South West Group home page
In this section of the site, you will find details of:
Lucy Pegler, Chair
Lucy is a senior associate specialising in technology, data protection and cyber security. She has in-depth sector experience and frequently advises clients operating in the transport, infrastructure and public sectors. Her experience ranges from advising on international, multi-party technology outsourcings through to advising on the handling of enforcement action by the UK's Information Commissioner.
Sarah Hill, Committee Member
Sarah is a Legal Director with over 15 years' experience in litigation, arbitration and other forms ofdispute resolution. She specialises in advising clients on contractual matters and complex informationtechnology and project disputes.
Edward Boal, Committee Member
Ed advises clients across a variety of industry sectors on commercial agreements, projects and transactions as well as data protection matters.
Christopher Coughlan, Committee Member
Chris is a Senior Associate in Capital Law’s Commercial Team specialising in technology, data protection and cybersecurity work. Chris advises a wide variety of businesses ranging from tech start-ups to multinationals. He has particular expertise in advising clients in the AdTech, and E-Commerce sectors. Chris has contributed to a number of industry and national publications including the FT, the Times Brief, and the Telegraph. He regularly speaks at events and previously spoke on the private sector panel at the Information Commissioners Office annual data protection practitioner’s conference in Manchester
Heidi Thompson, Committee Member
Qualified as a Solicitor (March 2009) and as a Chartered Secretary (1992). More than 25 years' business experience in-house and in private practice.
Headed Imperial’s GDPR compliance programme. Responsible for global network of DP Leads.
Asma Vranaki, Committee Member
Asma specialises in all aspects of Information & Communications Technology law and regulation (e.g. data protection, privacy, IP, defamation, freedom of expression and cyber crime). She has been called to the Bar of England & Wales as well as the Bar of Mauritius. In the past, she has practised as a commercial barrister in Mauritius.
About the Group
The tech community in the South West ranges from the “Silicon Gorge” of Bristol to the historic Goonhilly Satellite array on the Cornish coastline, containing over 11,000 technology companies and featuring growth in the formation of new companies in excess of the national average. At least 78,000 people are currently employed in the South West in digital technology roles, with digital tech business turnover in the region reaching in excess of £10bn since 2017. There are a diverse range of successful tech hubs in Bath, Exeter, Gloucestershire, Plymouth, Swindon and beyond, with innovation in the region spanning the aerospace industry to sustainable energy technologies.
Bristol, one of UK’s most economically significant cities and a European “tech super cluster”, is alive with a range of high-tech industries, including telecoms, chip-making, robotics, bionics, fintech and much more. With initiatives such as the city’s Engine Shed driving growth in start-ups and the recent successes of two “Unicorn” companies valued at over £1bn (Graphcore and Ovo Energy), the city and region look set to continue from strength to strength in the 2020s.
SCL has a group dedicated to the South West. Details of the committee members can be found below. We’re always interested to hear what you’d like to see more of from SCL in the South West - please do get in touch if you have any ideas for events.