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A leading set specialising in commercial, construction, insurance and property law

Kirby QC

“A strong advocate who delivers.” The Legal 500

Year of call: 1989


PJ was formerly a partner in a Holborn firm of solicitors but has subsequently enjoyed a long and successful career at the Bar. He took silk in 2013 – the only costs specialist to do so that year. PJ is Joint Head of Chambers at Hardwicke.

PJ’s practice covers costs litigation, commercial dispute resolution and professional negligence. He is instructed by a wide range of solicitors from City firms to High Street practitioners. As well as cases in England & Wales PJ has appeared in the Cayman Islands Court of Appeal in relation to the legality of CFAs and in the DIFC in Dubai and much of his work has an international dimension.

PJ is recognised as an expert in the field of costs and is often instructed on appeals in relation to problems over retainers, CFAs etc. He is also often instructed to draft bespoke DBAs, CFAs or CCFAs for firms of solicitors.

PJ sits as a Deputy District Judge and is a Bar Council appointed High Court costs assessor. PJ is also an ADR group accredited mediator and is on the Costs ADR (CADR) panel of mediators.

Directory recommendations

PJ is recommended for Costs Litigation in both Chambers UK and Legal 500. He is also recommended for Commercial Dispute Resolution in Chambers UK. The directories refer to the fact that PJ is:

  • “A calming influence, who is very confident and presents extremely well; he absolutely wiped the floor with the other side. Thorough and great with clients, and a real team player.” Chambers UK
  • “Very thorough and eloquent and has a very client-friendly manner.” Chambers UK
  • “A clear costs specialist, who is knowledgeable, commercial and prepared to go the extra mile.” Legal 500
  • “Great with clients, he is a real team player.” Chambers UK
  • “Provides excellent strategic and legal advice.” Chambers UK
  • “…he absolutely wiped the floor with the other side.” Chambers UK

Professional Associations

  • Employment Law Bar Association
  • Employment Lawyers Association
  • Commercial Bar Association
  • London Common Law and Commercial Bar Association
  • Professional Negligence Bar Association
  • London Court of International Arbitration
  • British Insurance Law Association


  • L.L.B. (Hons)
  • Former Solicitor
  • Deputy District Judge
  • Barrister Assessor on High Court Cost Appeals  
  • ADR Group Accredited Civil & Commercial Mediator
  • Costs ADR (CADR) panel of mediators

CSR & pro bono

PJ’s annual pop up restaurant in aid of the BillableHour appeal for Save the Children has raised thousands of pounds and attracted widespread press coverage.