Alistair Cantor

Call: 2011

Alistair is a civil barrister, specialising in business, property and housing.  An experienced and effective advocate, he is as comfortable on paper as on his feet and his practice increasingly consists of advisory work.  Having come to the Bar from a former career at a major investment bank, Alistair combines legal acumen with a rare commercial astuteness.  He is happy to consider instructions on a conditional fee basis where appropriate.

If you would like any further information regarding Alistair’s practice, please contact his clerks or call +44 (0)207 405 6114.

Business

Alistair has been instructed in a wide variety of commercial disputes.  He has represented parties in relation to a number of unfair prejudice petitions.  His past work has encompassed breaches of directors’ duties, various applications under the Companies Act and corporate insolvency.  He has strong contract law expertise and has acted or advised in numerous contractual claims, including sale of goods, supply of services, construction disputes and under guarantees or indemnities. He has appeared on numerous occasions in applications for interim relief in the High Court and has an expert knowledge of civil procedure.

He holds a particular specialism in enforcement law, having represented a High Court Enforcement Officer on many occasions.  His work in this field has included complex enforcement actions against very high value and unique assets – for example collections of antiquities and aircraft – and enforcement of foreign judgments and instruments.

He has an expert knowledge of the Taking Control of Goods Procedure under Schedule 12 of the Tribunal, Courts and Enforcement Act 2007, and related matters including interpleader claims and questions of pledge and bailment, and the associated statutory regime governing enforcement officer’s fees.  He successfully defended at trial a High Court Enforcement Officer in a High Court multi-track action based on an alleged assault in the course of execution of a writ of control.

He is presently instructed by the Dobbs Review, the ongoing high-profile independent review into the HBOS Reading fraud.

Property

Alistair has a busy and burgeoning property practice.  His past experience and expertise encompasses:

  • Easements and other rights of way, including defeating a High Court appeal against the grant of a negative declaration as to the absence of such a right at first instance (see Reported Cases)
  • Boundary disputes, adverse possession and trespass
  • Nuisance
  • Business tenancies and forfeiture
  • Enforcement of commercial rent arrears, including via Commercial Rent Arrears Recovery (“CRAR”)
  • Dilapidations, including acting for the defendant to a multi-track claim valued at around £370,000
  • Residential Property and Land Registration proceedings in the First Tier Tribunal (Property Chamber)
  • The full gamut of residential landlord and tenant disputes, including possession actions, trespasser claims, disrepair, deposit claims, licensing issues including rent repayment orders, and service charge disputes
  • Mortgage possession claims
Housing

Alistair spends a significant proportion of his time practising in housing, acting for both social landlords and tenants.  The field is of particular interest to Alistair, who understands the competing and acute pressures that operate on litigants in this arena.  He is the author of a Practical Law Practice Note on priority need.  His experience and expertise includes:

  • Proceedings related to homelessness, allocation and other local authority decision-making, both in the county court and via judicial review
  • Disrepair, fitness for human habitation and proceedings under the Environmental Protection Act, having appeared or advised in numerous such matters and regularly delivering training on these topics
  • Proceedings in relation to anti-social behaviour including applications for injunctions at the interim, final and committal stages
  • Possession claims, including those raising Equality Act and public law defences
  • Tenancy fraud
  • Right-to-buy and right-to-acquire
Reported Cases

Mayor and Burgesses of the Brent London Borough Council and another v Malvern Mews Tenants Association Ltd [2020] All ER (D) 192 (Apr); [2020] EWHC 1024 (Ch): Alistair Cantor represented the successful respondent, a residents’ association, in a High Court appeal against a ‘negative declaration’ in effect confirming that the appellants (a local authority and another party) did not enjoy the benefit of any easements over a private road.  The case raised an important point as to the position of defendants to and evidential burdens in claims for negative declarations as to the absence of legal rights.

KAHLON & ANOR v BARKING AND DAGENHAM LBC (2017) (Lawtel): Alistair successfully represented a local authority in an appeal in the QBD against a refusal of relief from sanctions to a defendant to a claim for care home charges under s21 HASSASSAA 1983. The appeal was dismissed on grounds the appellant had not shown he was unable to comply with the unless order concerned (for the disclosure of documents) or that he had good reason for not complying.

Education

Bar Professional Training Course – Outstanding

Graduate Diploma in Law – Distinction

BA (Hons) History – 2.1 (UCL)

Prizes

Winner, Lincoln’s Inn Open Moot 2011

Finalist, Inter-Inn Moot 2011

Buchanan Prize for Outstanding Performance on the BPTC, Lincolns Inn