Who we are

Hackett & Dabbs LLP is owned and operated by Lorna Hackett and David Dabbs

Lorna Hackett (formerly Elliott) is a barrister called in 2003, who has conducted numerous high profile cases in recent years.

She has extensive litigation experience, particularly in the areas of judicial review and human rights. Lorna has considerable expertise advising in cases of a sensitive nature and in which there is potential for media interest.

She is authorised by the Bar Council to accept instructions directly from the public under the Direct Access scheme, and is licensed to conduct litigation. She is an advocacy trainer with Lincolns Inn, and a Legal Aid funding and costs adjudicator.

David Dabbs is a barrister called to the bar in 1984 who is an expert in commercial drafting and disputes.

He has advised multinational corporations, banks and UK companies in all types of commercial transactions and litigation.

He was one of the first advocacy trainers at Lincolns Inn, having started teaching in 1994, and has been a Bencher at Lincolns Inn since 2003. He has trained lawyers from all over the world in the skills of written and oral advocacy.

He has also been qualified as an Arbitrator since 2002 and is licensed by the Bar Council to conduct litigation.

Lorna and David’s combined expertise, client-focussed approach and commitment to high-quality legal services make Hackett & Dabbs LLP the ideal choice for legal advice.

Our Principal Consultant

His Honour John Samuels QC is a retired Circuit Judge, having sat either part-time or full-time for 27 years in the Crown Court (including 16 years as a deputy High Court judge prior to his full-time appointment).

He was Chairman of the Criminal Committee of the Council of Circuit Judges and sat in the Central Criminal Court and other London Crown Courts.  He was a judicial member of the Parole Board for his maximum tenure of 10 years. 

In retirement he has continued to be involved with criminal justice issues: he is President of Prisoners Education Trust, has chaired the Criminal Justice Alliance; is a Vice President of Unilock, AMIMB and Tempus Novo; is a Patron of Prisoners Advice Service, and of Revolving Doors Agency; and has served as a trustee of the Centre for Crime and Justice Studies and the Howard League for Penal Reform.  He has been a visiting Professor (at Nottingham Law School, and now at Roehampton University) since 2012.  He can offer early neutral evaluation of litigation prospects as well as mediation.


Our Associate 


David Reader is a barrister called to the Bar in 2017.  He has broad civil practice with a keen interest in prison law and public law / human rights. 

A tenacious advocate, he joins Hackett & Dabbs from a leading set of chambers on the south coast where he completed his pupillage and first few years of tenancy.

He studied law as a mature student, graduating first in his year in 2015.  Prior to coming to the Bar he worked for several years in Local Government and the Civil Service, appeared as an advocate in appeals to the First-tier Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber) and volunteered at Stonewall, the LGBT rights charity.

He is authorised by the Bar Council to accept instructions directly from the public under the Direct Access Scheme and can conduct litigation through the firm.