Commercial Litigation Partner

John Whittingslow

Role: Partner
Dept: Commercial Litigation
Location: Preston
Direct Dial: 01772 904272
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John is a Commercial Litigation Partner.  Previously the firm's CEO and Chairman, John is a highly experienced commercial lawyer with over 20 years experience in litigation. Specialising in handling complex and high value commercial disputes he acts for a broad range of clients including PLCs and SMEs.

John is recognised by the by the legal industry bible 'Legal 500' as a leading individual and is recommended as being ‘committed and fair’.

“I received a great service from Napthens in respect of a commercial dispute.  Communication was excellent and the advice and guidance given was always clear.  I am very grateful to John Whittingslow and his team for their help in bringing matters to a very satisfactory conclusion.”  Andrew Clark, Director, L&D.


Regularly appearing in legal industry guide 'The Legal 500' for his litigation expertise, John specialises in shareholder disputes, contract disputes, breach of warranty claims, partnership disputes and professional negligence claims.  Some of his notable cases include:

  • Representing a well-known Rock Band in a claim for royalties against EMI records
  • Representing a local business in a successful claim for damages in excess of £1 million against a national supermarket chain
  • Advising a former professional rugby union player in a dispute with his permanent health insurers
  • Advising in a claim where damages exceeding £20 million relating to assets in Dubai (Singh Ghura & Others v Shokat Mohammed Dalal & Others (2015) EWHC 605 (Ch))
  • Defending an independent coffee shop chain in The High Court against allegations of breach of joint venture agreement by a national Australian company
  • Successfully represented the founders of Bongo’s Bingo, in a trial about intellectual property, contract and company claims stemming from a dispute as to who created and owned the brand (Shua Ltd v Camp and Furnace Ltd (2020) EWHC 687 (Ch) )
  • Acting for a professional golf caddy in successfully challenging disciplinary action
  • Advising a group of professional golf caddies in relation to certain disciplinary action taken against them
  • Acting for a professional golfer in connection with disciplinary action taken against him by the DP World Tour for his participation in LIV Tour events
  • Successfully represented a development company against a national infrastructure provider in a claim for damages for delays in the absence of a written contract (Barkby Real Estate Developments Ltd v Cornerstone Telecommunications Infrastructure Ltd  (2022) EWCH 1892 (TCC) )
  • Represented a national logistics company in successfully defending a claim for breach of contract


Educated at King Edward VII School, Lytham, John went on to read law at Leeds Metropolitan University before returning to the North West to complete his training with Preston firm Roscoes.  Qualifying in 1990, John joined Napthens when the firms merged in 2006.

More about John Whittingslow

Describe yourself in 3 words:
Decisive. Dedicated.  Pragmatic.

Which actor would you choose to play you on TV or film?
Gabriel Macht

Who would be your ultimate 3 dinner guests?
Willie John McBride, Admiral Nelson, Katherine Jenkins

How do you like to relax out of work?
Relaxing with family and friends and playing a bit of golf