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Richard Keightley

Principal Associate
Investigator Richard Keightley

Richard is a Principal Associate based in our London office. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Water and Environmental Management, a Chartered Water and Environmental Manager and Chartered Environmentalist. Richard has investigated over 150 cases since he joined Hawkins in 2017, primarily in relation to flooding, drainage and water ingress issues. Examples include: flooding from rivers, sea, surface water and groundwater; defective foul and surface water drainage systems; failure of infrastructure such as pumping stations, reservoirs and canals; the impacts of developments on flood risk to third party properties; and basement water ingress issues. Much of his work involves acting as an expert witness in civil claims, and advising on matters in relation to the requirements of national planning policies, building regulations and relevant design standards. In a recent High Court judgement, the judge favoured Richard’s evidence to that of the other expert witnesses, describing him as an “impressive witness” and “a careful expert witness using language with precision”.

Prior to joining Hawkins, Richard was a Principal Consultant at a multi-national water and environmental engineering consultancy, where he delivered projects for the Environment Agency, local authorities and developers. His projects included flooding investigations, flood risk assessments, options appraisal for flood defence schemes, flood forecasting, climate change impact assessments and contingency plans for infrastructure failures. 

Prior to this, he worked at a water and sewerage company where he was responsible for the strategic management and development of drainage and water supply networks. He had roles as a Senior Investigation and Design Engineer, investigating operational issues including flooding, water leakage and pollution incidents, and as Modelling Manager, leading a hydraulic modelling, asset condition/deterioration modelling and geospatial analysis team.  Before this, Richard was a Flood Risk Engineer at a multi-national civil engineering consultancy, where he specialised in hydrological/hydraulic modelling, flood risk assessment and flood mitigation design.  He managed projects to support planning applications and the preparation of Local Plans for clients including the Welsh Government, local authorities and major housebuilders.  His projects ranged from single-dwelling developments to mixed-used developments with over 1500 homes.  This work built on the experience gained in his previous role as a Hydrologist at a national water and atmospheric research institute.


FCIWEM Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Water and Environmental Management (CIWEM)
C.WEM Chartered Water and Environmental Manager, Chartered Institute of Water and Environmental Management (CIWEM)
C.Env Chartered Environmentalist, Society for the Environment (SocEnv)
PgDipSci Physical Geography – Victoria University
BSc Physical Geography and Environmental Studies – Victoria University
Expert witness certificate Cardiff University School of Law and Politics

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