Call: 2021

James joined Chambers following the successful completion of his pupillage in April 2022. During his pupillage year, James gained experience in several Chambers’ key practice areas including, environmental, regulatory, and criminal work. He was supervised by Chris Badger, Simon Taylor KC (now HHJ Taylor KC), and Mark Watson KC.

The majority of James’ work is criminal: he has developed a busy practice prosecuting and defending in the Magistrates’; Crown and Youth Courts. In addition to appearing in various trials including robbery; domestic ABH; sexual assault; harassment and exposure, James instructed to oppose various ancillary orders such as Sexual Harm Prevention Orders and restraining orders.

James has developed particular experience dealing with defendants with mental health issues. He secured a hospital order for a client suffering from a psychotic disorder who had committed ten offences including sexual assault and indecent exposure over a two-year period. He has also successfully persuaded the Crown Court not to activate a suspended sentence on the grounds of the client’s mental health reducing his culpability in his commission of dangerous driving.

In addition to his criminal practice, James has acted in a number of regulatory cases, including for local authorities to prosecute unlicensed HMOs, and in food safety cases for both prosecuting authorities and defendant organisations, which has included sentencing exercises with fines in excess of £100,000. Further, James regularly appears in the First-tier Tribunal Health, Education and Social Care Chamber representing the CQC.

Before pupillage, James worked as a paralegal for eighteen-months at a regional law firm. He gained experience in environmental law as a researcher at Plan.B Earth and on the committee for the PIEL UK conference.

James has also worked on secondment at Peters & Peters Solicitors LLP in the business crime and investigations department.

Crime

James spent four months of pupillage with Simon Taylor KC and observed a wide variety of hearings, including trials for prison mutiny, rape, and grievous bodily harm.

James has, in his own right, undertaken trials in the Magistrates’ Court and the Youth Court and has appeared for both the prosecution and defence in other hearings including first appearances, case management hearings, committals for sentence and appeals against conviction and sentence.
James has also been instructed in the prosecution of Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 offences.

James is currently a Grade 2 Prosecutor and regularly accepts both prosecution and defence work.

Notable Cases

R v B
Represented a youth defendant charged with two offences of sexual assault against his 14-year-old female cousin. Between the alleged commission of the offence and the trial, B pleaded guilty to attempted rape and sexual assault committed against his mother. Following submissions, B was sentenced to a three-year conditional discharge in the Youth Court.

R v T
Acquittal of defendant following successful argument of self-defence of property to prevent damage to trolley containing worldly possessions by homeless man alleged to have committed racially aggravated assault.

R v C
Secured a 12-month custodial term suspended for 24 months for defendant who had used her employment in a hospital to take a patient’s credit and debit cards, which were used over several weeks to withdraw almost £20,000 to purchase cocaine.

R v M
M suffered a traumatic brain injury as a young man. James represented him at sentence for 25 offences committed over two years, including a third domestic burglary attracting a mandatory minimum term. M was sentenced to a custodial term of 3 years 2 months following submissions relating to his mental health.

Environment

James spent four months of pupillage with Chris Badger during which time he observed a variety of environmental matters including multiple sentencing hearings dealing with Very Large Organisations that had committed offences under the Environmental Protection Act 1990. During this time, he gained an insight into both prosecution and defence work.

James has prosecuted on behalf of local authorities with regard to waste transit and fly-tipping offences. He has also acted for complainants in a noise nuisance case.

He is also a regular contributor to Chambers’ Environmental Law Blog.

Regulatory

James spent four months of pupillage being supervised by Mark Watson KC and Stuart Jessop. During this time, James researched the new Building Safety Bill and gained exposure to food law, large-scale disclosure exercises, and observed various hearings in the Magistrates’ Court.

In his own right, James has been instructed in multiple cases involving alleged breaches of inter alia food safety law and driving standards law, and he has been instructed as a case presenter for the Nursing and Midwifery Council.

Awards

Gardiner Scholarship & Harmsworth Entrance Exhibition (2019) from The Honourable Society of the Middle Temple

Certificate of Honour from The Honourable Society of the Middle Temple

UKELA Dame Frances Patterson Moot (2019) Winner

UKELA Lord Slynn of Hadley Moot (2020) Winner

Memberships

Honourable Society of the Middle Temple

Criminal Bar Association

UKELA

Education

Bar Professional Training Course, BPP University (Outstanding)

Graduate Diploma in Law, BPP University (Commendation)

BA (Hons) History, University of Oxford (2:1)

Latest news

24th May 2023

Appeal against closure of care home dismissed due to potential exposure of residents to ongoing risk of serious harm

James Harrison represented the Care Quality Commission before the First Tier Tribunal (Care Standards Chamber) in a ten-day appeal against the cancellation of the registration of a provider under the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2014.

29th March 2023

Surviving Second Six – an event for young barristers

James Harrison will be on the panel at this event hosted by the Middle Temple Young Barristers' Association on 5th April. James and other...

14th November 2022

Anne Williams and James Harrison represent residents in appeal against plans for a traveller site in East Hampshire

Anne Williams and James Harrison represented a group of 350 residents in an appeal concerning plans by East Hampshire District Council local authority to go ahead with a proposed gypsy/traveller site in the local area.

6th April 2022

James Harrison joins Chambers following successful completion of pupillage

Chambers is pleased to welcome James Harrison who joins us following the successful completion of his pupillage.

26th January 2022

Walleys Quarry litigation – a commentary

The Walleys Quarry litigation provides insights into areas rarely considered by the Courts in the context of environmental permitting, and the availability of declaratory relief.

Blog

13th May 2024

Environmental Law News Update

In this latest Environmental Law News Update, James Harrison and Samuel Glanville consider restrictions on the powers of Local Authorities and Natural England. Court...

11th October 2022

Environmental Law News Update

In this latest Environmental Law News Update, William Upton KC, Noémi Byrd, Natasha Hausdorff and James Harrison consider how the Government’s Net Zero Review, its revised Net Zero Strategy and response to the CCC Progress Report will interact, increases in civil penalties faced by polluting water companies, and the tough line being taken by the Environment Agency against illegal fishing.

26th January 2022

Environmental Law News Update: Jan 26, 2022

In this latest Environmental Law News Update, Gordon Wignall, Brendon Moorhouse, Christopher Badger and James Harrison consider a successful appeal by the Environment Agency in the Walleys Quarry litigation, draft documents issued by the new Office of Environmental Protection and the launch of a new consultation into the implementation of the biodiversity net gain (BNG) provisions for planning purposes.

10th January 2022

Environmental Law News Update: Jan 10, 2022

In our first Environmental Law News Update of 2022, Christopher Badger, Mark Davies and James Harrison consider some environmental law predictions for the year ahead, climate compatibility checkpoint tests for oil and gas, and an agreement between the UK and Norway on fishing access and quotas.

24th November 2021

Environmental Law News Update

In this latest Environmental Law News Update, Christopher Badger, Nicholas Ostrowski and James Harrison consider progress made at COP26, a major investigation into sewage treatment works by Ofwat and the EA, and provide a short summary of the new Environment Act.

8th September 2021

Environmental Law News Update

In this latest Environmental Law News Update, Charles Morgan, James Harrison and Rukan Hazar consider a new regulatory statement on water and sewage effluent discharges, a legal challenge relating to the emission of noxious landfill site fumes and an announcement on the UK's new 'Heat Strategy'.

13th August 2021

Environmental Law News Update

In this latest Environmental Law News Update, William Upton QC, Charles Morgan and James Harrison consider practical applications of Coventry v Lawrence, new regulations concerning the spreading of organic manure on agricultural land and a custodial sentence for deliberate offending.

4th August 2021

Environmental Law News Update

In this latest Environmental Law News Update, Christopher Badger,Charles Morgan and James Harrison consider problems with the disposal of sewage sludge, a new UK Innovation Strategy from the BEIS and a DEFRA Consultation on Environmental Review.

9th June 2021

Environmental Law News Update

In this latest Environmental Law News Update, William Upton QC and James Harrison consider the precautionary principle, the new Dutch case about Shell’s climate change obligations, the latest list of Enforcement Undertakings, and look forward to the UKELA conference.

30th April 2021

Environmental Law News Update

In this latest Environmental Law News Update,  Christopher Badger, Nicholas Ostrowski and James Harrison consider the Government's commitment to a 78% reduction in emissions by 2035, the publication of a climate change strategy by the Pensions Regulator and a case which rules that fluff is subject to landfill tax.

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Michael Hearn

Michael Hearn

Second Junior Clerk