Bruce Silvester is an accomplished personal injury, health and safety, and clinical negligence litigation practitioner who is also highly regarded for his practice in travel litigation. He regularly appears for claimants and also defendants in the High Court as well as providing advisory and mediation services. He has particular expertise in the field of catastrophic injuries including brain, spine, multiple injuries and also group litigation.
Hugely experienced senior junior with an enviable caseload of multimillion-pound catastrophic injury instructions, predominantly from claimant solicitors but also from defendant insurers. His cases concern a variety of circumstances, including fatal accidents, brain damage and spinal cord injuries. His practice includes trial advocacy, mediation and advisory work. "He is always extremely well prepared." "His case-craft is second to none - he identifies gaps in evidence at the earliest stage and knows how best to plug them, resulting in the cases being put forward at their absolute strongest." Acted for a 38 year old claimant mother who was rendered tetraplegic after breaking her neck at a trampoline park - Personal Injury, Chambers UK Bar 2021
Focusing his practice on travel litigation, he appears frequently in large-scale group actions on both the claimant and defendant sides. He handles claims arising from a range of transport accidents, both on road and at sea. He is highly regarded by commentators for his expertise in complex gastric illness claims. "A very knowledgeable and persuasive advocate." Acted for the claimants in Chloe Washington and 96 Others v Thomas Cook Tour Operations. The claimants suffered severe illness while on holiday in Zante - Travel: International Personal Injury, Chambers UK Bar 2021.
‘Prepared to fight the toughest of cases and exudes confidence and belief.’ - Personal Injury, Legal 500 2021
‘Very thorough and detailed drafting, and very persuasive written advocacy. Incisive.’ - Travel Law (including Jurisdictional Issues), Legal 500 2021
"He has a very keen legal mind." "An excellent trial advocate." Acted for the claimant in Sarah Edwards v Air Factory Leisure, a case in which a 38-year-old mother suffered a broken neck and tetraplegia following an accident at a trampoline park. - Personal Injury, Chambers UK Bar 2020
"He is very thorough, has great attention to detail and is very easy to work with. He doesn't shy away from rolling up his sleeves and getting stuck into the case." "He is tenacious, thorough and a very good advocate. He builds a good rapport with clients and is assertive without being aggressive." Instructed in Tina Campbell v Global Travel Group and Eros Bus Travel, a case concerning a claimant who suffered catastrophic spinal injuries when the coach she was travelling in left the carriageway in heavy rain and overturned. - Travel: International Personal Injury, Chambers UK Bar 2020
"Extremely thorough in terms of preparation of the claim." - Personal Injury, Legal 500 2020
"He is a very bright junior." - Travel Law (including Jurisdictional Issues), Legal 500 2020
"Excellent with clients and extremely tenacious. He's very thorough in reviewing and valuing a case and is a very committed advocate." "He's very keen to take on difficult cases and very good at interpreting facts into a lay person's terms so clients feel relaxed around him." Acted for a claimant who suffered serious head and spinal injuries in a quad-bike accident while on holiday in Spain. - Travel: International Personal Injury, Chambers UK Bar 2019
"He's very tenacious and is doggedly determined in securing the best possible outcome for his clients." "He is a very good advocate who is superb on his feet." Represented a claimant who suffered severe food poisoning after visiting the defendant’s restaurant. The case included both liability and quantum issues. - Personal Injury, Chambers UK Bar 2019
‘He is a fierce advocate who focuses hard on evidence, tackles complicated liability issues and runs the most difficult cases.’ - Personal Injury, Industrial Disease and Insurance Fraud, Legal 500 2019
"A great advocate, well respected by clients and judiciary alike with a wealth of knowledge in this field and a determined and tenacious approach to litigation." "He is a pre-eminent lawyer for gastric illness cases and his approach is impressive." "He's amazing with clients and extremely committed." Acted for 219 claimants in a multiparty action against Bourne Leisure, after 122 of the claimants suffered gastric illness while at the defendant's resort, due to alleged poor standards of food hygiene. - Travel: International Personal Injury, Chambers UK 2018
“Very tough and very experienced." "His attention to evidence means cases are always presented in the strongest possible way." Acted in a claim involving a man who suffered a catastrophic spinal injury in a mountain biking accident. - Personal Injury, Chambers UK 2018
"He has a relentless focus on evidence, in terms of both understanding it and plugging gaps in it." - Personal Injury, Legal 500 2017
"He is a great advocate, well respected by clients and judiciary alike, who has a wealth of knowledge and takes a tenacious approach to litigation." "Bruce is incredibly single-minded in his pursuit of the client's objective, and always prepared to think outside the box with liability arguments." "He gets a grasp of cases very quickly and is a bullish advocate."Successfully represented the claimant in the appeal of Gillian McIlhagga v Abdul Majid, which arose from a quad biking accident in Spain resulting in catastrophic injury. - Travel PI, Chambers UK 2017
Sources value his ability to be very direct in his dealings with the opposition while remaining entirely sympathetic and approachable for the client. "Very calm, very confident in his own abilities, not afraid of difficult cases." "Incredibly tenacious and single-minded in his pursuit of the client's objectives. He is very creative and always prepared to think outside the box." Represented the claimant, a trooper in the Household Cavalry, who was struck by the defendant's taxi and suffered near-fatal brain injuries. Achieved £1.5 million at a joint settlement meeting. - Personal Injury, Chambers UK 2017
"He will often get results that others would not." - Personal Injury, Legal 500 2016
Regularly appears opposite silks taking on complex maximum severity claims. He acts for both claimants and defendants and is noted for his expertise in cases concerning catastrophic head injuries. "He is a very impressive and persuasive advocate; if there was a jury he would probably have them in the palm of his hand." "He is a practical, fast-thinking lawyer who's also good at getting results." Acted in McIlhagga v Majid, a case concerning a serious accident leading to head and spinal injuries. - Personal Injury, Chambers UK 2016
Has established an excellent reputation among peers for his work on the claimant side of group illness cases under the Athens Convention. Such cases have typically turned on questions of liability. "He is very focused in terms of picking out the main points to argue. There may be many issues but he's very good at isolating those points that are really at the heart of the matter." - Travel, Chambers UK 2016
"Always approachable and well prepared." - Personal Injury, Legal 500 2015
Devotes much of his time to individual and group litigation concerning health and safety and catastrophic injury. He boasts a flourishing High Court practice and acts for both defendants and claimants. "He is a phenomenally hard worker. Every point is taken, and he doesn't miss anything." "His advocacy is superb, and he is regularly up against silks, often coming out on top." Acted as counsel in a high-value accident claim involving a child with serious neurological damage, where the damage could not be assessed properly until adulthood. - Personal Injury, Chambers UK 2015
Acts for claimants and defendants in cross-border personal injury litigation. He is notably strong in cases involving multiple claimants and issues arising from the Athens Convention. "He's very forensic, good with experts, and demonstrates good attention to detail." "Pretty fearsome to come up against, he doesn't mince his words, is very thorough and is incredibly tenacious." Acted for 205 claimants who fell ill during their stay on the 'Thomson Dream' cruise ship. - Travel: International Personal Injury, Chambers UK 2015
Described as "scrupulous in assessing evidence." - Personal Injury, Legal 500 2014
"A fearsome advocate who is capable of handling the most complex and high value of claims." He has many years of experience of a wide variety of personal injury claims, and is highly regarded for his expertise in cases involving brain and spinal injuries. He acted in Mark Lynch v CEVA Logistics, acting for the claimant, an electrician who was crushed under a fork-lift truck in the defendant's warehouse. - Chambers UK 2013
Bruce Silvester offers "assertive advocacy," and acts on anything from large illness group actions to RTA fatalities. Solicitors speak of his "fantastic client skills," noting that "he can be quite direct with clients and sometimes you need the barrister to be like that." He advised on Barltrop v TUI, which concerned a serious coach accident in Bulgaria. - Chambers UK 2013
Prominent junior Bruce Silvester "works like a Trojan and has great forensic skills". “He handles catastrophic brain injury, spinal injury and multiple injury cases” - Personal Injury, Chambers UK 2011
Specialises in international personal injury work and has been involved with a number of multiparty actions. He successfully acted for the claimants in Barltrop and 22 others v TUI UK Ltd, a case concerning a serious coach crash in Bulgaria involving 40 passengers travelling to a ski resort. - Travel, Chambers UK 2011
...the "brilliant and sensible" Bruce Silvester, is "an expert on brain and spinal injury cases. Silvester's recent highlights have included acting on Nicholson v Willis, a catastrophic injury case that raised issues of periodical payments and the relevance of state provision in Scotland". - Personal Injury, Chambers UK 2010
... is viewed as "highly effective, forthright and aggressive." Examples of his work include acting for a group of claimants in a case stemming from widespread illness in a hotel following a flooding. He also handled another group action relating to an outbreak of cryptosporidium infections.
"Great charm and presence in court". He is "like a dog with a bone when pursuing relevant arguments and issues within a case" He advises both claimants and defendants on clinical negligence and health and safety matters, as well as handling group litigation and catastrophic injury work. - Personal Injury, Chambers UK 2009
"Bruce Silvester can take a difficult point and make it look easy" - Personal Injury, Chambers UK 2008
Ranked in Chambers UK as a prominent junior, and in Tier 1 by Legal 500 2020, Bruce undertakes all aspects of personal injury, health and safety and clinical negligence work and regularly appears for both claimant and defendant in the High Court. He is instructed as lone and led junior in matters concerning catastrophic injuries, brain and spine, and in multi-party cases.
Bruce lectures extensively in the field of Personal Injury litigation at professionally organised conferences: Euroform, Butterworths and Lloyds of London and Legal Network Television, as well as providing seminars as part of the in-house training programs of a number of firms of solicitors.
Bruce Silvester is a well-known international personal injury specialist who has been ranked in Chambers UK for a number of years. He appears on behalf of claimants and Defendant Note in both single and multi-party matters, providing the full range of advocacy, advisory and mediation expertise in this complex area of law.
Bruce has over 20 years experience in all aspects of clinical negligence.
Past cases have included:
Bruce is a member of the PNBA and regularly attends the two day Clinical Negligence conference/residential seminar in Oxford.
Bruce is known for his tenacity and his ability to win the most difficult of cases.
PIBA, PNBA, APIL
University of London, Queen Mary College London LLB (1982)
Inner Temple Cecil Yahuda Scholarship; Inner Temple Law Grant (1983)
Antique books, contemporary design, cycling, skiing