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Hendersons - Barristers' Chambers

Arnold Ayoo

“Arnold is a star in the making at the Bar” “…. offers a level of gravitas in his advocacy above and beyond his level of call”

Legal 500 2022


Arnold specialises in heavy commercial litigation but accepts instructions across a spread of Chambers’ practice areas. He has particular expertise in insolvency, banking and group litigation as well as defective product claims. He is ranked as a ‘Rising Star’ by the Legal 500 2022.

Arnold’s background in high value multi-party litigation has seen him regularly appear as sole counsel in the High Court. In that capacity he has been involved in numerous recent precedent-setting decisions in his specialist areas (see Capital Funding One Limited v Esqulant [2020] EWHC 981 (QB); Wolf Rock (Cornwall) Limited v Raila Langhelle [2021] B.C.C. 67 and Points of View v Erre DB Group SA [2021] 2 WLUK 70 to name a few). He also acts in high value international arbitrations and has recently (as sole counsel) concluded a multi-million dollar ICC oil arbitration involving an African State, the State-owned oil company and its oil-exploration partners.

In 2021, Arnold is instructed (as sole counsel) on a £4m claim in the High Court concerning an intention to defraud creditors (s.423 Insolvency Act 1986) and is acting for an investment bank in a £3m Commercial Court action against a South African gold mining company, arising from a $50m brokerage contract. In 2022 he will appear for the respondent in the Supreme Court in a generationally decisive case on unjust enrichment (Barton v Gwyn Jones [2019] EWCA Civ 1999).

Indeed, he has a particular interest in cases with an international element. In 2020 he obtained a security for costs order against a China-domiciled Claimant and appeared (as sole counsel) before the QBD of the High Court in a case concerning the conversion of an Italian freezing injunction into an English remedy for the purpose of enforcement (Manetta v De Filippo [2020] EWHC 3460 (QB)).

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Arnold has extensive experience in heavy commercial litigation, often appearing in cases with an international element.

His practice covers the spectrum of claims pertaining to/arising from contract (including misrepresentation and professional negligence), civil fraud and economic torts. Ranked as a ‘Rising Star’ in company law (Legal 500 2022), he also acts in partnership and shareholder disputes, including unfair prejudice petitions and derivative actions.

Arnold regularly brings and defends interim applications for injunctions and freezing orders.

Cases (as sole counsel) include:

  • Representing a businessman in a £5.3m breach of trust/tracing claim against a BVI company who misappropriated investment funds for a retail park.
  • Currently advising a domestic food distributor in a £3m economic tort claim concerning a national supermarket.
  • Advising a property consortium in a £2m claim against solicitors who, it is claimed, negligently handled a remortgaging transaction involving 60 commercial properties.

Representative cases

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  • AC v BG: [2021] (Commercial Court)

    Currently instructed as sole counsel for the Claimant in a £3m commission claim. C is the assignee of a debt owing to an investment bank, who claims to have brokered a $50m investment in a South African gold mining company and seeks commission, as per a contract.

  • Barton v Gwyn-Jones [2021] (Supreme Court)

    Currently led by Brad Pomfret, acting for the respondent, in a generationally decisive appeal on unjust enrichment before the Supreme Court. It concerns the contractual allocation of risk and the sanctity of contracts principle, and will decide the limits of unjust enrichment where a contract subsists.

  • Points of View Ltd v Erre DB Group SA [2021] 2 WLUK 70

    Acted (unled) and obtained a £400,000 judgment for the claimant against a Swiss developer in a cross-border construction dispute, arising from the construction of the flagship Flannels store on Oxford Street.

  • Manetta v De Filippo [2020] EWHC 3460 (QB)

    Acted as sole counsel for the applicant who applied to adapt an Italian freezing order into an English freezing order for the purpose of its enforcement in this jurisdiction. A novel application brought for an ‘adaptation order’ under CPR 74.11A and Article 53 of the Recast Brussels Regulation.

  • Capital Funding One Ltd v Esqulant [2020] EWHC 981 (QB); [2020] 4 WLUK 253

    Represented (as sole counsel) a short term bridging lender at trial through to appeal in its claim to enforce its security following a default on a £300,000 loan. The appeal decision had significant ramifications for both CPR 34.2 (witness summonses) and CPR 32.10 (evidence at trial) – and is included in the White Book Commentary to the latter.

  • Ziheng Zu v Han Ning Lim [2020] (County Court, HHJ Roberts)

    Acted for the successful defendant in a £200,000 shareholder dispute. D brought a security for costs application on the basis that the claimant was resident in China. It required proving that China was not bound by any relevant multilateral enforcement treaty and would not enforce an English costs awards.


Arnold is recognised by the Legal 500 as a Tier 1 Rising Star in this field. He has a breath of experience in insolvency and restructuring proceedings, and is at home in complex, contested disputes. His practice covers contentious and non-contentious, personal and corporate insolvency and restructuring – including administrations, voluntary arrangements, liquidations, bankruptcy and claims under the Insolvency Act 1986, especially wrongful and fraudulent trading, misfeasance, preferences, transactions at an undervalue and transactions to defraud creditors.

He has written for Lexis Nexis on insolvency and restructuring law and has contributed LexisPSL case updates on cases of importance in which he has been involved. Later in 2021, he will appear in a landmark appeal in the High Court concerning the interpretation of the coronavirus test under the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act 2020.

Arnold also advises on the non-contentious aspects of restructuring which have the capacity to develop into disputes. For example, much of his 2020 post-covid practice was advising multi-national retailers on CVAs which restructured rent obligations following the demise of the high street.

Representative cases

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  • LW v C & others [2021] (High Court)

    Currently acting (unled) in a £4m claim under s.423 of the Insolvency Act 1986 (intention to defraud creditors). The claimant avers that the third defendant, whom Arnold represents, conspired with D1/D2 to sell commercial developments at massive undervalues, depriving the claimant of the true value of its security.

  • Wolf Rock (Cornwall) Limited v Langhelle [2021] B.C.C. 67

    Successfully acted (unled) for the petitioner at trial and appeal. At trial, Arnold obtained a compulsory winding up order and resisted attempts to bring cross claims of £7m. At appeal, HHJ Matthews decided key questions on insolvency procedure and the jurisdiction to make a winding up order where the sum is ‘unliquidated’ or concerns damages. It appears in Sealy & Milman 24th Ed (2021) in the commentary to both IR 7.16 and s.124(1) Insolvency Act 1986.

  • Doran v County Rentals Limited [2021] (High Court)

    Currently instructed (unled) for the appellant petitioner in a landmark appeal  concerning the interaction between insolvency and coronavirus. It concerns whether a company can rely on coronavirus to defeat a winding up petition in respect of sums which fell due pre-pandemic but not formally demanded until after the pandemic.

  • Charlton v Funding Circle [2019] EWHC 2701 (Ch)

    Acted for the Trustee in Bankruptcy in an appeal before the Vice Chancellor following an application to annul a bankruptcy. The VC decided the proper interpretation of s.265(2) of the 1986 Act (in respect of domicile, residence and carrying on business).

Commercial & Sport Arbitration

Arnold acts in large, international commercial arbitrations as well as smaller, domestic ad-hoc matters and sports disputes.

Representative cases

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  • SO v IP [2020] (ICC - London Seat)

    An $6m ICC arbitration between a government appointed oil exploration company (for whom Arnold acted, as sole counsel) and its production sharing partner. The breach of contract case involved the interpretation of interlinking production sharing, joint operating, and farmout agreements between an African State, the oil exploration company and its relevant partners.

  • Corekci v Cramer [2018] (Football Association Rule K/ Commercial Court)

    Successfully acted for a football agent in a FA Rule K arbitration, in respect of agency fees, against a top-flight Turkish footballer. The unsuccessful player then applied to the Commercial Court under s.67/68 Arbitration Act 1996 to set aside the arbitral award, in proceedings heard before Moulder J and Knowles J.

  • Thornley v Hull KR [2017] (RFL Independent Tribunal)

    Represented an RFL player against his former club before an arbitral tribunal after a disputed transfer from Hull KR to Catalan Dragons.

Banking, Finance & Financial Services

Arnold acts for and against financial institutions in matters arising from the execution and enforcement of loan agreements, financial instruments, charges/other security and guarantees. He frequently acts for lenders in relation to disputes about commercial loans and sees such instructions through to the enforcement stage (including disputes about property and insolvency).

He is also retained by the consumer lending divisions of numerous major financial institutions – so is well versed in the spectrum of consumer credit/unfair relationship matters and s.75 Consumer Credit Act 1974 claims based on misrepresentation.

Group Litigation

Arnold readily accepts instructions in large group litigation cases. He has experience of complex and high value commercial group actions.

Representative cases

grid list
  • Re Energy Tarrifs / Secret Commissions [2021]

    Currently advising 3000 business customers on ‘secret commission’ claims against energy companies arising out of the non-disclosure of payments to energy brokers. Should it proceed, the value of claims would top £90m.

  • Terrcorp Limited v Mistry & ors (2020) EWHC 2623 (Ch)

    Acted in a claim brought against 174 defendants by land-owning companies who claimed payments under various covenants after the sale of green field sites to the defendant buyers. Arnold advised and acted for a category of representative defendants prior to trial.

  • Peel Land & Property (Ports) Ltd v Nawaz & ors [2017-18]

    Acting for a group of sub leaseholders and lenders with interests in 75 apartments seeking relief from forfeiture further to the forfeiture of an intermediate lease. Total value of client property at stake in excess of £3m.

  • AB v CD (2018)

    Advising a group of high-profile cricket, rugby, football and television personalities in a £300,000 claim for professional negligence against former solicitors who had represented them in a dispute concerning tax avoidance schemes linked to the film industry.

Product Liability

Arnold has significant experience in contractual product liability claims, arising from the breach of express and implied terms in business to business/consumer contracts. He is also well placed to act in claims pertaining to the Consumer Protection Act 1987 and technical disputes concerning damage to property.


What the directories say

‘Arnold is a star in the making at the Bar. He has made excellent progress as a junior and is certainly going to make rapid progress in his career. He is very bright, a safe pair of hands, works incredibly hard and is confident. This is exactly what I want from Counsel. He is persuasive and, in my experience, offers a level of gravitas in his advocacy above and beyond his level of call.’
Legal 500 2022

Instructing Arnold Ayoo

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BA Law (Jurisprudence), University of Oxford, Christ Church

BPTC, BPP (Very Competent)

Regulatory Information

All members of Chambers are registered with the Bar Standards Board of England and Wales. For our standard contractual terms click here.

For more information about the way barristers at Henderson Chambers work, including our fee transparency statement and our complaints process, please click here.

Bar Council Number: 62921

VAT Registration Number: 208315041

Legal Status: Barrister

Professional Insurance: All members of Chambers have professional liability insurance provided by the Bar Mutual Indemnity Fund Ltd. Territorial coverage is world-wide and subject to the term of the Bar Mutual. Click here for details.

Regulated by the Bar Standards Board.

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