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Christopher’s practice focuses on competition law, EU law, commercial law and public law.

Before coming to Matrix in 2009, Christopher served as a Referendaire (Legal Secretary) to the UK Competition Appeal Tribunal (CAT), where he assisted the Tribunal panels in the management and resolution of cases. Whilst at the CAT, he gained in-depth experience into the competition law enforcement regime in the UK and handled numerous appeals. He then became the sole competition practitioner at the law firm Farrer & Co LLP, where he advised clients across the firm.

Christopher was shortlisted for Competition Junior of the Year by The 2016 Chambers UK Bar Awards.

Christopher was called to the Bar of Ireland on 4 October 2018.

Competition Law and Regulation

Recent and ongoing competition law and regulatory matters on which Christopher has acted include:

  • acting for a group of major retailers who sought damages from MasterCard and Visa in respect of multilateral interchange fees, the trials of which took place between June 2016 and March 2017; the retailers’ successful appeal took place in April 2018, with judgment in July 2018;
  • representing various claimants in litigation relating to the Trucks cartel;
  • acting for Lloyds Banking Group in defence of proceedings brought by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation alleging breaches of competition law in respect of the setting of USD LIBOR;
  • acting for the European Commission in defence of its Airfreight cartel decision;
  • acting for the CMA in relation to the appeal brought by EDF and SSE against Ofgem’s decision to reject a code modification on charges to generators for the electricity transmission system in 2015/16;
  • representing a multiple retailer in defence of a restrictive covenant alleged by a property developer to be anti-competitive;
  • advising the Office of Rail and Road on various matters, including their concluded investigation into suspected abuse of dominance by Freightliner;
  • representing (with Rhodri Thompson QC) the Cooperative Group in its successful appeal to the CAT against the OFT’s Tobacco products infringement decision, and for Somerfield in its subsequent application (before the CAT and then the Court of Appeal) to extend time for appealing the same decision;
  • acting (again with Rhodri Thompson QC) for the applicant in Stagecoach v Competition Commission, in which – for the first time – the CAT found a decision of the CC to be Wednesbury unreasonable;
  • acting as legal adviser to the CMA panel inquiring into the Ashford St Peter’s/Royal Surrey County hospitals merger.

EU Law

In terms of EU law, Christopher appeared (with Aidan O’Neill QC) in the Supreme Court in McGeogh v Lord President of the Council (compatibility of restrictions on prisoner voting rights with EU law) and in Shindler and MacLennan v Duchy of Lancaster and Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs [2016] EWCA Civ 469 (challenge on EU free movement and citizenship grounds to the exclusion from the EU Referendum franchise of British nationals who have resided in other EU Member States for 15 years or more); (with Rhodri Thompson QC and Nicholas Gibson) in R (Sky Blue Sports & Leisure and Others) v Coventry City Council (State aid challenge to the decision of Coventry City Council to lend £14.4m to Arena Coventry Limited, operator of the “Ricoh Arena”); and (with Rhodri Thompson QC) in the Court of Appeal in R (Chandler) v Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (challenge on EU public procurement grounds to the procurement of Academies). Christopher has in addition advised on numerous free movement and procurement law issues.

Sports Law

Christopher’s sports law experience includes acting for sports governing bodies in relation to challenges made to selection decisions and advising bodies on regulatory issues. He also recently appeared before an FA Appeal Panel on behalf of an organiser of junior football leagues in its (successful) appeal against a decision of a regional FA removing its sanction of the leagues.

Teaching and Publications

Christopher is a Visiting Fellow at the Dickson Poon School of Law, King’s College London, where he co-convenes the LLM course in UK Competition Law. He writes and lectures frequently on all aspects of competition and general EU law and was joint UK rapporteur for the Biennial Congress of the Fédération Internationale de Droit Européen (FIDE) in November 2010, reporting on “The Judicial Application of the EU Competition Rules”.

Christopher is regulated by the Bar Standards Board and accepts instructions under Standard Contractual Terms, details of which can be found here.

Privacy Notice

Christopher is committed to protecting and respecting your privacy. In order to provide legal services to his clients, including advice and representation services, Christopher needs to collect and hold personal data. This includes his client’s personal data and the personal data of others who feature in the matter upon which he is instructed. To read Christopher’s privacy notice in full, please see here.

Articles and Downloads

DIRECTORY RECOMMENDATIONS
WHAT THEY SAY:

Christopher has consistently been recommended in the directories, with Chambers & Partners 2019 “delightful to work with – he takes complex arguments and distils them down. Nothing is too much trouble for him” and Legal 500 2018  “Extremely easy to work with – he is responsive, intelligent, astute and collaborative.” Who’s Who Legal 2018 describe Christopher as “an experienced and effective junior who is well known for his knowledge of competition law and his abilities in the courtroom.” Legal 500 2017 described him as “a fabulously focused senior junior, who gets the big picture and provides prolific output.” Legal 500 2016 describe Christopher as “tenacious, thorough and a good team player” and Chambers and Partners 2017 saying that “his competition law knowledge is phenomenal.” Chambers and Partners 2016 states that he “gets to grips with facts quickly and is very incisive” whilst their 2015 guide said that he is “exactly what you want in a junior. He has a really thorough understanding of competition law and is always on top of the detail”. Christopher is described as “easy to work with and integrates well into a team” (Chambers, 2014); he is “regularly singled out by sources for his ability to work extremely well and cohesively with those instructing him. Sources feel that his competition law expertise has been enhanced by the time he spent as a référendaire at the CAT and turn to him for complicated cases” (Chambers, 2013).