An older man wearing glasses, a dark suit, and a striped tie is looking at the camera with a slight smile.

Robert Sterling

Year of Call: 1970
Practice areas:
  • Business and Property
  • Professional Negligence
  • Defamation
Experienced in corporate and personal insolvency cases.”


Robert Sterling joined Cobden House Chambers from St. James's Chambers in 2015. He specialises in chancery and commercial litigation with an emphasis on professional negligence, corporate and personal insolvency and company, property and probate work. He also specialises in defamation.

He appears mainly in the High Court and has experience in the Lands Chamber and in Land Registry adjudications.

His Chancery and Commercial practice covers shareholder and corporate disputes, directors disqualification, financial services, receivership, administration and liquidation, partnership, commercial landlord and tenant and agricultural holdings, rent reviews, all aspects of property law, in particular restrictive covenants, boundaries and easements (including rights of light), capital taxes, pensions, mortgage fraud, wills and estate disputes (particularly mental capacity issues), trusts, insurance, confidential information and restraint of trade and, also, contentious and non-contentious drafting. He undertakes, as well, arbitration and mediation work and sits as an arbitrator.

His professional negligence litigation tends to focus upon claims against solicitors, surveyors and accountants. He has recent and practical experience of the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal and professional issues relating to solicitors and accountants He is currently handling over 20 professional negligence cases.

Robert also specialises in defamation law, which represents around a third of his practice.

He has also developed expertise in costs disputes.


  • Professional Negligence

  • Defamation

  • Cost Disputes

  • Chancery Litigation

  • Commercial Litigation

  • Personal Insolvency

  • Corporate Insolvency

  • Company, property and probate work

Notable Cases


Westbrook v Rawlinson (1994) (CA)

Habib Bank Ltd v Abbey Pearl Ltd (2001) (CA)

Jim Ennis Construction Ltd v Thewlis (2003) (CA)

Company and shareholder disputes:

Re: P W Edgerley Ltd (1997)

Ross v Telford (1998) (CA)

Re: Mays deceased (2002)

Bradmount Investments Ltd v Williams de Broe Plc (2003) and (2005)

Mullen v White (2017) EWHC 2796 (CH)

Houldsworth Village Management Company Limited v Barton (2019) EWHC 3590 (CH) and (2020) EWCA Civ 980

Compulsory Purchase:

Singh v Rochdale MBC (1993)

Confidential information and technical secrets:

Medical Supplies v Acies Engineering (2014) EWHC 1032 (Mitchell point)


White & Callaghan v Express Newspapers (2014) EWHC 657
(defamation ruling re Jimmy White, the snooker player - and (2014) EWHC 814 - costs of the ruling proceedings)

White v Express Newspapers - Guardian on-line 9th March 2016 (Settlement on second day of trial)

Bode v Mundell (2016) EWHC 2533 (Serious Harm)

Price v MGN Limited (2018) EWHC 3014 (QB) and (2018) EWHC 3395 (QB)

Carruthers v Associated Newspapers Limited (2019) EWHC 33 (QB)

Allen v Times Newspapers (2019) EWHC 1235 (QB)

Spicer -v- The Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis (2019) EWHC 1439 (QB), (2020) EWHC 1778 (QB) and (2021) EWHC 1099(QB)

Haviland v The Andrew Lownie Literacy Agency Ltd (2021) EWHC 143 (QB) and (2022) EWHC 1688 (QB)

Sellers v Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs (2021) EWHC 358 (QB)

Wozniak v Randall (2021) EWHC 2341 (QB)

Pryor v Liverpool Women's NHS Foundation Trust (2021) EWHC 2911 (QB)

Smith v Surridge (2023) EWHC 351 (KB)

Adams v Associated Newspapers Ltd (2023) EWHC 1940

Price v Newsquest Media Group Ltd (2023) EWHC 3027

Francis v Pearson and Burston [2024] EWHC 605 (KB)

Parsons v Atkinson [2024} EWHC 888 (KB)

Family Provision:

Garside v Garside (2017) EWCH 3019 (CH)

Tish v Olley (2018) EWHC 1069 (CH)


Taylors Industrial Flooring Ltd v M & H Plant Hire (1990) (CA)

Griffiths v Yorkshire Bank (1994)

Re Salmet International Ltd (2001)

Park Lane Ventures Limited v Locke (2006)

Williams v Bateman (2009)

Gardner v Lemma Insurance (2014) EWHC 3674 and (2016) EWCA Civ 484
(professional negligence claim affected by cross-border insolvency)


Porter v Zurich Insurance Company (2009)

Marsland v Aviva Life & Pensions (2011) (unreported)
(enforcement of critical illness policy)

Professional negligence and solicitors:

Alsop Wilkinson v Neary (1996)

Naidou v Naidu and Brown Turner (2000)

Re: Pybus (2002) (Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal)

Maden v Clifford Coppock & Carter (2005) (CA)

Gallagher v Hallows Associates (2020) EW Misc 7 (CC)

Property (including landlord, tenant, trusts and agency):

Attorney-General v Barratt Manchester Ltd (1991) (CA)

White v Richards (1994) (CA)

Provincial North West Plc v Bennett (1999) (CA)

Joseph v Joseph (2003) (CA)

Transco Plc v Stockport MBC (2004) (HL)

Agricullo Ltd v Yorkshire Housing Ltd (2010) (CA)

Tickle v Admiral Taverns Ltd (2013) (Adjudicator to Land Registry)

Ashley v Tesco Stores (2014) EWHC 1917 and (2015) 1 WLR 5153 (CA)
(time for service on a company out of the jurisdiction, where it has a place of business in the jurisdiction)

G&A Properties (UK) Ltd v Rolland (2015) EWHC 939

Barton v Gwyn-Jones (2018) EWHC 2426 (CH), (2018) EWHC 3631 (CH) and (2019) EWCA Civ 1999

Mullberry Homes Limited v Barrow Borough Council (2023) EWHC 38 (TCC) (CH)

Barton v Morris (2023) UKSC 3



  • Manchester Grammar School

  • Corpus Christi College, Cambridge; MA (Cantab)


  • Northern Circuit

  • Chancery Bar Association

  • Northern Business and Property Bar Association

  • Professional Negligence Bar Association

News & Insights

View all Articles

This site uses cookies that enable us to make improvements, provide relevant content, and for analytics purposes. For more details, see our Cookie Policy. By clicking Accept, you consent to our use of cookies.