Julian has specialised, for over 30 years: in Social Enterprise; Charity; Responsible Business; Public Service Reform and Innovation; Co-operatives and Stakeholder Participation; blending business and public benefit legal disciplines. He has been especially involved in the development and maturing of Social Enterprise, Social Finance, Social Value, and Social Impact Investment and Measurement and their application to Public Policy.
He promotes public value, purpose and partnership in Public Procurement and Public Sector Contracts and State Aid and Public Sector Grants, championing the Innovation Partnership. He promotes a distinctive approach to contracts as practical working agreements (as noted in the 2020 Kruger Report to Government on Civil Society).
He works particularly in relation to: Community Transport; Education (particularly Further Education); Health and Social Care; Rehabilitation and Justice; Renewable Energy; and Employment and Youth Services
Before joining Stone King, in 2018, Julian was co-head of the Bates Wells Charity and Social Enterprise Department and led the development of the education and other cross-departmental sector groups.
Social Enterprise, Charity & Responsible Business
Julian’s areas of legal expertise include: commercial and charity law advice to social enterprises, charities, co-operatives, mission-led businesses and commercial organisations; charity, community interest company , registered society and company formations and constitutional reorganisations; Charity Commission and sectoral regulation; collaborations/ consortia/joint ventures/mergers/business transfers; private, public and third sector contracts, grants, loans and investments; public procurement and state aid; education law; financial services; competition law and intellectual property.
Public Service Reform & Innovation
Julian is especially interested in: the development of multi-sector, multi-stakeholder, ecosystem public service partnerships, integrating: social enterprise and charity providers, public authority commissioners and social finance institutions; regional, local and community place-based initiatives; outcomes contracting; social impact bonds; community wealth-building; community share issues; and the specific concept of the "innovation partnership, with its unique feature of design and delivery within a single, long-term, public service contract.
He has, since 2012, been dedicated to E3M, the Social Business International initiative, promoting the Social Enterprise model in Public Services, combining groups of pioneering leaders of mature social enterprises and an associated group of progressive “bold” commissioners. E3M projects he has worked on include: Public Service Alchemies in: Coventry, Gainsborough; Oldham (the Northern Roots Project); and Rotherham; consultancy work in: Bradford, Devon and Northern Ireland; and the 2020 “Growing the Social Economy” National Convention - see www.e3m.org.uk.
Trustee of Media Diversity Trust
"Julian is a pleasure to work with. He is incredibly passionate and engaged in his work and takes a real interest to understand how best to tailor his advice."
‘Ann Phillips has been a great source of strength, expertise and legal brain. Equally Julian Blake. Efficient, focused, rounded and informed in their advice. Their work is pre-emptive, thoughtful and acknowledges the operating environment of their client’.
‘Stone King has exceptional expertise in the field of social enterprises and the wider social economy. They are highly skilled and experienced and value driven which makes them stand out from lawyers in other firms. Key people working in this area that really stand out include Julian Blake, Hannah Kubie and Nicole Reed’.
‘Julian Blake is the most committed, probably the most able and in my view the best charity and social enterprise solicitor. He provides exceptional client care and support and consistently achieves effective solutions whatever the complexities’
“He consistently delivers excellent advice and care for clients. He is one of the most able, trusted and committed solicitors in the charity and social enterprise sector.”
Chambers - 2023
"In a complicated matter, he went way beyond our expectations to get the transaction over the line."
Client Feedback in Chambers, 2021
"Renowned for exceptional expertise and client care."
Client Feedback in Chambers, 2021
"Julian Blake combines exceptional professional expertise with a deep commitment to clients and the charity and not-for-profit sector. He is renowned as one of the top charity solicitors practising in the UK today and for developing innovative cross-sector social enterprise structures for public services"
Legal 500, 2021
"Renowned for his brilliant legal mind and exceptional client care."
Client feedback in Chambers - 2020
"A careful thinker and a high-quality lawyer."
Chambers - 2019