Professional practice

David has a broad commercial practice in line with Chambers’ profile. He has a particular interest in commercial litigation and arbitration, employment, public international law (including investor-state arbitration), shipping and the conflict of laws.

David graduated with a First Class degree in Law from the University of Exeter. He later read for the BCL at the University of Oxford, obtaining a Distinction.

Prior to joining Essex Court Chambers, David trained and qualified as a solicitor with Allen & Overy LLP. He was part of the firm’s International Arbitration team, during which time he was exposed to a wide range of commercial and investor-state arbitrations, with a particular focus on energy, natural resources and infrastructure disputes.

 

Arbitration & related court applications
  • Assisted Jeremy Brier in a jurisdictional challenge to an arbitral award under Section 67 of the Arbitration Act 1996 (Sonact Group Ltd v Premuda SpA [2018] EWHC 3820 (Comm)). The challenge concerned whether an arbitral tribunal had jurisdiction to determine a dispute arising from a settlement agreement, which did not have an arbitration clause, by virtue of the arbitration clause contained in the charterparty from which the settled dispute originated.
  • Assisted a Member of Chambers on an application for an urgent freezing order under Section 44 of the Arbitration Act 1996 in circumstances where an arbitral tribunal was unable to act effectively.
  • Assisted a Member of Chambers in an ICC arbitration concerning a dispute arising out of an agreement for the supply of specialist telecoms equipment to a state entity.
  • Assisted a Member of Chambers in an application to discharge an anti-suit injunction granted ex parte restraining the pursuit of foreign arbitration proceedings.
  • Assisted a Member of Chambers in an LMAA arbitration concerning a claims and counterclaims arising out of an agreement for the sale and purchase of a luxury motor yacht, which included making an application for security for costs. The case largely turned on the application of force majeure principles.
  • Assisted two Members of Chambers in resisting an application for a final anti-suit injunction and continuation of an extant interim anti-suit injunction restraining pursuit of foreign court proceedings in favour of a London-seated arbitration. The application raised jurisdictional issues concerning application of the Rome I Regulation.
  • Assisted two Members of Chambers in an LCIA arbitration concerning the enforcement of post-termination restrictive covenants in an employment contract, which included making an urgent application to court for an interim injunction.

Prior to joining Essex Court Chambers, David spent 18 months as an Associate in the International Arbitration team at Allen & Overy LLP. During this time, he gained experience in a number of international commercial arbitrations, particularly in the construction, infrastructure, and energy and natural resources sectors.

Banking & financial services

Assisted a Member of Chambers in a dispute between an investor and an investment manager operating an algorithmic trading strategy concerning allegations of misrepresentation and breach of contract.

Commercial dispute resolution
  • Assisted two Members of Chambers in a dispute concerning the transfer of operatorship of a number of oil and gas fields in the United Kingdom Continental Shelf, which included making an application for an expedited trial.
  • Assisted a Member of Chambers in a dispute concerning the enforcement of a guarantee given in respect of the construction of a ship-repair yard. The case raised a number of complex issues surrounding the law of guarantees, the doctrine of marshalling and the rule against reflective loss.
Conflict of laws & private international law
  • Assisted two Members of Chambers in resisting an application for a final anti-suit injunction and continuation of an extant interim anti-suit injunction restraining pursuit of foreign court proceedings in favour of a London-seated arbitration. The application raised difficult jurisdictional issues concerning application of the Rome I Regulation.
  • Assisted two Members of Chambers in a dispute arising out of an allegedly fraudulent withholding tax scheme. The case raised a complex conflict of laws issue regarding the application of the revenue rule.
Employment
  • Assisted two Members of Chambers in an LCIA arbitration concerning the enforcement of post-termination restrictive covenants in an employment contract, which included making an urgent application to court for an interim injunction.
  • Assisted a Member of Chambers on an application for urgent interim injunctive relief against a number of defendants to enforce obligations of non-competition, confidentiality and post-termination restrictions and for ancillary relief for delivery up.
Energy & natural resources

Assisted two Members of Chambers in a dispute concerning the transfer of operatorship of a number of oil and gas fields in the United Kingdom Continental Shelf, which included making an application for an expedited trial.

Prior to joining Essex Court Chambers, David spent 18 months as an Associate in the International Arbitration team at Allen & Overy LLP. During this time, he gained experience in a number of international commercial arbitrations, particularly in the construction, infrastructure, and energy and natural resources sectors. In particular:

  • Acted for an energy company in a dispute with a contractor over the construction of a significant trans-continental gas infrastructure project.
  • Advised an energy company in a dispute with a contractor over the construction of an ‘Energy from Waste’ plant.
  • Acted for an energy company in a dispute over the supply of fuel for a nuclear power plant.
Injunctions
  • Assisted a Member of Chambers in an application to discharge an anti-suit injunction granted ex parte restraining the pursuit of foreign arbitration proceedings.
  • Assisted two Members of Chambers in resisting an application for a final anti-suit injunction and continuation of an extant interim anti-suit injunction restraining pursuit of foreign court proceedings in favour of a London-seated arbitration. The application raised jurisdictional issues concerning application of the Rome I Regulation.
  • Assisted two Members of Chambers in an LCIA arbitration concerning the enforcement of post-termination restrictive covenants in an employment contract, which included making an urgent application to court for an interim injunction.
  • Assisted a Member of Chambers on an application for urgent interim injunctive relief against a number of defendants to enforce obligations of non-competition, confidentiality and post-termination restrictions and for ancillary relief for delivery up.
Insurance & reinsurance

Assisting a Member of Chambers in a dispute arising out of a refusal to pay a claim made under a hull and machinery policy following the sinking of a vessel. The case concerned allegations of scuttling.

Media, Art, Entertainment & Sport

Assisted a Member of Chambers in drafting an application for delivery up of film footage. The application was time-sensitive as the footage was required to complete a television documentary due to be broadcast nationally.

Assisted a Member of Chambers in a judicial review challenging a decision to refuse an application for a retrospective import permit required in order to re-export an artwork incorporating material controlled under the CITES regime.

Public international law

Assisted a Member of Chambers in a dispute involving issues of state immunity.

Whilst reading for the BCL at the University of Oxford, David worked as a research assistant for the legal team representing The African Union in the ICJ Advisory Proceedings concerning the Legal Consequences of the Separation of the Chagos Archipelago from Mauritius in 1965.

Prior to joining Essex Court Chambers, David spent 18 months as an Associate in the International Arbitration team at Allen & Overy LLP. During this time, he gained experience in a number of investor-state arbitrations and other public international law disputes, in particular:

  • Acting for an investment fund in an Energy Charter Treaty claim arising out of renewable energy subsidies.
  • Acting for a state in an ICSID arbitration arising out of the construction of LPG terminal.
  • Acting for a state in World Trade Organisation proceedings relating to mandatory product packaging requirements.
Shipping & admiralty

Assisting a Member of Chambers in a dispute arising out of a refusal to pay a claim made under a hull and machinery policy following the sinking of a vessel. The case concerned allegations of scuttling.

Career

2019: Tenant at Essex Court Chambers

2018-19: Pupillage at Essex Court Chambers

2016-2017: Associate (International Arbitration) at Allen & Overy LLP

2014-2016: Trainee Solicitor at Allen & Overy LLP

Education

2017-2018: BCL (Oxon), Christ Church, University of Oxford (Distinction)

2010-2013: LLB (Hons), University of Exeter (First Class)

Awards

2013: University of Exeter School of Law Prize; Dean’s Commendation