James Harrison

Call: 2021


Bar Professional Training Course, BPP University (Outstanding)
Graduate Diploma in Law, BPP University (Commendation)
BA (Hons) History, University of Oxford (2:1)



Gardiner Scholarship & Harmsworth Entrance Exhibition (2019) from The Honourable Society of the Middle Temple
Certificate of Honour from The Honourable Society of the Middle Temple
UKELA Dame Frances Patterson Moot (2019) Winner
UKELA Lord Slynn of Hadley Moot (2020) Winner



James joined Chambers following the successful completion of his pupillage in April 2022. During his pupillage year, James gained experience in several Chambers’ key practice areas including, environmental, regulatory, and criminal work. He was supervised by Chris Badger, Simon Taylor QC, Stuart Jessop, and Mark Watson QC.

The majority of James’ work is criminal: he has developed a busy practice prosecuting and defending in the Magistrates’; Crown and Youth Courts. In addition to appearing in various trials including robbery; domestic ABH; sexual assault; harassment and exposure, James instructed to oppose various ancillary orders such as Sexual Harm Prevention Orders and restraining orders.

James has developed particular experience dealing with defendants with mental health issues. He secured a hospital order for a client suffering from a psychotic disorder who had committed ten offences including sexual assault and indecent exposure over a two-year period. He has also successfully persuaded the Crown Court not to activate a suspended sentence on the grounds of the client’s mental health reducing his culpability in his commission of dangerous driving.

Before pupillage, James worked as a paralegal for eighteen-months at a regional law firm. He gained experience in environmental law as a researcher at Plan.B Earth and on the committee for the PIEL UK conference.

James has also worked on secondment at Peters & Peters Solicitors LLP in the business crime and investigations department.



James spent four months of pupillage with Simon Taylor QC and observed a wide variety of hearings, including trials for prison mutiny, rape, and grievous bodily harm.

James has, in his own right, undertaken trials in the Magistrates’ Court and the Youth Court and has appeared for both the prosecution and defence in other hearings including first appearances, case management hearings, committals for sentence and appeals against conviction and sentence.

James has also been instructed in the prosecution of Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 offences.

James is currently a Grade 1 Prosecutor and regularly accepts both prosecution and defence work.


Notable Cases

R v B
Represented a youth defendant charged with two offences of sexual assault against his 14-year-old female cousin. Between the alleged commission of the offence and the trial, B pleaded guilty to attempted rape and sexual assault committed against his mother. Following submissions, B was sentenced to a three-year conditional discharge in the Youth Court.

R v T
Acquittal of defendant following successful argument of self-defence of property to prevent damage to trolley containing worldly possessions by homeless man alleged to have committed racially aggravated assault.

R v C
Secured a 12-month custodial term suspended for 24 months for defendant who had used her employment in a hospital to take a patient’s credit and debit cards, which were used over several weeks to withdraw almost £20,000 to purchase cocaine.

R v M
M suffered a traumatic brain injury as a young man. James represented him at sentence for 25 offences committed over two years, including a third domestic burglary attracting a mandatory minimum term. M was sentenced to a custodial term of 3 years 2 months following submissions relating to his mental health.



James spent four months of pupillage with Chris Badger during which time he observed a variety of environmental matters including multiple sentencing hearings dealing with Very Large Organisations that had committed offences under the Environmental Protection Act 1990. During this time, he gained an insight into both prosecution and defence work.

James has prosecuted on behalf of local authorities with regard to waste transit and fly-tipping offences. He has also acted for complainants in a noise nuisance case.

He is also contributor to Chambers’ Environmental Law Blog



James spent four months of pupillage being supervised by Mark Watson QC and Stuart Jessop. During this time, James researched the new Building Safety Bill and gained exposure to food law, large-scale disclosure exercises, and observed various hearings in the Magistrates’ Court.

In his own right, James has been instructed in multiple cases involving alleged breaches of inter alia food safety law and driving standards law, and he has been instructed as a case presenter for the Nursing and Midwifery Council.


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