“She is always impeccably prepared, and is a subtle and effective advocate in court.” “She’s a very calming and charming practitioner.”
Chambers & Partners 2019

Experience

Year of Call: 2000

Education

MA Law (Cantab)
Qualified Collaborative La

Languages

French, Italian

Profile

Cleo is a specialist children’s law barrister, who represents parents and children in all levels of court, including the Court of Appeal.  She is widely recognised for her expert handling of difficult cases involving complex evidence and allegations of violence or abuse.  Her sensitive manner with clients combined with her robust advocacy enable her to support her clients successfully through domestic and international litigation.  Cleo is also in demand in cases where the local authority is involved, including those with complex factual backgrounds and significant allegations of harm.


Cleo represents parents and children in disputes concerning children’s living, contact and specific arrangements both domestically and internationally.  She brings strategic thinking and a calm but firm approach to contentious cases, and has considerable experience of cases involving allegations of violence, harm, or involving disputed medical evidence.  Her case load is both domestic and international, and she is experienced in dealing with cross-jurisdictional issues, including applications to remove children from the jurisdiction and child abduction.  Cleo speaks French and Italian.

As well as being a respected and rigorous advocate, Cleo is trained as both a collaborative law and family mediator.  She believes that these forms of alternative dispute resolution are often far better for families, especially children, going through separation, and has a thriving ADR practice.

In her public law practice Cleo is in demand for her skilful and professional handling of complex cases.  She represents children, parents and local authorities, and deals with cases involving intricate legal issues, child fatalities and significant abuse, including historical sexual abuse or multiple injuries.  She has recently appeared in the Court of Appeal in Z-O’C (Children) [2014] EWCA Civ 1808, and in the High Court in LB of Tower Hamlets v D and Others [2014] EWHC 3901 (Fam).

Cleo is presently instructed as counsel for Lambeth in the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse investigation into Children’s Homes in Lambeth.

Cleo was a Gray’s Inn scholar in 1999.

Professional Memberships

Family Law Bar Association
Association of Lawyers for Children
Gray’s Inn
South Eastern Circuit
Resolution

Directories

Her broad children practice spans both public and private law domestically and abroad. She has experience of representing both parents and children in disputes including those concerning leave to remove applications, and also has a growing practice in radicalisation cases.
Strengths: “She is always impeccably prepared, and is a subtle and effective advocate in court.” “She’s a very calming and charming practitioner.”
Recent work: Led by Alex Verdan in the Independent Inquiry into Child Sex Abuse, representing the London Borough of Lambeth.
Chambers & Partners 2019


Her broad children practice spans both public and private law domestically and abroad. She has experience of representing both parents and children in disputes including leave to remove applications.
Strengths: “She is tactically astute, eloquent in court and it goes without saying she’s completely on top of her papers. She’s extremely committed to ensuring that her clients have the best representation and get the best results.”
Chambers & Partners 2018