Public Law

Christian has a broad, high-level administrative law practice.  He has constitutional law experience and is regularly instructed in local government, community care, immigration and, planning and environmental enforcement.  He has an in-depth knowledge of human rights and discrimination law. He is on the Attorney General’s Regional A Panel and the Counsel General for Wales’ B Panel.

He is regularly instructed on behalf of claimants, local authorities and NHS LHBs.  He has advised on the legality of local authorities’ charging policies and funding disputes between NHS LHBs and Trusts in relation to continuing healthcare.  He is instructed in challenges to care plans and has a particular expertise in relation to young adults with a diagnosis of ASD.

Christian has a particular expertise in relation to local government strategic and funding decisions relating to public services, such as libraries and leisure centres.  He is instructed by the Welsh Government and local authorities in relation to statutory appeals, reviews and judicial reviews of planning and environmental enforcement.

Selected Cases

  • R (Counsel General for Wales) v Secretary of State for Business: led by Helen Mountfield QC on behalf of the Counsel General in a judicial review of the UK Internal Market Act 2020 which seeks declarations that UKIMA cannot curtail the legislative competence of the Senedd by implication or secondary legislation. This is a most significant constitutional case affecting Wales.
  • R (HE) v Lord Chancellor [2020] EWHC 1411 (Admin) (permission): Acted on behalf of the claimant in a challenge to the Civil Legal Aid (Financial Resources) Regulations 2013 on the basis that although they disregarded support payments made to victims of the Grenfell Tower fire and Windrush scandal in the capital means test, they did not disregard support payments made to victims of the infected blood disaster; such treatment was discriminatory within the meaning of article 14 ECHR read with article 8 ECHR and A1P1.  Following a successful settlement, the Lord Chancellor introduced amendment regulations to create a disregard.
  • R (Williams) v Caerphilly County Council [2020] EWCA Civ 296: Led by Philip Havers QC he acted on behalf of the appellant in an appeal regarding; (i) whether the local authority had to comply with the Welsh improvement duty contained in the Local Government (Wales) Measure 2009; and (ii) whether the cabinet could adopt a leisure strategy which was not foreshadowed in a budget.
  • R (DJ) v Welsh Ministers [2019] EWCA Civ 1349, [2020] PTSR 466: Led by Ruth Henke QC on behalf of the appellant in a challenge to the Welsh Ministers’ policy for the funding of education for young adults with learning difficulties at specialist residential colleges. It was argued that the policy amounted to an unlawful fetter on the discretion to fund such provision under s32 of the Learning and Skills Act 2000.
  • R (DJ) v Welsh Ministers [2018] EWHC 2735 (Admin): JR challenging the lawfulness of the policy on funding further education for young people with learning difficulties arguing unlawful fetter.
  • R (WX) v Northamptonshire County Council [2018] EWHC 2178 (Admin): Successful challenge to closure of 21 libraries arguing a failure to consider results of consultation, irrationality, library duty, PSED.
  • R (Tilley) v Vale of Glamorgan Council [2016] EWHC 2272 (Admin): JR against a decision to implement community libraries arguing irrationality, PSED, comprehensive and efficient library service duty, best interests of child.
  • R (Tilley) v Vale of Glamorgan Council [2015] EWHC 3194 (Admin): JR against a challenge to a decision to implement community-led libraries arguing unfair consultation, PSED and library duty.
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