Chambers and Partners

Keith Morton QC

Keith Morton QC


Keith's practice encompasses health, safety and regulatory law, in which he is recognised as a leading practitioner at the Bar, and civil common law with a particular focus on inquiry work, employment, personal injury and administrative law. His specialist practice in the health and safety field is long established. In 2010 he was short-listed for the Chambers and Partners Health and Safety Junior of the Year. He was appointed a Queen's Counsel in 2011. He acts almost exclusively for defendants. Keith has appeared in many of the most high profile health and safety cases in recent years. He has represented some of the country's leading corporations and public bodies in health and safety related criminal proceedings, inquests and public inquiries. He represented and advised the Metropolitan Police in the Stockwell Shooting prosecution and Transport for London in the Inquests into the London Bombings of 7 July 2005. He was junior counsel for the defence in R v Cotswold Geotechnical (Holdings) Ltd, the first prosecution under the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007. In respect of his common law work Keith is accustomed to dealing with complex civil litigation for both claimants and defendants.

What the Directories say

Recommended in Chambers and Partners in the field of health and safety since 2004. A recent edition reports peers say that "he is very good with clients, as he is user-friendly. His advocacy is excellent and well judged, he knows which points to take and he has a good grasp of tactics". Earlier editions described him as an "absolutely fabulous advocate" and a "calm advocate who reflects wisely" and noted that Keith is "a ferocious cross-examiner" who "is in demand and responsible for exploring acres of new grounds in case law", "works tirelessly and ceaselessly" and that "he outshines just about any other" with a "solid grasp of the law" and "great attention to detail". He was noted for his ability to put clients at ease.

Recommended by the Legal 500 in the field of health and safety. The 2011 Edition says "New silkKeith MortonQC reaps positive feedback from clients". Earlier editions noted he is "direct, focused and decisive". As a junior it reported that there was not "a better junior at the Bar" and that "Keith Mortonhas established an excellent reputation for his tremendous manner in court".

Notable Cases

  • University of Southampton v Mohtasham [2012] EWHC 1630 QB and [2012] EWHC 3795 QB: wide ranging permanent injunction obtained to restrain the defendant from harassing and making false allegations of plagiarism against certain academics at the university and those associated with them and related committal proceedings
  • R v Merlin Attraction Limited Operations Limited [2012] EWCA Crim 2670: appeal against sentence
  • R v BAM Construction Limited (2012, Bristol Crown Court): defendant acquitted of charges relating the death of a workman on a site of which it was the principal contractor
  • R v Dalkia Utilities Services Limited (2011, Reading Crown Court): prosecution arising from the death of a workman exposed to carbon dioxide discontinued following cross-examination of prosecution expert
  • Macintyre v Ministry of Defence [2011] EWHC 1690 QB: Ministry of Defence succeeding in its defence of claim arising out injury sustained in course of adventure training in the Alps
  • R v Cotswold Geotechnical Holdings Limited (2011, Winchester Crown Court): First prosecution under the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007
  • Inquests into the London Bombings of 7 July 2005 presided over by Lady Justice Hallett: Counsel for Transport for London
  • Uren v Corporate Leisure and Ministry of Defence [2011] EWCA Civ 66 and retrial in 2012
  • Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust Inquiry (2010) presided over by Robert Francis QC: Counsel to the Inquiry
  • R v Office of the Commissioner for Police of the Metropolis (2007, Central Criminal Court): prosecution arising out of the Stockwell Shooting
  • R (Purja) v Ministry of Defence [2004] 1 WLR 289
  • R v Sir John Stevens and Lord Condon (Central Criminal Court, 2003): duties owed to police officers under Health and Safety legislation


  • Appointed Junior Counsel to the Crown (London A Panel) 2003-2008 and 2009-2011