Mark Harper QC
36 Young Street, Manchester, M3 3FT
DX: 718188 MCH 3
Direct Dial: 0161 832 9082
5 Park Square, Leeds, LS1 2NE
DX: 713113 LEEDS PARK SQ
Direct Dial: 0113 242 1123
Embassy House, 60 Church Street,
Birmingham, B3 2DJ
DX: 13023 BIRMINGHAM
Direct Dial: 0121 200 3570
Clerked by:Colin Griffin
Mark regularly provides representation and advice on litigation proceeding in the Chancery Division, Commercial Court, Mercantile Court and Technology & Construction Court with his expertise in this area including agency, company litigation (including shareholder disputes and claims against directors/fiduciaries), confidential information, contract disputes, employer/employee post-termination disputes, insurance, restraint of trade and sale of goods.
Wootliff v Ruston-Turner & others - jurisdiction under s996 Companies Act 2006 wide enough to include a payment of compensation by the Company to the Petitioner for wrongful dismissal.
Brian John Harris v Microfusion 2003-2 LLP & others – representing the C (being the representative of a group of investors in a Film Partnership LLP) in seeking permission to bring common law derivative claim against the operators of the LLP. Permission granted at first instance for 2/3 claims with issue to be considered by the CA in 2016
MTC (UK) Ltd v Sir Bradley Wiggins  – represented Sir Bradley in defending the claim brought by his former management company for alleged breach of contract in terminating the management agreement and an account of commissions/payments due.
Houlgrave v Houlgrave and Beaconsfield Footwear Limited -Mark acted as junior to Lesley Anderson QC representing the Claimant in 2012 (one of the largest claims to be heard on the Northern Circuit).The claim alleged that the Claimant was deceived by the Defendants to sell his shares at below market value thereby enabling the shares to be sold there-after for their true market value. The claim involved a consideration of the circumstances in which one shareholder/company can be a fiduciary to an excluded shareholder/director. The trial lasted 8 weeks (Norris J)before compromising.
Sikorski v Sikorski  EWHC 1613 –unfair prejudice petition and the circumstances in which a breach of a shareholders agreement could found such a petition and the circumstances in which relief other than a share-purchase order would be appropriate
Proactive Sports Management Ltd v Rooney & Others  EWHC 1807 (QB) (restraint of trade in the context of an agreement between football player and agent)
Proactive Sports Management Limited v Rooney  EWCA Civ 1444 - (acting for Wayne Rooney (lead by Paul Chaisty QC) in successfully upholding the first instance decision that his Image Rights Representation Agreement was an unreasonable restraint of trade).
Quinn v CC Automotive Group Ltd (t/a Carcraft)  EWCA Civ 1412 – apparent authority and the issue of the knowledge on the part of the person dealing with the apparent agent which will prevent them from relying upon the apparent authority
Office of Fair Trading v Miller  EWCA (Civ) 34 (committal proceedings in the context of breaches of Stop-Now Orders)
Nigel Fryer Joinery Services Limited v Ian Firth Hardware Limited  EWHC 767(Ch) (issues of repudiation and compensation entitlement under the Commercial Agents Regulations)
Forrest & Sons Limited v CGU Insurance Plc  Lloyd's Rep. I.R. 113(variation of risk, alterations, disclosure in relation to insurance contract)
First Quench Retailing Limited v Whitbread Plc  EWHC 366 (Ch)(rectification of commercial contract)
Fortman Holdings Ltd v Modem Holdings Ltd  EWCA Civ 1235 (construction of accelerated payment(s) clause)
Mark is a member of the Chancery and Commercial team in Chambers and has developed what is recognised as one of the leading litigation practices in these areas having in recent years been involved in some of the largest and most high profile cases to be heard in the Chancery and Mercantile Courts outside London including his representation (with Paul Chaisty QC) of Wayne Rooney in his successful restraint of trade challenge to this Image Rights Representation Agreement (see below) and his representation (in 2014) of Sir Bradley Wiggins in defending the claims brought by his former management company following his termination of their retainer.
His areas of specialism are Banking & Finance, Civil Fraud, Commercial Litigation, Company, Insolvency, Partnership, Professional Negligence and Sport.
As is evidenced by his “Recommendations” he is widely regarded (both by his peers and the solicitors’ profession) as one of the leading and most sought after juniors in his areas of practice.
He has been described as the “complete all-rounder” being equally adept at all aspects of the role of the advocate coupled with tactical and strategic acumen and an affable and approachable personality that commends him to his peers, solicitors and clients alike.
Year of Call: 1993
Year of Silk: 2016
Areas of Expertise
- Banking & Finance
- Civil Fraud
- Company (non-contentious)
- Dispute Resolution
- Professional Negligence
Legal 500 2017
‘A team player throughout the litigation process.’
Chambers UK 2017
"The speed at which he can turn things round is incredible. He is a great advocate who is quick at thinking on his feet, and his way with the judiciary is great." "He is fantastic."
"His reputation is excellent and he gives a first-rate service to clients." "He is very pragmatic, very user-friendly and very good on his feet."
"He's always a very safe pair of hands - excellent and good with clients, he is short and succinct in his advice, which goes down well." "He's a class above most and very good on his feet before a judge."
"An excellent trial advocate who excels at tough cross-examination." "He's always a very safe pair of hands. He's excellent, good with clients, and short and succinct in his advice which goes down well."
Chambers UK 2016
"A safe pair of hands and very commercial."
Recent work: Represented Travel Counsellors against Barclays Bank in claims alleging the mis-selling of an interest swap product and the improper deduction of 'fees' from accounts.
"An extremely capable lawyer and a very hard worker. He leaves no stone unturned in seeking out the detail of a matter and is confident in his own abilities. He has the hallmark of quality."
"Forthright, exceptionally commercial and gets straight to the nub of the issue - exactly what the clients want."
Chambers UK 2015
"He's pragmatic and very user-friendly, and his advocacy is also excellent."
"When you see that you're against him your heart sinks." "He's an astute tactician. He doesn't sugar the pill, and clients certainly appreciate that."
"He is quietly and efficiently effective."
"He is very quick at spotting the issues and distilling them down into simple advice and action."
Chambers UK 2014
"He always gives a consistent performance in court. He is softly spoken, measured and always gets on with judges - that's how he wins cases."-
"He provides a superb all-round service, combining strong technical skills with a personable approach. He is regarded as one of the best in his field in commercial litigation."
"He is very bright and effective – I would not hesitate to instruct him."
Legal 500 2014
"A must-go-to junior counsel"
Chambers UK 2013
“Mark Harper is a barrister with a strong commercial chancery practice. He focuses largely on unfair prejudice petitions. According to one interviewee: "You can drop him into any situation and he will rise to the challenge."
“Mark Harper receives praise for his "strong advocacy skills." He is especially adept at cross-examination as "he is able to identify and exploit weaknesses in his opponents to great effect. "He has notable expertise in matters such as shareholder and commercial disputes, professional negligence cases and restraint of trade matters”
“Mark Harper who is sought out by instructing solicitors for his experience in the asset finance sector. He is recommended “
Legal 500 2012
Mark Harper "has a broad commercial and chancery practice"
Chambers UK 2012
Mark Harper is praised as "client-focused" whilst having "a great mind for strategy." Peers admire him as "an impressive opponent who is a pleasure to be up against in court." -
Mark Harper is a "very personable" junior with an excellent reputation in this sector
Legal 500 2011
"A very competent draftsman and an extremely able advocate"
Chambers UK 2011
'An "outstanding junior" who has "a great personal touch with all manner of clients"
'The "first-rate" Mark Harper is another leading junior, and he earns praise for his "hard work, fine intellect and down-to-earth approach." He is particularly strong on banking and sports-related disputes.'
'Mark Harper is a market favourite.'
Chancery Bar Association
Northern Chancery Bar Association
Northern Circuit Commercial Bar Association
“Can I have my deposit back please” (insolvency position where consumer deposits are used to fund insolvent companies)  6 CRI 225
“Fiduciary Duties owed to the excluded shareholder” (with Lesley Anderson QC) Law & Financial Market Review January 2013
Qualifications and Awards
Downing College, Cambridge – Law MA Hons (1989 – 1992)
Hardwicke Scholar (Lincoln’s Inn)