Lucy Sowden

Called 2006

When representing vulnerable clients, Lucy shows empathy and is able to ensure they understand and are engaged in the court process. She is pragmatic and will give clear advice.

Legal 500 2024


Lucy completed her pupillage with the Crown Prosecution Service in London where she undertook all aspects of prosecution work, appearing in the Magistrates and Crown Courts across London. She maintained her interest in family work and took a special interest in the prosecution of child neglect and child abuse cases. Following this Lucy worked in-house at a Local Authority before joining Zenith Chambers in 2011.

Lucy joined Parklane Plowden in February 2020 from Zenith Chambers.

Lucy specialises in all aspects of public and private law children work in the High Court, County Court and Family Proceedings Court, representing all parties including Local Authorities, parents, connected carers and the children. She is particularly skilled in working with vulnerable clients.

Lucy has a special interest in:

  1. Contested hearings in Care Proceedings involving issues of complex medical evidence or disputed factual evidence, including fabricated and induced Illness (FII),
  2. Finding of fact hearings under PD 12J involving issues of domestic violence.
  3. Representing parties with learning disabilities and those without capacity through the Official Solicitor.
  4. Private law disputes as with whom the child should ‘live with’ and the arrangements for them to ‘spend time with’ the other parent.


Lucy prides herself on being a hardworking, practical, approachable and  fearless advocate, who fights for the best outcome for her client.

Areas of Expertise


In public law proceedings Lucy regularly represents Local Authorities, parents – particularly those who are vulnerable or represented through the Official Solicitor, children through the Children’s Guardian and other interested parties.

Lucy has extensive experience of lengthy contested hearings and fact-finding hearings, which can be cases she has had conduct of from the outset or cases involving last minute instructions for the purposes of upcoming hearings.

Lucy is regularly instructed in public law cases involving neglect, physical and emotional harm, domestic violence and sexual abuse. Lucy also has significant experience in cases involving children and parents from other jurisdictions.

Lucy also represents all parties, including parents, extended family members and the children, in private law cases ranging from basic contact disputes to fact-finding hearings involving serious allegations of physical and emotional harm.

Lucy prides herself on being approachable and giving realistic advice in a sensitive and appropriate way, tailored to suit the individual needs of the client.

Legal 500 (2024) - Family, Children and Domestic Violence (Tier 4) - "When representing vulnerable clients, Lucy shows empathy and is able to ensure they understand and are engaged in the court process. She is pragmatic and will give clear advice."

Legal 500 (2023) - Child Law, Public and Private (Tier 3) - "Lucy has excellent advocacy skills and will robustly fight for her client. She provides clear, firm advice."

Legal 500 (2022) - "Lucy is well-respected in her field for her direct and effective cross-examination style. She always offers a balanced approach and is able to give firm and difficult advice when needed to."

Legal 500 (2021) - Child Law, Public and Private (Tier 4) - "She is very methodical and analytical and hard working. She gets involved in your case and will help you all the way through even if you have only instructed her to cover just one hearing. Her advocacy skills are great. She is very robust and thorough."

FLBA North Eastern Circuit

Re B and G (Children)(No 2) [2015] EWFC 3 – The first reported case where Female Genital Mutilation was the sole issue.

LA v LA v F [2021] - Care Proceedings - Lucy represented the LA where three children had sustained facial bruising and there was a significant dispute as to the level of domestic violence within the parental relationship.

G v G [2021] - Private Law - Lucy represents the father in proceedings which have been ongoing since 2018, where the child is a party and the mother is a litigant in person. The case concerns whether there should be a no contact order and a s91(14) Children Act 1989 order made.

LA v K [2021] - Care Proceedings - Lucy represents the father in proceedings involving two children with non-accidental injuries, involving significant dispute of fact and mental health issues.

F-S (A Child: Placement Order) [2021] - Lucy represented the LA in opposing an appeal against the Judgment of HHJ Campbell. Following written and oral submissions, the appeal was dismissed.

Parental contact – Private v Public law proceedings [2020] Changing the Family Landscape - Recommendations To Achieve Best Practice In The Child Protection And Family Justice Systems March 2021

Impact of COVID on threshold statements [2020] Court Skills for Family law professionals [2020] PLP Final evidence – an analysis [2021] Court Skills for Family law professionals [2021]

Law LLB (Hons) University of Hull