Professor Carrie de Silva


Honorary Professor of Real Estate Practice Law.


On graduating with a law degree from the University of Leicester, Professor Carrie de Silva worked in corporate taxation, initially for Arthur Andersen. She lectured in law and taxation to prospective rural chartered surveyors at Harper Adams University for over 20 years before being appointed as an Honorary Professor of Real Estate Practice Law at the Royal Agricultural University. She is also currently a consultant and trainer on the law elements of Sava courses for prospective residential valuers.

Professional memberships

  • Association of Law Teachers
  • Agricultural Law Association (former Tax Committee member), Women’s History Network
  • The Farmers Club
  • Worshipful Company of Tax Advisers

External posts:

  • ​2021-date. Somers Town History Research Group working on early women chartered surveyors and housing managers
  • 2020-date. Inner Temple research group on minority ethnic lawyers - working on early lawyers in/from Ceylon (Sri Lanka)
  • 2020-date. ASET Advocates Panel 
  • 2020-date. Sybil Campbell Collection Trust, trustee (collection housed at the University of Winchester and affiliated to the Centre for the History of Education)
  • 2018-date. British Federation of Woman Graduates Scholarship Trust, trustee and Chair from July 2021 - awarding approximately £35,000 annually on academic merit
  • 2017-date. Board member, Centre for Equine Law and Policy, University of Buckingham 
  • 2017-2020. Justice Defenders (formerly African Prisons Project) – property law tutor/materials lead 
  • 2017-2018. Rugby Co-operative Multi-Academy Trust – member (ceased due to the failure of the Trust to progress) 
  • 2016-2021. Vice President, British Federation of Women Graduates 
  • 2014-date. Consultant and tutor - residential valuers’ courses run by Sava, Milton Keynes (formerly through BlueBox Partners Ltd – director of BlueBox Partners Ltd 2016-2020)
  • 2006-2014. Governor, Reaseheath College, Nantwich, Cheshire
  • 2005-date. Legal consultant, ASET 
  • 2005-2010. Board member, ASET (Association of Sandwich Education and Training)


Carrie is interested in the legal frameworks of owning and managing land and property (rural and non-rural), in professional negligence and civil liability in the land and property sector, and in criminal liability for personal injury or death (negligence, professional negligence, health and safety and corporate manslaughter).

Carrie also researches various historical matters, including the history of agricultural education and also gender and ethnicity in the professions in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Work on surveyors includes engagement with the Somers Town History group in further researching the first woman chartered surveyor. Work on early women lawyers includes a current project in Iowa looking at the archive of an agricultural law office.

In progress is a study and book of women in street names – the stories of women honoured in street names throughout the UK, and a consideration of the potential wider impact of limited feminine presence in public places. Gender interests particularly include the factors impacting the gender imbalance of women in senior public and private sector positions.


Law teaching on real estate courses.




  • Women in Street Names: discovering the sometimes forgotten women remembered in the street names of Great Britain (to be released 2023)
  • Botanicals Casebook: cases involving trees and plants
  • Equine Law: an introduction to aspects of law and taxation relating to horse, rider and the small equine business. (Northern Ireland edition available)
  • Health and Safety Casebook: key Cases from 1837 to 2016 with particular reference to the land-based industries
  • Negligent Valuation Casebook: key cases from the 19th to 21st centuries
  • A Short History of Agricultural Education and Research in the UK: some key events, institutions and publications from the 16th to the 21st centuries

Journal papers:

  • 2022. Irene Barclay (1894-1989): the extraordinary career of the first woman chartered surveyor, and the development of the housing management profession. Women’s History special issue. Peer reviewed and publisher proofed. Publication due autumn 2022
  • 2021. ‘Not my employee, not my liability’: a review of the law of vicarious liability’, its April 2020 Supreme Court airing, and its relevance to the equestrian industry and other small businesses. Denning Law Journal 2020
  • 2018. Negligent valuation de-constructed: What is negligence at law? What are the practicalities in helping to avoid a claim? Journal of Building Survey, Appraisal and Valuation. Vol. 7, No. 3, Winter 2018/19, 262-274
  • 2018. Before and after Mirvahedy v Henley: the history, controversy and practice of strict liability. Contemporary Issues in Law. Vol 14, issue 3, 167-190
  • 2014. Educating the Chartered Surveyor: looking back to look forward. International Journal of Law in the Built Environment. Vol. 6, 3, 250-270
  • 2012. Health and Safety - Teaching Law, Educating for Prevention. International Journal of Law in the Built Environment. Vol. 4, 3, 233-246.
  • 2010. Livestock and public access: why does strict liability exist as a legal principle, what is ‘reasonable’ care and should livestock keepers be concerned about recent court decisions? Journal of Farm Management vol. 14, 2, Autumn 2010, 117-139

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography entries:

  • 2022. Marjorie Powell (1893-1939), the first women to be admitted to Lincoln’s Inn; academic economist, University of Cambridge (and sister of Harper Adams Agricultural College student) [under consideration]
  • 2021. Mary ‘Pollie’ Hirst Simpson (1874-1947), first agricultural adviser to Women’s Institute
  • 2018. Irene Barclay (1894-1989), first woman to qualify as a chartered surveyor in the UK
  • 2018. Carrie Morrison (1888-1950), the first women to qualify as a solicitor in the United Kingdom (co-authored)
  • 2016. Mary Glynne (1897-1991), a crop research scientist at Rothamsted

Books and book chapters:

  • 2022. Law elements in Residential Valuation, Volume 2. Abingdon: Routledge (to be released 2022)
  • 2022. Law chapter in Grow and Evolve Your Business. Buckingham University Press/Legend Times Group
  • 2021. Chapters 4, 5 and 11 in Residential Valuation, Volume 1. 2nd ed. Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge (to be released late 2021).
  • ASET Good Practice Guide for Health and Safety for Student Placements. 4th ed. Sheffield: ASET. [4th edition, revised by CdeS, 3rd edition, 2016, revised by CdeS, 2nd edition, 2010, produced by Carrie de Silva, Keith Fieldes and David Tattersall]
  • 2020. Galbraith’s Construction and Land Management Law for Students. Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge. Lead editor and author on new edition, including re-writing 8 chapters
  • 2010. Good Practice Guide: Health and Safety for Work Placement. Sheffield: ASET. Co-authored
  • 2009. ‘Compensation Culture: Coming or Going? A Review of Civil and Criminal Liability for Personal Injury in the Light of the Compensation Act 2006 and a Number of Recent Court Decisions’ in Sabitha, A. ed. Personal Injury Claims: compensation doctrines. Hyderabad: Icfai University Press

Peer reviewed conference papers:

  • 2021. ‘Pollie Hirst Simpson (1871-1947), the first agricultural adviser to the Women’s Institute: a life of public service’ Women’s History Network Annual Conference, London School of Economics, 3-4 September 2021
  • 2020. ‘Using the Socratic method and case law to engage and develop legal understanding and transferable skills in non-law students, work-based apprentices and CPD delegates.’ ARES RICS Cobra Conference, April 2020 [cancelled due to COVID-19]
  • 2019. ‘Health and safety in working with horses: making a practical difference’. Symposium on Horses in Culture, Society and Law, Radcliffe Centre, Buckingham University, 2 October 2019
  • 2019. ‘The extraordinary career of Irene Barclay.’ Women’s History Network Annual Conference, London School of Economics, 6-7 September 2019
  • 2019. ‘The agricultural education of women from the 1880s to 1939. Histories of Women in Agriculture and Rural Life. West of England and South Wales Women’s History Network, 26th Annual Conference, 29 June 2019
  • 2018. ‘‘There’s no business like …’ how decisions of the tax authorities, courts and tribunals on the treatment of profits, losses, investments and capital gains help or hinder equestrian operations in the UK, Éire and the USA.’ Symposium on Horses, Law and Society, Radcliffe Centre, Buckingham University, 19 September 2018
  • 2018. ‘‘A Woman Needs a Man Like …’ - a review of the occupations and positions of the men in the lives of early women lawyers’. First Woman Lawyers in Britain and Empire, The Road to 1919 Symposium, 29 June 2018, Jubilee Room, Palace of Westminster, London.
  • 2017. ‘Barriers to qualification: England, Iowa and Beyond’. The First Women Lawyers in Britain and Empire Symposium, 27 June 2017, St Mary’s University Twickenham
  • 2017. Before and after Mirvahedy v Henley: the history, controversy and practice of strict liability. Symposium on Horses, Law and Society, De Montfort University, 11 April 2017
  • 2016. ‘, 19-22 September 2016, Toronto, Canada (note: RICS COBRA Conference - lead on Legal stream (taken over from Dr Paul Chynoweth, University of Salford) - role which included liaising with RICS on peer review process, leading conference discussion forum, working with publisher sponsor on paper prize and journal output
  • 2015. ‘The validity, or otherwise, of history through biography considered through the exploration of the place of agricultural education in the development of the Women's Institute.’ Research Institute for the Humanities Postgraduate Student Research Symposium, Claus Moser Research Centre, Keele University, 18 June 2015
  • 2013. ‘Surveying education: looking back to look forward.’ RICS COBRA Conference, New Delhi, India, 9-11 September 2013
  • 2013. ‘Developing novel law assessments for non-law postgraduates.’ Association of Law Teachers Annual Conference, Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham, March 2013
  • 2012. ‘Case Studies in the Teaching of Health and Safety Law.’ RICS COBRA Conference, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA, 11-13 September 2012
  • 2012. ‘Teaching Law That Students Don’t Want to Hear.’ Association of Law Teachers’ Annual Conference, University of Oxford
  • 2009. ‘Workplace deaths in agriculture – incidence and culpability: legal, exposure and limitation. RICS Roots Conference, Cambridge, 23-24th March 2009
  • 2008. ‘The teaching of law to non-lawyers. International Conference on Building Education and Research, Kandalama, Sri Lanka. 11-15 February 2008
  • 2007. ‘Legislating for animal instincts: a comparative study of occupiers’ liability regarding personal injury involving horses and ponies in England and USA, with particular reference to the effects on commercial land use and farm diversification.’ RICS Roots Rural Conference, Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, London, 17 April 2007
  • 2006. ‘Strict liability under Rylands v Fletcher: 1868-2006.’ RICS Roots Rural Conference, Wadham College, University of Oxford

Conference posters:

  • 2017. Poster presentation: Law degree delivery to long term prisoners under the African Prisons Project. Association of Law Teachers Annual Conference, University of Portsmouth, 10 April 2017
  • 2016. Poster presentation: 20-22 March 2016, Northumbria University
  • 2013. A history of education in agriculture and land agency to 1945. Poster presentation. RICS National Rural Conference, Royal Agricultural University, Cirencester, 19 June 2013
  • 2013. The development of legal education from the 12th to the 20th century. Poster presentation. Association of Law Teachers Annual Conference, Leeds, 13-15 April 2013

Professional press:

Law and taxation

  • 2020. ‘A residential surveyor in the High Court: thoughts on Hart v Large [2020].’ Sava Technical Bulletin
  • 2020. ‘Japanese Knotweed and Surveyor Risk: a review of the cases.’ Sava Technical Bulletin
  • 2020. ‘Vicarious liability and modern business practices following two April 2020 Supreme Court cases.’ Agricultural Law Association Bulletin. 100th edition. Spring 2020, 9-12
  • 2017. ‘BPE Solicitors v Hughes-Holland (aka Gabriel v Little) [2017] SC - ‘the SAMMCO Cap’’. Issue 27, December 2017, Sava Technical Bulletin, 27, December 2017
  • 2016. ‘‘I beg to differ’: dispute resolution and changes in practice and philosophy.’ December 2016/January 2017 RICS Property Journal, 14-15
  • 2016. ‘Get your facts straight: Paris v Stepney Borough Council [1951] revisited.’ New Law Journal, 13 May 2016, 22