Helen Johnson


  • Qualified in England and Wales in 2008.

Helen is a Senior Associate based primarily in Kennedys’ Sheffield office. She also works out of our London and Manchester offices.

Helen qualified in England and Wales in 2008.

Helen specialises in advising developers, contractors and consultants on both contentious and non-contentious construction and engineering related matters.

She is entrusted with leading some of the team’s most high-profile work. This year Helen has spearheaded the construction element of a significant due diligence instruction on behalf of a US investor/purchaser of a £500 million hotel deal in the UK, and has been instructed on a series of cases relating to cladding following the inquiries into the Grenfell disaster.

Helen is involved with the Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise Partnership and leads Kennedys’ Sheffield office’s charity committee.

Helen Johnson leads the team superbly – confident, tactically astute and industrious.

The Legal 500 UK 2021

Market recognition

  • A Notable Practitioner (Associate to Watch) in ‘Construction (Yorkshire)’
    “Helen Johnson is a senior associate and provides support on some of the department's most significant non-contentious work. Clients describe her as ‘very personable, diligent, efficient and knowledgeable,’ and add: ‘She is also very good at explaining technical issues and implications to those of us who aren't naturally legal-minded.’”
    Chambers UK 2018
  • ‘Construction (Yorkshire and the Humber)’
    “Associate Helen Johnson is ‘an excellent lawyer who gets stuck into the detail’”
    Legal 500 UK 2017

Contentious work highlights

  • Represented an Austrian contractor with extension of time claim and variation claims arising from the rehabilitation of a rail network in Romania. Dispute Adjudication Board proceedings followed by International Chamber of Commerce arbitration with a combined claim and counterclaim value of c.€140 million.
  • Acted for a structural engineer on a £4 million claim involving ground improvement vibro works.
  • Acted for an Italian contractor managing contractual disputes relating to a turn-key steel works project in Kuwait in advance of formal proceedings.
  • Acted for the structural engineer (through its professional indemnity insurer) in a dispute relating to the subsidence of a leisure centre development resulting in delay to the project and substantial remedial works.
  • Acted for a UK plc in defence of a £7 million agreement for lease dispute and associated action for costs specifically concerning extensions of time and variations claims. Litigation in the Technology and Construction Court.


Non-contentious work highlights

  • Acted on behalf of (including a secondment to) an Italian contractor providing contract administration advice on FIDIC Red Book based contracts in relation to a turn-key steel works project in Abu Dhabi.
  • Advised UK national rail company on construction documentation requirements for various property holdings, to include reporting on and negotiating amendment and novation of consultant’s appointments, building contracts and all security documentation.
  • Advised UK-based retailer in relation to fit out contracts for both shops and offices including drafting, review and management of framework agreements, building contracts and professional appointments.
  • Advised an international investor and its legal team in relation to the construction elements of a purchase of 19 hotels in the UK with a purchase price in excess of £500 million.
  • Acted for the contractor on the construction aspects of a series of NHS LIFT hospital and care centre schemes, including managing the circulation and negotiation of a high level of documentation and negotiating and finalising all consultant documentation.
Market recognition
  • Uk Recommended Lawyer 2022

    Recommended Lawyer

    The Legal 500 UK 2022

  • Legal-500-UK-2021-recommended-lawyer.png

    Recommended Lawyer

    The Legal 500 UK 2021

  • Legal-500_UK_Recommended-lawyer.png

    Recommended Lawyer

    The Legal 500 UK 2020

  • Recommended_lawyer_2019.png

    Recommended Lawyer

    The Legal 500 UK 2019