Simon Gurney ensures retired teacher accused of sexual relationship with pupil is cleared of wrongdoing

Simon Gurney was instructed by Jared McNally of Clifford Johnston Solicitors, to represent GB, a retired teacher who was accused by the Teacher Regulation Agency, of engaging in a protracted sexual relationship with a pupil at a school for children with emotional and behavioural difficulties, over 20 years ago.

GB had been referred by the TRA to a Disciplinary Panel, which was required to determine the veracity of the allegations made by the former pupil, who claimed she and GB had been engaged in an intimate relationship, when she was aged between 13 and 15 years old. She alleged that he had bought her gifts, grooming her, before they engaged in sexual activity both at his home and on school premises.

Simon and Jared advised GB throughout the proceedings, from the referral in 2020 to the conclusion of the proceedings before the TRA Panel. Simon represented him during the 5-day final hearing in August 2023.

Having heard Simon’s closing submissions, the Panel rejected the TRA’s case, concluding, on the balance of probabilities, that no inappropriate relationship ever took place.

Following the hearing, GB said:

“I was left in no doubt whatsoever ever that Jared would prepare my case with skill and care, and that Simon would present it in a persuasive and compelling way to the panel at the hearing.”

“Jared was at the end of the phone to me if needed. His attention to detail was excellent and he kept me informed at every stage of the process, answering my queries and concerns without delay. It all felt like a team effort.”

In relation to Simon’s representation, GB said:

“he was unbelievably good. Simon represented me at the hearing which lasted 5 days. He was exceptional, gunning for me for the duration, his arsenal at his disposal was second to none, briefing and debriefing at every sitting… Mr Gurney’s cross examination of the TRA witnesses was direct and succinct extracting key evidence in our favour. He had prepared my case thoroughly and had not missed a thing. His summary left me confident of the outcome.”

GB said: “For cases such as mine you definitely need an experienced and specialist solicitor and barrister to represent you to obtain the best possible outcome… I would definitely recommend them to anyone who is being investigated or prosecuted by the TRA.”

Simon Gurney has a wealth of experience across a range of disciplinary tribunals representing professionals facing allegations of serious professional misconduct. He has a strong track record securing outstanding results and is happy to accept instructions either to advise or to appear during a contested hearing.

If you would like any further information please contact Ty Price, Clerk in Chambers on 0161 832 5701 or