Robin Hopkins

Robin is a leading specialist in information law: data protection, privacy and freedom of information.

Robin is the top-ranked junior in Chambers & Partners for data protection (the sole ‘star individual’ junior for 2018 to 2020), and a top-tier junior in Legal 500. He is also listed by Global Data Review as one of the world’s leading data privacy lawyers under the age of 40.

He has vast experience on GDPR and DPA issues such as data breaches, compensation claims, ICO actions, subject access requests, direct marketing, and media disputes. He is currently retained by a number of major multinationals on some of the ground-breaking cases emerging under the GDPR.

Robin has appeared in hundreds of information rights appeals (FOI and environmental information) and maintains 11KBW’s Panopticon blog.


Information Law

Robin has vast experience in all aspects of data protection, for which he is ranked as a Band 1 Junior (Chambers and Partners). He has appeared in numerous leading data protection cases, and works with clients on issues such as GDPR preparations, social media and apps, artificial intelligence, data-sharing, direct marketing, subject access and compensation disputes.

He has appeared in hundreds of appeals concerning FOIA and EIR matters, including leading cases. Current work includes Department of Health v IC and Lewis (Court of Appeal; ministerial diary) and DECC v IC and Henney (Court of Appeal; definition of environmental information). Robin is also highly experienced in information rights in a commercial context: notable cases include Worcestershire CC and UBB v IC (EA/2015/02) and Southwark v IC and Lend Lease (EA/2013/0162).

Media & Privacy

Robin works extensively with both media and individual clients on privacy disputes in the context of news, online content and reputation management. He works with major national news publications and content hosts, and is experienced in right to be forgotten/take-down disputes, the DPA’s journalism exemption and the intersection of data protection and defamation (e.g. David v Gabriel and Others [2016] EWHC 2799 (QB)).

Public Law

Robin’s public law practice often encompasses privacy issues, including R (C) v Northumberland CC & ICO [2015] EWHC 2134 (Admin) (child protection information), R (MS) v Independent Monitor [2016] EWHC 1629 (Admin), [2016] 4 WLR 88 (challenge to enhanced criminal record certificates) and R (Catt) and R (T) v Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis and Others [2015] UKSC 9 (Supreme Court; application of Article 8 ECHR and the DPA to policing information).

Human Rights

Robin has extensive advisory and litigation experience of Article 8 ECHR cases in particular. Reported cases include R (MS) v Independent Monitor [2016] EWHC 1629 (Admin), [2016] 4 WLR 88 (challenge to enhanced criminal record certificates) and R (Catt) and R (T) v Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis and Others [2015] UKSC 9 (Supreme Court; application of Article 8 ECHR and the DPA to policing information).

Local Government

Robin works in all aspects of local government law, with extensive experience in information rights matters in particular. Those include FOI and environmental disputes – often in commercial contexts – as well as data protection issues such as disclosure, retention and data-sharing. He appeared in the leading case on local authorities’ retention of child protection information: R (C) v Northumberland CC & ICO [2015] EWHC 2134 (Admin).

Robin is also highly experienced in Assets of Community Value matters. He has appeared in numerous Tribunal cases as well as the leading case in this area of law, Banner Homes v St Albans (to be heard by the Court of Appeal later in 2017).


“He is just brilliant. For a barrister’s view on any issue going to court, he gives the most helpful input and feedback.” Chambers & Partners

“He is a very clear adviser; he is good tactically and he is practical.” Chambers & Partners

“He is user-friendly and has a good grip on the regulator’s position.” Chambers & Partners

“He is the best junior around for data protection and truly has no weaknesses in the area.” Legal 500

“A superstar junior with sense well beyond his years.” Legal 500

“An outstanding junior in the data privacy field, he is exceptionally bright and makes dealing with the most complex matters seem effortless.” Legal 500

“Unparalleled junior-level experience in DPA and freedom of information instructions… He is highly regarded as a staple in this practice area’s most precedent-setting litigation.” Chambers & Partners

“He’s excellent on strategy, prompt and responsive, great on paper and a pleasure to deal with overall.” Chambers & Partners

Recent Cases

[2020] EWHC 691 (Fam), [2020] 1 WLR 3119 (access to deceased’s medical records)

Scott v LGBT Foundation
[2020] EWHC 483 (QB), [2020] 4 WLR 62 (oral disclosure of personal information)

[2018] EWCA Civ 1497 (mixed personal data)

Ittihadieh v 5-11 Cheyne Gardens/Deer v Oxford University
[2017] EWCA Civ 121, [2017] 3 WLR 811 (subject access; personal purposes; judicial discretion)

Holyoake v CPC and Nicholas Candy
[2017] EWHC 52 (subject access; surveillance; investigations; LPP)

Department of Health v Information Commissioner
[2017] EWCA Civ 374, [2017] 1 WLR 3330 (freedom of information; ministerial diaries)

DBEIS v IC and Henney
[2017] EWCA Civ 844 (meaning of environmental information)

R (Catt) and R (T) v Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis and Others
[2015] UKSC 9 (Supreme Court; application of Article 8 ECHR and the DPA to policing information)

Edem v IC and FCA
[2014] EWCA Civ 92 (Court of Appeal; definition of ‘personal data’)

Re Southern Pacific Personal Loans Limited
[2013] EWHC 2485 (data protection in commercial insolvency context)


Attorney General’s Panel of Counsel (B Panel)

Deputy Chancellor of the Diocese of Chichester

Commissary General, Diocese of Canterbury

News, Articles & Publications

Maintains and regularly contributes to 11KBW’s Panopticon blog.


Rhodes Scholar (South African College School, 2001)

City University, London: Graduate Diploma in Law (Distinction)

Oxford University: BA (PPE); Master of Studies (Philosophical Theology)

University of Cape Town: Bachelor of Business Science (Finance)


Regulatory Information

All members of Chambers are registered with the Bar Stardards Board of England and Wales. For general terms and conditions on which services are provided - click here

Professional title: Barrister

Full name (as registered with Bar Standards Board of England and Wales): Robin Hopkins

VAT Number: GB 979813357

Legal Status: Sole Practitioner

Professional Insurance: All members of Chambers have professional liability insurance provided by the Bar Mutual Indemnity Fund Ltd - click here for more details

Territorial coverage is world-wide, subject to the terms of the Bar Mutual, which may be found here

Should you wish to make a complaint - click here