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Isabel Hitching KC

Call 1992 • KC 2019

“Isabel is everything you want from a silk.”
(Chambers & Partners, 2024)

Professional Liability

Isabel has extensive experience of acting in professional negligence claims in the Technology and Construction Court, Chancery Division and Commercial Court. She acts both for and against defendants. She also regularly appears at mediations, working closely with the clients to secure successful outcomes that both focus on the immediate claim and the clients’ wider business needs.

Cases have involved legal advisors (barristers, and solicitors), auditors and accountants, construction professionals (building surveyors, architects, engineers and Employer’s agents), valuers and stock condition surveyors.

Selected Cases

Legal Advisors:

  • Advised a claimant on a potential professional negligence claim against former solicitors who had acted for her in connection with a negligence claim against property developers.
  • Advising a client on potential professional negligence claim against a barrister who failed properly to advise on the correct cause of action and the limitation period attached resulting in the potential loss of a claim valued at c£3.5m.

Auditors and Accountants:

  • Acting against auditors of a school who failed properly to carry out audit of accounts and identify misuse and misallocation of funds.
  • Acted for liquidator of company against accountants for failure properly to draw accounts to ensure monies withdrawn by sole director over a period of years were repayable loans.

Construction professionals:

  • Acted for developers alleging that a practical completion certificate had been issued negligently.
  • Nick Joyce Architects LLP v Rudders & Payne Ltd – Secured discontinuance of a contribution claim by architects against specialist damp proofing contractor for allegedly negligent advice as to a damp proofing scheme. Isabel persuaded architects that contractor did not owe requisite duty of care.
  • Acted for a property developer of a block of luxury apartments in central London in connection with potential claims in negligence against architects, engineers and employers’ agents, following flooding. Legally complex as the developer had operated at arms’ length through a subsidiary, now insolvent, which had entered into a contract with a main contractor that was now also insolvent.
  • Acted for developer against quantity surveyor / employer’s agent for undervaluation of the build-out costs of a housing estate.
  • Acting for developer of luxury domestic property in London against architect for negligent issuing of Practical Completion certificate.


Acting for property developers alleging negligent valuation of property relied on to obtain lending.

Stock condition surveyors:

  • Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council v (Def) One Vision Housing Ltd (Part 20 Def 1) Savills Commercial Ltd (Part Def 2) Curtins Consulting Engineers PLC – Isabel appeared for Savills, stock condition surveyors, defending professional negligence claims arising out of the fascia to tower blocks detaching in high winds. The claim was one of the first in relation to stock condition surveys. Isabel acted from pre-issue to settlement shortly before trial following a two day mediation.
  • In Donnelly v Camden Borough Council, Savills Commercial Ltd and Savills PLC Isabel appeared for both Savills’ entities. The claimant suffered head injuries at a property owned by the Council which had been surveyed as part of a stock condition survey by Savills Commercial ltd. Isabel successfully secured a discontinuance and settlement for her clients.
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  • MA (First Class), Christ Church, Oxford
  • BCL, Christ Church, Oxford
  • Open Scholar, Open Exhibitioner, Radcliffe Exhibitioner and Dixon Scholar Christ Church, Oxford
  • Lord Justice Sachs Scholarship, Middle Temple
  • Queen Mother Scholarship, Middle Temple
  • Inns of Court Studentship
  • Previously non-stipendiary lecturer in law Christ Church Oxford
  • Accredited Adjudicator (TecBar)
  • Accredited Arbitrator (LCIA)


  • Civil Procedure Rule Committee
  • Professional Negligence Bar Association
  • Commercial Bar Association
  • London Common Law & Commercial Bar Association
  • Society of Construction Law (and past committee member)
  • Technology & Construction Bar Association (and past committee member)
  • Joint editor of Emden’s Construction Law
  • London Court of International Arbitration
  • Former member of Attorney General’s Treasury Panel. Continues to act for government as silk.
  • Past member of Bar Standards Board Equality & Diversity Committee
  • Past member and vice-chair of Bar Standards Board Qualifications Committee
  • Past member of Bar Council and Bar Council International Committee


“Isabel is everything you want from a silk. Her mind is just razor-sharp, she will spot things in huge mounds of paperwork and see a relevance in them to then map it all through.”… “She is particularly good in cases that are a bit novel and different.”

Chambers & Partners, 2024

‘Isabel has an innate ability to drill down to the main points and weed out irrelevant issues, from which instructing solicitors can then draw up a strong strategic approach which usually gets us to where the client wants to be.’

Legal 500, 2024

“Isabel is extremely astute, very careful and conscientious and always has a clear plan of action in terms of approach to the issues and getting the best out of the case for the client. She manages expectations in relation to delivering work and solicitors know exactly where they stand.”

Legal 500, 2024

“She is very knowledgeable of the construction sector, excellent with clients and a very persuasive advocate in court or arbitration.”

(Chambers & Partners, 2022)

“She always has a good grasp and understanding of the case, and is a confident and persuasive advocate.”

(Legal 500, 2022)

“Industrious, meticulous and convincing … always has a good grasp of the case, and is a confident and persuasive advocate”

Legal 500, 2022

“Very sensitive to the needs of the client, and adopts a realistic and commercial view in order to achieve the best result.”

(Legal 500, 2021)

“A standout barrister at the construction Bar.”

(Legal 500, 2021)

“She is clear and concise as an advocate, with the ability to see the bigger picture in disputes.”

(Chambers & Partners, 2021)

“Boasts a tally of appearances in important and high-value construction cases… She has a chess grand master’s great grasp of strategy.”

(Chambers & Partners 2020)

“She has a chess grand master’s great grasp of strategy.”

(Chambers & Partners, 2020)

“She has an awesome intellect and always examines issues from all angles.”

(Legal 500)

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