Stephen Mason

Stephen Mason

Senior Counsel

Stephen has an indisputable reputation in travel law with an unmatched wealth of experience and is, therefore, able to advise clients on law and on the most likely outcome of cases in clear, professional terms. Stephen is the top rated UK solicitor in Travel in Chambers Directory 2018.

He set up what is now Travlaw in 2003 to offer a law firm that specialises in working with the travel industry and to be recognised as leaders (and thought leaders) whilst avoiding pomposity. The company’s ethos is to have a professional but informal approach to clients.

Stephen is proud of the firm’s litigation success record and puts that down to his hatred of losing matched with his desire to get the right results for clients. “Our clients are great to work with and many of them have transcended the role of client and become friends.”

Aside from his work with Travlaw, Stephen speaks at many conferences and seminars in the UK and overseas. Away from work and family, Stephen loves international rail travel and directing plays at his local theatre.

In 2018 Chambers wrote “Stephen provides good insight into the industry. Widely admired for his academic powers. Clearly pre-eminent in the industry combines commercial solutions with excellent technical knowledge.” His practice focuses on both advisory and litigation work. Stephen is personally ranked in Band 1, being the only lawyer in the country to be awarded such a ranking in the travel sector.

Rivka Hawley

Rivka Hawley

Founder and Managing Director

Rivka is a founding member of Travlaw, having set up the firm in 2003 with Stephen Mason. Rivka is wholly devoted to advising the travel and leisure industry and offers a modern dynamic and forward thinking approach to legal services and client care. Rivka remains 100% committed to the firm and dedicated to seeing it expand and develop without losing its individuality and “professional yet approachable ethos”.

During her career, Rivka has dealt with high profile personal injury claims, Court of Appeal cases, illness outbreaks, catastrophic injuries and cross border litigation. She has excellent judgment regarding which claims to fight and is not afraid to pursue difficult defences where appropriate. Rivka now takes on the role of Managing Director, dealing with finance, business development, recruitment and managing and marketing the firm. With over 25 years in the industry Rivka continues to enjoy an enviable and unrivalled relationship with many of the firm’s loyal clients.

Outside of work Rivka loves travelling and has been lucky enough to visit many fascinating Countries including,  Japan, Peru, South Africa, Iceland to name but a few!

Aside from her travelling, Rivka is a qualified Clinical Hypnotherapist!

Associate member of ACILEX; ABTA Travel Industry Partner; The Association of Women Travel Executives – former Partnerships Director. Rivka is also a member of The National Council of Hypnotherapy.

Matt Gatenby

Matt Gatenby

Senior Partner

Part of the Leadership Team at Travlaw, Matt Gatenby has over two decades of experience in the travel law industry and so likes to think he has seen it all – even though the ever dynamic industry means that just isn’t possible!

Friendly and approachable, Matt is part of the leadership team at Travlaw. His day-to-day work see Matt proud to serve a vast array of tour operators, travel agents, trade associations, insurers and their underwriters. His skill-set encompasses all levels of work, not only the complex multi-track matters which he attracts so many instructions for, but also various other civil litigation cases which clients trust in the firm to handle. His well-established defendant personal injury practice revolves around two main aspects. Firstly, single party claims for trips, slips and more complex cases such as serious and fatal injuries. Secondly he has a long history or successfully dealing with illness cases. Examples of such cases are legionnaire’s outbreaks as well illness group and class actions involving norovirus, salmonella, cryptosporidium and other types of food poisoning. Long before the infamous rise in illness claims in the ‘tweens, Matt was dealing with gastric cases! His work in this area has seen Matt ranked as a leading travel lawyer in Chambers & Partners for a number of years now.

Matt has contributed to various publications including Travel Law Quarterly and Solicitors Journal. He has blogged on various issues, featured in various newsletters and has commented on industry issues in leading trade press publications Travel Weekly and Travel Trade Gazette as well as national and global media such as BBC News. A popular trainer and speaker, Matt is often asked to deliver in-house seminars, appear on panel debates and has also spoken many times in the UK and abroad at conferences. These include speaking at The ABTA Legal Seminar, ABTOT, PEOPIL, ECC-NET, AGTO, AITO, UKInbound, the Clarity Travel Management conference, BTA conferences as well as at various Travlaw events.

More recently Matt has headed up Travlaw’s “Brexit” team, advising the travel & leisure industry on the various potential issues arising from everybody’s favourite referendum and also helped lead the firms advice and support to travel businesses following Covid-19.

Memberships: ABTA, ABTOT, AITO, BCH, BETA, BTA, EnglishUK, IAGTO, ITT, TATLA, UKInbound.

Ami Naru

Ami Naru

Partner, Head of Employment

Ami qualified as a solicitor in 2000 and has since then focused on building an enviable employment practice serving the travel industry. She  works closely with ABTA, BTA and AITO amongst other travel industry bodies. She also features regularly  in Travel Weekly providing comment and updates on developments affecting employers in the industry. Ami is well known amongst the travel industry as the one stop shop for all matters employment related, from hiring to firing and managing staff. She exclusively serves the travel and leisure industry with its employment law needs, so has inside knowledge of what will and will not work and industry norms.

Ami is highly experienced in all aspects of employment law, both contentious and non–contentious. She has pretty much seen all there is when it comes to issues with employees. She regularly advises clients on matters such as board and senior level appointments and exits, business reorganisations and redundancies, TUPE, cross jurisdictional disputes and disciplinary and grievance procedures. Ami is your one stop shop for all aspects of employment law.

Ami has also gained an enviable litigation record defending a wide variety of claims for clients in the Employment Tribunal, Employment Appeal Tribunal and High Court. Ami is also an experienced advocate who adopts a “cradle to grave” approach in advising clients. She offers commercial yet pragmatic advice to clients to help them achieve their business objectives. “Ami Naru is someone you always want fighting your corner” – Legal 500.

A confident yet approachable speaker, Ami regularly presents at seminars and training events for clients, in-house and events organised by industry bodies.

Memberships: Employment Lawyers Association.

Krystene Bousfield

Krystene Bousfield


Having qualified as a Solicitor in 2017, Krystene specialises in the areas of civil litigation, debt recovery and personal injury. Since joining Travlaw in October 2014, Krystene has become a key, senior member of our litigation team, handling various claims in civil, commercial and criminal areas of law. Subsequently, her caseload could not be more varied and whilst one day she might be defending holiday illness claims, the next she could be battling an industry regulator over issues regarding advertising standards!

As a well-known and established member of the travel industry, Krystene is always keen to get out and about, meeting new clients and faces whenever she can. You will often see Krystene speaking at and moderating industry events up and down the country, specifically those focused on personal injury, customer complaints and the Package Travel Regulations.

With over 10 years of Debt Recovery experience, Krystene is Travlaw’s first point of contact for all things recovery based. Whether individual or business debt, UK based or abroad, Krystene has the knowledge and experience necessary to ensure a positive outcome for clients, even taking cases as far as the Royal Courts of Justice so as to ensure a successful recovery. Krystene also specialises in enforcement, including the processes of bankruptcy, winding up petitions, charging orders and freezing of assets.

Krystene has contributed to various publications including Travel Law Quarterly and regularly features in leading trade press publications including Travel Weekly. She makes regular appearances on industry panels, including at the Barclays Travel Forum and Travlaw’s own Big Tent Event where she moderated and contributed on key topics including ATOL Reform, Brexit and Regulatory Review.

When she is not practicing law, Krystene spends her time teaching it(!), and has an ongoing working relationship with both Law Business Research (LBR) and FOR Legal where she provides training to other legal professionals on all things Debt Recovery.

Nick Parkinson

Nick Parkinson


Nick joined Travlaw in 2018, having previously lead a team of litigation fee earners at a claimant-orientated firm.  Since joining Travlaw, Nick has helped the travel industry navigate their way through various challenges posed by:

  • The travel sickness claim epidemic;
  • The failure of Thomas Cook;
  • Brexit; and
  • The covid-19 pandemic

With over 12 years experience in civil litigation, and with considerable expertise in the travel & leisure industry, Nick regularly advises the travel industry in relation to:

  • Obligations under the Package Travel Regulations
  • B2B contractual disputes (e.g. disputes between a tour operator and their suppliers)
  • Travel sickness claims
  • Injury claims, with an emphasis on disputes over ‘local standards’
  • Copyright infringement claims
  • Domain disputes – to take down ‘rogue websites’ and e-mail accounts used by fraudsters and unlicensed travel companies
  • Aviation claims – including claims under Regulation 261/2004 and the Montreal Convention
  • Equality & Discrimination claims – including claims under the Equality Act and Regulation 1107/2006
  • Applicable Law & Jurisdiction & Cross Border issues
  • Brexit


Nick’s first introduction to travel law came about as a trainee solicitor, handled a number of cross-border road traffic accident claims.  Identifying the ‘booby traps’ and ‘loopholes’ that arise when applying foreign law in the courts of England and Wales, resolving ‘conflicts of law’ and jurisdictional disputes provided Nick with an appetite for the other challenges that come with international and travel litigation.

A failure by the UK government to properly implement the EU’s ‘5th Motor Directive’, causing financial loss to victims of accidents caused by uninsured drivers, spurred Nick to initiate a campaign for legal reform. Having brought a number of ‘Francovich claims’ against the Department of Transport this project successfully forced the Department of Transport to take measures to finally implement the 5th Directive, as they should have done many months earlier!

In 2015, the floodgates opened to passengers claiming compensation for delayed or cancelled flights under Regulation 261, where Nick was at the forefront of a number of important ‘test cases’ and ‘appeal cases’ in a developing area of law.  Examples include disputes over contractual limitation, exclusive jurisdiction clauses, when ‘extraordinary circumstances’ apply and, most notably, a successful Court of Appeal decision in Thea Gahan & Others v Emirates.

The Travlaw Career Path!

Nick joined Travlaw Litigation Team in 2018 and has quickly established himself as a ‘go to expert’ in the travel industry, speaking at events with ABTA, ABTOT, UKInbound, BETA and The European Consumer Centre in Luxembourg.

What does he enjoy most about being a travel lawyer?  Every day is different, and variety is the spice of life.

Katherine Peatfield

Katherine Peatfield


After obtaining her psychology degree in her native home state of California, Katherine spent a few years travelling around Europe, largely based out of Gothenburg, Sweden.

After deciding to settle in Yorkshire, Katherine went back to university where she completed her LLB at the University of Leeds in 2020 and her Legal Practice Course at the University of Law in July 2021 with a Distinction. Katherine joined the Commercial and Corporate Governance Team in August 2021 as a Paralegal before undertaking a a Training Contract, completing in December 2023 and is now looking forward to continuing to assist Travlaw’s clients!

In her free time, Katherine enjoys staying fit by running, travelling to new countries and is a self-proclaimed foodie!

Nick Goodchild

Nick Goodchild

Trainee Solicitor

Nick is a Trainee Solicitor in the Commercial and Corporate Governance department. Having worked at a tour operator for 10 years, Nick knows the travel industry well. He has negotiated with travel agents, airlines, hotel chains, and overseas suppliers, and has gained an in-depth understanding of the commercial context and objectives of travel businesses.

Nick’s first degree was in French and Spanish at King’s College London. After deciding to pursue a career in law, Nick went back to University and got a Distinction grade in his Graduate Diploma in Law in 2021, and is now taking the Legal Practice Course.

In his spare time Nick is a keen golfer, and of course loves to travel. He has lived in France, Spain, Chile and Argentina, and his favourite city is Buenos Aires, where he learned to dance the tango.

Conor Askins

Conor Askins

Trainee Solicitor

Conor is originally from the north east and joined the firm as a paralegal before commencing a Training Contract in April 2024. Conor has previously worked as a paralegal for a top 50 law firm in Leeds specialising in debt recovery. Conor has also gained experience working as a divorce paralegal in his hometown of Middlesbrough.

Conor graduated from Leeds Beckett University with a First-Class Honours Degree in Law. Conor won the Front Row Legal Award for achieving the highest grade in his year group for Media and Entertainment Law. After his undergraduate degree, Conor completed his LPC with a commendation and achieved a First in his Masters.

Conor enjoys watching Middlesbrough Football Club and the England Cricket team at Headingley. Conor is passionate about music and plays the guitar in his spare time. Conor enjoys travelling and recently travelled around America in the summer of 2022.

Rachel Baskerville

Rachel Baskerville

Director of Finance

Rachel has nearly 30 years’ experience working not only with Stephen Mason but with the travel industry in both a legal and accounting capacity.

She first joined Stephen Mason as a legal secretary, quickly moving through her ILEX exams and taking on a fee earning role. A number of years later, and with the arrival of her first son, Rachel decided to move into the less stressful and more office-based role of Practice Manager!

Fast forward a few more years to when Stephen first established Travlaw, she soon followed and joined him and Rivka to form what we now call Travlaw . Rachel took on the accounts role as well as studying and passing her legal cashiers qualifications (ILFM) and bringing up two boys (arguably the hardest part!).

Today sees Rachel as the Director of Finance providing all Travlaw’s financial functions. Not only is she efficient, thorough, approachable, reliable and practical but this all comes with a cheerful, fun loving and bright persona….there’s never a dull moment in the office when she is in! Rachel prides herself on her financial management skills and her attention to detail; both crucial assets to her role.

On the serious side, the Accounts Rules of the Solicitors Regulatory Authority impose stringent standards on how solicitors handle clients’ money. These are constantly evolving and Rachel ensures that we are complying with changes and implementing them correctly within the firm.

As you would expect Rachel is also our Compliance Officer for Financial Affairs (COFA). A very important role, nominated by the partners at Travlaw and then appointed and approved by the SRA. This role carries an even greater responsibility to monitor, review, record and report risks concerning compliance directly to the SRA.

Although Rachel has lived most of her life here, she was born in Melbourne where some of her family, including her twin brother, remain. She is a seasoned traveller having visited five out of seven continents. One day she is planning to return to Melbourne to enjoy a well-earned retirement in the sun!

Dave Robertson

Dave Robertson


Dave has been administrator since 2019, having previously worked as an performer and front of staff at Harrogate Theatre.

He works across all departments providing logistical and clerical support, plus always on hand to help with whatever else comes up!