He has been a member of the Attorney General’s Panel of Civil Counsel (C Panel) since 2017 (moving up to the ‘B’ panel on 1 September 2021).
The Legal 500 said of Alistair in 2020:
“Alistair is a highly skilled advocate, he is very thorough with both submissions and advice, is very responsive to queries and is able to quickly digest complicated issues and pull out key points.”
European Union Law
Alistair’s practice raises matters of European Union law. In the context of planning and environmental law, the decision of the Court of Appeal in R (Shirley) v SSHCLG  EWCA Civ 22 included arguments on the interpretation of the Air Quality Directive. The social security cases SSWP v MC  UKUT 84 (AAC) and IG v SSWP  UKUT 176 (AAC) concerned the EU harmonisation regime for social security benefits.
Alistair has been in a number of significant cases.
Alistair appeared unled for the successful Secretary of State in (to his knowledge) the first ever determined appeal under the Welfare of Wild Animals in Travelling Circuses Regulations 2012. Alistair appeared for the Environment Agency, led by Charles Banner, in the inquiry concerning water abstraction from the Test, Itchen and Candover.
In addition to major court challenges, Alistair has experience of proceedings before Planning Inspectors. He was junior to Graeme Keen KC in promoting the County Durham Plan at examination. He represented a group of developers at the Epping Forest Local Plan Examination (led by Charles Banner). He appeared for the Local Planning Authority in a planning inquiry into a residential scheme in November 2020, raising issues of landscape/visual impact and heritage impact. He represented the developer at a two week inquiry into a residential-led scheme (led by David Elvin KC), and the local planning authority at the call-in inquiry concerning intu Milton Keynes (also led by David Elvin KC).
Alistair has a wide-ranging advisory practice. As well as his book on interpreting the NPPF, Alistair is the editor of the Digest of Decisions interpreting the 2012 NPPF, and an Assistant Editor of the Planning Encyclopedia.
Alistair represented the Valuation Officer in successfully resisting two sets of appeals in the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) concerning the changes introduced following the decision of the Supreme Court in Woolway (VO) v Mazars LLP:
Alistair has a broad range of experience in public law matters. In the field of social security, he appeared for the successful Secretary of State, led by David Blundell, in a lead case on the interpretation of EU Regulation 1408/71: SSWP v MC  UKUT 84 (AAC). He appeared for the successful Secretary of State, unled, in SSWP v RR  PTSR 19 (a case concerning whether a room counted as a bedroom for the purposes of the Housing Benefit Regulations 2006, reg B13(2)). He represented the appellant in IG v SSWP  UKUT 176 (AAC), a case concerning payment of benefits and EU Regulation 883/04.
In the field of immigration, Alistair appeared for the successful Secretary of State, led by Sasha Blackmore, in R (Taste of India Ltd) v SSHD  EWHC 414 (Admin), a case concerning Tier 2 sponsor licences. He appeared for the second appellant in the Iran Country Guidance case SSH and HR (illegal exit: failed asylum seeker) Iran CG  UKUT 308 (IAC).
Alistair is the Assistant Editor of the Journal Judicial Review. He has taught Administrative Law for many years, and is External College Lecturer in Law at Magdalene College, Cambridge.
His advocacy is effective and his analysis strong"
Alistair graduated from Magdalene College, Cambridge, with a Double First in 2009. He obtained a distinction on the Bachelor of Civil Law at Oxford in 2010. He was awarded Outstanding on the Bar Professional Training Course from Northumbria University in 2011.
Alistair provides small-group teaching in administrative law and is an external College Lecturer in Law at Magdalene College, Cambridge. He has published widely, including in the Cambridge Law Journal, Judicial Review, the Lloyd’s Maritime and Commercial Law Quarterly, and the Journal of Professional Negligence.
Legal 500, 2022 – Environment
Legal 500, 2022 – Planning