John Tackaberry KC

Year of call:

+44 (0)20 7832 1111

“One of the doyens of international arbitration”
Chambers & Partners

During his career at the Bar, John Tackaberry MA, LLM (Pub Int Law), FCIArb has undertaken a wide range of work both as a Junior – e.g. Pickin v British Railways Board [1973] 1 QB 219, [1974] AC 765; Anns v Walcroft [1977] EGD 556, (sub Nom Anns v Merton) [1978] AC 728; Birkett v James [1978] AC 297 – before specialising as a Silk, initially in arbitration but subsequently including work in other capacities – for example, recently as a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators Governance Tribunal.

As well as work in the UK, he has a great deal of expertise in international disputes throughout Europe, the USA, the Middle East, the West Indies, Africa, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, India and South America.  He is a member of, or has been admitted to, the Bars of California, Ireland, Hong Kong (ad hoc), Malaysia (ad hoc) and New South Wales, and has been heavily involved in ICC arbitrations.  He sat as a Recorder for 17 years and was appointed to the United Nations Compensation Commission for a five year term as chair of a construction panel.  He has written and contributed widely, including in particular as Principal Editor, to Bernstein’s Handbook of Arbitration and Dispute Resolution Practice.

He undertakes work as an arbitrator, advocate, mediator, dispute board resolver, and adjudicator.

John has been consistently recommended as a leading Silk in “International Arbitration: Arbitrators” for many years – some examples are set out below:

“He doesn’t miss a trick and leaves no stone unturned”  Chambers & Partners 2020
“An outstanding arbitrator and mediator who has wonderful judgement” 
Chambers & Partners 2019
“He is an erudite lawyer and an outstanding arbitrator” 
Chambers & Partners 2018


Construction cases have included disputes about a hotel project in the Gambia; the construction of Fantasy Land in Paris; a glass walling contract in London; a lift installation contract in Hong Kong; prefabricated housing in Saudi Arabia; the Mercury Court office development in Liverpool; the Westminster & Chelsea Hospital building; local authority housing rehabilitation schemes; the construction of a tertiary education campus in Hong Kong plus related areas of dispute such as copyright issues re architects’ designs.


Commercial work has included a taxi franchise in the High Court; a bus contract in Turkey; a shore dealing dispute in Hong Kong and continental Europe; a commission dispute arising out of Westland v Saudi Arabia (a major case in the 90s); a follow-on dispute to the CME television rights dispute; and an aircraft servicing dispute in Africa involving serious corruption issues.

Work at the UNCC involved five years of intensive dispute resolution on a paper-only basis utilising a locally based legal team.  196 construction claims were addressed.  The total value of the claims exceeded $3 billion.


Engineering work has included disputes about a gypsum plant in Jordan; a steel mill in Egypt; a major gas storage and pumping station in Poland; an LPG plant in Malaysia; underground storage of LPG in Australia; a catcracker (refinery equipment) in Australia; a mining collapse dispute; an undersea cable dispute (North Sea); a barge mounted generating plant in Bangladesh; a shipping dispute in India; an industrial boiler and water treatment installation plant in England; a major offshore fabrication dispute in the gulf; Connah’s Quay, Kirklareli and other combined cycle power stations; a coastal defence project; the British Library M&E contract; the conversion of the Solitaire into the world’s largest dynamically positioned pipe laying vessel and the BTC pipeline.


John is recommended as a leading Silk in Chambers UK (2014) and the Legal 500 for International Arbitration: Arbitrators.  He was ranked in Chambers & Partners (2010) International Arbitration: Construction / Engineering and International Arbitration: Arbitrators, and in Legal 500 (2009) for Construction and Commercial Arbitration.

Acclaimed international arbitrator with considerable experience in the areas of construction, commercial and energy law.  His substantial experience as an advocate in international arbitrations has afforded him a deep understanding of disputes arising in both common law and civil law jurisdictions.” Chambers & Partners (2018)
He is an erudite lawyer and an outstanding arbitrator” Chambers & Partners (2018)
Very experienced in construction and infrastructure disputes.” Legal 500 (2018)
The doyen of construction arbitrations.” Legal 500 (2015)
He is unparalleled and manages to remain unruffled when tackling difficult matters.” Chambers & Partners (2015)
An arbitrator par excellence, and a real construction and commercial expert.” Legal 500 (2014)
A powerhouse; one of the finest barristers at the Bar” Legal 500 (2014)
Unfailingly helpful and prompt, and discerning in his advice” Legal 500 (2014)
Considered an eminent expert in the field of commercial arbitration, and is acknowledged by market sources as
‘someone you would instinctively appoint in a major projects case’” Chambers UK (2013)
one of the doyens of international arbitration” Chambers & Partners (2010)
performs splendidly” Legal 500 (2009)

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