Call 1992 (Middle Temple)
Qualifications BA (Oxon) 1st Class 1986, LLM (Cantab) 1987, LLM (University of Pennsylvania) 1988, Thouron Scholar (University of Pennsylvania) 1987-8, Attorney-at-Law New York State 1991, Queen Mother’s Scholar 1992, Sachs Prize & Campbell-Foster Prize 1993 (all Middle Temple)
Professional Memberships Member of Chancery Bar Association, Secretary of the Western Chancery & Commercial Bar Association
Areas of Practice
Ancillary to the above areas of expertise, particularly solicitors’ negligence.
Property and Real Estate
John specialises in:
- principally commercial, including contracts for the sale of land and disputes relating to land development (title problems, conditional contracts, restrictive covenants and overage clauses)
- easements (rights of way, rights to light and water rights)
- nuisance and trespass
Landlord and Tenant
- principally commercial property but also agricultural and residential
- commercial lease construction
- 1954 Act renewals
- rent reviews
- dilapidations claims
- breaches of covenant, particularly covenants against as signment
- possession, including Housing Association possession actions
- “John is recognised for his fantastic technical expertise. ‘John leaves no stone unturned and is very intelligent.’ ‘Pound for pound, he’s one of the best barristers on circuit.’ ” Chambers UK, Real Estate Litigation (2014)
- “John is authoritative, measured, and calm.” Legal 500, Commercial, Insolvency and Property (2013)
- “The ‘very experienced’ John specialises in all areas of real property. He brings superior technical knowledge to each case he handles and is the author of the legal text ‘Land Licences’. Sources praise him for the fact that ‘he will always fight the client’s corner.’ “ Chambers UK, Real Estate Litigation (2013)
- John has particular experience in licensing matters.” Legal 500, Commercial, Insolvency and Property (2012)
Wills, Trusts and Probate
- co-ownership and trusts of land
- claims under Trusts of Land & Appointment of Trustees Act 1996
- construction of wills
- contentious probate
- administration of estates and trusts
- claims under the Inheritance Act
- “John has proved to be both good on paper and a strong advocate in complex ToLATA matters. “ Chambers UK, Chancery (2014)
- “John is perhaps best known for his property work, but he also advises on wills, trusts, and probate and professional negligence matters. An interviewee praises Sharples, and comments that ‘he is very thorough and will cover every sort of angle.’ “ Chambers UK, Chancery (2013)
- “John leans towards property, landlord and tenant, and probate work. Other barristers find him ‘an impressive opponent’ and ‘a rigorous advocate who takes every point.’ He is a noted authority on land licences.” Chambers UK, Chancery (2012)
John specialises in all areas of real property. He is frequently instructed on behalf of major land developers and owners, national house builders and large public authorities as well as private clients.
John has recently written a book on Land Licences, printed by Jordans Publishing in which Lord Neuberger, the Master of the Rolls, writes the foreword. He has also recently become a contributor to the New Law Journal.
John is qualified to undertake public access work in appropriate cases, for further information, please visit our Public Access page.
Before joining the Bar, John practised as an attorney-at-law in a Wall Street law firm from 1989 to 1991. His practice there included contentious take-overs and major litigation for international banks, insurance companies and brokerage houses.
John is qualified to undertake Direct Access work in appropriate cases, for further information, please visit our Direct Access page.