Keith Morton QC
Head of Chambers

Year of Call: 1990 / Year of Silk: 2011

kmorton@tgchambers.com


Practice Areas


Keith Morton QC
Head of Chambers

Experience

Keith is recognised as a leading practitioner in the fields of health and safety law, inquests and inquiries. In October 2017 he was named Health and Safety Silk of the year at the Chambers and Partners UK Bar awards. His practice also encompasses administrative law and civil common law with a particular focus on personal injury.

Directories

Recommended in the top band of Chambers and Partners in the fields of Inquests, Inquiries and Health and Safety.

The 2019 edition says that he is “A brilliant barrister who has a lovely manner with clients. He is very knowledgeable and very thoughtful” and “has good vision, a good eye for detail and experience of handling big cases”.

Earlier editions say “He is extremely thorough, meticulous in his preparation and tactically astute”, “A fantastic grasp of the law. He has a great jury manner and is a wonderful cross-examiner, which becomes immediately apparent” and “He is thorough, bright, intelligent and a pleasure to work with.” They have also reported that Keith is “Bright, hard-working, careful in court but capable of baring his teeth when necessary.” “He is incredibly user-friendly, has a knack with clients and an almost instinctive knowledge of what the judge or coroner is looking for”, “His attention to detail is phenomenal”, “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”, “an absolutely fabulous advocate” and a “calm advocate who reflects wisely” and note 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”.

Recommended in Legal 500 top band in the fields of both Health and Safety and Inquests and Inquiries. The 2020 Edition reports that Keith is “Probably the best QC in the field …” and has “First-class client skills, with meticulous attention to detail and focused on working with solicitors as part of an integrated legal team”.

Earlier editions reported that Keith “is one of the best cross-examiners of expert witnesses and is always polished” and that “He is undoubtedly one of the leaders in this area of law and a pleasure to work with”. The 2017 edition said: “An incisive cross-examiner and good tactician, who has the jury’s attention” and “He gets to the core of the issues quickly and with ease”. Earlier editions say:He has a gravitas which inspires confidence in judges, juries and clients”, “Great with clients and good on his feet”, and that Keith is “direct, focused and decisive” and “has established an excellent reputation for his tremendous manner in court”.

Appointments

Assistant Coroner for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough

Education

University of Hull, City University, Inns of Court School of Law

Professional Memberships

Health and Safety Lawyers Association, Administrative Law Bar Association, Personal Injuries Bar Association

CROYDON TRAM INQUEST

Fiona, led by Keith Morton QC, represented Transport for London at the inquests into the deaths of the seven people killed in the Croydon Tram crash at Sandilands on 9 November 2016. The inquests were held over 10 weeks.

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R (HSE) v A Major Construction Company

Keith Morton, instructed by Madeleine Abas, Senior Partner of Osborn Abas Hunt, secured the acquittal of a major construction company following an 8 day trial before the District Judge (Magistrates’ Court) at Derby Magistrates Court.

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Croydon Tram Inquest

Keith Morton QC, leading Fiona Canby, represented Transport for London at the inquests into the deaths of seven people killed in the Croydon Tram crash at Sandilands on 9 November 2016. The inquests were held over 10 weeks. The jury returned a unanimous conclusion of Accidental death together with a narrative.


R (HSE) v X Construction Company Limited

Keith secures a reduction of almost quarter of a million pounds for a very large construction company following its guilty plea to a charge under section 2 of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.


R (HSE) v Mick George Limited

Keith secures a substantial reduction in the fine imposed for breach of Regulation 25(3) of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015. Prosecution arose as a consequence of a tipper vehicle striking an overhead power line (OPL).


Shoreham Air Disaster Inquest

Keith is instructed by the Civil Aviation Authority in the ongoing Inquests in the deaths of 11 people on 22 August 2015 when a Hawker Hunter participating in the Shoreham Air Show crashed onto the A27


R (HSE) V Tata Steel UK Limited [2017] EWCA Crim 704

In what is believed to be the first successful appeal against sentence for a very large organisation sentenced for health and safety offences under the Definitive Guidelines, Keith Morton QC and Dominic Adamson secured a substantial reduction in a fine imposed on Tata Steel UK following its guilty plea to two health and safety offences.

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R v BAM Construction Limited

Keith represented BAM Construction Limited at a month long trial in which the Company was accused of failing to comply with its duties under Section 3 of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and Regulation 22 of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007.

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Vauxhall Helicopter Crash Inquest

Keith Morton QC acted for the Civil Aviation Authority at the Inquest into this high profile case in which a helicopter collided with a crane on top of St Georges Wharf Tower, then under construction in Vauxhall. The collision resulted in the death of the pilot and a pedestrian, a large number of injuries and significant damage to property.


R v Dynamiq Cleaning Limited Central Criminal Court

Company prosecuted for failing to ensure the safety at work of its employees following an accident at Edgware Bus Depot in which a cleaner suffered serious injury. The company was acquitted following a two week trial


Re Tiya Chauhan

This inquest arose out of the death of a 22 month old girl who was attending a nursery school. As part of an activity session, cubes of jelly were made available in a sensory tray. Tiya choked on a cube of jelly taken from this tray. The jury considered that the death was contributed to by neglect. Keith Morton QC represented the company operating the nursery, Tim Sharpe represented a senior manager of the company and Charles Curtis acted for the London Borough of Merton.


Cox v Ministry of Justice [2014] QB 107

Leading decision of the Court of Appeal considering the reach of vicariously liability of the Ministry of Justice for the negligent act of a prisoner resulting in injury to a prison officer


R v Austin & McLean Limited and Esso Plc

Keith represented Austin & McLean in a prosecution following the death of a sailor on board ship at Esso’s Fawley Refinery. He was killed when the jib of a crane collapsed onto the ship’s deck. Austin & McLean were charged with corporate manslaughter. However, after initiating a dismissal application of that charge the case was resolved by a plea to a lesser offence under the Health and Safety at Work Act


Monk v Cann Hall Primary School and Essex County Council [2013] EWCA Civ 826

Court of Appeal decision on relationship between damages for unfair dismissal and common law damages for negligence causing person injury in the context of a dismissal. The Court of Appeal held that the Judge had been wrong to strike out the claimant’s case


R v Merlin Attractions Plc [2012] EWCA Crim 2670

The then leading case on sentencing large corporations following conviction for a health and safety offence resulting in death


University of Southampton v Mohtasham [2012] EWHC 1630 QB

The Court granted the University a wide ranging permanent injunction against the Defendant restraining her from harassing employees and research students of the University by her repeated and unfounded allegations including allegations of plagiarism. The Court of Appeal rejected the Defendant’s attempts to overturn the injunction on appeal


R v BAM Construction Limited

Defendant was the principal contractor on a large building project at the University of Bath. An employee of one of its sub-contractors was killed when temporary works which he was working under collapsed. BAM was acquitted of all charges following a 5 week trial.


Macintyre v Ministry of Defence [2012] EWHC 1690 QB

The Ministry of Defence succeeded in its defence to this claim arising out of serious injury sustained by an officer in the course of a mountain climbing accident during adventure training in the Alps


R v Dalkia Utilities Services Limited

Prosecution arising from the death of a workman exposed to carbon dioxide in the course of his employment. The case was discontinued following Keith’s cross-examination of the Prosecution’s expert.


TGC Inquests and Inquiries Newsletter

18th March 2021

Welcome to the inaugural edition of the TGC Inquests and Inquiries newsletter, a twice-yearly publication containing articles on recent key legal developments in these fields, as well as a selection of recent noteworthy cases in which Members of Chambers have been involved.


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The Legal diary

20th August 2020

Keith Morton QC writes the Legal Highlight of the Week in today’s Edition of Edward Fennell’s Legal Diary.


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TGC Podcast Covid – 19: RIDDOR Reporting and Causation in a Criminal and Civil Context

10th July 2020

Members of the Health & Safety and PI teams at Temple Garden Chambers have recorded their second podcast in our Covid – 19 series.

 

The podcast is essential listening on the implications for employers and employees in relation to the return to the workplace in the shadow of Covid 19.

 

Please join ranked leaders in the field Keith Morton QC and Dominic Adamson QC along with Lionel Stride, David R White and James Yapp via the below link.

 

The date of knowledge information as mentioned within the podcast can be obtained here.


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How to manage risk during a pandemic

9th June 2020

With the end to lockdown in sight, operators must now form a viable plan for health and safety. Keith Morton explains the key points  The Caterer 5 June 2020.


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TGC Podcast: Avoiding Criminal Enforcement Action & Civil Claims in the Shadow of Covid-19

26th May 2020

Members of the Health & Safety team at Temple Garden Chambers intend to inform and assist in a topical podcast on the implications to employers on workers returning to the workplace in the shadow of Covid 19.

 

Please join ranked leaders in the field Keith Morton QC, Dominic Adamson QC along with Lionel Stride, David White and James Yapp via the link below.

 

More information on the speakers and the areas in which TGC can assist can be found at:

 

www.tgchambers.com

Or by contacting the clerks:

0207 583 1315 or clerks@tgchambers.com


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TGC Fraud Newsletter Issue X – October 2019

23rd October 2019

Issue X of the TGC Fraud Newsletter, a publication we have set up with the stated aim of facilitating the sharing of information about decided claims involving issues of road traffic fraud and related matters, can be found at the link below.


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TGC Inquest & Inquiries Newsletter – Second Issue, November 2021

24th November 2021

Welcome to the second edition of the TGC Inquests and Inquiries newsletter, a twice-yearly publication, containing articles on recent key legal developments in these fields, as well as a selection of recent noteworthy cases in which Members of Chambers have been involved.

Our previous edition, published in March 2021, was published one year on from the first Covid-19 national lockdown, which had a huge impact on
inquests and public inquiries alike. At that time, inquests and inquiries were tentatively starting again, albeit with social distancing and additional technology measures. Now many inquests and inquiries are going ahead in person (or with hybrid in person/video link arrangements).

As such, it has been a busy few months for the Inquests and Inquiries team at Temple Garden Chambers. We were delighted to see that our recent work in this area has been rewarded with Chambers being promoted to a Band 1 ranking set for Inquests & Public Inquiries in Chambers and Partners UK Bar Rankings 2022, with a number of individuals being ranked individually, namely Andrew O’Connor QC, Cathryn McGahey QC, David Barr QC, Dominic Adamson
QC, Keith Morton QC, Nicholas Moss QC and Fiona Canby. All of these individuals were also ranked in the Legal 500 for Inquests and Inquiries, alongside Sian Reeves. We congratulate all members of the TGC Inquests and Inquiries team on this brilliant news.

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Keith Morton QC secures acquittal of major construction company charged under Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015

13th September 2021

Keith Morton, instructed by Madeleine Abas, Senior Partner of Osborn Abas Hunt, has secured the acquittal of a major construction company following an 8 day trial before the District Judge (Magistrates’ Court) at Derby Magistrates Court. The case explored the relationship between concurrent duties on designers, principal contractors and contractors under the CDM Regulations, the significance of foreseeability in health and safety cases and the extent to which the prosecution may be permitted to broaden its case on exposure to risks in the course of the trial.

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Croydon Tram Inquest

22nd July 2021

The inquests into the deaths of seven people killed in the Croydon Tram crash at Sandilands on 9 November 2016 concluded today after a hearing lasting 10 weeks. The jury returned a unanimous conclusion of Accidental death together with a narrative.

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Sandilands Inquests

17th May 2021

The Sandilands Inquests have started today at Croydon Town Hall. Keith Morton QC and Fiona Canby are acting for Transport for London.

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Keith Morton QC Appointed as Assistant Coroner

27th January 2021

TGC is delighted to announce that the Lord Chancellor and Chief Coroner have approved Keith Morton QC’s appointment as Assistant Coroner for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, under the Senior Coroner David Heming.

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Employers shouldn’t be treated as criminals

3rd September 2020

Workplace guidelines for coronavirus are born from bad government guidance.  The law shouldn’t punish businesses for trying to follow it.  Read Keith Morton QC’s article in today’s issue of The Times.


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Spotlight on health and safety as many restaurants, cafes and pubs reopen on 4th July

26th June 2020

Business owners may still be concerned that they get their health and safety obligations absolutely right to protect employees and customers. Keith Morton QC comments in today’s issue of This is Money about the grey area that remains around how firms should manage health and safety effectively and legally in their workplace.


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How to manage risk during a pandemic

9th June 2020

With the end to lockdown in sight, operators must now form a viable plan for health and Safety.  Keith Morton explains the key points in the 5 June issue of The Caterer.


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Tomorrow’s Health & Safety – The New Reality

20th May 2020

In this month’s edition of Tomorrow’s Health & Safety Keith Morton QC looks at the legislation dutyholders must abide by in the shadow of COVID-19.  The article can  be viewed here.


Appeal Success: Fine Substantially Reduced

8th October 2019

Keith Morton QC, instructed by Richard Voke of Temple Bright, Bristol has secured a substantial reduction in the fine imposed on a large construction company following a guilty plea to a charge under section 2 of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

Read more

Keith Morton QC shortlisted as Health & Safety silk of the Year

30th August 2017

TGC are delighted to announce that Keith Morton QC has been shortlisted for the Silk of the Year award for  Health & Safety  at the forthcoming 2017 Chambers UK Bar Awards to be held at The London Hilton on Park Lane on Thursday, 26th October 2017.


Keith Morton QC succeeds in challenge to Health and Safety Executive’s Fee for Intervention dispute process

10th March 2017

Keith Morton QC, instructed by Mike Appleby Partner of Fisher Scoggins Waters and representing OCS Group UK Limited, brought judicial review proceedings against the Health and Safety Executive’s (HSE) dispute process for challenging findings of contravention and fees issued under the Fee for Intervention (FFI) scheme. The HSE settled the judicial review out of court shortly before the hearing in the Administrative Court listed on 8 March 2017. The HSE also agreed to set aside two Notices of Contravention it had issued against OCS.

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GDPR Privacy Notice

Thank you for choosing to instruct me in your case. I will need to collect and hold your personal information in order to represent you. I will take all reasonable steps to protect your personal information. I will do all that I reasonably can to ensure I do not infringe your rights or undermine your trust. This Privacy Notice describes the information I collect about you, how it is used and shared, and your rights regarding it.

Data Controller

I am registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) as a Data Controller for the personal data that I hold and process as a barrister. My registered address is Temple Garden Chambers, 1 Harcourt Buildings, Temple, London, EC4Y 9DA and my registration number is Z4640598.

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