Dr David Sawtell

I am a practising barrister at 39 Essex Chambers, specialising in land law and construction law.  I undertook my BA and my MPhil in history at Peterhouse, and my MSc in construction law at King's College, London, winning prizes for best overall graduate, best dissertation, the best performance in the second-year examinations, and best performance in the Module AL construction technology examination. I am currently undertaking my PhD at the University of Cambridge, researching the effect of construction operations on interests in land. I was awarded a Francis Paterson Scholarship from the Society of Construction Law in respect of my PhD. I am also a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.

My research is primary concerned with the doctrinal study of private law relating to the development of land and the built environment. It centres on the taxonomic interface between construction law and land law. I am especially interested in the doctrinal framework which governs the relationships between those involved in and affected by development and construction, such as neighbouring owners, residential and commercial occupiers, and the project participants themselves.

In 2021, I won the Society of Legal Scholars Best Paper by a Doctoral Student at their 2021 Annual Conference. The paper, entitled ‘Injunctions, land and the cynical breach’, was published in Legal Studies in 2022.


Key Information

Land Law and Equity


Land Law and Equity