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Jeremy Phillips KC

  • Firm: Francis Taylor Building (Barristers' Chambers)
  • Practice Area: Licensing
  • Country: England, United Kingdom
  • Inner Temple, London, EC4Y 7BY.

About Jeremy Phillips KC

As a solicitor Jeremy Phillips was recognised for several years as the leading licensing practitioner in England and Wales and identified as one of the 50 most influential individuals in the leisure sector. As a barrister he has subsequently been involved in many of the leading decisions in this field, appearing before licensing committees, magistrates, the High Court and Court of Appeal, representing operators, residents, trade associations, police and licensing authorities. He has advised in overseas jurisdictions on appellate proceedings and issues of vires.
Jeremy is also Editor in Chief of Paterson’s Licensing Acts, the only work of reference in this field. He is also a General Editor of Smith & Monkcom – the Law of Gambling and author of numerous other works and articles in the field.
He is a member of the International Masters of Gaming Law (IMGL), a non-profit association of gaming attorneys, regulators, educators, executives and consultants from around the world.
Fitness & propriety has been a key element of Jeremy’s practice over four decades, forming a major element in many licensing decisions. The concepts were central also to his previous roles as law firm Senior Partner, member of Bar Council’s Ethics Committee and the Law Commission’s Panel concerning taxi licence reform as well as his roles as charity trustee and schools’ governor. They are also central to Jeremy’s current wide-ranging disciplinary practice as a Legally Qualified Chair (LQC), panel member and advocate for parties in proceedings in both the professional and sports sectors.



  • Association of Regulatory & Disciplinary Lawyers (ARDL); Health & Safety Lawyers Association (HSLA): UK Environmental Lawyers Association (UKELA); Administrative Bar Association (ALBA) and Planning & Environment Bar Association (PEBA)


Jeremy has for many years been a specialist in all aspects of licensing work, from representing every type of licensed premises and categories of individuals in highly contested application, to advising regulators and authorities in respect of such matters.

As a solicitor, he was responsible for devising, setting up before justices, and then seeing through to the High Court (with John Saunders QC, before his elevation to that court) the test case of Gough v Avon and Somerset Police Licensing Bureau [2002] EWHC 658 (Admin) , which distinguished earlier decisions and so enabled pubs and bars throughout England and Wales to apply for extensions to serve drinks with breakfasts during the FIFA World Cup 2002 in Japan and South Korea. The Licensing Act 2003, which ensured far greater flexibility for licensing hours generally, came into force three years later.

Notable Licensing Cases

  • Gambling Commission v [operator] – representing one of the ‘Big Five’ gambling operators in relation to a wide range of high-value AML, KYC, SR and RG online gambling issues
  • [individual] v Bestway Ltd – defending overseas online betting operator against civil action concerning customer’s alleged AML issues. Claim withdrawn, with costs.
  • Online PHV provider – advising and representing global PHV ‘taxi’ service company in relation to its complex dealings with TfL, resulting in the issue of a new PHV London Operator Licence, and subsequently.
  • Chohan v Gambling Commission -. First appeal determined by First Tier Tribunal (Gen – Gambling). Established wide-ranging duties of a specialist holder of a personal management licence (PML).
  • Bamboodle Bar and Grill Limited v Stratford District Council – representing licensing authority and successfully resisting appeal against revocation and closure of premises. Full award of costs.
  • R (Lalli) -v- Metropolitan Police Commissioner and Newham Borough Council – Whether on summary review premises could be ‘associated with serious crime’ on basis of a single violent incident. Permission to appeal to the Court of Appeal. Case raised issues of national importance.
  • Patel (t/a Funky Brownz) v London Borough of Barnet – ‘food safety’ did not specifically engage Public Safety licensing objective. LA correct to revoke the licence.
  • Gurgur v London Borough of Enfield – determined which policies and versions of S of S s 182 Guidance should apply to licensing appeals.
  • R (Thompson and Spearmint Rhino Ventures (UK) Limited) v Oxford City Council – extent to which licensing authority entitled to refuse renewal of an SEV without distinguishing from previous grant in (virtually) identical circumstances.
  • Little France Ltd v Ealing London Borough Council – determined extent of reasons required on licensing appeals.
  • Crawley BC v Attenborough – entitlement of Justices to order licensing authority to pay costs on appeal. Requirement for conditions imposed to be intelligible to parties and others.
  • R (on the application of the British Beer and Pub Association and Others) v Canterbury City Council – clarified extent of a licensing authority’s power in relation to its published Statement of Policy
  • Hashtroudi v Bournemouth Borough Council – Bournemouth magistrates granting first new licence to large bar / nightclub in town’s Cumulative Impact Zone.
  • Combine Leisure Limited v Chief Constable of Avon & Somerset Constabulary – representing police in licensee’s appeal against revocation. Summary review including quashing of High Court stay on suspension of licence. Costs order against director in personal capacity.
  • Chief Constable of Cambridgeshire v JD Wetherspoon (2007) Tesco Express (2009) Waitrose (2010) All Saints Ltd (2010) – multiple successful objections on behalf of Cambridgeshire constabulary.
  • Marstons Plc (1) and Greene King Pub Company Ltd (2) v Chief Constable of Nottinghamshire – successful licensing appeals for operators following a related fatality in the area.

Disciplinary Cases

  • British Horseracing Authority (BHA) – advised owner re inquiry into allegation that overseas national and racehorse owner had profited from ‘inside information’. In another case represented owner before panel regarding sums laid against own stable.
  • Re Swim Wales – advised former swim coach and re civil claim against former employer / club.
  • B v A (an EA licensed coach) – advising parents of an Paralympic athlete in relation to potential claim for recovery of expenses paid to former coach.
  • AW v Archery GB – successfully representing appellant before appeal panel. Costs awarded.
  • SWE v Bennett–advising and representing registrant before disciplinary panel and subsequently in High Court challenge by Professional Standards Authority.
  • NMC – representing midwife before panel in high-profile case.

Other Practice Areas

Regulatory & Environmental

  • for the Environment Agency, Marine Management Organisation and local authorities concerning a range of waste, food and breach of licensing offences, as well as representing multinational companies in relation to due diligence and confiscation issues.
  • Statutory nuisance appeals (incl Walleys Quarry Landfill challenge) and prosecutions.
  • Inquests.

Public inquiries

  • supporting the Weymouth Relief Road and South Devon Link Road
  • objection for a government department to the £4.1bn Thames Tideway Tunnel project
  • promoting rail crossing extinguishment orders (Network Rail)
  • representation of the Ramblers’ Association re the Bus Rapid Transit Scheme. Extension of Linhay Quarry.



  • Legal Professional Privilege: Reporting AML suspicions is “not black and white” (with Mark O’Brien O’Reilly)
  • Guest Editorial, Journal of Licensing, Number 31, November 2021
  • Does the SRA Treat Sexual Misconduct Cases Seriously? (with Esther Drabkin- Reiter). Solicitors Journal, April 2020
  • ‘The (Underutilised) Role of Mediation in Licensing’ (with Conor Fegan) [2019] Journal of Licensing
  • Two Blue Doors (footpaths), Waymark, Autumn 2017
  • The Hand We’ve Been Dealt (Gambling), Solicitors Journal, 5 September 2017
  • Calling Time on the Licensing Act, Solicitors Journal, 25 April 2017
  • Burden of Proof in Licensing Appeals, Solicitors Journal, 24 January 2017
  • Public Safety Versus Public Health, Solicitors Journal, 19 January 2016
  • Here’s to Her Majesty and Other Licensing Developments, 7 June 2016
  • Drinking, Gambling and Mistakes and Notices, 11 October 2016
  • Noise Nuisance in the Licensing Arena, 22 September 2015
  • Licence to Thrill, Solicitors Journal, 30 June 2015
  • Hemming: outcome and implications, 10 February 2015 Licensing Update, Solicitors Journal, 30 September 2014
  • Licensing Update, Solicitors Journal, 1 July 2014


“‘He is exceptionally eloquent and persuasive on paper and is able to engage in a positive and constructive manner with the Tribunal when on his feet.“
Legal 500 [2023]

“He is authoritative and knowledgeable.” “Jeremy’s attention to detail and thoroughness are second to none.”
Chambers and Partners [2021]

“Responsive, unflappable and thoroughly prepared, his experience and commerciality make him a real asset.”
Legal 500 [2021]

“He has a unique knowledge of licensing legislation which enables him to provide assistance on a wide range of licensing and gambling issues.”
Chambers and Partners [2020]

“His in-depth analysis and consideration of the case are invaluable. He is also very responsive to time pressures.”
Chambers and Partners [2020]

“He has long been committed to this area of practice, and is someone who is both a pleasure to be against and fabulously impressive.”
Chambers and Partners [2020]

‘Especially valued for his encyclopaedic knowledge of licensing law, he is described by sources as being an experienced and persuasive advocate. He advises large-scale corporations and local authorities on various taxi, SEV and gambling issues.’
Chambers and Partners [2020]

‘A master tactician who is practical and organised, and gets in the trenches with the client’
Legal 500 [2020]

“He is formidable in terms of his advocacy and puts the opposition on the back foot quite quickly.”
Chambers and Partners [2019]

“He does not approach matters from an ivory tower, but quickly gets in the trenches, helps out and is constructive.”
Chambers and Partners [2019]

‘He has a track record of work on infrastructure projects’
Legal 500 [2020 Silks]

“An extremely experienced counsel who brings a very commercial perspective and is very approachable.”
Chambers and Partners [2017]

“He’s thorough, has excellent attention to detail and is very persuasive.”
Chambers and Partners [2017]

“If I instruct him I know I will get someone who is totally committed and extremely thorough in terms of researching the issues, advising and if necessary appearing on behalf of the client.”
Chambers and Partners [2016]

“…a good advocate to go to if you have a difficult point.”
Chambers and Partners [2016]

“Stands out.”

Legal 500 [2016]

“Extremely able and very approachable. He manages to turn work around so quickly.”
Chambers and Partners [2015]

“A very good advocate whose courteous and knowledgeable manner instils confidence in clients.”
Chambers and Partners [2015]

“He has gravitas before Tribunals.”
Chambers and Partners [2015]

“Can always be relied upon to provide swift, effective assistance whenever needed.”
Legal 500 [2015]

“Excellent attention to detail and very persuasive when presenting a case.”
Legal 500 [2014]

“the ‘vastly experienced’ Jeremy Phillips, who is ‘utterly reliable, and very good value for money'”
The Legal 500 [2013]

“He is terrifyingly good – if you’re against him he looks at you and you think ‘arrrgggh'”
Chambers and Partners [2013]

Q&A With Jeremy Phillips KC


Jeremy Phillips KC Latest Posts

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