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 (more recently mainly remote video and telephone hearings), 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, such as applications for urgent commercial injunctions, applications to set aside default judgment, applications to strike out statements of case/summary judgment, applications for relief from sanctions, applications for pre-action disclosure, applications under the Companies Act 2006, applications under the Insolvency Act 1986, Winding-Up Petitions, vesting orders and possession claims (both residential and commercial).  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

Property, landlord and tenant disputes


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:

•    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.

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

•    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 headhunter fees.

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

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

Civil fraud:

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

•    Acted for an investor in a failed tax scheme, successfully obtaining pre-action disclosure from its agent of payments said to be bribes.

•    Advised the borrower under a $5m facility agreement on whether it could be rescinded following discovery of a secret commission received by their agent.

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.

•    Acted for the petitioner successfully obtaining an order for costs 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.

Property, Landlord & Tenant:

•   Successfully acted for mortgagee-in-possession in forfeiture of a commercial lease and substitution of parties.

•   Successfully represented the claimant tenant, obtaining substantial damages for unlawful eviction in a two-day Fast-Track trial.

•    Acted for the respondent landlord successfully opposing the tenant’s appeal against the dismissal of his claim under the Housing Act 2004, s.214.

•   Prepared an appeal and successfully appeared on behalf a tenant appealing against a possession order and money judgment.

•   Acted for a leaseholder successfully claiming extension under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993, s.49.

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.

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

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