performance;
  • resolving the issue of applicable jurisdiction for an offshore specialist subcontractor prior to launching major dispute proceedings against a major UK contractor in relation to a contract in Scandinavia;
  • recovering the sum of several hundred thousand pounds in adjudication for a fit-out contractor by establishing within a short time frame grounds for defending and counter-claiming against a subcontractor’s claim for alleged delays; and
  • acting for a bank on a £17m lending facility allowing a major commercial project to proceed by ensuring all the construction project documentation gave the bank appropriate security.
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Deborah Ritchie

Partner
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Deborah Ritchie

Partner

Deborah is a Partner in the Construction team.

Deborah advises property developers and occupiers, investors, construction contractors and professionals in negotiating and drafting development agreements, standard and bespoke building contracts (JCT, NEC3, MF/1, IMechE, GC/Works), professional appointments, collateral warranties and construction finance documents.

Deborah also advises on the resolution of disputes over construction projects, by mediation and adjudication or litigation.  She is an experienced advocate before the Technology and Construction Court and Arbitrators.

Deborah has been involved in projects as diverse as residential housing, primary health care, and green energies.

Recent examples of how Deborah has helped clients include:

  • ensuring that a construction company in dispute over defective work did not have to pay for testing costs, limiting their resources and funding their opponents case, by obtaining an injunction to prevent adjudication proceedings on the testing costs -Twintec Ltd v Volkerfitzpatrick Limited [2014] EWHC 10 (TCC);
  • settling a dispute for a contractor with a university over construction delays and disruption; and
  • ensuring a Derbyshire house builder could proceed confidently with a large development by creating a suite of agreements covering construction management, collaboration and infrastructure, consultant appointments and collateral warranties.
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Mike Waring

Partner
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Mike Waring

Partner

Mike is a Partner in the Construction team.

In addition to advising on a wide range of transactional issues in construction, Mike specialises in cost-effective strategies for managing, negotiating and settling construction disputes, with experience across all aspects of dispute resolution, including negotiating settlements, pursuing and defending adjudications and arbitrations on behalf of clients, or through proceedings in the Technology and Construction Court.  Mike's background as an engineer gives him an acute understanding of the pressures and challenges experienced throughout the supply chain.

Mike advises employers, developers and other professionals, but he has particular experience of acting for contractors and sub-contractors involved in complex heavy infrastructure, power generation, rail and renewable energy projects.  Clients include ISG, Npower, Enterprise Managed Services, Amey and Alstom.

Recent examples of how Mike has helped clients include:

  • achieving a successful outcome for a national infrastructure contractor in a high-value dispute concerning civil engineering services provided by a subcontractor, in the process avoiding substantial liabilities by providing strategic and practical advice on technical aspects of the NEC3 contract;
  • securing the revenue stream of a start-up energy company selling waste-to-energy power by negotiating and amending an EPC contract based on the IChemE red book form of contract and other ancillary documents; and
  • defeating claims of up to £30 million against a major energy supplier, preventing further claims and exposure regarding a high value power station environmental upgrade by strategically employing court proceedings based on the correct interpretation of an EPC contract.

Recent reported cases include:

  • Dawnus Construction Holdings v Amey LG Ltd [2017] EWHC B13 (TCC)
  • ISG Retail Ltd v Castletech Construction Ltd [2015] EWHC 1443 (TCC)
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Sarah Wilson

Partner
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Sarah Wilson

Partner

Sarah Wilson is a Partner in the Construction team.

Sarah acts for contractors, subcontractors and consultants in contentious and non-contentious matters related to high value engineering and construction projects that include chemical and energy works, waste and utilities works, as well as residential developments.

Her particular speciality is the NEC form of contract, with extensive experience of JCT, FIDIC, IChemE contracts, as well as bespoke construction contracts.

Sarah provides strategic advice throughout the life of a project to ensure compliance with contractual obligations, undertaking claims for variations involving time and money, and defects claims related to activities such as piling, roofing, concrete work, welding, glazing, cladding and air conditioning.

Sarah acts on behalf of clients in court proceedings, adjudication and domestic and international arbitration (appeals and enforcement proceedings),and mediation.

Recent examples of how Sarah has helped clients include:

  • enabling a contractor to construct an animal care facility in Holland by negotiating and adapting the complex, bespoke contract proposed by the developer from a mix of US and Dutch contracts;
  • successfully obtaining a £1 million award for a contractor based on NEC3 provisions by establishing that a project manager was deemed to have accepted the contractor’s quote for a compensation event; and
  • successfully settling a substantial dispute with a contractor denying liability for failures in piling and disputed quantum by mediation following proceedings in the TCC, and resolving additional problems with the contractor’s insurers over professional indemnity policy and diminution in value.
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Steve Webb

Senior Associate
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Steve Webb

Senior Associate

Steve is a Senior Associate in the Construction team.

Steve acts for employers, contractors, developers and professional consultants in non-contentious and contentious construction matters.

Steve advises on, reviews, drafts and negotiates construction contracts and ancillary documents. He assists with the construction element of due diligence in transactions that involve other practice areas, such as property purchases, and he advises clients from a construction perspective, on agreements for lease and development agreements.

Steve reviews building contracts as part of Knights’ contract review service, and advises clients on potential construction-related claims and different forms of dispute resolution.

Steve also advises professional consultants on the proposed terms of their appointment.

Recent examples of how Steve has helped clients include:

  • ensuring the appointment of over 10 consultants on a complex high-value project , drafting and negotiating their appointments and the building contract, while simultaneously finalising an agreement for lease for the building’s high-profile tenant on completion of construction;
  • identifying key risks in contracts for a number of leading brand contractors to tight deadlines, and amending standard forms to reflect bespoke contract issues; and
  • advising of design risk responsibility for a fit-out contractor when negotiating the building contract for a phased room-by-room refurbishment of a well-known Mayfair hotel.
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Bethan Brewer

Solicitor
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Bethan Brewer

Solicitor

Bethan is a Solicitor in the Construction team. 

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Maria Fert

Solicitor
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Maria Fert

Solicitor

Maria is a Solicitor in the Construction team.

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Katie Kent-Jones

Solicitor
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Katie Kent-Jones

Solicitor

Katie is a Solicitor in the Construction team.

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Waqas Tariq

Solicitor
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Waqas Tariq

Solicitor

Waqas is a Solicitor in the Construction team.