"He listens to clients, is very good in writing and has a very good rapport. He is very approachable and friendly." "He always delivers." – Chambers and Partners 2021
"Mathew is very thorough and leaves no stone unturned. I am therefore confident in recommending clients to Mathew for his assistance in LL&T matters. Mathew also produces detailed advice which considers all options available to a client. As an advocate, he is confident and concise." Legal 500 2021
Mathew is a through-and-through landlord and tenant specialist, with a particular emphasis on social housing. If the matter is of relevance to either a landlord or a tenant, in whatever guise they appear (residential or commercial) or whatever Court or Tribunal in which they find themselves, Mathew will be able to assist.
His primary area of work is social housing with homelessness appeals comprising a very large portion of that work, and a growing judicial review practice on top. He frequently acts for many London boroughs, as well as other social landlords and tenants. He has given – and continues to give – training to solicitors and other professionals throughout the country on landlord and tenant matters, and he has written in the legal press numerous times and contributed recordings to the professional development podcasting service, CPDCast.
Above everything Mathew gives direct, concise, no-nonsense and honest advice that cuts through the irrelevancies and focuses solely on what matters to the client. One solicitor has said that “Mathew has the knack of still seeing the wood despite there being many trees in the way”.
In his spare time Mathew enjoys running, walking his beloved Whippet, Maple, and spending time with family. He is also keenly interested in British and North American history, in particular socio-economic history from the mid-19th Century to the 1980s, and also devours any book related to the Second World War.
Social Housing Profile
Rather than simply list the sort of cases with which he regularly deals, as a general rule if the issue or question relates to the occupation or condition of social housing – from the perspective of either the landlord or the tenant/occupier – Mathew can help. Indeed, prior to the Bar Mathew cut his teeth at a busy Housing Aid centre assisting tenants and mortgagors on the Duty Possession Desk. As such, Mathew’ experience in this field stretches beyond his years of work as a barrister.
A large portion of Mathew’s practice sees him advising on homelessness appeals under the Housing Act 1996, drafting skeleton arguments in respect of them and, of course, appearing in Court on behalf of both local authorities and applicants. Mathew is also accustomed in dealing with the now-frequently raised equality and human right issues in the housing, allocations and homelessness context.
Mathew has written a number of articles for the New Law Journal, Lexis Nexis PSL and Adviser (published by the Citizens Advice Bureau) and has recorded a number of podcasts on behalf of CPDCast. He also instigated and edits 42 Bedford Row’s successful and widely-distributed Housing Law Bulletins, which are often published by the Local Government Lawyer.
Landlord and Tenant Profile
Mathew’s experience of landlord and tenant matters reaches well-beyond the social housing sector, whether that landlord or tenant is a residential or a commercial one. He is very experienced in long leasehold matters and regularly appears in the First-Tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) and has appeared in the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber). In this respect he is regularly instructed on issues ranging from lease extension, enfranchisement, Right to Manage and the payability and reasonableness of service charges. He also has a burgeoning TOLATA practice and has recently appeared in a number of multi-day trials.
He is particularly interested in the ever-changing context in which private residential landlords find themselves in respect of both managing and obtaining possession of premises (tenancy deposits, retaliatory eviction, HMOs, etc)
Mathew is also frequently instructed in forfeiture proceedings, whether they stem from breaches of residential or commercial leases, regardless of the nature of the breach. He has considerable experience advising on discreet points in this respect concerning entitlement to forfeit and waiver of the same. His commercial practice has additionally seen him undertake advisory and court work in respect of contested business lease renewals under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954.
Mathew’s direct and realistic advice is particularly valuable in the commercial context, and he prides himself in this respect on his ability and willingness to assist his solicitors or clients with the progression of the case generally.