Duncan Macpherson

Called: 1994

Inn: Middle Temple

Deputy head of chambers


Accepts instructions under the Public Access Scheme


Email: dmacpherson@1ec.co.uk



Duncan’s practice includes (in alphabetical order): 

Banking - Chancery – Charities - Commercial - Company - Financial Services -Fraud - related Human Rights - Insolvency - Partnership - Probate - Property - Professional Negligence (solicitors)

Duncan advises and represents banks, charities, clubs, companies, partnerships and individuals in areas ranging from family quarrels to international multi-million pound trade disputes.  Duncan is known for his client-focused approach to finding the best practical & cost-effective result available against a complex legal and factual background.  He is a fearless advocate before any tribunal, able to turn his hand equally to an urgent freezing injunction as to a complex trial or appeal. 


Duncan regularly acts as lead or sole Counsel in claims of over £10m (some over £500m) but gives the same attention to disputes of all sizes.

Recent/current clients include:


A number of substantial actions for fraudulent misrepresentation on behalf of both claimants (including one group action) and defendants (including one multi-jurisdiction action). A related claim in respect of a collective investment scheme.


A claim against RBS for negligent misselling of swaps and unlawful means conspiracy. Opposing ancillary worldwide freezing orders in aid of enforcement. 


A contested winding up petition on the just & equitable basis. Advice relating potential unfair prejudice petitions.


Actions for specific performance of contracts of sale, for both claimants and defendants. Defending landlord’s multiple claims to possession of a church. Advising on the conditions of purchase of an historic farming estate.


Advising pubs on tenancies, renewals, and the Pubs Code. Successfully defending an appeal against a arbitration award. 


Claims against solicitors for negligently advising and conducting substantial fraud and trust litigation, for badly redrafting Articles of Association, and for failing to prevent a transaction caused by undue influence. Advising solicitors regarding their liability for the fraud of former partners.


Proving at trial an home-made will found ten years after the death of the testator.  Settling at trial a case on mental capacity. Advising on claims against personal representatives.



Chancery Bar Association

Franco-British Lawyers Society

Human Rights Lawyers Association

Bar Pro Bono Unit (reviewer)



2010 - present

2010 - present

Practice Areas (in alphabetical order)


Banking: securities; guarantees; mortgages; debentures; factoring; invoice discounting. 

Chancery:  informal trusts; undue influence; general Chancery not identified elsewhere


Charities: charitable property; disputes within and against religious and other charitable bodies

Commercial: general commercial; agency; partnership; international trade.  Freezing injunctions and other urgent remedies. Pubs Code.

Company: meetings; minority interests; directors’ duties; derivative actions


Fraud: conversion; wrongful interference; breach of trust; tracing; knowing receipt; inconsistent dealing; dishonest assistance; restitution.  Freezing injunctions and other urgent remedies.

Human Rights: Articles 6 - fair trial; Article 8 - right to a home; Article 1 to Protocol 1 - right to property. 

Insolvency: company insolvency; receivers and administrators; bankruptcy; directors’ disqualification


Probate & trust: contested probate; Inheritance Act; claims against personal representatives or trustees; applications to replace personal representatives or trustees.


Property:  conveyancing; land registration; rights of way and other easements; proprietary estoppel; adverse possession; landlord & tenant (commercial & residential) including pubs.


Professional negligence: claims against solicitors, accountants and financial professionals.

Skills & Interest


French (fluent)

Bar Choral Society



MA (Oxon) - Jurisprudence

Privacy Policy


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Selected Reported Cases


London Borough of Barking & Dagenham v Omokudu [2020] EWHC 2620 (Ch). Appeal against declaration that a church had obtained relief from forfeiture.

EI Group v Clarke [2020] EWHC 1858 (Ch). Appeal by PubCo against award by arbitrator under the Pubs Code. Terms of ‘Free of Tie’ offer.

Re Brunt (deceased); Wrangle v Brunt [2020] EWHC 1784 (Ch). Proving home-made will found ten years after the death of the testator. Fraud; knowledge & approval.


The New York Laser Clinic Ltd v Naturastudios Ltd [2020] EWHC 560 (QB).  Setting aside post-judgment worldwide freezing order for substantial failure to disclose. Appeal pending.


Birdi v Price [2018] EWHC 2943 (Ch). [2019] 3 All ER 250; [2019] BPIR 306; [2019] Bus LR 489. Claim against trustee in bankruptcy for selling tools of the trade. Consequences of discharge of trustee.

The Republic of Angola v Perfectbit Ltd [2018] EWHC 965 (Comm). Application to discharge a $540m freezing injunction on the grounds of non-disclosure. 

Gresport Finance Ltd v Battaglia [2018] EWCA Civ 540.  Appeal on liability and limitation regarding a substantial fraud by an offshore wealth manager.

Bishop v Chhokar [2017] EWCA Civ 2717.  Appeal to set aside judgment on the grounds of perjury by the Defendant. 

Hira v Kanzai Securities Limited [2017] EWHC 2213 (Ch). Bankruptcy.  Whether a guarantee sounds in debt or damages. 

Ahmed & Anor v Ali Khalifa [2017] EWHC 1198 (Comm).  Challenge to jurisdiction by a Bahraini sheikh relating to a claim for agents fees for introducing Bollywood stars.

Thornton v Woodhouse [2017] EWHC 769 (Ch). 10-day trial formally to prove a complex will against the comprehensive opposition of the daughter of the testator.

Blake-Coulter v Anne Alexander Hotels [2016] EWHC 1457 (QB).  The test for setting aside judgment after non-attendance at trial.  

Khosravi v British American Tobacco PLC [2016] EWHC 123 (QB).   Application to extend time to serve proceedings in a claim for kidnapping and assault in Dubai.

Touton Far East v Shri Lal Mahal [2016] EWHC 1765 (Comm).  Conflict of laws. Appropriate terms of a post-judgment Freezing Order against an Indian company.  US$6.5 million claim.

Re Guidezone; Kaneria v Kaneria (30.07.15; LTL AC0147346).  Company.  21-day, 3-party trial of an unfair prejudice petition.  Included issues of contract, trust and equity.  Claim of £5-10 million.

Rai & Ors v Ahir & Ors [2014] EWHC 2299 (Ch).  Charity.  7-day, 3-party trial concerning the election of the management committee of a religious organisation.

Farsheshani v Versani [2014] EWHC 1966 (Ch).  Chancery.  5-day trial of probate/property dispute involving undue inflence, contractual construction and section 2 of the Law of Property (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1989

Citicorp International Ltd v Shiv-Vani Oil & Gas Exploration Services Ltd [2014] EWHC 245 (Comm).  Conflict of laws.  Whether the bank could simultaneously pursue claims in India and England.  US$ 85 million claim.

Redstone Mortgages Ltd v Wiemer [2013] EWHC 2497 (Ch).  Guarantee.  Appeal against summary judgment.

Rai v The Charity Commission for England and Wales [2012] EWHC 1111 (Ch). Charities. Leading case on when the court will permit a party to continue charity proceedings. 

Relfo Ltd v Jadvavarsani [2012] EWHC 2168 (Ch). Fraud. 7-day trial of a complex fraud and tracing claim involving 4 jurisdictions.  Led a junior in chambers.

Taylor v Lambert [2012] EWCA Civ 3. Chancery. Appeal regarding a boundary dispute.  Pro Bono.

Christie Owen & Davies Plc v Raobgle Trust Corporation [2011] EWCA Civ 1151. Commercial. Successful appeal against the trial judge's finding of primary fact. 

Re Salt & Evans [2011] EWHC 2105 (Ch). Bankruptcy. Whether a guarantee sounds in debt or damages. 

Sharafi & Anor v Woven Rugs Ltd [2010] EWHC 230 (Ch). Companies. Complex trial of a petition for relief against unfair prejudice of a minority shareholder. 

Truex v Toll [2009] EWHC 396 (Ch). Bankruptcy. Leading case to show that a solicitor cannot present a petition on unassessed costs. 

British Sky Broadcasting Plc v Sky Home Services Ltd [2008] EWCA Civ 1101. Costs. Successful appeal on the apportionment of costs

Brown v Rice [2007] EWHC 625 (Ch); (2008) FSR 3. Procedure. The first case about mediation privilege. 

Holtham v Kelmanson [2006] EWHC 2588 (Ch) (2006) NPC 112. Bankruptcy. The effect of Article 6 on delayed completion of a bankruptcy. 

Zaman v Zoha [2006] EWCA Civ 770. Partnership; mortgages. Status of a mortgage where partner paid underlying debt.


National Westminster Bank Plc v Malhan [2004] EWHC 847 (Ch); [2004] All ER (D) 196. Mortgages – s. 2 LPA 1925; Human Rights – Article 8 ECHR. Overriding interests and two trustees. 

Mirzai v Zucker [2004] All ER (D) 31. Wills; professional negligence. Whether a solicitor had been instructed to destroy a will. 

Maloney v St. George [2004] All ER (D) 184. Bankruptcy. The effects on a debt of a compromise. 

Re Crown Packaging Services Ltd [2004] EWHC 3147 (Ch). Insolvency. Winding up petition succeeds in obtaining payment. 

National Westminster Bank v Patel [2004] All ER (D) 429. Mortgages; estoppel; evidence. Enforcement of “all monies” charge refused for default on a later loan. 

Forder v Forder; Swindale [2003] 1 FLR 911. Ancillary relief; partnership; trusts. Intervener entitled to 1/3 of H’s property. 

Coppard v Customs and Excise [2003] EWCA Civ 511 [2003] QB 1428; [2003] 2 WLR 1618; [2003] 3 ALL ER 351. Procedure; Human Rights. The Common Law rules as to de facto judges and how they are affected by Art 6 ECHR.

Owo-Samson v Barclays Bank Plc [2003] EWCA Civ 714 [2003] BPIR 1373. Bankruptcy. Valuation of security by petitioning creditor. 

Re Ringinfo Ltd [2002] 1 BCLC 210. Insolvency. Winding up petition should not be restrained by spurious cross-claim. 

Jackson v Bell & Anor [2001] EWCA Civ 387 (15 March 2001); (CA) BPIR [2001] 612; [2001] Fam Law 879. Bankruptcy; Art. 8 ECHR; ancillary relief. Whether a property adjustment order by consent is a preference or transfer at undervalue.  Whether a claim against former solicitors constitutes exceptional grounds to delay sale of bankrupt’s property. 

Gordon v Omgate [2001] BPIR 909. Bankruptcy – R 6.06, IR ’86. Grounds for granting leave to present 2nd petition. 

Ladjadj v Bank Of Scotland [2000] EWCA Civ 21; (CA) [2000] 2 All E.R. (Comm) 583. Mortgage.  Possession order refused when miscalculation of interest prevents AJA application.

R v Cole (CA) [1998] 2 BCLC 234; [1998] BCC 87. Insolvency – s. 216(4) IA ’86.  Liability for running “phoenix” company is strict.

Re a Debtor (68/SD/97) [1998] 4 All ER 779; [1999] BPIR 352. Bankruptcy; Legal Aid. Assisted party is trustee for debt due to Legal Aid Board.