Legal big-wigs shared their legal expertise with Bristol's construction professionals at the Baker's Hall in Cabot Circus

Bristol turned out in force last night for Building’s networking club for new professionals. Phase One attracted nearly 100 of the city’s surveyors, architects, engineers, contractors and assorted legal types to Baker’s Hall, a plush, gabled room above the new Brasserie Blanc in Cabot Circus.

They were no doubt drawn by the recession-friendly combination of free drinks, free food and free legal advice. The evening’s theme was dispute resolution, all-too topical as we enter recession, with advice from a panel of legal experts who between them have solved thousands of cases.

They told the assembled crowd how to prepare for disputes, deal with them when they arrive but hopefully avoid them altogether. Morwenna Crichton, associate director at Contract & Construction Consultants emphasised the importance of knowing exactly what you’re signing up to, and closely examining the contract before you start work.

Steve Wilkinson, group commercial director at Midas Group, talked about the astronomical costs of taking disputes to court compared to mediation and David Simper, chartered QS, chartered arbitrator and registered adjudicator of Simper Bibbey & Associates, revealed what disputes look like from the adjudicator’s chair.

The evening was sponsored by the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, Contract & Construction Consultants and QS and dispute resolution firm GF Partnership, who gave attendees a second chance to nab some extra legal tips later in the evening. The next Phase One takes place in Birmingham on 7 May. Click here for more information and to sign up.

The event was supported by:

Phase One sponsors