"Straightforward, immensely likeable, pragmatic and solution oriented."

Chambers UK

Bruce Carr QC

Year of Call: 1986 Silk: 2009

"Straightforward, immensely likeable, pragmatic and solution oriented."

Chambers UK

Bruce Carr QC

Year of Call: 1986 Silk: 2009

"Straightforward, immensely likeable, pragmatic and solution oriented."

Chambers UK

Bruce Carr QC

Year of Call: 1986 Silk: 2009

Bruce Carr

"Straightforward, immensely likeable, pragmatic and solution oriented."

Chambers UK

Bruce Carr QC

Year of Call: 1986 Silk: 2009

Bruce practises predominantly in the field of employment law. His practice spans the breadth of this area and he is particularly sought after for his expertise in relation to industrial action, restrictive covenants, company re-organisations, union recognition and de-recognition and discrimination. Bruce won 'Employment Silk of the Year' at the Chambers UK Bar Awards 2017, having been twice nominated in his first two years in silk by both The Lawyer Awards as ‘Barrister of the Year’, and Chambers UK as 'Employment Silk of the Year'. He was also named Lawyer of the week by The Times newspaper in January 2010 following his success in the BA 'Christmas' injunction. Prior to taking silk, Bruce was twice nominated as 'Employment Junior of the Year' in the Chambers UK Bar Awards. He is ranked as a star individual in Chambers UK 2019

Recent highlights include:

  • Unite v Nailard - Court of Appeal hearing on employer liablity for third party harassment and union liability for acts of paid officer and lay officials
  • IPL v Osipov - landmark EAT judgment on individual liability for dismissal related detriment - Court of Appeal hearing pending
  • Green v SIG Trading Ltd.  - territoriality and application of Lawson v Serco to expatriate employee. Court of Appeal hearing pending;
  • Lokhova v Sberbank. Long-running sex discrimination case. Approximate award of £3.2 million. The award, which is primarily made up of Ms Lokhova’s anticipated loss of earnings as a result of the sex discrimination to which she was subjected by the Bank, also includes a significant award of £15,000 for aggravated damages.
  • BALPA v Jet2.com. Raises important questions about the scope of the statutory right to collective bargaining . Currently on appeal to the Court of Appeal.
  • Dronsfield v University of Reading. Successful appeal against the dismissal of the Claimant's claim of unfair dismissal. Appeal allowed and remitted to a fresh Tribunal.

Bruce is a frequent lecturer on employment subjects including restrictive covenants and confidential information, discrimination, trade disputes, employment related injunctions, TUPE and whistleblowing.

  • Recommendations

    Winner of 'Employment Silk of the Year' - Chambers UK Bar Awards 2017

    A skilful advocate, widely recognised for his expertise in industrial relations and trade union matters. He is also highly proficient in whistle-blowing, discrimination and strikeout cases.  "Authoritative and thorough. Clients are always impressed." "Really persuasive and very well prepared in court. He is also very pleasant to work with." Acted successfully for the claimant in Osipov v International Petroleum and Others, a case concerning alleged whistle-blowing. - Star Individual, Employment, Chambers UK Bar 2019

    ‘He is very impressive and easy to work with.’ - Employment, Legal 500 2019

    A skilful advocate, widely recognised for his expertise in industrial relations and trade union matters. He is also highly proficient in whistle-blowing, discrimination and strikeout cases. “Excellent advocate with unparalleled knowledge and experience of employment contract and industrial issues.” “A first-class operator and a very smooth advocate. He is top of his game in terms of trade union and collective labour law injunctions.” Acted for BALPA in its claim against Jet2.com regarding the scope of the right of a trade union to collectively bargain pursuant to statutory recognition. - Star individual, Employment, Chambers UK 2018

    "Highly regarded for industrial action and union work." Employment, Legal 500 2017

    A skilful advocate, widely recognised for his expertise in industrial relations and trade union matters. Sources also highlight his proficiency in whistle-blowing, discrimination and strikeout cases, alongside his high level of client service and determination that he brings to his cases. "He is an exceptional advocate who is good at both closing submissions and cross-examination." "Very quickly gets to the nub of the issue and dispels very technical legal arguments from the other side that have no weight with the commercial realities." Instructed in Lokhova v Sberbank, a high-profile sex discrimination case in which Carr obtained a £3.2 million award for the claimant. - Employment, Chambers UK 2017

    "An outstanding advocate, who creates the minimum amount of work for his instructing solicitors along the way." - Employment, Legal 500 2016

    "A major figure in industrial relations disputes, whose advice is much sought after. His advocacy style and work ethic are also highly praised, and he was recently engaged in a governmental review of industrial relations law. "A very fluent advocate, who is very user-friendly." "Fantastic to work with, he has an excellent manner with clients." "Straightforward, immensely likeable, pragmatic and solution oriented." Acted in a multimillion pound sex discrimination claim brought against the largest bank in Russia." - Employment, Chambers UK 2016

    "He is very client-friendly, and positions his advice strategically and commercially." - Employment, Legal 500 2015

    A pre-eminent employment and discrimination expert who has unrivalled experience and expertise on issues relating to industrial relations. He is highly sought after for his union expertise, and has handled significant work for employers in high-profile cases. He is singled out for his courtroom presence and is widely viewed as one of the leading advocates in the business. Expertise: "He is innovative and has clever ideas about how to tactically deal with situations." "Unflappable, he has a very cool head, and is very calm and authoritative." "Terrier-like, he's a difficult opponent in court but totally charming outside of it." Recent work: Acted for Lloyds in defending a multi-claimant indirect discrimination and equal pay claim relating to an attempt to harmonise terms and conditions after the bank's acquisition of HBOS. - Employment, Chambers UK 2015

    Ranked as a Leading Silk, has been desribed as "a robust cross-examiner, who is able to dominate a tribunal" has also been ranked within a Leading Set. - Employment, Legal 500 2014

    "Real gravitas, excellent judgement, great advocacy skills and a calm and commercial manner with clients," impressed sources report. His areas of expertise include high-value discrimination claims, contractual issues arising from change management and industrial relations. His recent highlights include his representation of Haringey Council in claims brought by the social workers in charge of Baby P. - Chambers UK 2013

    "One of the cleverest and most impressive barristers in this field." He is highly sought after for his expertise in industrial relations, an area in which he is "obviously storming ahead," as evidenced by work on behalf of British Airways. Not only does he combine "excellent commercial judgement with engaging and persuasive advocacy," but he is also "a great team player and willing to roll his sleeves up." - Chambers UK 2012

    "A real class act – he never seems to get phased and thinks incredibly fast on his feet." - Legal 500 2011

    A standout barrister who provides clients with the full package and presents opponents with a tough fight. An absolute superstar who "rises to any challenge," he has made waves in his first couple of years as silk, not least appearing in the recent BA litigation. "Cool as a cucumber," his flair and charm reassure clients and woo courts. Solicitors hail him for being "witty, diplomatic and blessed with faultless judgment." - Chambers UK 2011

  • Employment

    Add to Portfolio

    Bruce Carr QC is an employment practitioner specialising in particular in high value discrimination cases, industrial action and change management (contractual) issues ranging from variation to terms and conditions to restrictive covenants and wrongful dismissal. He also frequently advises and act in relation to TUPE transfers and other consultation issues.

    Recent notable cases include:

    • Unite v Nailard (2018) - Acting for Claimant in sex discrimination and harassment case in Court of Appeal raising issues of employer liablity for third party harassment and union liablity for acts of lay officials - judgment pending
    • International Petroleum v Osipov (2017) - Acted for Claimant in land-mark EAT case in which c.£2m awarded against individuals foudn liable for dismissal related detriment. Appeal pending in the Court of Appeal in July 2018
    • Green v SIG (2017) - Acted for employer in jurisdiction dispute in the EAT - application of Lawson v Serco principles to expatriate employee. Appeal pending in the Court of Appeal in May 2018
    • Lokhova v Sberbank (2016) - Acted for Claimant in high profile high-value sex discrmination claim resulting in record award for 2016 of c.£3m
    • BALPA v Jet2 (2017) - Acted for trade union in Court of Appeal case on the scope of statutory recognition
    • Ward & Christou v Haringey (2013) - Acted for local authority in Court of Appeal case on applicaiton of res judicata principles to internal disciplinary processes
    • Malone & Ors v British Airways Plc [2010] EWCA Civ 1225 - incorporation of collectively agreed terms 
    • Whitney v Monster Worldwide [2010] EWCA 1312 - novation of pension promise by former employer after TUPE transfer
    • British Airways v Unite the Union [2009] EWHC 3541 - injunction to restrain Christmas strike action by cabin crew


2014 - Apppointed to conduct Carr Review of the law on industrial disputes

2009 - Appointed Queen's Counsel

2002 - Appointed to the DRC and EOC Panel

2002 - Member of Bar Pro Bono Unit case reviewing panel

2001 - Appointed Junior Counsel to the Crown (A Panel)

2000 - Appointed Recorder

1999 - Appointed Assistant Recorder

1998 - Appointed member of Bar Council Professional Conduct Committee

1995 - Appointed Junior Counsel to the Crown (B Panel)

Memberships and Associations



Inns of Court School of Law - Bar Final. Grade: Upper Second

Ede & Ravenscroft Prize

Treasurer Prize for highest mark in Bar Finals by a member of Inner Temple

Queen Mother Scholarship, Inner Temple

University of Westminster - Post Graduate Diploma in Law

London School of Economics - B.Sc(Econ) - International Relations. Grade: Upper Second

Hills Road Sixth Form College, Cambridge

Cambridgeshire High School for Boys