People

Victoria Wakefield

Year of Call: 2003

Clerk: Tony Burgess tony.burgess@brickcourt.co.uk

Victoria Wakefield

Year of Call: 2003

Clerk: Tony Burgess   tony.burgess@brickcourt.co.uk

"Wonderfully talented - she has an incredibly good legal mind and picks up on the nuances of a case much faster than other people. She has an aura about her that is incredibly impressive and she is just a delight to work with."
- Chambers & Partners 2016, Competition Law

"One of the most talented juniors around."
- Chambers & Partners 2016, Administrative & Public Law

Overview

Victoria Wakefield has been consistently ranked by the legal directories (Chambers & Partners and the Legal 500) as an outstanding junior. Current directories include comments that Victoria is "very impressive; incredibly bright and personable" (European Law, Chambers & Partners 2016), “a very good advocate. She is very clever and has an extremely nice way with clients” (European Law, Chambers & Partners 2016), "extremely diligent and proactive" (Public Inquiries, Chambers & Partners 2016), "an absolute pleasure to work with" (Civil Liberties and Human Rights, Legal 500 2015) and "a brilliant lawyer; communicative, thorough and reliable." (Administrative & Public law, Legal 500 2015).

Victoria’s practice spans commercial, EU, competition and public law. Recent highlights in her practice include: addressing the Supreme Court on the application of A1P1 ECHR to forfeiture of an insurance claim (Versloot Dredging BV UKSC 2014/252, hearing March 2016); appearing in the Court of Appeal in R(Roche Registration) v MHRA [2016] 4 WLR 46, the first piece of litigation in respect of the EU Pharmaceuticals Penalties Regulation; and acting in a multi-million pound commercial dispute before an LCIA arbitral tribunal. Current instructions include a reference to the CJEU from the Supreme Court in R (Hemming t/a Simply Pleasures) v Westminster City Council [2015] AC 1600 and acting for a generic company in the so-called “pay for delay” Servier litigation in the General Court.

practice areas

Victoria’s practice spans all of chambers’ practice areas. She works in regulatory/EU/ competition law, public law and commercial law.

EU/Competition

Victoria’s regulatory/EU/competition law practice includes energy, pharmaceuticals, agriculture, tobacco, cosmetics, medical devices, commercial agents,  procurement, human rights and general regulatory work. She undertakes significant advisory work (in particular in relation to competition matters). She regularly appears in both the Court of Justice of the European Union and national courts (from the High Court to the Supreme Court). She also acted for Eurostar International Limited (led by James Fynn QC) before the Channel Tunnel Intergovernmental Commission (“IGC”) in the matter of a regulatory appeal seeking, amongst other things, transparency over Eurotunnel access charges. 

Important cases include:

In the national courts

  • R (UNISON) v The Lord Chancellor (hearing December 2016)Victoria is instructed as junior counsel in the Supreme Court hearing of this access to justice challenge to the introduction of fees in employment tribunals.
  • (1) HMRC and (2) BMW v MGR (hearing July 2016) – Victoria is instructed as junior counsel for BMW in this Upper Tribunal appeal relating to the repayment of overpaid VAT.
  • R (British American Tobacco) v Secretary of State for Health [2016] EWHC 1169 – Victoria was instructed, led by David Anderson QC, in this high profile challenge to the introduction of plain packaging for cigarettes.
  • R (Roche Registration Limited) v the MHRA [2016] 4 WLR 46- This high profile case concerned the first application of the pharmaceutical Penalties Regulation (which allows for a fine of 5% of turnover) anywhere in Europe. It related in particular to the legality of evidence collection by the MHRA. Victoria appeared for Roche in the High Court ([2015] 1 CMLR 6) and the Court of Appeal (on both occasions led by David Anderson QC).
  • R (Hemming, trading as Simply Pleasures) v Westminster [2015] 2 WLR 1271 – Victoria is instructed as junior counsel in this Supreme Court case, which has now been referred to the CJEU. It concerns the applicability of the Services Directive to licensing regimes (in particular, to the licensing of sex shops in Westminster).
  • R (Minchinhampton Committee of Commoners & Ors) v DEFRA (settled 2015) – Victoria was instructed unled on behalf of a group of farmers. The case led to Defra reversing its previous policy, with the potential to benefit farmers by many millions of pounds.
  • R (Crossley Cooke) v SSH (settled 2015) – Victoria was instructed unled in this judicial review relating to “force majeure”.
  • Daiichi Sankyo v the Information Commissioner (September 2014)– Victoria appeared unled in this challenge to the Information Commissioner’s decision in respect of release of information on the Pharmaceutical Price Regulation Scheme.
  • Carewatch Care Services Limited v Focus Caring Services Limited [2014] EWHC 2313 – Victoria was instructed for the Claimant in this 7-day trial relating to post-termination non-compete clauses and active/passive selling. She appeared unled, against a QC,  on the competition law aspects of the claim (with co-counsel addressing the common law points).
  • Involvement Packaging v Jokey Plastik (settled spring 2013) – Victoria was led by Fergus Randolph QC in this commercial agency claim, which also raised contract and competition law issues.
  • EWRG v Philips & Ors (settled autumn 2012) - Victoria was instructed as one of the counsel team in this large piece of competition litigation in the High Court.
  • Applications for warrants – Victoria has appeared as junior counsel in applications for warrants brought by the Office of Fair Trading.
  • Bookmakers Afternoon Greyhound Services v Amalgamated Racing Ltd and others [2008] All ER (D) 73 (Aug) - Appeared led by Charles Hollander QC and Helen Davies QC in competition claim relating to media rights.
  • Lonsdale v Howard & Hallam [2007] 4 All ER 1- Victoria was led by Fergus Randolph, intervening in the House of Lords in this commercial agents regulations case.
  • Barker v Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Ch.Div, 2007) - Appeared unled on behalf of the claimant farmer seeking payment of money owed under a Council Regulation
  • Easyjet v Liverpool Airport (settled 2007) - led by Mark Brealey QC and Danny Jowell on behalf of the Defendants in a competition law claim.
  • Adidas v International Tennis Federation & Ors (settled 2006) - Led by Charles Hollander QC on behalf of the Defendants in a competition law claim.

In the Court of Justice of the European Union

  • Case T-680/14 Lupin v Commission -  Victoria is instructed, led by Mark Hoskins QC, on behalf of one of the generic companies in this high profile action for annulment against the Commission’s so-called “pay for delay” Servier decision (with fines of 428million euros).
  • Case C-547/14 R (Philip Morris International) v SSH (Judgment 4 May 2016)Victoria was instructed, led by David Anderson QC, in this challenge to the Second Tobacco Products Directive.
  • Case T-437/14 United Kingdom v Commission – Victoria was instructed unled by the United Kingdom in this challenge to a Commission Decision disallowing sums from the Common Agricultural Payments to the UK.
  • Case C-428/14 DHL – Victoria was instructed as junior counsel to file Written Observations in the CJEU on behalf of the UK in this case concerning national leniency regimes.
  • Case C-209/13 United Kingdom v Council – Victoria is junior counsel for the United Kingdom in this application to annul the Council Decision which authorises Enhanced Cooperation in the area of Financial Transaction Tax.
  • Case C-248/12 P: Northern Ireland Department of Agriculture and Rural Development v Commission,  Case T-503/12 United Kingdom v Commission and Case T-245/13 United Kingdom v Commission  - Victoria appeared, led by Derrick Wyatt QC, in these General Court challenges to Commission decisions which disallowed significant sums of money from the Common Agricultural Payments due to the UK.
  • Case C-373/12 GIC Cash – Victoria was instructed (unled) on behalf of the United Kingdom in this reference from a Slovakian court in respect of consumer contracts.
  • Case 636/11 Berger - Victoria was instructed (unled) on behalf of the United Kingdom in this reference from a German Court in the field of food safety.
  • Case C-416/11 P United Kingdom v Commission – Victoria was led by Derrick Wyatt QC in this appeal against a finding of inadmissibility, in the context of a claim relating to British Gibraltar territorial waters.
  • Cases C-14/10 Nickel Institute and C-15/10 Etimine - Victoria was instructed (led by David Anderson QC and Jemima Stratford QC respectively) in these references from the High Court to the ECJ for preliminary ruling in respect of the regulation of chemicals.
  • Case C-391/08 Dow Agrosciences - Victoria was led by David Vaughan QC in an appeal against a refusal to grant interim relief.

Public Law

Victoria is frequently instructed to appear, led and unled, in judicial review claims. She also undertakes significant advisory work. Her public law practice includes commercial judicial reviews, regulatory work, human rights, general public law, environmental law, etc. She also takes on extensive pro bono work, including assisting NGOs and campaigning organisations. 

Important cases include:

  • R (UNISON) v The Lord Chancellor (hearing December 2016)Victoria is instructed as junior counsel in the Supreme Court hearing of this access to justice challenge to the introduction of fees in employment tribunals.
  • (1) Versloot Dredging BV & (2) SO DC Merwestone BV v HDI & Ors (hearing March 2016, awaiting judgment)Victoria addressed the Supreme Court in this case concerning the forfeiture of an insurance claim due to use of a fraudulent device, in particular whether this breaches A1P1 of the ECHR.
  • R (British American Tobacco) v Secretary of State for Health [2016] EWHC 1169 – Victoria was instructed, led by David Anderson QC, in this high profile challenge to the introduction of plain packaging for cigarettes.
  • R (Roche Registration Limited) v the MHRA [2016] 4 WLR 46- This high profile case concerned the first application of the pharmaceutical Penalties Regulation (which allows for a fine of 5% of turnover) anywhere in Europe. It related in particular to the legality of evidence collection by the MHRA. Victoria appeared for Roche in the High Court ([2015] 1 CMLR 6) and the Court of Appeal (on both occasions led by David Anderson QC).
  • R (Hemming, trading as Simply Pleasures) v Westminster [2015] 2 WLR 1271 – Victoria is instructed as junior counsel in this Supreme Court case, which has now been referred to the CJEU. It concerns the applicability of the Services Directive to licensing regimes (in particular, to the licensing of sex shops in Westminster).
  • R (Barda) v the Mayor of London [2016] 4 WLR 20– Victoria was instructed unled on behalf of Occupy Democracy in this Human Rights Act challenge to the Mayor’s restrictions of its right to protest in Parliament Square Gardens.  
  • R (Minchinhampton Committee of Commoners & Ors) v DEFRA (settled 2015) – Victoria was instructed unled on behalf of a group of farmers. The case led to Defra reversing its previous policy, with the potential to benefit farmers by many millions of pounds.
  • R (Wall) v MoJ  (settled March 2014) - Victoria appeared unled in this judicial review concerning prison mother and baby units.
  • Makanjuola v MoJ (settled Jan 2014) - Victoria was instructed unled in this speedy review of detention case.
  • R (Hansen Palomares) v Lord Chancellor (settled December 2013)– Victoria appeared unled in this judicial review concerning legal aid.
  • KM v Cambridgeshire County Council [2012] UKSC 23 - Victoria was led by Richard Gordon QC in this Supreme Court hearing concerning community care law.
  • The Baha Mousa Public Inquiry -Victoria was Junior Counsel for the MoD in an Inquiry into the death of an Iraqi in British custody.
  • R (Zagorski) v SS for Business, Innovation and Skills [2011] HRLR 6- Victoria was led by Martin Chamberlain for the respondent in this case about the export of the anaesthesia used in lethal injections in the USA.
  • Knights v Ministry of Justice (July 2010) - Victoria appeared unled in this direct HRA claim, brought by a prisoner, concerning the communication of his autobiography.
  • Aehmed v Legal Service Commission 2009 EWCA 572 - Victoria was led by Martin Chamberlain on behalf of the LSC in an appeal against an award of election petition costs.
  • Woodpecker v HMRC [2009] EWHC 3442 (Ch) - Appeared unled for HMRC
  • R (Smith) v (1) Secretary of State for Justice & (2) Parole Board [2008] EWHC (Admin) - Appeared unled for the Parole Board
  • R (Government of Bermuda) v Office of Communications [2008] All ER (D) 88 (Aug) - Junior Counsel for the Government of Bermuda (led by Richard Gordon QC) in judicial review against an Ofcom Decision relating to satellites.
  • Mkombozi v Attorney General (High Court of Tanzania, 2008) - Victoria appeared unled in the High Court in Arusha, Tanzania, in a direct constitutional challenge against the rounding up of street children.
  • Lord Avebury v The Information Commissioner (2007) - Victoria was instructed by Lord Avebury, successfully seeking the disclosure of the dates of meetings between Tony Blair and Rupert Murdoch or Richard Desmond.
  • R (Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) v The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (2007) - Led by Nigel Pleming QC and Martin Chamberlain on behalf of the Claimant in a judicial review on the consultation of Home Information Packs.
  • R (Dost Mohammed) v Secretary of State for Defence (Court of Appeal) [2007] All ER (D) 09 (May) - Junior counsel for the Secretary of State (led by Clive Lewis QC and Martin Chamberlain) defending a race discrimination challenge to the ex gratia Far Eastern Prisoner of War compensation scheme. Also appeared in the earlier hearing in the High Court.

Commercial

Victoria’s practice includes the full gamut of commercial work. She appears unled in both High Court and county courts, in trials and in applications (including for injunctions, in particular in respect of breach of confidence). She has also appeared as part of larger counsel teams in very high value complex litigation. She has appeared (both led and unled) in arbitration (LCIA rules) and has provided a joint expert report for foreign proceedings. She also enjoys a substantial advisory practice.

Important cases include:

  • (1) Versloot Dredging BV & (2) SO DC Merwestone BV v HDI & Ors (hearing March 2016, awaiting judgment)Victoria addressed the Supreme Court in this case concerning the forfeiture of an insurance claim due to use of a fraudulent device.
  • Confidential arbitration – Victoria acted (initially unled, and then with Tim Lord QC) in a significant joint venture dispute for a major brand, in LCIA arbitration. 
  • SULCo v Ariadne [2015] EWHC 2595 Victoria successfully acted unled in this High Court contractual dispute relating to an implied term.​
  • RFU v Blink - (settled 2014) - This is a breach of contract claim involving media rights, in which Victoria was instructed unled.
  • Sarclad v APT & Ors - Victoria was instructed (initially unled, and then led by Thomas Plewman QC) in this copyright/confidential information claim in the High Court.
  • Amber Solicitors v the Lord Chancellor - Victoria acted (unled) for the defendant in this contractual dispute arising out of the Duty Solicitor Scheme.
  • MWM Boardroom Consulting v OVO (settled November 2013) - Victoria was instructed (unled) in this contractual dispute in the High Court.
  • Castmasters v Sarclad (settled November 2013) – Victoria was instructed (unled) for the Claimant in this contractual dispute concerning agency activities in China,  with the trial set down for hearing in the High Court in early 2014.
  • Jones v Ricoh [2012] EWHC 348 (Ch), in which Victoria was led by Charles Hollander QC on behalf of the defendants in a breach of NDA/ breach of confidence claim).
  • Rayden v Edwardo (Commercial Court, settled 2009) - Victoria was led by Charles Hollander QC in this breach of share sale warranty claim.
  • Associated British Ports v Ferryways (first instance [2008] 2 Lloyd's Rep 353) (CA [2009] 1 Lloyd's Rep. 595) - Victoria was led by Peter Irvin in a contractual dispute relating to guarantees/indemnities.
  • Arla Foods UK v Barnes and Others [2009] 1 B.C.L.C. 699 - Led by Charles Hollander QC on behalf of the defendant farmers in a contractual claim under a milk supply agreement.
  • Royal Bank of Scotland v Winterthur (2008) - Junior counsel for Winterthur (led by Mark Howard QC and Helen Davies QC) in a breach of share sale warranty claim.
  • The Accident Group Litigation (settled 2007) - Junior counsel for Winterthur and NIG (led by Charles Hollander QC, Tim Lord and Colin West), the underwriters of The Accident Group personal injury legal expenses scheme, in a professional negligence and contractual dispute.

Qualifications & Further Information

Education

  • Tapton Comprehensive School, Sheffield
  • BA Hons Law, Trinity College Cambridge – First Class (2001).
  • D.E.S. droit européen, Université Libre de Bruxelles – Grande Distinction (2002)
  • BVC, Inns of Court School of Law - Very Competent (2003)
  • Scholarships/Prizes:
    • Bedingfield Scholar, Gray’s Inn, 2002-3
    • Wiener-Anspach Scholar, U.L.B., 2001-2
    • 3 Verulam Buildings Prize for top paper in Equity, June 2001
    • Lizette Bentwich Prize for tripos, June 2001
    • Senior Scholar, Trinity College Cambridge 2001

Further Information

  • Member of the Treasury B Panel.
  • Languages: French
  • Member of the Administrative Law Bar Association and of the Bar European Group.

Directory Quotes

  • "Exceptionally talented." (Administrative & Public Law, Legal 500 2016)
  • "Approachable and pragmatic; a pleasure to work with." (Civil Liberties and Human Rights, Legal 500 2016)
  • "Thorough, hard-working and comes up with creative points. One of the most talented juniors around." (Administrative & Public Law, Chambers & Partners 2016)
  • "Wonderfully talented - she has an incredibly good legal mind and picks up on the nuances of a case much faster than other people. She has an aura about her that is incredibly impressive and she is just a delight to work with." (Competition law, Chambers & Partners 2016 and Chambers Global 2016)
  • "Very impressive; incredibly bright and personable." (European Law, Chambers & Partners 2016)
  • "A very good advocate. She is very clever and has an extremely nice way with clients." (European Law, Chambers & Partners 2016)
  • "Both extremely diligent and proactive." (Inquests & Public Inquiries, Chambers & Partners 2016)
  • "An absolute pleasure to work with" (Civil Liberties and Human Rights, Legal 500 2015)
  • "A brilliant lawyer; communicative, thorough and reliable." (Administrative & Public Law, Legal 500 2015)
  • "She is a delight to work with. She is extremely thorough and diligent in the advice she prepares, is extremely proactive and her advice is very solid." "She's clever, but accessible and happy to roll her sleeves up." (Administrative & Public Law, Chambers & Partners 2015)
  • “Receives significant praise from clients and peers alike.” (Competition Law, Chambers & Partners 2015)
  • "She has inexhaustible supplies of energy and is very, very good." (Competition Law, Chambers & Partners 2015)
  • "An excellent speaker." "She is able to pick up a case and familiarise herself with it very quickly." (European Law, Chambers & Partners 2015)
  • "She is hugely bright and hugely hard-working." (Inquests & Public Inquiries, Chambers & Partners 2015)
  • "Takes complex facts and concepts and shapes them into effective strategy with remarkable speed and skill." (Administrative & Public Law, The Legal 500 2014)
  • "Excellent." (Civil Liberties & Human Rights, The Legal 500 2014)
  • "She is very personable and very hard-working, and can endear herself to clients and solicitors alike." "She is a very tenacious, efficient and clear advocate in court." (Chambers & Partners 2014, Administrative & Public law)
  • Seen by peers as an up-and-coming name in the competition field. Her recent experience has demonstrated her strength in cases that include a commercial angle. She is also recommended for her public law expertise.” (Chambers & Partners 2014, Competition law)
  • “She is highly industrious and her legal research skills are near perfect." "She is effortlessly able." (Chambers & Partners 2014, Competition law)
  • “Her practice encompasses public, EU and competition law. She is experienced in acting before a number of EU courts and has recently been instructed by the UK government. Sources praise her superb research skills.” (Chambers & Partners 2014, European law)
  • "Outstanding on EU general court practice and EU agricultural law." "Her judgement in court is striking." (Chambers & Partners 2014, European law)
  • “Offers representation in public inquiries of the highest social and political importance. She is an expert in public law and human rights.” (Chambers & Partners 2014, Inquests & Public Inquiries)
  • "She is invariably correct and performs with utter brilliance." "A bit of a phenomenon. She is painfully clever, very hard-working and very easy to get along with." (Chambers & Partners 2014, Inquests & Public Inquiries)
  • "stunningly good tactically" with a "natural sense for litigation" Victoria Wakefield is an up-and-coming member of the UK's competition bar" (Global Competition Review "UK barrister survey" 2013)
  • "Victoria Wakefield "is starting to make a big name for herself" in the public law sphere. She represented the Ministry of Defence in the Baha Mousa Inquiry, and acted for the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation & Skills in a judicial review challenge to the legality of the export from the UK of chemicals which are used in lethal injection executions in the USA. One senior barrister "was completely wowed by her. I can't think of any area that I would fault her on."" (Chambers & Partners 2013, Administrative & Public Law)
  • Ranked in the Legal 500 2012 in Administrative & Public Law and Human Rights & Civil Liberties
  • "Victoria Wakefield ... impresses solicitors with her public law expertise." (Chambers & Partners 2012, Administrative & Public Law)
  • "the ‘tremendous' Victoria Wakefield is praised for her work on the Baha Mousa Public Inquiry." (Legal 500 2011, Civil Liberties and Human Rights)
  • "wise beyond her years, has a brilliant manner, yet wears it modestly" (Legal 500 2009, Commercial litigation)

About cookies on our website

Following a revised EU directive on website cookies, each company based, or doing business, in the EU is required to notify users about the cookies used on their website.

Our site uses cookies to improve your experience of certain areas of the site and to allow the use of specific functionality like social media page sharing. You may delete and block all cookies from this site, but as a result parts of the site may not work as intended.

To find out more about what cookies are, which cookies we use on this website and how to delete and block cookies, please see our Which cookies we use page.

Click on the button below to accept the use of cookies on this website (this will prevent the dialogue box from appearing on future visits)