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Experience and Expertise
William has expertise in advising trustees as to the identification of charitable trusts, their purposes, public benefit, construction and the exercise of powers under them.
William has particular experience in advising trustees of trusts of land with a public or charitable element, especially sports and recreational venues, civic buildings and open spaces. In doing so William advises upon matters including the exercise of powers to sell or lease, the application of the doctrine of cy-près, the duties of trustees and the role of the Charity Commission.
William frequently acts for charities as beneficiaries under wills and trusts in all matters arising in respect of their beneficial interests and any challenges to them.
William is recommended for Traditional Chancery and Real Estate Litigation by Chambers UK and for Commercial Litigation, Professional Negligence and Property Litigation by The Legal 500. Recent directory editorial includes:
- superb attention to detail and a charming manner with clients
- As an advocate he does not get distracted by difficult opponents and focuses on building and presenting the best possible case for the client
- head and shoulders above others of his year of call
- popular with clients and really takes the fight to the other side
- produces skeleton arguments that are very clear and show good analysis
- an advocate with a good, relaxed manner, he is firm but not unduly aggressive in court
- a born problem-solver with a loyal and diverse following
- lauded for being thoughtful and thorough
- an excellent lawyer and a strong and clever advocate
- very reliable and always delivers when he says he will
- a truly outstanding trial advocate.
Cases and Work of Note
Examples of recent work in this area include:
- William has advised local authorities on trusts governing civic buildings and land including pleasure gardens, nursing clinics, concert halls and libraries;
- William has advised a local authority on the use of land left on trust for recreational purposes, comprising in part a well-known sports stadium used by a high profile national sports club, on issues such as the right of the club to charge admission to the public;
- William has advised a nationwide benevolent institution on its funding of residential care homes for its members and the application of means-tested rules to the provision of financial support;
- William has advised charity trustees on the potential development of a city-centre cricket ground held upon charitable trusts.