Mark Cawson QC

Call 1982
Silk 2001

“A very experienced and technically strong silk who has a real air of calm, in even the most high-pressured of situations.”

Chambers and Partners 2020
Photo of Mark Cawson QC


Mark is recognised as a leading QC in Chambers and Partners UK 2020 (Band 1) in the field of Insolvency/Restructuring.

His insolvency practice extends to:

  • Transaction avoidance
  • Asset tracing
  • Misfeasance and fraud claims
  • Enforcement of security
  • Directors disqualification
  • Bankruptcies and IVAs
  • Administrations
  • CVAs and Schemes of arrangement
  • Professional negligence claims

Mark’s clients include government departments, local authorities, banks, office holders, Plcs, SMEs/SMBs, and private clients. The emphasis of Mark’s practice is on complex and high value litigation in the above areas. His work takes him on a regular basis to the Court of Appeal, the Chancery Division of the High Court, and the Commercial and Mercantile Courts.

Mark sits as a Deputy High Court Judge and a Recorder, and he is an accredited mediator. He is the current Chairman of the Northern Chancery Bar Association.

Insolvency Cases

Recent insolvency cases include the following:

As Leading Counsel

Conn & Anor v Ezair, Re Charlotte Street Properties Ltd [2019] EWHC 1722 (Ch), HHJ Halliwell, ChD, Manchester:
Acting for joint administrators in respect of application under s. 234 and 236 of the Insolvency Act 1986 for order for transfer of title to properties vested in the name of the Respondent but which the joint administrators of the company claimed were held on bare trust for the company so as to entitle them to call for a transfer.

Re, CC Automotive Group [2019] EWHC 2771 (Ch), HHJ Klein, ChD, Leeds:
Acting for the Liquidator of CC Automotive Ltd (“Car Care”) on application seeking directions from the Court as to the proper application of the monies held in trust fund for benefit of customers.

House of Fraser [2018]
Acting for the landlords of a number of properties used by House of Fraser as department stores. Advised the landlords with regard challenge to a Creditors’ Voluntary Arrangement on the grounds of unfair prejudice and material irregularity. Application issued, but settled before it could be heard.

POWA Technologies Group Plc [2017], HHJ Bird, Ch. D (Manchester):
Acting for creditor/preferential shareholder on successful application for an administration order in respect of POWA Technologies Plc, opposed by a former director/shareholder who himself sought administration order appointing different office holders. Purpose of administration order was to enable conspiracy claim of potentially in excess of £100m to be pursued against another former director and a secured creditor.

Wood v Priestley & Anor [2016] EWHC 2986 (Ch)
Successfully defending claim by a partner of failed Poppleton & Appleby Insolvency Practitioner practice for an indemnity from his co-partners.

ING v OW Bunker Middle East DMCC [2015]
Acting for liquidators of Dubai subsidiary within the OW Bunker insolvency in respect of claim that raises issue as to whether certain assets (valued at in excess of £50m) are caught by the terms of a bank’s security. The case raises issues as the terms of the relevant company’s supply contracts.

Re McNally, McNally v Dymond and National Westminster Bank
[2013] BPIR 604 (HHJ Purle QC):

Acting for bank on issue as to valuation of security for purposes of voting on an IVA

Consolidated Finance v Collins [2013] BPIR 543 (CA):
Application of Consumer Credit Act 1974 to credit agreement funding annulment from bankruptcy

Amble Assets LLP v Longbenton Foods [2012] 1 All ER (Comm) 764:
Acting for joint administrators on application concerning the entitlement of the joint administrators to forfeit a deposit paid under a contract for the sale of land

Howarth v (1) Cartmel (2) HMRC [2012] BPIR 428:
Acting for trustee in bankruptcy  on application by bankrupt to annul on grounds of lack of mental capacity

RBS v Chandra [2010] 1 Lloyd’s Rep 677 (Richards J), [2011] EWCA Civ 192 (Court
of Appeal):

Successful enforcement of guarantees on behalf of bank notwithstanding defence of undue influence by wife

Accident Group Limited, (2003 – 2011):
Acting for the joint administrators, and subsequently the joint liquidators The Accident Group Limited in respect of claims against former directors and others, and various applications for directions

Crown Paints Limited v Landsbanki Islands HF , (2008):
Acting for Crown Paints Ltd  in dispute with Landsbanki Islands HF, the Icelandic bank, upon the collapse of the latter

MG Rover Group Ltd, (2008):
Acting for former Solicitors of MG Rover Group Ltd on  the inquiry into the latter by Inspectors appointed by Department of BIS under S 432(2) of the Companies Act 1985

Lune Metal Products Limited (In Administration) [2007] 2 BCLC 746:
Acting for joint administrators on application for permission to make payments to creditors on discharge from administration

TVR Motors Company Limited, (2007):
Advising the joint administrators of TVR in respect of antecedent transactions by directors

As a Deputy High Court Judge

Fons HF v Corporal Ltd [2013] EWHC 1801 (Ch):
Interpretation of legal charge raising question as to meaning of, “debentures or other securities” (Manchester)

Re Oxford Pharmaceuticals Ltd; Wilson v Masters International Ltd [2009] 2 BCLC 485:
Claim relating to preference and misfeasance, and the availability of remedies against
third parties (London)

Re Paycheck Services 3 Ltd; HMRC v Holland [2008] 2 BCLC 613:
Claim relating to misfeasance, and unlawful dividends paid on basis of unsuccessful tax planning scheme (London)

Lomax Leisure Limited v. Miller [2008] 1 BCLC 262:
Application concerning a liquidator’s duties in respect of the payment of dividends to creditors (London)

Re Siteburn Limited [2006] BPIR 1009:
Estoppel by convention in an insolvency context (London)