Business Apprentice of the Year 2021

Chambers are delighted to congratulate our mediation clerk, Shanaz O’Brien on being awarded Business Apprentice of the Year 2021 this week. She has been undertaking her apprenticeship with the Northern Skills Group through Middlesbrough College and has earned a distinction.

 We are especially proud of her for keeping going even through the Covid restrictions and online learning and so pleased that her hard work has been recognised.

Fountain Chambers Welcomes Two New Pupils

Over the course of the last few weeks Chambers has been delighted to welcome two new pupils. Christopher Bevan is undertaking a criminal pupillage, supervised by Richard Bennett and Farah Shames is undertaking a family pupillage supervised by Gill Kane and Kate Dodds.

 They are likely to be shadowing other members of Chambers during their first six months as we ensure they get the best training they can in both remote and ‘in person’ hearings.

Collette Price


Collette has previously been listed in the Legal 500 as a leading junior in family. She has over 20 years’ experience working within Family Law and is relied on by both solicitors and clients for her attention to detail and commitment to seeking a resolution to their cases in their clients’ best interests.

She believes in advising clients as early as possible about the potential outcomes of their cases to allow them to make the right decision for them. She is also conscientious and efficient in providing feedback to solicitors where they cannot be present at court.

Collette’s public law experience is extensive including cases involving sexual abuse, serious physical harm, brain injuries and Facitious Illness Syndrome. She frequently represents local authorities from around the area as well as parents and other family members who find themselves involved in the family law system.

In addition to public law proceedings Collette undertakes financial remedy work. Her logical and straight forward approach is sought after by local firms and she always seeks to resolve matters where possible to minimise the cost and distress of ongoing proceedings.


Notable Cases

Re S – private law case including a 16.4 Guardian (2015)

Protracted proceedings in which mother alleged that father had sexually abused their young child and subjected her to domestic abuse. Collette represented the father. Following a finding of fact hearing the court determined that mother had invented all of the allegations and ordered direct contact should resume. In a second set of proceedings a year later, to clarify contact arrangements, shared care was ordered.


Re G – private law case including a 16.4 Guardian. (2015 / 2016)

Mother stopped all contact between two primary school age children and their father following disclosures of sexual abuse. Father denied the allegations and cross-alleged emotional harm by the mother. Collette represented the father. At the conclusion of a finding of fact hearing the court found that the children had been subjected to emotional harm by their mother and been coached into making the disclosures. An interim care order was made of the court’s own motion and the children moved to their father with immediate effect. The proceedings concluded with the children in the full-time care of their father.


W v L – private law case including a 16.4 Guardian. (2017)

Representing the mother in long-running private law proceedings between parents who had never lived together, late into which, mother made allegations of rape within her relationship with father to explain her concern about contact taking place. At a finding of fact hearing the court made all of the findings sought by the mother and contact between father and child was terminated.

Re G-P [2019] EWCA Civ 56 (Peter Jackson, Leggatt LJJ, Moor J.) (2018 /2019)

Led by Nkumbe Ekaney QC representing the Intervenor in a fact finding hearing involving a young child with serious head injuries.


Re G (2019)

A case before the Designated Family Judge to undertake enquiries into the care planning for two girls who were subject to care orders and placement orders (to be placed together) who had been separated after final orders were made. Complicated legal issues involving how the court could come to be seized of the issues involving both children.




Practice Areas



Family Law Bar Association

North Eastern Circuit

Frank Hughes | Family & Civil Clerk

Frank joined Fountain Chambers in September 2019 with the responsibility for Family and Civil Clerking. He brings with him over 30 years of clerking experience. 

Frank started his career, with Chambers in Newcastle upon Tyne, as an accounts clerk before promotion to Junior Clerk & then Senior Clerk; a position he held for 26 years. 

In addition to the day to day clerking duties, he also provides clients with advice on appropriate counsel, with regard to seniority, suitability and fees at all levels. 

Luke Martin | Family & Civil Clerk

Luke joined Chambers through a business administration apprenticeship conducted by Middlesbrough College in 2016.  After working with Fountain Chambers for almost 3 years he has progressed from the apprentice, through to the mediation department and eventually to the Family and Civil Team.

The Family and Civil clerking is shared between Luke and Frank Hughes, with Luke being the first point of call for any new enquiries and day to day diary management.  Luke is also able to assist with clients wishing to instruct Counsel for direct access cases.

Luke is a member of the Institute of Barristers’ Clerks.

Family & Civil Clerk

Luke is a member of the Institute of Barristers’ Clerks