Timothy Atkinson2018-11-08T18:01:47+00:00

Project Description

Timothy Atkinson

Timothy Atkinson

Call: 1988

“Highly knowledgeable and approachable.”

Timothy Atkinson
Download Barrister CV
Email Clerks
020 7353 8845

Barrister Overview

Timothy has appeared in a significant number of leading media law cases over many years including appearances (both led and on his own) in the Court of Appeal. He has represented leading national figures from all walks of life. His practice has a significant international dimension, including representing and advising prominent individuals, large corporations and media organisations in many different countries, including several appearances in the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal of Gibraltar.

He has addressed influential and prestigious meetings here and abroad on the General Data Protection Regulation, taking part in a Meeting of Experts concerning the Regulation organised to assist the European Commission, and giving a lead speech at the Annual Conference of the Society for Computers and Law. He has advised on several important Inquiry reports. He advises the Law Society on defamation.


Timothy has an extensive media and reputation management practice. He acts for public figures from across the globe.  He has the ability to put clients at ease and to respond to matters of urgency in a timely manner. He grasps the facts quickly. Chambers and Partners 2019

“Very knowledgeable and approachable.” The Legal 500 2018

Timothy has been described as having “encyclopaedic knowledge”, Chambers and Partners 2017

He is “user friendly” The Legal 500 2016

“Very good with clients, conscientious and sensitive” Chambers and Partners 2015

Timothy “thinks outside the box”, The Legal 500 2015

“Fearsomely bright” Chambers and Partners 2013, and “an exceptionally gifted advocate” Chambers and Partners 2008

Representative Cases

Huda v Wells [2017] EWHC 2553 (QB) – Decision on absolute privilege in context of permission to serve out of the jurisdiction, with observations on s.9 Defamation Act 2013. Counsel for the defendant.

The Construction Industry Vetting Information Group Litigation (2014 – 2016) – High profile multi-million pound data protection claim. Junior Counsel for one of the defendants led by Patricia Robertson QC.

Cammish v Hughes [2012] EWCA Civ 1655 (Court of Appeal) – Important decision on (a) defamatory meaning and (b) the application of the principle in Jameel. Counsel for the claimant.

McLaughlin v Lambeth Borough Council [2010] EWHC 2726 (QB) – Significant decision in relation to the capacity of an employee of a governmental body to sue in defamation where what is impugned is their conduct in the carriage of the business of that body. Junior Counsel for the defendant led by Andrew Caldecott QC.

Kearns v General Council of the Bar [2003] EWCA Civ 331 (Court of Appeal) – Important decision on qualified privilege in context of pre-existing relationship between publisher and recipient. Junior Counsel for the claimant led by Richard Rampton QC.

Al-Fagih v H.H. Saudi Research & Marketing (UK) Ltd [2001] EWCA Civ 1634 (Court of Appeal) – Important decision on extension of public interest defence in context of a political dispute. Junior Counsel for the defendant led by Andrew Caldecott QC.

Austin v Newcastle Chronicle & Journal Ltd [2001] EWCA Civ 834 (Court of Appeal) – Significant decision on extension of time for service of Particulars of Claim. Counsel for the claimant.

Alexander v Arts Council of Wales [2001] EWCA Civ 514 (Court of Appeal) – Important decision on (a) summary judgment in context of defamation and (b) malice. Junior Counsel for the defendant led by Tom Shields QC.

Cornelius v de Taranto [2001] EMLR 12 (appeared) and [2002] EWCA Civ 1511 (Court of Appeal (drafted Skeleton for Appeal)) – First case in which an award of damages for mental distress caused by a breach of confidentiality was made. Junior Counsel for the claimant led by Edward Garnier QC.

Waple v Surrey County Council [1998] 1 WLR 860 (Court of Appeal) – Significant decision on privilege defence regarding answers to enquiries relating to a contribution notice under the Children Act 1989. Counsel for the claimant.

McDonalds Corporation v Steel and Morris (1994-1999) (i) [1995] EMLR 527 (Court of Appeal) 1999 (Court of Appeal) (ii) The Independent May 10, 1999 – The longest civil case in English history with important Court of Appeal decisions on (a) pleading a defence of truth (b) the capacity of a powerful multinational corporation to sue for defamation and (c) corporate goodwill in the context of a defamation action. Junior Counsel for the claimant led by Richard Rampton QC.

Cases and News

Publications and Seminars

Co-author, Atkin’s Court Forms on Defamation

Co-author, Duncan and Neill on Defamation, 3rd edition (2009) 4th edition (2015)

Cyber Liability and Data Protection, Address to Annual Conference of the Society for Computers and Law, 2015

Certification Schemes, Address to Meeting of Experts in Amsterdam to assist European Commission in process of formulating the General Data Protection Regulation, 2014


BA (Hons) University of Oxford (Balliol College), Brackenbury Scholar

Member of Human Rights Lawyers Association

Privacy Notice

Name and contact details of the Data Controller

Timothy Atkinson
One Brick Court
London EC4Y 9BY
Tel: 020 7353 9945
Email: clerks@onebrickcourt.com

Individuals to whom this Privacy Notice applies
1. This notice applies to all those whose personal data I process in the course of my practice as a barrister. It applies to you if (a) you are an individual and I have been instructed to act on your behalf (that is, you are “my client”), (b) you are a person mentioned in my case papers whether because you work for or are otherwise connected with a company, organisation or public body which has instructed me to act on its behalf or because, for example, you are a witness or are referred to in documents with which I have been supplied, (c) you are my instructing solicitor, (d) another lawyer or professional involved in a case in which I am acting, or (e) a member, pupil or employee at One Brick Court. If you are my client, you will have received a copy of this Privacy Notice when I was first instructed on your behalf.

Collection, use and reasons for processing your personal information
2. What information I obtain, and why and how I use that information, varies with the source and type of information:

Personal information where I am acting for you
2.1. If you are my client, I collect and store your personal details, other information that you have provided to me or your solicitor in connection with your case, and information about you contained in documents provided by others involved in the case, such as witnesses and opposing parties. This information may be obtained upon receipt of instructions, receipt of documents sent by your solicitor or other lawyers involved your case, or from you directly.

Personal information of individuals who are not my client
2.2. If you are not my client, you should know that I collect and store the names, employment details and contact details of third parties with whom I deal in the course of my practice, and the personal data of individuals contained in instructions, case papers and communications in cases in which I am instructed. This information may be obtained upon receipt of instructions, upon enquiries being made about my services, through dealings with third parties concerned with my work, from you directly or from enquiries being made by me about you, your work or your services.

2.3. If you are a member of Chambers, a pupil or employee at One Brick Court, I collect, store and use your name, contact details, work done by you (if you are a pupil), and other information about you that may be contained in Chambers internal documents or that you provide to me yourself.

3. The purposes for which I process the above personal data are the provision of legal services, the administration of my practice (including my membership of One Brick Court), legal research, practice development and marketing, training and assessing pupils, training mini-pupils and work experience students, and dealing with any complaints or disputes. The processing of the above personal data is necessary for those legitimate interests. Where I process your personal data for those legitimate interests, I have taken into account your data rights and considered that they do not override my interests in relation to the data I hold and the use I make of those data.

4. I lawfully process some of the above personal data in order to be able to comply with my legal obligations, for example dealings with HMRC.

5. If your personal data reveal your racial or ethnic origin, your political opinions, religious or philosophical beliefs, or your trade union membership, data concerning your health or data concerning your sex life or sexual orientation, or data relating to your criminal convictions and offences or related security measures, I will only process those data where you have given your explicit consent, where the processing relates to personal data which are manifestly made public by you, where the processing is necessary for the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims, or where the processing is otherwise permitted by law.

6. I will retain your personal data for so long as is necessary for the purposes identified above. This may vary depending on the context in which I acquired the data and the purpose for which I process those data, and, in the event of any sort of dispute for as long as is necessary to resolve it.

Security of your personal information
7. I take appropriate technical and organisational measures to prevent the loss, misuse or alteration of personal information.

Sharing your personal data
8. I may disclose your personal data to third parties where it is reasonably necessary to carry out any of the purposes set out above in this Notice.

Your rights
9. You may at any time:

9.1 Ask for confirmation that I am processing your personal data and request a copy.
9.2 Request the rectification of your personal data or for your data to be completed if data are incomplete.
9.3 Request that I erase your personal data.
9.4 Request that I restrict the extent of my processing of your personal data.
9.5 Request receipt of the personal data you have provided for transmission to another data controller, or request that I provide those data directly to another data controller.
9.6 Object to my processing of your personal data.

10. I will need to verify your identity before I can comply with any request.

11. I may be entitled or obliged to refuse your request or objection. If I do so, I will give you my reasons.

12. You have a right to complain about my processing of your personal data, including how I have responded to any request you’ve made about how I use your personal data, to the Information Commissioner (www.ico.org.uk and/or 0303 123 1113) the Supervisory Authority of any EU Member State.