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MEET:

Tom Gillie

"He is a remarkable barrister with fantastic client care skills."

"He is a really great advocate…He is very quick to grasp complex points, he is a very persuasive advocate, clients really like him and he is not easily fazed."

"An expert on the law while also being extremely good at dealing with clients."

Chambers and Partners 2024
Called: 2013

Tom specialises in discrimination and human rights law, employment law and the law of politics and elections. He is an expert in equality, education, local government and charity law, as well as contract law, industrial disputes and disciplinary investigations. Tom is ranked highly in Chambers and Partners and the Legal 500 in employment and election law. He is a member of the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s panel of preferred counsel and frequently acts in complex and high value cases; he accepts instructions at all levels, including in the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court, and has an appellate and trial practice.

Tom is the author of the legal text on the law of political parties, their members and organised political campaigning (Organised Politics, Law and Practice, due to be published by Hart in 2024) and has acted in many of the highest profile matters in that area, from the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s investigation into the Labour Party, the expulsion of Jeremy Corbyn MP from the Parliamentary Labour Party, to Islamophobia in the Conservative Party, new rules about Voter ID and the candidacy of members of various political parties. Tom regularly advises NGOs on lawful political campaigning.

Tom has extensive experience across a broad range of equality, discrimination and human rights law matters. He is instructed by high profile organisations in discrimination law cases of public importance and has appears un-led in the Hight Court and the Employment Appeal Tribunal. Tom is currently acting as counsel to the Labour Party in relation to internal complaints of antisemitism, and the EHRC’s investigation under section 20 Equality Act 2006. He has also advised the Muslim Council of Britain on the widely publicised All Party Parliamentary Group’s Definition of Islamophobia, advised on islamophobia in the Conservative Party and has advised on matter of discrimination law in the selection and election of the General Secretary of one of the UK’s largest trade unions. Tom acts in multi-day and multi-week discrimination cases on behalf of claimants and respondents and has particular expertise in cases concerning race, disability and sexual orientation discrimination and discrimination on the basis of religion or philosophical belief. Tom also acts in domestic slavery and human trafficking cases and in claims for Judicial Review and applications for emergency injunctive relief.

Tom is a member of the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s panel of junior counsel and has advised the Government Equalities Office on the Equality Act 2010.

Tom’s other recent instructions include acting in a High Court claim on behalf of a victim of domestic slavery and human trafficking; and advising clients on claims for Judicial Review and applications for emergency injunctive relief. He also advises corporations on their duties under the Modern Slavery Act, and has advised the Government Equalities Office about guidance on non-discriminatory dress-codes and the Equality Act 2010 for employers.

Tom is a member of the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s panel of junior counsel.

Tom is an expert in employment and industrial law, regularly appearing before the employment tribunals and appellate courts in complex and high value employment disputes. His clients value his strategic acumen and his attention to detail. He acts for a range of clients, from trade unions and their members, vulnerable individuals, members of the armed forces and emergency service staff, to major corporations, blue chip companies and leading charities. His cases include:

  • Preston v E.ON Energy Solutions Ltd [2022] EAT 192
  • Gillett v Bridge 86 Limited (2017) – Employment Appeal Tribunal – sole counsel in an appeal about employment law practice and procedure;
  • Browne v Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis (2018) – Employment Appeal Tribunal – sole counsel in an appeal concerning reasonable adjustments and the necessity of medical evidence in disability discrimination cases;
  • DHL Supply Chain Ltd v Fazackerley (2018) – Employment Appeal Tribunal – sole counsel in an appeal about the time limits to bring claims under the Employment Rights Act 1996;
  • Enforcing successfully restraint of trade provisions;
  • Successfully defending a large utilities company in a complex sex discrimination case;
  • Obtaining favourable settlements for CEOs and senior managers in large national charities and the banking sector;
  • Advising a primary school involved in the Birmingham ‘Trojan Horse’ cases on data protection rights and open justice;
  • Advising one of the world’s best-known luxury department stores on transgender rights and sex discrimination in a goods and services context.

Tom is an expert in parliamentary and local government law and the law of political parties. Tom’s practice encompasses private political law and public electoral law proceedings. Recent instructions include acting in a challenge to the election of a Police and Crime Commissioner, defending the selection of a candidate for the 2019 Mayor of Liverpool elections in a claim brought by the Lord Mayor of Liverpool, acting in the High court successfully defending claims brought by Christopher Williamson MP, Jeremy Corbyn MP and a multi-party challenge to the Labour Party’s disciplinary procedures relating to discrimination. He has also recently advised on the conduct of Members of Parliament and intended complaints to the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority and the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards.

Tom has particular interest in discrimination claims in housing cases. He has extensive knowledge of the housing sector having previously worked both for a large housing association and in a law centre’s homelessness team. In addition to representing housing providers and their employees in employment law disputes, Tom also acts for tenants in discrimination cases against landlords in the county court. Tom has been extensively involved in housing policy matters; he has addressed a policy panel in Parliament on tenants’ rights and housing in the UK; and has worked with policy partners including the IPPR, the Equality and Human Rights Commission, the National Housing Federation and trades unions. He was the Chair of Home: The Tenants Foundation and The Tenants Foundation Policy Network.

Tom has a busy, predominantly Claimant focussed, practise in education law. He has recently acted in successful challenges to school exclusions and advises regularly in cases involving disability discrimination and reasonable adjustments for school pupils and university students.

Neslen and others v Evans [2021] EWHC 1909 (QB)

Corbyn v Evans [2021] EWHC 130 (QB)

Rothery v Evans [2021] EWHC 577 (QB)

Gillett v Bridge 86 Limited [2017] UKEAT/0051/17/DM

Browne v Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis (2018) UKEAT/0278/17/LA

DHL Supply Chain Ltd v Fazackerley (2018) UKEAT/0019/18/JOJ

  • Industrial Law Society
  • ELA
  • PIBA
  • Franco-British Lawyers Society
  • HOME: The Tenants Foundation (Chair)
  • Bar Human Rights Committee
  • Inner Temple Major Exhibition Award
  • Churchill College Cambridge Scholarship Award
  • Bar On Straight Civil Partnerships is Lawful
  • Settling Injury to Feelings: A Taxing Time
  • Race Discrimination and Housing in Post Brexit Britain
  • Housing, Race and the Right to Rent post Brexit
  • Can Judicial Assessment help Claimants and Respondents in the Employment Tribunal?
  • Bakers lose ‘Gay Cake’ case
  • ‘2017: the year of the discount rate: a claimant’s perspective’ (co-author with Martyn McLeish), Journal of Personal Injury Law, (2017) No.2 Pages 109-117
  • A guide to using statistics in equality and employment litigation
  • BA First Class with mark of Special Excellence in Modern Languages, University of Cambridge
  • BPTC

Tom speaks fluent French and Italian

Tom is committed to protecting and respecting your privacy. In order to provide legal services to his clients, including advice and representation services, Tom 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 Tom’s privacy notice in full, please see here.

Tom is regulated by the Bar Standards Board and accepts instructions under Standard Contractual Terms. To find out more information on this and the way we work at Matrix, including our fee transparency statement, please see our see our service standards

DIRECTORY RECOMMENDATIONS

"Tom understands this niche area very well and has innate empathy with the political nature of the disputes. He is able to convey the political sensitivities and motivations in a very clear manner to those not familiar with political campaigns."

Legal 500, 2024, Election

"A junior who demonstrates commitment to his clients and work, friendliness and technical expertise."

Legal 500, 2024, Employment

"Tom is great to work with, going the extra mile to support through all stages of a claim. He has very good knowledge and is clearly familiar with the process and arguments to run. He is very strong and confident on his feet." "He is an expert on the law while also being extremely good at dealing with clients." "Tom is very good at working out the right strategy and then deploying it through his excellent advocacy and drafting skills."

Chambers & Partners, 2024, Employment

"He is a remarkable barrister with fantastic client care skills."

Chambers & Partners, 2024, Election

"He is very quick to grasp complex points and is a very persuasive advocate. Clients really like him and he is not easily fazed." "His work ethic is consistently high and he has the ability to respond nimbly and quickly. He is detail-oriented and he is very good at giving advice over the phone or in writing." "He is lovely on a personal level and he is a really great advocate. I am always impressed with how he presents his arguments: he is very thorough and he really emphasises the right points to drill down into."

Chambers & Partners, 2023, Employment

"Tom truly supports his instructing solicitors he makes himself available to provide considered advice. Tom is very measured and calm, and this comes across in his advocacy style."

Legal 500, 2023, Employment

"He is very quick to grasp complex points, he is a very persuasive advocate, clients really like him and he is not easily fazed." "His work ethic is consistently high and he has the ability to respond nimbly and quickly. He is detail-oriented and he is very good at giving advice over the phone or in writing." "He is lovely on a personal level and he is a really great advocate. I am always impressed with how he presents his arguments: he is very thorough and he really emphasises the right points to drill down into."

Chambers & Partners, 2022, Employment
Matrix Chambers
24 HOUR ASSISTANCE
+44 (0)20 7404 3447
Called: 2013

"He is a remarkable barrister with fantastic client care skills." "He is a really great advocate…He is very quick to grasp complex points, he is a very persuasive advocate, clients really like him and he is not easily fazed." "An expert on the law while also being extremely good at dealing with clients."

Chambers and Partners 2024

MAIN AREAS OF PRACTICE

  • Commercial Law
  • Discrimination and Equality
  • Education Law
  • Employment Law
  • Civil Liberties and Human Rights
  • Investigations
  • Public Law
  • Public Law: Information, Data and Privacy
  • Police, Inquests and Prison
  • Health and Social Care (including welfare benefits)
  • Commercial Public Law

Tom Gillie

Contact Tom: tomgillie@matrixlaw.co.uk | +44 (0)20 7404 3447

Contact Tom's Practice Team (Team M): TeamM@matrixlaw.co.uk


Tom specialises in discrimination and human rights law, employment law and the law of politics and elections. He is an expert in equality, education, local government and charity law, as well as contract law, industrial disputes and disciplinary investigations. Tom is ranked highly in Chambers and Partners and the Legal 500 in employment and election law. He is a member of the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s panel of preferred counsel and frequently acts in complex and high value cases; he accepts instructions at all levels, including in the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court, and has an appellate and trial practice.

Tom is the author of the legal text on the law of political parties, their members and organised political campaigning (Organised Politics, Law and Practice, due to be published by Hart in 2024) and has acted in many of the highest profile matters in that area, from the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s investigation into the Labour Party, the expulsion of Jeremy Corbyn MP from the Parliamentary Labour Party, to Islamophobia in the Conservative Party, new rules about Voter ID and the candidacy of members of various political parties. Tom regularly advises NGOs on lawful political campaigning.

Equality, Discrimination and Human Rights

Tom has extensive experience across a broad range of equality, discrimination and human rights law matters. He is instructed by high profile organisations in discrimination law cases of public importance and has appears un-led in the Hight Court and the Employment Appeal Tribunal. Tom is currently acting as counsel to the Labour Party in relation to internal complaints of antisemitism, and the EHRC’s investigation under section 20 Equality Act 2006. He has also advised the Muslim Council of Britain on the widely publicised All Party Parliamentary Group’s Definition of Islamophobia, advised on islamophobia in the Conservative Party and has advised on matter of discrimination law in the selection and election of the General Secretary of one of the UK’s largest trade unions. Tom acts in multi-day and multi-week discrimination cases on behalf of claimants and respondents and has particular expertise in cases concerning race, disability and sexual orientation discrimination and discrimination on the basis of religion or philosophical belief. Tom also acts in domestic slavery and human trafficking cases and in claims for Judicial Review and applications for emergency injunctive relief.

Tom is a member of the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s panel of junior counsel and has advised the Government Equalities Office on the Equality Act 2010.

Tom’s other recent instructions include acting in a High Court claim on behalf of a victim of domestic slavery and human trafficking; and advising clients on claims for Judicial Review and applications for emergency injunctive relief. He also advises corporations on their duties under the Modern Slavery Act, and has advised the Government Equalities Office about guidance on non-discriminatory dress-codes and the Equality Act 2010 for employers.

Tom is a member of the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s panel of junior counsel.

Employment and Industrial Relations

Tom is an expert in employment and industrial law, regularly appearing before the employment tribunals and appellate courts in complex and high value employment disputes. His clients value his strategic acumen and his attention to detail. He acts for a range of clients, from trade unions and their members, vulnerable individuals, members of the armed forces and emergency service staff, to major corporations, blue chip companies and leading charities. His cases include:

  • Preston v E.ON Energy Solutions Ltd [2022] EAT 192
  • Gillett v Bridge 86 Limited (2017) – Employment Appeal Tribunal – sole counsel in an appeal about employment law practice and procedure;
  • Browne v Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis (2018) – Employment Appeal Tribunal – sole counsel in an appeal concerning reasonable adjustments and the necessity of medical evidence in disability discrimination cases;
  • DHL Supply Chain Ltd v Fazackerley (2018) – Employment Appeal Tribunal – sole counsel in an appeal about the time limits to bring claims under the Employment Rights Act 1996;
  • Enforcing successfully restraint of trade provisions;
  • Successfully defending a large utilities company in a complex sex discrimination case;
  • Obtaining favourable settlements for CEOs and senior managers in large national charities and the banking sector;
  • Advising a primary school involved in the Birmingham ‘Trojan Horse’ cases on data protection rights and open justice;
  • Advising one of the world’s best-known luxury department stores on transgender rights and sex discrimination in a goods and services context.

Constitutional and Political Law

Tom is an expert in parliamentary and local government law and the law of political parties. Tom’s practice encompasses private political law and public electoral law proceedings. Recent instructions include acting in a challenge to the election of a Police and Crime Commissioner, defending the selection of a candidate for the 2019 Mayor of Liverpool elections in a claim brought by the Lord Mayor of Liverpool, acting in the High court successfully defending claims brought by Christopher Williamson MP, Jeremy Corbyn MP and a multi-party challenge to the Labour Party’s disciplinary procedures relating to discrimination. He has also recently advised on the conduct of Members of Parliament and intended complaints to the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority and the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards.

Housing

Tom has particular interest in discrimination claims in housing cases. He has extensive knowledge of the housing sector having previously worked both for a large housing association and in a law centre’s homelessness team. In addition to representing housing providers and their employees in employment law disputes, Tom also acts for tenants in discrimination cases against landlords in the county court. Tom has been extensively involved in housing policy matters; he has addressed a policy panel in Parliament on tenants’ rights and housing in the UK; and has worked with policy partners including the IPPR, the Equality and Human Rights Commission, the National Housing Federation and trades unions. He was the Chair of Home: The Tenants Foundation and The Tenants Foundation Policy Network.

Education

Tom has a busy, predominantly Claimant focussed, practise in education law. He has recently acted in successful challenges to school exclusions and advises regularly in cases involving disability discrimination and reasonable adjustments for school pupils and university students.

Highlight Cases

Neslen and others v Evans [2021] EWHC 1909 (QB)

Corbyn v Evans [2021] EWHC 130 (QB)

Rothery v Evans [2021] EWHC 577 (QB)

Gillett v Bridge 86 Limited [2017] UKEAT/0051/17/DM

Browne v Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis (2018) UKEAT/0278/17/LA

DHL Supply Chain Ltd v Fazackerley (2018) UKEAT/0019/18/JOJ

Appointments and memberships

  • Industrial Law Society
  • ELA
  • PIBA
  • Franco-British Lawyers Society
  • HOME: The Tenants Foundation (Chair)
  • Bar Human Rights Committee

Awards

  • Inner Temple Major Exhibition Award
  • Churchill College Cambridge Scholarship Award

Publications and training

  • Bar On Straight Civil Partnerships is Lawful
  • Settling Injury to Feelings: A Taxing Time
  • Race Discrimination and Housing in Post Brexit Britain
  • Housing, Race and the Right to Rent post Brexit
  • Can Judicial Assessment help Claimants and Respondents in the Employment Tribunal?
  • Bakers lose ‘Gay Cake’ case
  • ‘2017: the year of the discount rate: a claimant’s perspective’ (co-author with Martyn McLeish), Journal of Personal Injury Law, (2017) No.2 Pages 109-117
  • A guide to using statistics in equality and employment litigation

Qualifications

  • BA First Class with mark of Special Excellence in Modern Languages, University of Cambridge
  • BPTC

Tom speaks fluent French and Italian


Tom's Privacy Notice

Tom is committed to protecting and respecting your privacy. In order to provide legal services to his clients, including advice and representation services, Tom 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 Tom’s privacy notice in full, please see here.


DIRECTORY RECOMMENDATIONS

"Tom understands this niche area very well and has innate empathy with the political nature of the disputes. He is able to convey the political sensitivities and motivations in a very clear manner to those not familiar with political campaigns."

Legal 500, 2024, Election

"A junior who demonstrates commitment to his clients and work, friendliness and technical expertise."

Legal 500, 2024, Employment

"Tom is great to work with, going the extra mile to support through all stages of a claim. He has very good knowledge and is clearly familiar with the process and arguments to run. He is very strong and confident on his feet." "He is an expert on the law while also being extremely good at dealing with clients." "Tom is very good at working out the right strategy and then deploying it through his excellent advocacy and drafting skills."

Chambers & Partners, 2024, Employment

"He is a remarkable barrister with fantastic client care skills."

Chambers & Partners, 2024, Election

"He is very quick to grasp complex points and is a very persuasive advocate. Clients really like him and he is not easily fazed." "His work ethic is consistently high and he has the ability to respond nimbly and quickly. He is detail-oriented and he is very good at giving advice over the phone or in writing." "He is lovely on a personal level and he is a really great advocate. I am always impressed with how he presents his arguments: he is very thorough and he really emphasises the right points to drill down into."

Chambers & Partners, 2023, Employment

"Tom truly supports his instructing solicitors he makes himself available to provide considered advice. Tom is very measured and calm, and this comes across in his advocacy style."

Legal 500, 2023, Employment

"He is very quick to grasp complex points, he is a very persuasive advocate, clients really like him and he is not easily fazed." "His work ethic is consistently high and he has the ability to respond nimbly and quickly. He is detail-oriented and he is very good at giving advice over the phone or in writing." "He is lovely on a personal level and he is a really great advocate. I am always impressed with how he presents his arguments: he is very thorough and he really emphasises the right points to drill down into."

Chambers & Partners, 2022, Employment