Alex Shattock

Call: 2018

Alex practises in public, planning and environmental law. He has a particular interest in public interest litigation.

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Practice summary


Public and Administrative



Practice Summary

Alex is a public, planning and environmental law practitioner.

His practice is broad and covers matters involving human rights, equality, education, community care, immigration, housing, pollution, climate change and information law.

On the public law side his clients include individuals (such as vulnerable children, destitute asylum seekers, migrants, homeless persons, and persons with disabilities), and public bodies such as state schools.

Alex is ranked in the Legal 500 and Chambers and Partners for environmental law. His clients include NGOs and campaigners such as Animal Equality, Campaign for National Parks, the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, ClientEarth, Compassion in World Farming, the Environmental Law Foundation, Extinction Rebellion activists, Fossil Free London, the Good Law Project, Friends of the Earth, Rights: Community: Action, the RSPB, WWF-UK, and Urban Squirrels.

On the planning side his clients include individuals, community groups, local authorities, consultants and developers. He is one of Planning Magazine’s top-rated junior barristers under 35.

Notable work includes:

  • Acting for the claimant in the challenge to the controversial Bibby Stockholm asylum barge. With Fiona Petersen and led by Alex Goodman KC. Reported in many media outlets.
  • Acting for the successful claimant in R (Hough) v SSHD [2022] EWHC 1635, a planning and consultation challenge to the controversial continued use of Napier Barracks as asylum seeker accommodation. Reported in The Guardian and on the front page of the Sunday Mirror. With Charles Bishop and led by Alex Goodman KC. 
  • Acting for the claimant in R (Rights: Community: Action) v SSHCLG [2021] EWCA Civ 1954, an environmental and equalities challenge to the government’s “slum housing” permitted development reforms and Class E planning deregulation (Alex appeared in both the Court of Appeal and Divisional Court), reported in the media here, here and here. Led by Paul Brown KC. During the course of the claim, the government announced minimum space standards for permitted development homes in England.

Alex accepts direct access and pro bono instructions where appropriate. He is a legal reviewer for the charity Freedom From Torture.

Alex has a doctorate in public international law from Cambridge, as well as law degrees from Oxford and LSE. During his doctorate he researched the legality of military intervention in civil wars. His previous work experience includes teaching economics, working in a secure prison, and working at the Law Commission on its driverless cars project. In his spare time he enjoys films, video games, and Scandinavian heavy metal music. He also enjoys picking up heavy objects and putting them back down again.


Alex practices in all aspects of environmental law and is ranked in both of the main legal directories in this area. He is particularly interested in pollution, climate change and the overlap between equality law and planning.

Alex works with a variety of environmental NGOs and campaigners including Extinction Rebellion, WWF, Fossil Free London, Friends of the Earth, ClientEarth, the Good Law Project, RSPB, the Environmental Law Foundation, Rights: Community: Action, and Urban Squirrels.

Notable instructions include:

  • Rights: Community: Action v DLHUC: Acting for the claimant in a challenge to the main modifications recommended by two Inspectors examining the area action plan for a new garden village. The main modifications would significantly water down the net zero/low carbon elements of the plan.
  • A complaint brought by WWF-UK and ClientEarth against DEFRA and the Environment Agency to the Office for Environmental Protection, regarding endemic agricultural pollution and under-enforcement.
  • Friends of the Earth v DLUHC. Instructed by Friends of the Earth to challenge the grant of permission to a new deep coal mine in Cumbria. Alex also acted for Friends of the Earth in the four-week planning inquiry. Led by Paul Brown KC. Reported on the BBC.
  • Protect Dunsfold v DLUHC: a climate change challenge to the grant of planning permission for an exploratory oil and gas well. Reported on the BBC
  • R (Cox and others) v Oil and Gas Authority: Instructed by Extinction Rebellion in a judicial review of the Oil and Gas Authority’s approach to the statutory definition of maximising economic revenue. Led by David Wolfe KC with Merrow Golden.
  • Bioabundance v South Oxfordshire District Council: a section 113 Local Plan challenge brought on, inter alia, climate change grounds. Reported on the BBC, the Guardian and the Planner.
  • Rights: Community: Action v SSHCLG: Acting for the claimant in an environmental and equality challenge to the recent permitted development and use class changes. Led by Paul Brown KC.
  • Hough v SSHD: Acting for the claimant in an environmental challenge to a segregated asylum camp built at Yarl’s Wood immigration detention centre. Success at the pre-action stage. Led by Alex Goodman KC. Reported on the BBC, Independent and Guardian.
  • Haytop Country Park: Sole counsel for a Rule 6 Party in a seven-day planning inquiry in which the developer had expanded a caravan site after unlawfully felling 100+ protected trees. Cross-examination on landscape, heritage, arboriculture, and planning. Opening submissions quoted in local media.

Alex works with a variety of environmental NGOs and campaigners such as Animal Equality, Campaign for National Parks, the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, ClientEarth, Compassion in World Farming, the Environmental Law Foundation, Extinction Rebellion activists, Fossil Free London, the Good Law Project, Friends of the Earth, Rights: Community: Action, the RSPB, WWF-UK, and Urban Squirrels.

Public and Administrative

Alex has a broad public law practice and is regularly instructed in judicial review matters. He is often on the claimant side, but has also acted for Defendant local authorities, universities and educational institutions. Recently he has been instructed in public law cases involving elections, special educational needs assessments in schools, Housing Benefit, Universal Credit, asylum and immigration, age assessments and the vires of public authority actions. He has a particular expertise in judicial review claims relating to asylum accommodation and has been involved in many cases on behalf of asylum seekers.

Recent cases include:

  • R (MQ) v SSHD [2023] EWHC 205 (Admin). Acting for the claimant asylum seeker in a systemic challenge to the Home Office’s allocation system for asylum accommodation, based on Article 8 and s.55 of the Borders, Citizenship and Immigration Act 2009.
  • SK v SSHD: unled successful Article 8 deportation appeal in the First-tier Tribunal and Upper Tribunal.
  • Osman v DWP: Acting for a blind man in a judicial review of DWP’s failure to provide accessible communications. Challenge brought under the Equality Act and Article 14. Led by Tim Buley KC.
  • Leadbetter v Secretary of State: Acting for the claimant in an equality challenge on behalf of a blind lady to the provision of inaccessible Covid-19 shielding information. Settled with all the claimant’s costs paid, after the government agreed to reconsider its approach and pay for detailed research into accessible shielding communications. Led by Tim Buley KC. Reported on the BBC.
  • XXX v Camden Borough Council [2020] EWCA Civ 1468, acting for the claimant in the leading Court of Appeal case on applications for anonymity orders under CPR 39.2. Led by Justin Bates.
  • Advising schools and local authorities on various public law and equality matters.
  • Unled in various complex challenges to care packages and healthcare support on behalf of disabled individuals and children, often with multiple Defendants and KCs instructed on the other side.


Alex has a strong education law practice and been instructed on a variety of education matters. He advises individuals, schools, local authorities and the DfE. He is regularly instructed in SEN appeals and discrimination challenges in the First-tier Tribunal, involving issues such as whether an EHC plan should be made, choice of placement, overprovision, unreasonable public expenditure, and whether non-NHS approved treatments can be included in an EHC plan.

He often advises schools and local authorities on discrimination and equality issues.

He was instructed by Ofsted in a significant judicial review of a report brought by the educational establishment in question.

Human Rights and Civil Liberties

Alex has a keen interest in human rights, civil liberties and Equality Act issues. A lot of his work in this area is done on Legal Aid.

Notable work includes:

  • Sole counsel for the claimant in numerous urgent claimant reviews of the Home Office’s failure to provide adequate accommodation to vulnerable destitute asylum seekers and failed asylum seekers. His clients in this area have included a large number of disabled and/or stateless asylum seekers with infant children. See eg TG v SSHD [2021] 1 WLUK 253 and K v SSHD [2020] EWHC 3639 (Admin).
  • Leadbetter v Secretary of State: Acting for the claimant in an equality challenge on behalf of a blind lady to the provision of inaccessible COVID-19 shielding information. Settled with all the claimant’s costs paid, after the government agreed to reconsider its approach and pay for detailed research into accessible shielding communications. Led by Tim Buley KC. Reported on the BBC.
  • Instructed for the claimant in an urgent Article 3 challenge to a Council’s decision to remove a homeless man on daily dialysis from a hospital without an adequate accommodation and transport package in place.
  • Instructed for the claimant in an urgent High Court challenge to a local authority and CCG’s failure to carry out an assessment under s.117 of the Mental Health Act.
  • DMA v SSHD [2020] EWHC 3416 (Admin) (interim hearing only): A successful High Court disclosure application to require the Secretary of State to release sensitive KPI data relating to its private accommodation providers for failed asylum seekers. The disclosed information was relied on heavily by the judge in the final hearing.
  • Instructed for the claimant with Justin Bates in an Equality Act challenge to a local council’s social housing allocation scheme.
  • Claimant judicial review of a trafficking ‘reasonable grounds’ decision
  • Instructed in a claim against the Information Commissioner concerning information rights, anonymity orders, reasonable adjustments and freedom of expression. Led by Samantha Broadfoot KC and Julia Smyth.
  • Numerous unlawful detention/false imprisonment judicial reviews and damages claims.


Alex regularly appears in immigration and asylum hearings, in the First-tier Tribunal, Upper Tribunal and High Court. He has appeared in the Upper Tribunal in several deportation cases and has a particular expertise in cases involving the EEA Regulations.

He also regularly advises on unlawful detention and false imprisonment cases, including merits and quantum issues.


Alex has an in-depth knowledge of international law. During his PhD he taught students on the undergraduate international law module. His doctoral research considered issues such as terrorism, military intervention, self-determination, neutrality and the UN Charter. He has presented his research at several academic conferences and at the UK Law Commission. His research on civil wars was cited in Professor Gray’s International Law and the Use of Force (4th ed), the leading academic textbook on military intervention.

Alex has been instructed on cases involving international human rights obligations, the extra-territoriality of UK discrimination legislation and the UNHCR. He acted for the defendant in a challenge to a UK resettlement scheme for refugees fleeing Syria, in which the claimant argued too many Muslim were being admitted onto the scheme in breach of equality law and public international law (Led by David Blundell KC).

He has also provided advice on a variety of public international law matters, including:

  • Advising on the application of international treaty law in the context of Brexit
  • Advising on the scope of certain international immunities
  • The UK treaty ratification process
  • Issues relating to the Crown Dependencies and British Overseas Territories.


Alex accepts planning instructions from individuals, community groups, local authorities and property developers, and regularly advises on a range of planning issues. He is often instructed as sole counsel against leading planning KCs in inquiries and judicial review/statutory review claims. He is one of Planning Magazine’s top-rated junior barristers under 35.

Notable cases include:

  • Land off Lodge Road, Hurst. Sole counsel for the Rule 6 Party in a two-week inquiry concerning sustainability, transport, housing land supply and biodiversity issues.
  • The Goose House, Pyebush Lane, Buckinghamshire. Sole counsel for the local planning authority in a two-week enforcement inquiry. Alex successfully argued that the construction of a dwelling was not caught by the 4-year rule as it was part and parcel of the change of use.
  • Land east of Bredon Road and Tewkesbury Road, Mitton. Acting for the developer in a two-week inquiry concerning AONB and transport issues. Led by Neil Cameron KC.
  • Silverthorne Lane, Bristol. Acting for the developer in a called-in inner-city urban regeneration scheme. Led by James Maurici KC. In allowing the scheme the Secretary of State and the Inspector accepted the many benefits, including the equality benefits, of the scheme.
  • Vastern Road, Reading. Acting for the developer in a large riverside property development in a highly constrained location. Led by Tim Corner KC.

Alex’s briefing note on the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill, written with Paul Brown KC, has been widely circulated and attracted a signed written response from the Secretary of State.

A lot of Alex’s planning work has an environmental element and can be seen under the environmental expertise tab.


Landmark's barristers often work at the intersection of our core practice areas; bringing a wide range of skills, knowledge and experience to bear on a particular dispute or issue facing a client.

Our focus is always on achieving the best possible outcome for our client. By viewing the client's objectives in a holistic way - and not purely through the lens of one rigidly-defined legal area - we deliver the best possible advice and representation in complex matters that engage multiple specialist areas of law. 

Whether it's providing support as an individual cross-practice barrister or a cross-disciplinary team of Landmark counsel, we are able to draw on an outstanding array of complementary skillsets and knowledge bases. This often achieves a better result than instructing multiple barristers from different specialist sets. This also improves the quality of client care through increased levels of communication, quicker response times, and a coordinated approach to clerking and fees, made possible by our team-based cross-practice approach.

Please contact our practice management team for more information.

Public Interest Litigation

Alex chairs the Public Interest Litigation Group within chambers. Much of his work has a public interest element and involves legal challenges brought to further his clients’ wider campaigning objectives, as can be seen under the other tabs.

He accepts Legal Aid instructions and pro bono instructions in appropriate cases.


EU Law post-Brexit


Aarhus Convention and Environmental Justice

Air Quality

Climate Change and Emissions Trading

Ecology and Biodiversity

Environmental Assessment (Environmental Outcomes)

Environmental Enforcement

Environmental information

Environmental Regulation

Habitats and Species


Pollution and Contaminated Land

Protection of the Countryside





Human Rights and Civil Liberties



EU Law post-Brexit

Judicial Review

NHS, Health and Community Care


Development Plans and other planning policy

Green Belt


Planning Appeals, Inquiries and Hearings

Planning Enforcement and Injunctions

Planning Judicial and Statutory Reviews



Public Interest Litigation


EU Law post-Brexit

Alex is a very dedicated barrister. He has strong analytical skills and an impressive work rate."

Legal 500

Shattock Alex Uk leading juniors 2024

Personal Highlights

Qualifications and achievements


  • PhD in public international law, University of Cambridge. Supervised by Professor Christine Gray. Thesis title: The legal limits of intervention by invitation of government in civil wars. Funded by a full scholarship and maintenance grant.
  • LLM in public international law, London School of Economics. 1st in year.
  • BA in jurisprudence, University of Oxford. New College Scholar.
  • Alex attended local state comprehensive schools in the Midlands. He was the first in his family to attend sixth form and the first to go to university.
  • Alex is an alumnus of the Hague Academy of International Law, a centre for advanced international legal studies based in the Peace Palace at the Hague, Netherlands. He was the only British scholar to obtain a place on the 2014 Hague Academy public international law programme.


  • Opinion writing subject prize, University of Law. Received for the highest mark in the opinion writing exam.
  • Best Journal Entry prize, Legal Cheek. Received for an essay on sovereign immunity from domestic criminal prosecution. Presented at the ‘Legal Cheek Awards’.
  • Shortlisted for the Harry Porter Prize (top 3 entries), Cambridge Footlights. The Footlights’ annual prize for an original comedy play script.
  • Georg Schwarzenberger Prize in Public International Law, Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, University of London. Received for the highest overall achievement in public international law across the University of London law schools in a given year.
  • First Prize, New Statesman/Beatrice Webb Memorial Trust Essay Competition. For an essay on post-war economic policy. £1,000 award presented in Parliament. Essay published in the New Statesman magazine.
  • Lawyers’ Alumni Prize, LSE. Received for ranking 1st out of 251 graduate law students.
  • Blackstone Prize, LSE. Received for best overall LLM results in public international law subjects.
  • LSE/African Prisons Project Human Rights Moot prize, LSE. Received full funding for an internship in Uganda, for winning the Human Rights Moot.


  • WM Tapp Studentship in Law, Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge. Full tuition and living costs paid for a 3-year PhD.
  • Lord Denning Scholarship (major Inns of Court BPTC award), Lincoln’s Inn.
  • Hardwicke Entrance Award, Lincoln’s Inn.
  • New College Scholar, New College, Oxford. For distinction in law exams.


Practice Managers

Contact our friendly and helpful Practice Managers for more information about our barristers and services or to make an enquiry.

Richard Bolton new

Richard Bolton

Senior Practice Manager

020 7421 1392

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Charlotte Hockney

Assistant Practice Manager

020 7421 1303

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