Gemma has a busy employment law practice and has amassed a wealth of experience in the full range of employment and discrimination law matters. She has achieved success in the Court of Appeal and regularly appears in both Employment Tribunals and the Employment Appeals Tribunal in cases concerning discrimination, unfair / wrongful dismissal, redundancy, equal pay, unlawful deductions of wages, working time regulations, whistle blowing and TUPE Regulations.
The majority of her instructions are on behalf of large public sector employers such as NHS Trusts and local authorities in lengthy and complex tribunal hearings and appeals. She also enjoys frequent instructions from high-profile employers including Lidl, Adecco, Sports Direct and Amec Foster Wheeler as well from major trade unions but she also enjoys acting for claimants and individuals and will accept instructions on a direct access basis where appropriate.
Notable recent successes include acting for the successful respondent in the Court of Appeal and EAT in Adedeji v University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust.
Gemma graduated from Oxford University with a degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics before qualifying for the Bar and undertaking pupillage in London.
“Good in tribunal and also excellent at dealing with clients.”
Chambers UK 2021
“Always on top of the commercial aspects of claims and knows the case inside-out.”
Legal 500 2021
“Tenacious in cross-examination.” “I was very impressed by her advocacy skills and her strong approach when putting forward the client’s case.”
Chambers UK 2020
“Knows her brief and owns the hearing bundle.”
Legal 500 2020
“A persuasive advocate. She is always fully prepared and establishes good rapport with clients very quickly. Her legal knowledge and strategy is always spot on.” “Really user-friendly.”
Chambers UK 2019
“Bright and pragmatic; a persuasive advocate.”
Legal 500 2019
“She’s a very impressive, skilled advocate with excellent interpersonal skills.” “She demonstrated her impressive abilities in employment law, together with commercial acumen. I would recommend her highly.”
Chambers UK 2018
“She is very thorough, incredibly prepared and extremely intelligent. She also has a complete understanding of the healthcare sector and NHS clients.” “She gets to the issue of the case very quickly and will know the case inside out and grasp the key issues very quickly.”
Chambers UK 2017
“Has a broad employment practice and is highly rated for her expertise in discrimination claims. She regularly handles complex cases for large public sector organisations such as local authorities, and also represents a number of international private sector businesses.”
Chambers UK 2016
“She is very clever and witty. She understands employment law really well, gives good grass-roots advice and communicates well with clients.” “She is competent beyond her year of call.”
Chambers UK 2015
Adedeji v University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust  EWCA Civ 23
Acted for the successful Respondent in this matter which concerned the application of the ‘just and equitable’ extension of time limits in the ET where a claim was presented only 3 days late. The Court of Appeal accepted that the EJ had exercised her discretion appropriately and was entitled to consider the cogency of evidence relating to historical allegations of discrimination even though the material delay was insubstantial.
Gor v Adecco UK - EAT
Represented the respondent successfully at first instance and before the EAT and obtained a costs award against the Appellant following an oral permission to appeal hearing.
Hibbins v Hestors Way Neighbourhood Project:  IRLR 198 EAT
Acted for the Respondent in an appeal concerning whether protection was afforded under the ‘whistle-blowing legislation’ for disclosures that do not reveal any “wrongdoing” or “failure” by the employer or person for whom the employer is responsible.
Wilcox v Birmingham CAB Services Ltd EAT  All ER (D) 73 (Aug),  EqLR 810
Successfully represented the Respondent in the EAT. The appeal was focused upon when the duty to make reasonable adjustments arises and the level of knowledge required by an employer for the duty to arise. The law was clarified in relation to Eastern and Coastal Kent PCT v Grey and Secretary or State for Work and Pensions v Alam.
Kirby v Quality Electrical Supplies and Technology Limited and Other
Represented the Claimant in a successful claim for discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation and constructive unfair dismissal. Following a 12 day hearing, the Claimant was awarded damages for injury to feelings within the upper Vento / DaBell bracket, substantial aggravated damages and a compensatory award.
Collier v Aurora Group Ltd
Acted for the Claimant in successful claim for unfair dismissal in high profile case attracting ‘front page’ coverage in national media.
Pointing v Islington Central Medical Centre
Successfully represented the Claimant in 10 day claim for constructive unfair dismissal.
Lee-Dwyer v City Islington College
Successfully represented the Respondent in a 5 day hearing for disability related discrimination and failure to make reasonable adjustments.
Ashman v Sainsburys Plc
Represented Sainsbury’s in a redundancy claim by a former employee who also alleged unfair dismissal and disability discrimination. Following a 5 day hearing the Claimant was awarded a nil compensatory award. Successfully resisted the Claimant’s appeal on ground of perversity in the EAT
Free Representation Unit
Gray’s Inn (Lord Uthwatt Scholarship 2005)
M.A Oxon; Philosophy, Politics and Economics (New College, Oxford)
GDL BPP Law School (Commendation)
BVC BPP Law School (Very Competent)