Robert Machell

Called: 2016

Inn: Lincoln's Inn


Email: rmachell@1ec.co.uk






Robert was called to the Bar in 2016 and completed pupillage specialising in complex commercial disputes. He has a broad civil practice, with regular court advocacy, as well as drafting statements of case and providing written advice.

Robert’s practice encompasses contractual disputes, banking & finance, civil fraud, property, and insolvency.

Prior to being called the bar, Robert spent over twenty years working in financial services, establishing and successfully growing a LLP and accumulating considerable commercial experience. He is well-placed to advise and represent banks and commercial litigants.

Before that Robert spent six years in the British Army, leaving as a Captain in the Royal Engineers.

​Robert has appeared in a wide range of hearings including trials, appeals and applications, including applications for urgent commercial injunctions, applications for pre-action disclosure, applications under the Companies Act 2006, applications under the Insolvency Act 1986, Winding-Up and Bankruptcy Petitions.  He has appeared in the County Court, High Court and Court of Appeal.



2016       Barstow Scholarship, City Law School

2015       Denning Scholarship, Lincoln’s Inn

2015       Excellence award, University of Law

Practice Areas

Commercial & Contractual Disputes

Civil Fraud

Banking & Finance


Jurisdiction challenges


Company Law

General Civil Litigation


2015 – 2016 – Bar Professional Training Course, City Law School (Outstanding, ranked 3rd on course)

2014 – 2015 – Graduate Diploma in Law, University of Law (Distinction)

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Recent Cases 

Examples of recent instructions include:

Commercial Disputes:

  • Advised and acted for a specialist M&E subcontractor following early termination by the main contractor in a multi-million pound construction project.

  • Advised and successfully appeared at trial for a commercial claimant in a complex dispute over licensing fees.

  • Obtained an urgent interim injunction in the High Court for a TV studio for the return of television recording cameras seized by a shareholder/creditor.

  • Obtained an urgent interim injunction for a commercial laundry whose machines had been rendered inoperable by the lessor’s agents in a dispute over lease payments.

  • Represented a property developer at trial defending a claim from the buyer of the property.

  • Acted for a company in a multi-track claim against a former senior employee for misuse of company funds.

  • Successfully resisted a challenge to detailed assessment of costs by a commercial claimant who had discontinued proceedings.#

  • Advised those acting for a FTSE 250 company in a dispute over contractual fees.

  • Advised on and successfully represented a commercial litigant for a Part 69 application for a court-appointed receiver by way of equitable execution.

  • Successfully obtained an order in the High Court enforcing the cross undertaking in damages in a commercial injunction.


Civil fraud:

  • Acted for a property investor in a multi-million pound bribery claim (ongoing).

  • Advised the potential claimant on the effect of an undisclosed commission received by his bank in connection with a £10 million investment.

  • Successfully obtained pre-action disclosure in the High Court of payments said to be bribes, for an investor in a failed tax scheme.

  • Advised the borrower on rescission of a $5m facility agreement for fraud.

Banking & Finance:

  • Drafted pleadings in a Letters of Credit dispute between two commercial banks.

  • Advised the potential claimant on the merits of the claim in respect of losses incurred on a regulated pension product.

  • Represented the Defendant bank against a mis-selling claim where the terms of a prior settlement were challenged.



  • Counsel for the Respondent opposing an application to seek, on a derivative basis, an injunction to restrain presentation of a Winding-Up Petition in a one-day hearing in the High Court.

  • Represented the Respondents in a high-value cross-border insolvency matter, opposing an application by a trustee-in-bankruptcy for a Proprietary Injunction and Receivership Order in the High Court.

  • Assisted (as pupil to Duncan Macpherson) in Birdi v Price [2018] EWHC 2943 (Ch), a “tools of the trade” claim against a trustee-in-bankruptcy.

  • Advised a solicitor on a trustee-in-bankruptcy’s s.311 request for papers of a former client, which were the subject of joint privilege with a third-party.

  • Successfully obtained a third-party costs order against a director following the winding-up of a company.


  • Appeared in the Court of Appeal in Kuznetsov v Amazon Services Europe SARL [2019] EWCA Civ 964, an appeal concerning the court’s jurisdiction to set aside a judgment some 15 months after it was entered.

  • Researched points of law (as pupil to Andrew Fulton) in Sabbagh v Khoury [2017] EWCA Civ 1120: a jurisdictional challenge on five grounds to a US$600m claim relating to allegations of conspiracy.

  • Prepared arguments to resist enforcement of a Cypriot anti-suit injunction in the High Court (as pupil to Jonathan Miller).

  • Acted for a claimant seeking permission from the High Court to serve proceedings out of the jurisdiction on non-EU domiciled persons in a multi-million pound dispute.

  • Successfully opposed a jurisdiction challenge by a defendant who sought to rely on an arbitration agreement, and/or an exclusive jurisdiction agreement.

  • Represented the Respondent in Chelfat v Hutchison 3G UK Ltd [2022] EWCA Civ 455, an appeal concerning what a claimant must do before limitation where a claim form is to be served out of the jurisdiction without permission.


Chancery & Company Law:

  • Advised the beneficiary of a trust and drafted a Part 8 claim for issue in the High Court for conveyance of property under the rule in Saunders v Vautier.

  • Drafted the Defence to a claim for a constructive trust.

  • Drafted statements of case and acted for a party claiming an account and an inquiry under a constructive trust.

  • Successfully obtained a declaration that a Deed of Trust was void for want of capacity.

  • Advised on, and prepared an application for, restoration of a company to the register under the Companies Act 2006, s.1024.

  • Advised on an application for alterations to the register under the Companies Act 2006, ss. 790V, 1096 and 1097.

Skills & Interest
Away from Chambers, Robert is often to be found on his 1952 Ferguson tractor or looking after his rare-breed Tamworth pigs.

2010 - present

2010 - present