Year of Call


“Archie did another excellent job with his submissions.”



Archie is an expert in landlord and tenant law, with a particular specialism in regulations relating to HMOs where he is known as one of the leading experts at the Bar.

Archie represents residential and commercial landlords and tenants in the civil and criminal courts and the Residential Property Tribunal. He is sought out for cases relating to HMOs and to disrepair of tenanted property, and frequently acts in the leading cases in the area. He recently represented the London Borough of Newham in the case of Newham v Chaplair - the first successful prosecution of a tower block owner for failure to remove flammable cladding from the building. 

Prior to returning to practice at the Bar in 2003 Archie headed the prosecution and litigation team at the London Borough of Enfield. He regularly represents local authorities in both the civil and criminal courts and is able to provide a seamless service to clients facing litigation in both jurisdictions.

Equally at home in either an adversarial courtroom or the more consensual mediation environment Archie is skilled at addressing clients’ broader interests including the financial and other costs of the litigation and dispute resolution process.


Archie has a great reputation in HMO cases and acts for landlords and tenants all over the country in both the civil and criminal courts. He knows the law and regulations in the area backwards, and is able to advise clearly and confidently about the likely outcome in court. He is often instructed to provide written advice to local authorities on highly technical aspects of the law in order to allow them to formulate appropriate policy for dealing with HMOs.

Archie is used to dealing in high profile cases with significant media interest, and can advise clients on a strategy for managing the litigation taking into account the wider implications on business and reputation.


Having led a local authority team and subsequently acted for them at the independent Bar, Archie has unrivalled knowledge and understanding of local authority prosecutions. His prosecution work covers almost the entire range of local authority enforcement law from benefit fraud to trading standards. He has a particular interest in noise nuisance prosecutions. His advice work for local authorities has covered areas as diverse as Tree Preservation Orders and the legal basis of Parks Constabularies. He acts in cases under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 concerning fire safety in buildings.

Archie also acts for individuals, either in defending cases or in private prosecutions against local authorities under specialist legislation such as the Environmental Protection Act 1990.


To instruct Archie please contact Rob Johnstone.


  • B.A.(Hons) University of Durham
  • University of Glamorgan


  • Administrative Law Bar Association
  • Social Housing Law Association


  • Hilyard Senior Award (Grays Inn)

Notable Cases

Newham v Chaplair (2023): the first successful prosecution of a tower block owner for failure to remove flammable cladding.

London Borough of Barking and Dagenham v NTM Limited (formerly All Seasons Lettings and Management Limited) LON/00BB/HBA/2022/0004: successfully defended his client against a banning order under the Housing and Planning Act 2016 (“the 2016 act”) s.15(1) by showing that the Notice of Intention (“NOI”) served by the applicant housing authority was invalid due to its failure to cite sufficiently the reasons for the application being made.

AA Homes & Housing Limited v Croydon LBC [2020] UKUT 181 (LC): A successful appeal concerning a local housing authority’s application of the penalty notice procedure and specifically the matters that it is permitted to take into account when assessing level of penalty.

Clark v Manchester City Council [2015] UKUT 129 (LC): Successfully represented a landlord in a case that clarified the scope of local authorities’ powers to set minimum required room size standards for HMO licences. 

Urban Lettings (London) Limited v Haringey L.B.C. [2015] UKUT 104 (LC): Represented a landlord in a case that clarified the meaning of “person having control” for the purposes of s61 Housing Act 2004 and the term “rack rent”.

R v Goremsandu: Instructed by a London Borough in an ongoing series of prosecutions and appeals relating to HMOs owned by a defendant variously described as “Britain’s worst landlord” by The Guardian and “The Bulgarian Queen of run down bedsits” by The Times.

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