Our people

700 professionals at Knights service 10,000 clients across the full spectrum of legal & professional services.

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Andrew Pilkington

Office Leader
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Andrew Pilkington

Office Leader

Andrew is a Partner in the Commercial team and the Office Leader in Derby and Leicester.

Andrew has advised on and concluded hundreds of commercial agreements at every stage of the supply chain.  He works with clients in sectors as diverse as engineering and energy, business and financial services, leisure, digital and fashion providing strategic support and specific contract advice.

Andrew advises on a wide range of trading arrangements, start-up documentation, outsourcing contracts, franchising, supply, agency or distribution agreements, and e-commerce.  Where contracts involve a formal tender process, he advises and provides training on bid strategies and general business risk management.

Andrew is also the office leader in Derby and Leicester where he is responsible for client management and growing and building the team. This includes recruiting, developing and promoting lawyers who share the positive and open culture, and providing ongoing training and coaching.

Recent examples of how Andrew has helped clients include:

• working with an established fashion entrepreneur on the launch of a new vintage-style fashion brand and its commercial agreements; creating a new resales agreement and system for a national franchise business;

• carrying out a fundamental review of the contracts and trading systems for Mortgage Advice Bureau plc; and

• providing day-to-day support for the in-house legal team at a major international engineering company, including the development of a dedicated contract support service.

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Gayle Curry

Partner
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Gayle Curry

Partner

Gayle is a Partner in the Commercial team.

She advises on trading terms, contractual joint ventures, outsourcing, agency and distribution arrangements, manufacturing agreements, facilities management contracts and marketing contracts for a wide range of businesses.

Gayle also advises on the ownership, protection and exploitation of intellectual property rights and IP strategy, including R & D collaborations, software contracts and complex rights licenses

With 25 years’ experience of acting for healthcare clients, including the Department of Health and NHS bodies and a past author of the NHS standard contract, Gayle is an expert on clinical service contracts and NHS standard terms.  She supports clients with management of those contracts and their contract disputes.  She also supports private companies and charities bidding for public sector contracts and often advises at the interface of health policy and the law.

Her current clients include Horder Health Care, Bourn Hall Fertility, Ramsay Healthcare, Simplyhealth, InHealth, Oxfordshire MIND, NHS Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group and Mazwell LLC.

Recent examples of how Gayle has helped clients include:

  • supporting the management team of a US clinical supplies company in their buyout of subsidiary businesses in the UK, Germany and Australia and in negotiating licences for use of know-how and intellectual property, drafting their intra-group trading arrangements and their international distributorship arrangements;
  • advising a consortium of healthcare businesses on the various options for creation of a joint venture, drafting the JV documents and supporting them with their successful collective bid for an NHS contract to provide integrated clinical services for patients with musculoskeletal conditions;
  • advising the NHS on the ownership and IP protection for an obstetric dressing invented by midwives and drafting the manufacturing contract;
  • guiding a pharmacist through the process of launching a patient app to access home call primary care services, including drafting bespoke terms and conditions between the pharmacist and the clinicians, and with the patients;
  • acting for a private hospital business in its acquisition of a new hospital business, advising the new owners on the legal risks associated with the business and the implementation of mitigation strategies;
  • resolving a series of disputes on behalf of an NHS Trust which had arisen out of a 7 year £227 million integrated clinical services contract.
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Karen Delamore

Partner
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Karen Delamore

Partner

Karen is a Partner in the Commercial team.

Karen prepares, negotiates and advises on a range of commercial contracts, including leasing and rental agreements, terms and conditions of trading, warranties, guarantees, security documents, framework agreements, letters of intent, asset and share purchase agreements and confidentiality agreements.  She also handles corporate transactions, including business acquisitions and disposals, restructuring (particularly among group companies), joint ventures, due diligence and financing agreements.

Karen acts for UK and international corporates, including multinationals.  Her expertise lies in advising businesses who lease commercial equipment, including trailers, tankers commercial vehicles, modular units, aircraft, shipping, rolling stock and agricultural equipment.  She also advises the customers and suppliers of leasing companies.

Karen was senior legal counsel for GE Equipment Services for 12 years and held the same post with the HNA Group for four years following their acquisition of TIP Trailer Services from GE Capital.

Recent examples of how Karen has helped clients include:

• acquiring multiple trailer, tanker and maintenance and repair businesses to help a client diversify their transportation fleet and increase the geographic reach of their UK network;

• negotiating customer contracts for the provision of company car services throughout Europe on behalf of the owner of a car fleet business;

• working on the corporate restructure of an enterprise with operations in several jurisdictions to streamline the business and make it more tax efficient; and

• acquiring part of a national transportation company under terms which locked the seller into a favourable five-year lease-back and maintenance arrangement.

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Becky Harper

Partner
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Becky Harper

Partner

Becky is a Partner in the Commercial team.

Becky advises on commercially and strategically important contracts, including general terms and conditions of trading, framework agreements, supply contracts, joint ventures and collaborations, facilities management arrangements, agency and distribution agreements, supply chain contracts, outsourcing arrangements and IT agreements.  She also undertakes contract reviews and audits, either as a standalone service or as part of the due diligence process in corporate transactions.  In addition, she provides in-house training for clients who wish to ensure the terms of their commercial contracts are fully implemented and followed.

Becky acts for private and public companies, from owner-managed start-ups to established multinationals.  She is experienced in a range of sectors, including leisure and entertainment. Her specialism lies in visitor attractions.

Recent examples of how Becky has helped clients include:

• advising a specialist fleet outsourcing company on its long-term supply arrangements with two major automobile manufacturers in contracts worth more than £18 million;

• acting for a Premier League football club in its sponsorship arrangements, including negotiating its technical kit deals;

• advising a world-renowned ceramics manufacturer on the outsourcing of its UK distribution operations to a specialist logistics company; and

• advising the owner of a chain of garden centres on the terms of a multi-site license agreement with Costa Coffee.

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Karen Harrison

Partner
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Karen Harrison

Partner

Karen is a Partner in the Commercial team.

Drawing on in-house experience with an international venture capitalist and a University IP team, Karen acts for IT vendors and purchasers in education, retail and e-commerce sectors.

Karen advises clients on all aspects of their commercial contracting arrangements and projects including supply, distribution, agency, licensing, manufacturing, R & D, collaboration, franchising, outsourcing, joint venture and bespoke contracts of all types.  She acts for vendors and purchasers of IT products and services including systems acquisition, outsourcing, ASP, software as a service (SaaS), cloud service provision, software development, licensing and support, VAR, e-commerce and web hosting agreements.

Karen drafts and negotiates IP-related contracts relating to materials transfer, clinical trials, licensing and marketing agreements.  She has extensive experience of advising clients on data protection compliance and data breaches.

Recent examples of how Karen has helped clients include:

• acquiring a critical enterprise resource planning system for a global aerospace company from a supplier in the US;

• achieving successful business outcomes for a retail space design consultancy; and

• ensuring a motor retailer did not pay fines, compensation or costs of fraud-checking, following a data breach resulting from the theft of a contractor's laptop.

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Hugh Tebay

Partner
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Hugh Tebay

Partner

Hugh is a Partner in the Commercial team.

Hugh advises on commercial contracts, including terms and conditions of business, distribution and supply, franchises, OEM agreements, concessions, service agreements, consultancy, operational management and software development agreements.

Hugh advises on the protection and worldwide exploitation of intellectual property rights, through licensing, franchising, merchandising, sponsorship or research and development collaborations.  He helps to create intellectual property strategies, carries out intellectual property audits and due diligence, negotiates IP service agreements, secures rights clearance and pursues cases of alleged rights infringement.

Hugh also advises on data protection, conducting audits and devising compliance programmes, creating data protection policies, assisting with subject access requests, dealing with data breaches or cyber-attacks and communications with the Information Commissioner.

Hugh’s sector experience includes retail, media, e-commerce, technology and franchising.  His current clients include Oxford Innovation, Whittard Trading, Specsavers Optical Stores, SMEG (UK) and Toni & Guy.

Recent examples of how Hugh has helped clients include:

  • supporting a medical diagnostics company in the rationalisation of their licensing and distribution regime entitling third parties to utilise the company’s intellectual property rights and knowhow in the manufacture and distribution of medical testing kits;
  • establishing a pilot programme for a company looking to franchise their business and drafting an operations manual and master franchise agreement;
  • defending the trade mark rights of a well-known brand owner by threatening infringement proceedings against businesses which had been associating themselves with the client’s brand when selling online;
  • guiding a European appliance manufacturer through the UK data protection rules following a ransomware attack and making representations to the Information Commissioner which resulted in no enforcement action being taken; and
  • creating a range of bespoke contractual documentation for a property management company, including profit share contracts, bidding agreements, consortium agreements and operational management agreements.
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Ian Thomson

Partner
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Ian Thomson

Partner

Ian is a Partner in the Commercial team.

Ian advises clients on commercial arrangements of all kinds, including agreements for the sale and purchase of goods and services covering both standard terms and conditions and bespoke contracts, manufacturing agreements, franchising agreements, agency and distribution agreements and outsourcing agreements. He also deals with information technology contracts including software licensing, the supply of software as a service, software support and maintenance and hardware and systems procurement, sponsorship and marketing agreements, and public procurement and funding arrangements.

Ian acts for financial services clients on consumer credit compliance and provides regulatory advice and support in the areas of data protection, advertising and sales, grocery codes of practice, financial services, competition law and gaming.

Ian advises and supports a wide variety of clients ranging from individual designers and entrepreneurs to national and multinational organisations.  Recent examples of how Ian has helped clients include:

  • advising ValueLicensing, a business specialising in the purchase and re-sale of pre-owned Microsoft products, drafting and advising on a range of contracts and navigating the relevant EU laws and authorities;
  • drafting standard service agreements and negotiating bespoke contracts in high value deals for a corporate provider of back office IT support to energy suppliers;
  • advising a member of the Freudenberg Group on a sub-contract, forming part of a high value project for the supply of materials in connection with the construction of a nuclear power station; and
  • advising a specialist provider of car insurance to young motorists on underwriting documentation produced by a major global insurer.
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Claire Tonks

Partner
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Claire Tonks

Partner

Claire is a Partner in the Commercial team.

Claire creates contracts to support a range of business activities in the private and public sector. She is particularly experienced in drafting terms and conditions of trading, outsourcing agreements, software licenses, contracts for consultancy services, IT agreements, procurement project documentation and agreements for funding.

Claire has extensive knowledge of regulatory and compliance issues, specifically around data protection.  She carries out regulatory and compliance audits and helps with the creation of bespoke policies and procedures.

Claire acts for private businesses, local authorities, public sector companies, financial organisations and educational establishments.  She has experience in a number of sectors, including the automotive industry, retail and logistics.

Having undertaken a long term secondment for Office Depot, Claire appreciates the need to create legal documents that are pragmatic from a commercial perspective.

Recent examples of how Claire has helped clients include:

• advising a further education college on the tendering process for the construction of a new college building to ensure fair selection of a preferred bidder;

• advising a building society on the outsourcing of their IT requirements to ensure contractual arrangements were in place to guarantee compliance with data protection regulations and which maintained confidentiality;

• supporting the introduction of an online booking system for the repair and servicing of cars at quality-assured garages, by creating multiple contracts with the software developer, garages within the scheme and an automotive parts provider; and

• assisting a school federation to make the contractual arrangements necessary to facilitate the pooling of resources and the sharing of skills across the 10 school members.

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Simon Weinberg

Partner
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Simon Weinberg

Partner

Simon is a Partner in the Commercial team.

Simon provides advice on commercial contracts, the exploitation and licensing of intellectual property rights, data protection requirements and legal issues around new technologies.

Simon’s primary focus is on supporting start-up businesses who require help in developing contracts with suppliers and customers, seeking out routes to market using conventional and online platforms, maximising the return on lucrative IP protected processes, procedures, designs and imagery and ensuring compliance with legal and regulatory requirements.

Simon also works closely with high-growth businesses who need commercial input to support their expansion plans, whether through the root and branch review of contractual arrangements to ensure they remain fit for purpose, the negotiation of new domestic or international contractual agreements, the grant of franchise rights or the appointment of agents and distributors.

Simon works for clients in a broad range of sectors from retail and healthcare to engineering and digital technologies. His clients include Eagle Eye, iVendi, Mobysoft, Godel Technologies and Recipharm.

Simon is particularly experienced in supporting tech companies focused on developing software and cloud-based products such as Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Software as Service (SaaS) programmes.

Recent examples of how Simon has helped clients include:

  • concluding deals on behalf of vehicle finance platform iVendi to provide users with direct access to motor finance deals offered by major lenders;
  • negotiating deals for digital loyalty platform Eagle Eye to work with various high street retailers; and
  • guiding social housing software specialists Mobysoft on day-to-day legal requirements, including revamping contractual documentation and advising on the changes needed to their policies, procedures, privacy notices and contractual documentation to ensure compliance with UK and EU data protection laws.
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Katherine Douse

Senior Associate
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Katherine Douse

Senior Associate

Katherine is a Senior Associate in the Commercial team.

Katherine advises on business-to-business and business-to-consumer contracts, website and e-commerce contracts including distance selling, cookies and acceptable use requirements.  She also prepares software contracts, terms and conditions of trading, framework agreements and service agreements.  She advises on data protection and provides onsite audits of clients' processes and procedures to ensure compliance.

Katherine acts for start-ups and more established businesses, including sole traders, partnerships, limited companies and in-house legal teams within PLCs.  She has experience across a range of sectors, including travel, technology and engineering.

Recent examples of how Katherine has helped clients include:

• providing day-to-day support for the in-house legal team at a major international engineering company;

• drafting a software as a service agreement for a client keen to manage the input of personal data by customers and to have a clear data protection compliant policy in place where they did;

• advising a travel association on the terms of its contracts with members to ensure compliance with regulatory requirements and on the terms of licensing arrangements to maximise reputation and brand protection; and

• advising a manufacturer on the changes required to a distribution agreement to ensure it did not breach competition rules.

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Emma Ferguson

Senior Associate
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Emma Ferguson

Senior Associate

Emma is a Senior Associate in the Commercial team.

Emma regularly reviews contracts to identify and advise on key risks and reviews and revises standard terms and conditions to ensure they comply with the latest consumer protection legislation.  She also advises on and drafts a wide variety of commercial agreements.

Examples include outsourcing of facilities management, cleaning, catering, telecoms and IT support; IT agreements to cover software licensing, support and maintenance; website terms and conditions, privacy and cookie policies and advising on consumer rights in e-commerce.

Emma also advises companies on their import and export arrangements, whether supplying direct, or via an agency or distribution agreement.

Recent examples of how Emma has helped clients include:

• advising a manufacturing company on its supply and distribution arrangements throughout Europe and South Asia;

• preparing supply agreements for a US manufacturer supplying goods into Europe;

• drafting the website terms of use and cookie policy for an online portal in the financial services sector; and

• negotiating and drafting the terms of an outsourcing arrangement for a facilities management company supplying services to a hospital.

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Stephen Green

Senior Associate
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Stephen Green

Senior Associate

Stephen is a Senior Associate in the Commercial team.

Stephen advises on and negotiates commercial contracts, as well as drafting bespoke commercial arrangements. This extends to agreements for agency or distribution, confidentiality, consultancy, cooperation, event management, infrastructure, outsourced services, sponsorship, software or website development, equipment or venue-hire, intellectual property rights and licensing, software-as-a-service, trade mark licences and standard terms and conditions of trade, service and supply.

Stephen is experienced in contracts negotiated through a formal procurement process, including for the public sector, and has also concluded complex and high-value international and cross-border contracts.  Stephen is an experienced commercial contracts lawyer with in-house and secondment experience (including working with major international brands) and has good experience working with Russian and Swiss companies in particular.

Stephen’s clients span a wide range of sectors, from cosmetics and retail through to leisure and hospitality to education, energy, manufacturing and infrastructure.

Recent examples of how Stephen has helped clients include:

  • concluding numerous outsourcing contracts for the 2018 FIFA World Cup RussiaTM and FIFA Confederations Cup Russia™ 2017 covering catering, temporary infrastructure and equipment;
  • securing agreements with port authorities to facilitate the transportation of biomass to power stations as part of a circa £200 million renewable energy project;
  • advising a Swiss company on (i) risk management, (ii) domestic and international compliance particular in relation to data protection and the Bribery Act, and (iii) a number of international contracts with various Russian customers and suppliers; and
  • lead adviser to the T20 Caribbean Premier League (CPL), primarily involved drafting, advising on and negotiating various commercial agreements on behalf of CPL (including franchise agreements, sponsorship agreements, stadium agreements, advertising and competition arrangements, hotel agreements, player and coaching contracts, merchandising agreements and team managerial agreements).
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Claire Jacques

Senior Associate
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Claire Jacques

Senior Associate

Claire is a Senior Associate in the Commercial team.

Claire advises on commercial agreements, predominantly for technology supply companies and technology service users.  Having spent time both in private practice and several years as an in-house lawyer with the commercial and technology legal team at Barclays Bank PLC, Claire has extensive experience in IT procurement and tenders, framework agreements, software development contracts, technology licences, IT and business process outsourcing, managed service agreements, arrangements concerning cloud computing, data analytics and IT support.

Claire also advises on contracts for the sale of goods and supply of services, confidentiality agreements, marketing and sponsorship arrangements, website terms and conditions, e-commerce and e-marketing agreements, consultancy appointments, data protection and privacy issues.

Additionally, for small to medium-sized businesses Claire provides a data privacy audit service, checklists for assessing risks in commercial contracts, in-house training on how to avoid common contractual pitfalls and personalised support when negotiating new commercial arrangements.

Claire’s clients include global companies with UK headquarters, such as McDonald’s, Whittard, digital brand and marketing agency Hot Pickle, property development and investment business MEPC Limited, aviation mobile applications specialist Levarti Limited and owners of the Animal clothing and lifestyle brand H Young Limited.

Recent examples of how Claire has helped clients include:

  • negotiating and drafting an IT outsourcing agreement for a UK property development business which raised TUPE considerations as a result of the transfer of staff to the outsourced service provider;
  • supporting an aviation software development company in the grant of licences to several major airlines allowing them to use a new mobile seat booking application in return for a multi-million-pound licence fee;
  • guiding a large UK infrastructure provider through the procurement of a new data centre and the creation of a data centre services agreement with the chosen data centre operator; and
  • ensuring compliance with new UK data protection laws for an international retailer via a compliance audit, creating new policies and procedures, providing in-house training and analysis of guidance issued by the Information Commissioner’s Office.
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Owain John

Senior Associate
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Owain John

Senior Associate

Owain is a Senior Associate in the Commercial team.

Owain advises on the negotiation and renewal of commercial contracts with customers, consultants, suppliers and distributors, including confidentiality agreements, the supply and development of software apps, software as a service (SAAS), cloud computing and the legal issues around new technologies. His work also includes reviewing contractual obligations for public and private sector tenders.

Having worked inhouse for nearly three years in a data intelligence company, Owain is intimately familiar with GDPR and issues relating to database IP rights, data processing and licensing, data protection and privacy requirements. He also brings a commercial approach, combining project management skills and a drive towards continuous improvement.

Owain has worked for a number of banks, including a digital challenger bank, reviewing a range of commercial and software contracts to ensure compliance with financial services regulations and to mitigate risks.

Owain provides training on commercial contracts and has also delivered courses on equality and diversity.

Recent examples of how Owain has helped clients include:

  • drafting a suite of GDPR-compliant data contracts for multiple products and services on behalf of a global plc;
  • successfully renegotiated improved licensing arrangements with a companies key suppliers, including BT;
  • contribution towards improving legal processes, following a compliance and risk management audit which required the amendment to approximately 20,000 customer agreements; and
  • negotiated the terms for multi-million-pound agreements with blue chip clients and government agencies to meet a business’s ambitious financial targets.
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Amy Oakley

Senior Associate
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Amy Oakley

Senior Associate

Amy is a Senior Associate in the Corporate and Commercial teams.

Amy advises on corporate and commercial matters, with an emphasis on corporate transactions covering business acquisitions, disposals and mergers, share sales and buy-back arrangements.  She also advises on constitution and governance issues, partnership agreements and joint venture documentation.  Her commercial work focuses on terms and conditions of trading, service supply agreements, outsourcing and transitional services contracts.

Amy acts for domestic and international private companies, LLPs and partnerships, in sectors including fitness and leisure, healthcare, professional services and agribusiness.

Amy’s clients include the UK’s largest independent hatchery company P D Hook (Hatcheries) and the founders of the company operating as Virgin Experience Days.

Recent examples of how Amy has helped clients include:

  • supporting the founders and exiting shareholders of Acorne Limited, trading as ‘Virgin Experience Days’, on a multi-million pound share sale to Inflexion Private Equity;
  • facilitating the sale by LA Fitness of 25 gyms to SportsDirect under a series of business and asset disposals;
  • creating bespoke and customer-friendly terms and conditions of trading for an online goods hire platform; and
  • facilitating multiple business and asset acquisitions for a leading UK food producer and drafting and negotiating the ongoing supply chain contracts.
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Charles Gordon-Creed

Associate
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Charles Gordon-Creed

Associate

Charles is an Associate in the Commercial team.

He advises on a wide variety of documents and contracts for businesses. From terms and conditions, supply agreements and agency/distribution agreements to software licences, intellectual property licences and all other commercial contracts.