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Esther Drabkin-Reiter

Esther Drabkin-Reiter

Year of call: 2017

Practice areas: Planning, Environment, Public Law, Compulsory Purchase and Compensation, Rating, Major Infrastructure Projects, Local Government

Esther Drabkin-Reiter

Esther Drabkin-Reiter is currently a second six pupil in Chambers and welcomes instructions to advise and represent clients across all of Chambers' practice areas. She is currently under the supervision of Ned Westaway after having spent four months under the supervision of John Jolliffe.

Esther read Jurisprudence at Merton College, Oxford, and has a master's degree in EU Law from the European University Institute, Florence. Prior to coming to the Bar she spent a year as Judicial Assistant to Lord Justice Lloyd Jones (as he then was) at the Court of Appeal, working on cases involving issues of public and EU law.

Her main areas of interest include:

  • planning and environment;
  • public and human rights law;
  • EU law;
  • local government;
  • rating and valuation;
  • compulsory purchase and compensation;
  • infrastructure;
  • rights of way and highways;
  • licensing.

In appropriate cases, Esther is happy to work on a pro bono basis.

Practice Areas


Esther has gained experience of a wide variety of planning issues during her pupillage, including:

  • judicial review & statutory challenges;
  • challenges to officers' reports;
  • plan-making;
  • the interpretation of planning policy;
  • section 106 obligations;
  • Community Infrastructure Levy;
  • Tree Preservation Orders;
  • Compulsory Purchase Orders.

Environmental Law

Esther has a particular interest in environmental law and has gained experience in this field during pupillage, including:

  • private and statutory nuisance;
  • SEA and EIA Directives;
  • Aarhus Convention claim, in particular the costs capping regime;
  • Habitats Directive and Regulations;

Public Law

Esther has a keen interest in public law, and has gained experience during pupillage of a range of public law issues, including:

  • adequacy of consultation;
  • procedural fairness;
  • duty to give reasons;
  • legitimate expectations;
  • public sector equality duty;
  • issues of vires;
  • Human Rights Act 1998.


  • Merton College, University of Oxford, BA in Jurisprudence with European Legal Studies (German Law) (2.i) (2008-2012)
  • European University Institute, LLM in Comparative, European and International Laws (2014-2015)
  • City Law School, Bar Professional Training Course (Outstanding) (2015-2016)

Scholarships and Awards

Bar Awards & Scholarships

  • Buchanan Prize (Lincoln's Inn) (2016)
  • Lord Denning Scholarship (Lincoln's Inn) (2015-2016)
  • Hardwicke Award (Lincoln's Inn) (2014)

University Scholarships & Prizes

  • Academic Scholarship (Merton College) (2009-2012)
  • Norton Rose Prize (Merton College) (2009)

Previous Experience

Before coming to the Bar, Esther spent two years working as a Research Assistant at the Law Commission on a project to reform electoral laws across the UK. She was subsequently Judicial Assistant to Lord Justice Lloyd Jones in the Court of Appeal. Most recently, Esther spent a year gaining experience of planning law and the planning process as Planning Caseworker at Southwark Law Centre.


Esther is fluent in German.

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