Helen Saunders BA (SCU), LLB (Hons) (University of Sydney), MMus (ANU), PhD (Cantab), joined Keele University as a lecturer in law in 2019. Prior to joining Keele University, Helen completed her doctorate at the University of Cambridge, and before that lectured in contract law at the University of Sydney (2012-2015) and the Australian National University (2008-2012). She also convened and taught a Business Law module on the MBA program of the Australian Graduate of Management, University of New South Wales (2014-2018).

Research and scholarship

Helen researches in the areas of contract law, equity, and legal history, particularly the history of the early modern court of Chancery. Her doctoral thesis "Corrupt Bargains and Unconscionable Practices": The Expectant Heir in Seventeenth-Century Chancery, supervised by Dr Neil Jones, applied a contextual legal history approach to the development of Chancery’s jurisdiction to relieve expectant heirs from improvident bargains, and its impact on the modern doctrine of unconscionable dealing.



  • Contracts 1
  • Contracts 2
  • Equity 1
  • Equity 2
  • Commercial Law
  • Business Law


  • Archival Research, in Socio-Legal Studies: Applications and Themes


Helen can offer PhD supervision in contract law, equity and legal history.



Lambe v Finch (1626): An Early Seventeenth-Century Expectant Heir Chancery Suit in Context’ (2019) 40 (3) The Journal of Legal History 253.

Book Review: Unfair Contract Terms in European Law: A Study in Comparative and EC Law by Paolisa Nebbia (2008) 24 Journal of Contract Law 196.

'Relief from unconscionable contracts: The Contracts Review Act 1980 (NSW) and the "unwritten law" ' (2007) 29 Australian Bar Review 290.


Conference Papers

‘A Life Revealed: A Late Seventeenth-Century Widow Moneylender in Chancery’ North American Conference on British Studies, Vancouver, Canada, 14-17 November 2019.

"From Blenheim Palace to Wicks Ave, Campbelltown: the Long Journey of the Expectant Heir" at 19th British Legal History Conference, University of Exeter, July 2009.

School of Law
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