Simon Readhead

Call: 1979, QC: 2006
Queen’s Counsel (QC)

"An all-round star performer" with "excellent attention to detail" "He deftly handles complex cases and is a very determined, excellent advocate." "He has an incredible eye for detail, and is meticulous in everything he does" "Never loses sight of the bigger picture"
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His professional liability work also covers indemnity and personal injury claims.

Simon is recognised as a leading Queen's Counsel in the current editions of both the Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners directories. He has been shortlisted in the Clinical Negligence and Personal Injury category for Queen’s Counsel of the Year at the Legal 500 Awards and features in the 2022 edition of The Best Lawyers in the United Kingdom.

He has a particular interest and expertise in catastrophic injury claims including birth trauma and other neurological injuries particularly those involving the brain and spine. He is frequently instructed in complex and high value quantum claims.
Recent cases

  • Hopkins (A Child) v Akramy [2020] EWHC 3445 (QB); [2021] 2 W.L.R. 893; [2020] 12 WLUK 259 (QBD) Negligence - Duty of care - Primary care trust - Group of companies providing primary medical services pursuant to contract with primary care trust - Whether primary care trust liable in respect of negligent provision of such services - Whether primary care trust owing non-delegable duty of care to protect patients from harmNational Health Service Act 2006 (c 41), s 83.

  • Sanderson v Guy’s & St. Thomas’s NHS Foundation Trust [2019]  Rotational instrumental delivery - NICE Guidelines on fetal monitoring - Role of clinical assessment - Logical basis for decisions – Expert evidence - Material contribution to injury.

  • Britchford v Staffordshire and Stoke On Trent Partnership NHS Trust [2018]  Incomplete occlusion of brachial artery - Standards expected of nurse practitioner - Anticoagulation treatment - Ischaemic stroke.

  • Jabang v (1) NHS Commissioning Board (2) Wadman (3) Pool (4) East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust (5)  Underhill [2017] Paralysis following delayed diagnosis of spinal tuberculosis - Screening for infectious diseases - Causation - Costs orders

  • Spire Healthcare v Brooke [2016]  Abuse of process; Cause of action estoppel; Clinical negligence; Contribution; Interim payments; Statutory interpretation; Limitation.

  • Jones v Secretary of State for Health [2016]  Clinical negligence; Consent to treatment; Doctor's duty to advise on material risks; Causation; Reliance on advice; Whether failure in care.

  • CR v West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust [2015] Practice; Personal Injuries; Damages; Assessment; Interim payment of damages;.

  • Haynes v Kingston Hospitals NHS Trust [2014] Practice; Personal Injuries; Damages; Interim payment of damages; Accommodation.

  • Nyang v G4S Care & Justice Services & Others [2013] Clinical Negligence; Mental health assessments; Self-harm; Treatment of detainees; Procedures in immigration removal centre; Whether causative of injuries.

Chambers & Partners and Legal 500 Rankings
Chambers & Partners 2021

Clinical Negligence (Silks) – Band 1

Impresses both with his knowledge of complex medical negligence matters and his meticulous approach to his work. He has a very broad practice and is recognised for his work on claims involving catastrophic and neurological injuries. He works on behalf of both the prosecution and the defence. "Very experienced and meticulous in his preparation - he leaves no stone unturned. He's charming with experts, clients and opponents alike." "He's excellent to work with and is very approachable." 

Recent work: Acted for the defendant in ABC v North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust, a case involving a child born with severe physical and mental problems.

Personal Injury (Silks) – Band 3

Experienced silk with extensive experience handing complex, high-value catastrophic injury and clinical negligence litigation. He is adept at interpreting difficult medical evidence. He is regularly instructed to act on behalf of both claimants and defendants. "He is always meticulously thorough, extremely well prepared and highly responsive. He also has a wonderfully reassuring manner with clients."

Recent work: Acted for the claimants in Callagher v Mitchells and Butler, a claim for psychiatric damage brought by the family of an individual who developed food poisoning and subsequently died.

Legal 500 2021

Tier 2: Clinical Negligence - ‘Simon has an exceptional eye for detail. He picks up and explores every relevant point. His preparation of a case is second to none. Going to trial with Simon is a pleasure – he is calm, measured and an exceptional advocate.’

Due to his wide ranging practice, Simon has collected many positive client comments including:

“He is absolutely excellent and incredibly thorough.”

He is an excellent advocate and tactician, and has the ability to put clients at ease.

“Regularly instructed in matters where the claims runs into millions”

“Prepares extremely well and is rarely wrong-footed”

“A very good judge of when to push the boat out and when to go gently.”

"Achieves outstanding results in difficult and complex matters …”

“Fantastic at putting experts through their paces”

“Exudes confidence and is pure class”

“He is superb with clients and an incredible advocate.”

“Very thorough, very responsive and easy to work with ”

“He's incredibly well prepared on cases - he's absolutely on top of all the papers"

“An all-round star performer” with “excellent attention to detail”

“He deftly handles complex cases and is a very determined, excellent advocate.”

“His preparation is very thorough and he is able to master all the facts of a case.

"Thoughtful, analytical and very easy to work with”

“Always one step ahead of his opponent.”

“He has an incredible eye for detail, and is meticulous in everything he does”

“Never loses sight of the bigger picture”
Colombos International Law Prize, 1979

  • Professional Negligence Bar Association

  • Personal Injuries Bar Association

  • London Common Law and Commercial Bar Association

  • Commonwealth Lawyers’ Association

  • Association of Regulatory and Disciplinary Lawyers

  • Medico-Legal Society

  • Standing Council of Mediation Advocates


  • BA (Jurisprudence) - 1977    

  • BCL (Civil Law) - 1978

  • MA (Jurisprudence) - 1982

  • Lincoln College, University of Oxford


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