New Licensing Team for Davenport Lyons
17 Nov 2011
At the beginning of this year we were joined by leading licensing practitioner, Philip Somarakis to take our licensing practice forward.
This is an exciting new development for Davenport Lyons and we plan to expand our licensing practice further to include gaming and regulatory issues.
We would welcome the opportunity to explore how we can assist you in these areas in the future.
Phillip Somarakis will be supported by Phillip D’Costa, a partner in the firm with substantial licensing expertise who will deal with matters on a day to day basis. Short profiles of the ‘two Phillips’ are set out below.
Philip has been involved in licensing law for 17 years. He spent 5 years within the courts service acting as a legal advisor to a number of licensing committees. He spent one year as a licensing solicitor in the Midlands before joining Blake Lapthorn's licensing team in 2000. He became a partner in Blake Lapthorn in 2008.
He has dealt with a substantial number of applications, acting for national pub chains, hotels, restaurants, clubs and supermarkets. Philip has also acted for country parks, obtaining licences for large music festivals. He has dealt with over 100 contested hearings under the Licensing Act 2003. Philip is also an accomplished criminal defence and business regulatory lawyer.
He provides advice to and has represented clients who have faced investigations for breaches of the Licensing Act 2003. He has successfully defended a publican who was acquitted of a drink driving charge and a bar owner accused of selling alcohol to an underage test purchaser, with the prosecution offering no evidence at trial.. "He is commended for his calm approach and excellent ability to instil confidence in clients." (Chambers UK, A Client's Guide to the Legal Profession 2011). Philip has been an accredited trainer for the BII. Philip's family has been connected with the licensed trade for over 25 years. He is a co-owner of an Inn in Oxfordshire.
Phillip graduated from London Guildhall University with an Honours degree in Law. He qualified in 1997. Phillip was a partner at Hill Dickinson LLP before joining Davenport Lyons.
Phillip’s practice covers commercial litigation and contentious and non contentious licensing.
Phillip has been a licensee for over 15 years and has experience of acting for and on behalf of restaurant, bars, clubs and other licensed premises, in a variety of licensing matters including, applications for and variations of personal and premises licenses, appointment of designated premises supervisors, tables and chairs licenses, temporary event notices, dealing with objections, appeals and reviews of licensing decisions and with the licensing authorities generally.