Helen Wolstenholme

Call 2002

"Technically excellent, extremely knowledgeable and very articulate."

Legal 500 2024


Helen has considerable experience of claims related to obstetrics and gynaecology (e.g. wrongful birth, shoulder dystocia, maternal death, PTSD following traumatic labour, stillbirth); orthopaedics; cardiology; infection control (e.g. sepsis, necrotising fasciitis, discitis following neurosurgery); cosmetic surgery; oncology; emergency medicine; mental health (including the management of patients with suicide ideation); spinal injuries (including cauda equina syndrome); and general practice.

Notable Clinical Negligence cases

AB v Dr C & others (2023)

Helen acted for the defendants in this claim arising out of a delay in diagnosing base of tongue cancer. Breach of duty was admitted but causation denied, the key issue being whether the claimant’s treatment – and her prognosis – would have been the same in any event. The expert evidence was particularly contentious, one of the claimant’s experts having sought to alter his opinion after the joint statement was prepared. The claim was pleaded in excess of £7m and settled for a modest sum at a JSM shortly before trial.

CD v E NHS Trust (2022)

Helen acted for the defendant in this claim arising out of an allegedly negligent delay in diagnosing necrotising fasciitis in a patient who had recently given birth. The claimant required multiple procedures, developed chronic pain and suffered permanent disability. The claim was pleaded in excess of £3.3m and settled at a JSM shortly before trial.

FG v H NHS Trust (2022)

Helen, led by Caroline Harrison KC, acted for the claimant child in relation to her claim for damages arising out of negligence in the management of her birth. She suffered a hypoxic brain injury and developed atypical four-limbed cerebral palsy. The claim was settled shortly before trial, the capital value of the settlement being in excess of £18m.

IJ v K NHS Trust (2022)

Helen acted for the defendant in this claim arising out of a maternal death following a negligent delay in diagnosing pulmonary hypertension during pregnancy. Liability was admitted. The claim settled at mediation, the contentious issues being the deceased’s “but for” life expectancy and ability to provide services.

LM v N NHS Trust (2022)

Helen acted for the defendant NHS Trust in relation to this sensitive claim brought by the family of an illegal immigrant who killed himself whilst awaiting deportation at a Detention Centre. It was alleged that the Trust had failed properly to assess the risk by suicide and had discharged the deceased from inpatient care with inadequate provision in place. The case included a Human Rights Act claim. Valuation was challenging because of the uncertainty in predicting the deceased’s future but for his death. Settled at mediation.

Thomasson v Salford Royal NHS FT (2021) Recorder David Allan KC, Manchester CC

Helen acted for the defendant in this claim arising out of an allegedly negligent delay in performing emergency neurosurgery leading to blindness. The claim was dismissed following a 5-day trial. The judgment is reported and known to be of significance because of its analysis of the reasons for preferring one medical expert over another.

Helen’s personal injury practice focuses on high value claims across the spectrum of employer’s liability (including industrial disease and psychiatric injury); occupiers’ liability and defective premises; accidents abroad; RTAs (including claims involving allegations of fraud); and the Animals Act. She has a particular interest in cases involving serious psychiatric, as well as physical, injuries, and in chronic pain.

Notable Personal Injury cases

AB v the Ministry of Defence (2022)

Helen acted for the claimant, a member of the Royal Navy, in his claim for damages arising out of an injury suffered during a training course when he was placed in a stress position during a mock interrogation. The career-long loss of earnings claim was particularly complex, requiring expert evidence from specialist employment and accountancy experts. The claim settled shortly before trial.

The Estate of CD v Various Parties (2022)

Helen acted for one of three defendants in this claim arising out of the death of a pedestrian who fell head-first, when severely intoxicated, into an unfenced waterworks excavation in the pavement outside his home. The contractual position between the defendants was complex and a key issue was the extent to which the deceased caused his own death because of extreme alcohol consumption. The claim settled at a JSM.

EF v G NHS Trust (2022)

Helen acted for the defendant NHS Trust in this employer’s liability claim brought by a consultant pathologist arising out of her negligent exposure to formaldehyde. She developed an allergic reaction and was unable to perform ‘cut-ups’, a key part of pathology work, and claimed to have suffered a secondary psychiatric injury. Quantum issues related to the claimant’s likely career path and earnings and pension but for her exposure, and the extent to which they would have been impacted by pre-existing psychiatric disorder. The claim settled shortly before trial.

The Estate of HI v J Ltd (2021)

Helen acted on behalf of the defendant in a very sensitive FAA claim, which settled pre-action at a JSM. The deceased, who was attending her daughter’s wedding, was run over by a Range Rover driven by the wedding venue’s manager whilst crossing the car park. The dependency claim involved the contentious issue of assessment of loss in the context of a family business.

Stephenson v Coleman (2020), Oxford County Court

Helen acted for the owners of an equestrian centre who permitted an employee and his wife to sleep in an old converted horse box after an event. The wife fell from an unfenced bed above the cab, a distance of six feet, and suffered a traumatic head injury. The claim was dismissed at trial, the judge having been persuaded that the danger was an obvious one, the claimant had willingly accepted it and, in her intoxicated state, had failed to take reasonable care.

Helen’s travel and jurisdiction practice is built on her personal injury and clinical negligence expertise. She was involved in the leading case of Wall v MPA (practical application of Rome II) and has particular experience of cases involving Spanish law.

Notable Travel cases

AB v C Insurance Co (2022)

Helen acted for the claimant, who suffered a spinal injury during a speed boat tour of the harbour in Barcelona. Liability was conceded and the claim settled shortly before trial, one of the key issues being the extent to which interest should be awarded in accordance with Spanish rates or English rates.

DE v F Insurance Co (2022)

Helen acted for the defendant insurer in a claim brought by a Bulgarian national, living in the UK, arising out of a road traffic accident in Germany. The claimant suffered major psychiatric disorder following the accident and developed a severe acquired stammer. The claim settled at a JSM shortly before trial.

GH & others v I Insurance Co

Helen acted for the claimant family who were all injured in a serious road traffic accident whilst holidaying in France. Valuation and settlement of the 7-year-old son’s case was particularly challenging because of a thorny legal issue regarding provisional damages.

JK v L Insurance Co

Helen acted for the claimant, who suffered severe facial injuries while being treated for anaphylactic shock as a result of an allergic reaction to penicillin while on holiday in Spain. Clinical negligence claim against Spanish doctor settled before trial.

Significant Cases

Thomasson v Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust [2021] 1 WLUK 607

Pearce v East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust [2020] EWHC 1504 (QB)

Olayemi v Athena Medical Centre [2016] 7 WLUK 410

Acted for the successful appellant pro bono under the ELAAS scheme.

Ukeh v Ministry of Defence [2015] 5 WLUK 430

Secretary of State for Business, Innovation & Skills v Studders & others [2011] 5WLUK 436

Rashford v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2010] EWHC 2200 (QB)

Sunley v Ministry of Justice [2009] 3 WLUK 332

R (on the application of UMBS Online) v Serious Organised Crime Agency [2007] EWCA Civ 406

Privacy Policy

Helen Wolstenholme Privacy Policy

My contact details:

ICO Reg No: Z8758400
Address: 2 Temple Gardens, London, EC4Y 9AY
Email: clerks@2tg.co.uk
Phone: +44 (0)20 7822 1200

The type of personal information I collect

To enable me to provide you with legal advice and representation in courts, tribunals, arbitrations and mediations, I currently collect and process the following personal information:

Personal identifiers, contacts and characteristics (for example, name, date of birth and contact details), bank and financial details, your background and circumstance and education.

Other personal data relevant to, or included in instructions to provide legal services, including data specific to the instructions in question and data included in documents provided to me as part of instructions or otherwise.

Such information may include personal information relating to family members, associates, agents, employees, shareholders or beneficial owners. By providing such personal information to me, you automatically confirm that you are authorised to do so. It is not reasonably practicable for me to provide the information set out in this Privacy Notice to those individuals. Accordingly, where appropriate, you are responsible for providing this information to any such individuals.

Where necessary, I may also need to process Special Category data about you including

  • racial or ethnic origin;
  • personal data revealing political opinions;
  • personal data revealing religious or philosophical beliefs;
  • personal data revealing trade union membership;
  • genetic data;
  • biometric data (where used for identification purposes);
  • data concerning health;
  • data concerning a person’s sex life; and
  • data concerning a person’s sexual orientation.

How I get the personal information and why I have it

Most of the personal information that I process is provided to me directly by you or via the professional you have instructed such as a solicitor or consultant or other professional adviser who instructs me on your behalf to provide legal services.

I use the information that you have given me in order to

  • provide legal services to you, my client, including the provision of legal advice and
  • representation in courts, tribunals, arbitrations, and mediations
  • keep accounting records and carry out office administration
  • take or defend legal or regulatory proceedings or to exercise a lien
  • respond to potential complaints or make complaints
  • check for potential conflicts of interest in relation to future potential cases
  • promote and market my services
  • carry out anti-money laundering and terrorist financing checks
  • train other barristers and pupils, and when providing work-shadowing opportunities
  • publish legal judgments and decisions of courts and tribunals as required or permitted by law.

I may share this information with

  • other professional advisers such as other legal professionals and consultant experts and other witnesses
  • courts and tribunals
  • the staff in my Chambers
  • prosecution authorities
  • pupils and mini pupils
  • lay clients
  • family and associates of the person whose personal information I am processing
  • in the event of complaints, the Head of Chambers, other individuals nominated by Chambers who deal with complaints, the Bar Standards Board, and the Legal Ombudsman
  • other regulatory authorities
  • current, past or prospective employers
  • education and examining bodies
  • business associates, professional advisers and trade bodies, e.g. the Bar Council
  • professional indemnity insurers or brokers
  • the general public in relation to the publication of legal judgments and decisions of courts and tribunals
  • If you have engaged other professional advisers to instruct me on your behalf on the matters on which I am providing legal services to you, I shall assume that I may disclose your personal information to them unless you tell me otherwise.
  • I may be required to provide your information to regulators, such as the Bar Standards Board, the Financial Conduct Authority or the Information Commissioner’s Office. In the case of the Information Commissioner’s Office, there is a risk that your information may lawfully be disclosed by them for the purpose of any other civil or criminal proceedings, without my consent or yours, which includes privileged information.
  • I may also be required to disclose your information to the police or intelligence services, where, acting in good faith, I consider it required and permitted by law.

Under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the lawful basis I rely on for processing this information is

  • The processing is necessary for a contract I have with you, or because you have asked me to take specific steps before entering into a contract.
  • You are able to remove your consent at any time. You can do this by contacting me.
  • It may be necessary for me to share your personal data to comply with legal obligations to, for example, HMRC.

How I store your personal information

Your information is securely stored in Chambers or at my home. I use reasonable technical and organisational security measures such as password protection and encryption of computer generated data and keeping paper data secure to prevent personal information from being accidentally lost or destroyed, or used or accessed in an unauthorised way.

In this connection, Chambers, as data processor, acting on my behalf, will only process your personal data on my instructions and is subject to a duty of confidentiality.

The data will be held in line with any regulatory obligations and generally be kept for 6 years but may be 12 years, or longer where, for example, the case includes information relating to a minor, from the date of completion of instructions. At this point any further retention will be reviewed and the data will be marked for deletion or marked for retention for a further period.

All data will be securely deleted or securely shredded after this time without reference to you. I will store some of your information which I need to carry out conflict checks for the rest of my career. However, this is likely to be limited only to your name and contact details and the name of the case. It will not include any information that is “sensitive information” for GDPR purposes.

Your data protection rights

Under data protection law, you have rights including:

  • Your right of access – You have the right to ask me for copies of your personal information.
  • Your right to rectification – You have the right to ask me to rectify personal information you think is inaccurate. You also have the right to ask me to complete information you think is incomplete.
  • Your right to erasure – You have the right to ask me to erase your personal information in certain circumstances.
  • Your right to restriction of processing – You have the right to ask me to restrict the processing of your personal information in certain circumstances.
  • Your right to object to processing – You have the the right to object to the processing of your personal information in certain circumstances.
  • Your right to data portability – You have the right to ask that I transfer the personal information you gave us to another organisation, or to you, in certain circumstances.
  • You are not required to pay any charge for exercising your rights. If you make a request, I have one month to respond to you. Please contact me at 2 Temple Gardens, London, EC4Y 9AY or clerks@2tg.co.uk if you wish to make a request.

Transfer of your information outside the European Economic Area (EEA)

This privacy notice is of general application and as such it is not possible to state whether it will be necessary to transfer your information out of the EEA. If I do transfer your personal data I will use safeguards to ensure the data is fully protected as required by the UK Data Protection Regulations.

Changes to my Privacy Policy

From time to time, I may need to make chances to my privacy policy. If so, the changes will appear on my entry on the 2TG website.


As above, I may share your personal data with Chambers who may in turn use that data to notify you by email, or post about an invitation to seminars and similar events. You may opt out of receiving any such marketing communications at any time by using the “unsubscribe” link in any emails. In relation to how Chambers uses such data, please see Chambers’ privacy policy. Other than sharing personal data with Chambers as described above, I will not share your information with any other third party for marketing purposes.

How to complain

If you have any concerns about my use of your personal information, you can make a complaint to me or to my Senior Clerk, Lee Tyler at 2 Temple Gardens, London, EC4Y 9AY or clerks@2tg.co.uk. You can also complain to the ICO if you are unhappy with how we have used your data.

The ICO’s address:

Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane

Helpline number: 0303 123 1113
ICO website: https://www.ico.org.uk

© Briefed Ltd 2021. All Rights Reserved.

"An astute tactician."

Chambers UK 2024

"A hugely impressive barrister."

Chambers UK 2023

"She is direct but also appreciates the needs of her clients and always delivers results."

Chambers UK 2023

"...highly regarded by clients."

Legal 500 2023

"An excellent advocate; knowledgeable and articulate."

Legal 500 2022

"She has incredible attention to detail and is very precise, efficient and approachable. She commands authority and writes beautifully."

Chambers UK 2022

  • Recorder, Midlands Circuit, Crime
  • Junior Counsel to the Crown (C Panel)

  • Hardwicke Scholar, Lincoln’s Inn
  • European Commission Human Rights Scholar

  • MA (Jurisprudence), Hertford College, Oxford University

  • Personal Injury Bar Association (PIBA)
  • Professional Negligence Bar Association (PNBA) (Executive Committee member since 2023)
  • Ogden Working Party (since 2024)

“Helen is calm in difficult situations and is my go to counsel for sensitive or complex settlement meetings.”
“Helen has a good eye for detail and the commercial realities of the claims.”
“She is a very good technical lawyer who takes a pragmatic and commercial view.”
“She is an astute tactician and has an excellent manner with clients.”
Chambers UK 2024

“Helen is technically excellent, extremely knowledgeable and very articulate.”
“Very thorough and always well-prepared. Good negotiator and advocate.”
Legal 500 2024

“Helen has an excellent eye for detail and is very thorough.”
“She is a very assured advocate.”
“Helen is an excellent advocate. She is quick to grasp the essential issues in the claim.”
“Helen is a hugely impressive barrister. She is direct but also appreciates the needs of her clients and always delivers results.”
Chambers UK 2023

Helen has a fantastic manner; her drafting skills are exemplary, she is responsive and is widely respected.
Her calm and thorough approach means she’s highly regarded by clients, and she has a great mind for quantum issues.
Legal 500 2023

She has incredible attention to detail and is very precise, efficient and approachable. She commands authority and writes beautifully.”
“She is a very good technical lawyer and advocate who takes a sensible and pragmatic approach to cases.”
“She is meticulous at planning and clients have a lot of confidence in her. She is an excellent junior.”
“She’s very impressive in RTMs and conferences.”
“She fights her client’s corner and is a robust and very good advocate.”
Chambers UK 2022

Helen is an excellent advocate; knowledgeable and articulate.
Her calm and thorough approach makes her highly regarded with clients, and she has a great mind for quantum issues.
Legal 500 2022

“She is very attentive and clients really like her.”
“Helen has a wonderful advocacy style.”
“Excellent in her analysis of both liability and quantum.”
“Very thoughtful, intelligent and organised. Her written work is very impressive.”
“Easy to work with and excellent with clients.”
Chambers UK 2021

A thoughtful barrister with a real enthusiasm for the work.
Legal 500 2021

“She is extremely incisive in terms of both her paperwork and her cross-examinations. She’s client-friendly and gives very practical and accurate advice.”
Chambers UK 2020

“She has excellent knowledge of clinical negligence law.”
Legal 500 2020

“She’s firm but pragmatic, and very good at what she does.”
“She’s very experienced, trustworthy and approachable.”
Chambers UK 2019

“A thorough and competent barrister with a good eye for detail.”
“She dealt beautifully with a tricky case.”
“Reputed for her ability to address allegations of exaggeration.”
Chambers UK 2018

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