Inquests and Inquiries

The only Tier 1 set on circuit for Inquests and Inquiries –  Legal 500 (2024) 

Ranked as a Band 1 Set for Inquests & Public Inquiries in Chambers & Partners 2024

‘First-rate set‘ for inquests work, members of Park Square Barristers are equally strong in handling high-profile inquiries.  Legal 500 (2024) 

 ‘The set boasts an impressive bench of barristers skilled in the inquests field, with several government panel members and assistant coroners among its roster.’ Chambers & Partners 2024

 ‘Park Square has very good barristers who have dealt with some knotty cases in a professional manner, always with an eye on the client’s reputation.’ Chambers & Partners 2023

‘Park Square Barristers is a go-to set for interested persons in inquests, including government departments, police forces, healthcare organisations, local authorities and education bodies.’ Legal 500 (2023)

The team is headed jointly by Janine Wolstenholme and Kirsten Mercer who succeed Lorraine Harris following her appointment Area Coroner for Hull and the East Riding of Yorkshire.

With an embarrassment of riches the team boasts three brilliant silks, Head of Chambers Richard Wright K.C. , Head of the Regulatory Team Craig Hassall K.C. and Andrew Lewis K.C. providing expertise at the highest level across a range of disciplines. Richard Wright K.C. and Craig Hassall K.C. were both instructed in the Manchester Arena Inquiry. members of the Team are also currently instructed on the Covid-19UK Inquiry, The Under Cover Policing Inquiry and the Thirlwall Inquiry.

The team includes nine Assistant Coroners (Janine Wolstenholme , Kirsten Mercer, James Hargan, Nadim Bashir, Simon Connolly, Matthew Stanbury, Kate Wilson, Mark Henley and Naomi McLoughlin) sitting across nine different areas and an abundance of talented juniors at all levels.

Six members are on the Attorney General’s “Treasury Counsel” civil panels with appointments to all three (A, B & C) panels, namely Janine Wolstenholme, Mark Henley, Kirsten Mercer, Kate Wilson, Simon Clegg and Simon Connolly, and conduct Article 2 inquests on behalf of Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service.  They are supported by a further nine members on the GLD’s Junior Junior scheme.

Members of the team represent the full range of interested persons at inquest proceedings, including bereaved families, individuals recognised as interested persons, care homes, central and local government departments, the HSE, the police,  healthcare trusts, corporate entities, and insurers.  They also act for coroners in judicial review proceedings and Section 13 applications to the High Court.

The team also does a significant amount of Article 2 jury work on behalf of providers of Healthcare in prisons across the length and breadth of the country.

Simon Connolly and Caroline Wood have practices with a focus on medical care and receive instructions from defence organisations for medical, dental and healthcare professionals.

A particular strength is the fact the Inquest and Inquiries Team is a subgroup of the overarching Regulatory and Public Law Team.  Accordingly, the vast majority of the Inquest and Inquiry Team practitioners have extensive experience in other disciplines.  This means not only can the Set ensure the perfect fit of barrister to case but, extremely importantly, can, and routinely does, provide continuity in any further or associated proceedings across all jurisdictions.  For example, clinical negligence and fatal accidents, breaches of the Human Rights Act, secondary victim claims, criminal prosecutions for gross negligence manslaughter, offences such as death by dangerous and careless driving; regulatory criminal prosecution in relation to health and safety offences, CQC breaches in the workplace or care homes; and professional disciplinary proceedings.

PSQB is committed to assisting bereaved families on a PRO BONO basis and has strong relationships with AAFDA (Advocacy after fatal domestic abuse) and AVMA (Action against Medical Accidents) with ten members of the team providing such assistance in the last year.

Ultimately, it is the breadth and depth of our expertise transcending every other discipline that might touch on or arise from inquests and inquiries that sets us apart from other Chambers.

Contact our clerks

“Madeleine Gray is very helpful and accommodating.” Chambers & Partners 2024

“Senior clerk Madeleine Gray is really business-minded and very keen to address any issues.” Chambers & Partners 2024

‘The fabulous Madeleine Gray has as much passion for the work as her advocates, and is excellent at matching the right people with the right work to give families the best possible representation.’ Legal 500 2024

“Madeleine Gray and Patrick Urbina are always very quick to respond to queries.” ” The clerks are easy to contact and quick to respond. They are upfront and highly competitive with fees, and suitably flexible.” Chambers & Partners 2023

Madeleine Gray, the Senior Clerk, is second to none and very much at the centre of the team’s success. She really understands the work and the client base, and is always striving to ensure clients receive an excellent service.’ Legal 500 2022

Madeleine Gray on 0113 202 8603

Patrick Urbina on 0113 213 5250

Imogen Brown on 0113 2135225


The team

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