Sophie joins Cobden House from 30 Park Place in Cardiff, where she enjoyed a busy mixed practice, with a focus on criminal, family and inquest proceedings.
Sophie is developing a busy criminal practice and appears regularly in the Magistrates and Crown Courts instructed across the spectrum of proceedings, achieving excellent results when prosecuting and defending. She has been praised for her meticulous preparation and astute tactical knowledge. Her pragmatic and empathetic approach enables her to build a rapport with clients quickly, even when delivering hard-to-hear advice. She handles all issues with sensitivity and diplomacy, though is objective and focused.
Sophie is also developing her regulatory and inquest practice. Most recently she represented an Interested Person in a series of six inquests, invoking Article 2, heard concurrently over a period of 9 weeks concerning deaths of elderly care home residents, with live issues including neglect, the Protection of Vulnerable Adults and inter-agency working. She has been commended by clients and instructing solicitors alike for her calm and approachable manner, diligent preparation and effective advocacy, both oral and in writing.
In terms of family law, Sophie’s practice encompasses both public and private children law instructions at all stages of proceedings. She is regularly instructed to represent parents and carers, interveners and other interested parties in public law proceedings, and has acted in cases involving issues such as chronic neglect, domestic violence and allegations of abuse. Within the realms of private law, Sophie has been instructed on behalf of applicants and respondents in the full range of applications. She has experience of applications concerning contact disputes, internal relocation, parents with mental health issues and cases resulting in a change of residence and other specific issues.
Before coming to Law, Sophie was a member of the British Army and read Economics with Human Geography at Loughborough University. After leaving the military, she returned to Manchester to complete the Postgraduate Diploma in Law (GDL) and the Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC). In the intervening period between completing her studies and coming to the Bar, Sophie worked as a paralegal in the Catastrophic Personal Injury Department at DWF Manchester where she dealt with claims concerning life-changing injuries, from subtle brain injuries to paralysis and amputation. From there, she moved to the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman where she dealt with claims of a clinical nature against the NHS and other parliamentary bodies.
Whilst undertaking the BPTC, Sophie volunteered with the Personal Support Unit (now Support Through Court) and the Medical Practitioners’ Tribunal Service, during which she developed a keen interest in regulatory and disciplinary proceedings before the General Medical Council. In terms of her current volunteering, Sophie is registered with the Bar’s national charity Advocate and undertakes work on a pro bono basis through their services.
Away from work, Sophie enjoys swimming, eating out and spending time with her family, friends and energetic Weimaraner Luna.
Operation J (2021) – instructed for an employee of the Local Health Board who was an IP in their own right, in a series of inquests concerning the deaths of elderly care home residents, which were the subject of a series of television documentaries. Live issues included neglect, the Protection of Vulnerable Adults and inter-agency working. Involved cross-examination of lay and professional witnesses, and written and oral submissions on the engagement of Article 2, Neglect riders, the concept of aggregation and ‘unlawful killing’.
R v James (2020) – prosecuted Defendant charged with ABH against his ex-partner. Defendant convicted. Case involved assertion of self-defence and medical evidence as to mechanism of perichondrial hematoma, or “cauliflower-ear” injury.
R v Pyne (2020) – represented Defendant charged with public order offences during Covid-19 lockdown restrictions. Incident captured on body-worn footage but following detailed cross-examination of police officers conducting the arrest, established that relevant limbs of the offence were not made out. Defendant acquitted.
Criminal Bar Association
INQUEST Lawyers Group
Family Law Bar Association
BPP Manchester, BPTC – Very Competent
University of Law Manchester, GDL – Commendation
Loughborough University, BSc – 2:1 (Hons)
Inner Temple, Major Scholarship
Inner Temple, Duke of Edinburgh Entrance Award
BPP Manchester, Regional Programme Leader’s Award
BPP Manchester, Advocacy Award
University of Law, Academic Scholarship
Loughborough University, Elite Sport Scholarship
British Army, Academic Scholarship