Inquests and Inquires

‘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. Members additionally act for bereaved families. 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 2022 ‘Park Square Barristers is a go-to set for inquest work. The inquests team consists of superbly qualified, often uniquely experienced, barristers dedicated to inquest work. The chambers is able to represent the vast range of interested persons that coroner’s inquiries encompass and as such are able to provide a fully rounded service for anyone needing specialist legal representation in the Coroners Court.’ Legal 500 2022. 

The only Tier 1 set on Circuit for Inquests and Inquiries. 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 Q.C. , Head of the Regulatory Team Craig Hassall Q.C. and Andrew Lewis Q.C. providing expertise at the highest level across a range of disciplines. Richard Wright Q.C. and Craig Hassall Q.C. were both instructed in the Manchester Arena Inquiry.

The team includes seven Assistant Coroners (Janine Wolstenholme , Kirsten Mercer, James Hargan, Nadim Bashir, Kate Bisset, Kate Wilson and Mark Henley), sitting across eight 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, 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

Daniel Highfield on 0113 213 5213


The team