Senior Associate


Christopher is a specialist immigration lawyer covering all aspects of the field, including commercial immigration law, but with a particular interest and expertise in personal, human rights-based and asylum applications. Christopher has worked in the field for over 25 years. He has been at Bates Wells Braithwaites for nearly 10 years and was a partner in the ground-breaking immigration firm Winstanley-Burgess before that. He has taken cases to all levels of the UK courts, and to both the European Court in Luxembourg and the European Court of Justice in Strasbourg. He has acted as an expert in a number of immigration and criminal cases.

Christopher has been selected by peers for the inclusion in the 2015 Edition of Best Lawyers in the United Kingdom in the practice area of Immigration law.

Examples of recent work 

  • Appeared before the House of Commons Joint Committee on the Draft Modern Slavery Bill and gave evidence as a result of a longstanding association with Kalayaan, an organiation which supports overseas domestic workers
  • Advising on the immigration status of an international sportsman and obtaining him leave to remain on human rights grounds in order to allow him to pursue his career in the UK
  • Advising a group of skilled migrants ‘the HSMP Forum’ in the litigation which forced the rewriting of the Home Office policy for highly skilled migrants
  • Obtaining entry clearance for a spouse of a British citizen with a serious conviction
  • Obtaining asylum for two foreign journalists, one based on his activities abroad, and one based on activities in the UK
  • Advising international celebrities on the immigration status of their staff
  • Advising employers about their obligations when employing foreign nationals

Qualifications and career

  • New College, Oxford University, BA Politics, Philosophy and Economics, 1981
  • City of London Polytechnic, Common Professional Examination and Law Society Finals, 1985
  • Winstanley-Burgess Solicitors, from trainee to equity partner, 1985
  • Senior associate at Bates Wells Braithwaite. 2003
  • Part-time Immigration Judge, 2009

Pro-bono, memberships and appointments

  • Provides advice to Kalayaan
  • Member of ILPA, executive for 15 years and chair for two years to November 2007
  • Teaches regularly for ILPA and other migrant organisations
  • Trustee of Refugee Action
  • Long involvement with organisations that assist overseas domestic workers  
  • Expert advisor to Parliamentary Select Committee on Constitutional Affairs in their enquiry into immigration appeals, 2003-2005
  • Acts as an expert in immigration and criminal cases

Publications and lectures

  • Co-authored ‘Recent Developments in Immigration Law' which appeared quarterly in ‘Legal Action' until 2003
  • Wrote a chapter in ‘Strangers and Citizens' – a positive approach to migrants and refugees by Sara Spencer IPPR, 1994