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Richard Brooks


T: 020 7842 1401 (DDI)
T: 020 7583 2222
M: 07775 918 757 E:

Richard is one of those rare individuals in the law – a litigator with wide ranging legal skills but with a particular passion for horseracing. Not every lawyer who knows about horses makes a good equine lawyer, but Richard is independently recognised as a "Leader in his field" and a "shrewd lawyer and tactician" by legal directories Chambers & Partners UK and Legal 500 UK.

Their specialist knowledge of racing is exceptional resulting in sound, practical and astute advice. This expertise across the whole spectrum of the racing and bloodstock world combined with their high standards of service, in my opinion, make them the leaders in their field.
Mick Channon, owner and breeder, West Ilsley Stables

About Richard

Richard qualified as a solicitor in 1994 and helped to establish niche bloodstock practice Chalk Smith Brooks in 1999. He is a joint leader of the Racing and Bloodstock team who “knows equine matters inside out” according to The Legal 500 UK. Richard, an “aggressive litigator”, regularly and expertly handles animal-related claims.

He has considerable experience in:

  • sports disciplinary and licensing work particularly in horseracing acting in high profile cases, including race-fixing and corruption enquiries
  • accidents to riders and horses including claims under the Animals Act 1971
  • personal injury work more broadly particularly very serious injury cases with a special interest in chronic pain
  • motorbike accident claims
  • sporting injuries: accidents involving participants and spectators
  • equine claims involving training and other contract disputes, misrepresentation, sales of goods and veterinary negligence.

Richard is also an accredited Mediator and part of the firm’s mediation team. Known in particular for mediating equine-related matters he acts in a wide range of other commercial, property and other disputes.

Richard is the Training Principal for our trainee solicitors and provides support and guidance throughout their training contract.

The Legal 500 - The Clients Guide to Law Firms

Everything to do with bloodstock, racing and the business of horses is my thing. It’s a world I feel comfortable in and my clients feel comfortable with me because they know that I get what they do. I wouldn’t change it for anything.

Richard Brooks

Related articles

Opinion [4]
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Cow attacks: what are the odds?

12 February 2019

Richard Brooks, partner in our Personal Injury team, helps you to understand the likelihood of a cow attack, how you might be able to avoid one, and what you can do if you are unfortunate enough to have been victim to one.

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When bees attack: a perspective from a lawyer and beekeeper

26 June 2018

Personal injury lawyer and beekeeper Richard Brooks takes a look at a recent story about a young boy who was injured by bees, and what the legal position is should you be victim of an angry swarm.

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Do I have to wear a helmet while horse riding? A legal expert’s view

15 September 2017

Many of us are guilty of not wearing a helmet when out riding, be that on a horse or on a bicycle. We often see cases in the media of people being seriously injured or even killed when they were involved in an accident and were not wearing a helmet.

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Did you hear the one about the Irishman, a horse and an Italian ambulance? The legal view.

8 July 2016

From a legal perspective the recent slapstick incident involving jockey, Chris Meehan, helps to illuminate the subtle complexities of the law governing claims for compensation for injuries suffered at the hands (or hooves) of animals.

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News [4]
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Royds Withy King welcomes ruling in cow attack case

7 December 2016

Lawyers from Royds Withy King have welcomed a decision this week to fine a farmer £30k for health and safety failures after his cows attacked and killed a retired professor as he walked across a field in Wiltshire.

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Economic pressures continue to affect racing

7 June 2013

Economic conditions continue to take their toll on horse racing with over half (53 per cent) of the trainers who took part in a recent poll admitting they weren’t confident about the business climate over the next six months. One-fifth …

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Court of Appeal Judgement: Philip Hide v Jockey Club Racecourses

22 May 2013

The Court of Appeal has today ruled in favour of former jockey turned trainer, Philip Hide, awarding him £58k compensation for injuries sustained during a race at Cheltenham in 2006. The ruling overturns the decision at Oxford County Court in …

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Onus on farmers to prevent animal accidents

20 December 2012

Cows and humans usually get along very nicely, but sometimes accidents happen. A number of cow-trampling stories have made the headlines recently prompting the question, who is responsible? As farmers and landowners will know, the onus is on them to …

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Case Studies [3]

Royds Withy King gets a result where another firm could not

4 December 2015

We acted for Sally* who was a stable girl in her twenties. Sally worked in a racehorse training yard and one morning on the way to the gallops the filly she was riding became so agitated that she flipped over. Sally had no chance to avoid the accident and the horse landed on top of her.

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Stable girl compensated for loss of ten teeth

13 February 2014

Former stable girl, Jennie, has received significant compensation for terrible facial injuries.

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Racehorse owner admits liability for horse’s dangerous behaviour

4 December 2013

Ms M was employed as Head Girl at a racehorse training yard. On the day of her accident, she was among the seven horse-riders who exercised horses. They were making their way back to the yard and had to go through a gate.

Read more..

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