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Anderson Strathern


Anderson Strathern - Edinburgh
  • 1 Rutland Court
  • Edinburgh
  • City of Edinburgh
  • UK
  • EH3 8EY
  • Chairman Robert Carr
  • Managing Partner Murray McCall
  • Number of UK partners 57
  • Number of UK fee-earners 160

THE FIRM Anderson Strathern LLP is one of Scotland’s leading full service law firms. It provides specialist legal advice to commercial clients, public bodies, and private individuals throughout the UK and overseas. The firm has 57 partners, circa 300 staff, seven solicitor advocates and 23 accredited specialists operating across three offices. Client service is of the upmost importance to the firm and as certified holders of ISO standards in information security, quality management, environment management, and health and safety Anderson Strathern is within a small group of UK law firms externally accredited for deploying best practice and delivering high-quality services. Anderson Strathern is the only Scottish law firm to be accredited with Investors in People Gold status, the mark of a cutting-edge organisation operating at the highest levels of people management practice. This demonstrates that its people are at the heart of its success.

CLIENTS The firm has retained a number of prestigious panel appointments including the Crown Estate, City of Edinburgh Council, University of the West of Scotland, the University of Edinburgh, the University of Stirling, Edinburgh Napier University, the Parole Board for Scotland, the Coal Authority, the Scottish Social Services Council and the Scottish Children’s Reporters Administration. The firm achieved a number of new client wins and panel appointments in 2013/14, including: APUC, Dundee City Council, Glasgow City Council, Coral Racing Ltd, High Life Highland, Energy Savings Trust, Audit Scotland, the Auditor General, the Accounts Commission, Clackmannanshire Council, Falkirk Council, Highland Council, Skills Development Scotland, and Visit Scotland.

INTERNATIONAL Anderson Strathern is a member of the Association of European Lawyers with associated offices throughout all major European jurisdictions. The firm specialises in acting for inward investors including those based in China, India, and the US. Its international reputation was strengthened in 2013/14 by acting for listed Indian clients in a successful litigation at the Court of Appeal in London regarding alleged infringement of an international patent.

RECRUITMENT During 2013/14 there have been a number of partner promotions including: Jonathan Guy (Commercial Litigation); Adele Nicol and Sheonagh Richards (Land Resources); Barry Nichol (Employment); Chris Richardson (Commercial Real Estate); Carole Tomlinson (Private Client) and Catriona Watt (Healthcare and Regulatory). A number of significant appointments have been made including: Sara Jalicy, Head of Residential Property, who joined the firm from Balfour and Manson; Colin Young who joined the Corporate team in Glasgow from Morisons LLP; Alister Aitkenhead formerly of Morisons LLP who joined the Private Client team in Glasgow; Jennifer Long who joined the Family Law division from Turcan Connell; and Robin Beattie, also from Turcan Connell, who has joined the Land Resources team.

Areas of Practice

  • Commercial Real Estate 23%
  • Dispute  
  • Private Client 18%
  • Corporate 12%
  • Land Resources 9%
  • Employment 7%
  • Asset Management 6%
  • Residential Property 4%
  • Banking & Finance Andrew Morris
  • Charities John Kerr
  • Commercial Real Estate Paul Jennings
  • Construction & Engineering Keith Bishop
  • Corporate James Blair
  • Discrimination Alun Thomas
  • Dispute Resolution Andrew Lothian
  • Employment Alun Thomas
  • Health & Safety Jonathan Guy
  • IP/IT Simon Brown
  • Land Resources John Mitchell
  • Parliamentary & Public Law Fiona Killen
  • Planning & Environment Alastair McKie
  • Private Client John Biggar
  • Renewable Energy Bruce Farquhar
  • Residential Property Sara Jalicy
  • Sports Law John Kerr


  • George House,
  • 50 George Square,
  • Glasgow,
  • Glasgow City
  • UK
  • G2 1EH
  • Tel (0141) 242 6060
  • Fax (0141) 221 7974
  • DX GW102

Administrative & Public Law - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 4 partners
- 14 other lawyers

What the team is known for Offers an excellent standard of representation to statutory bodies and local authorities in public law issues. Noted for particular expertise in data protection and human rights compliance.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"They offer really effective counsel that's always timely and tailored." 

"They are well thought of in public law, in particular for regulatory bodies and big public sector clients."

Work highlights Acted for the Scottish Legal Complaints Commission on an appeal contesting its interpretation of the Commission's Rules of 2009 concerning when a case will be time-barred from investigation.

Acted for the Scottish Ministers, standing in place of the Scottish Prison Service, on a claim for compensation alleging breach of right to life under the ECHR. The pursuer, whose daughter had been murdered by a prisoner released on home leave, contended that a duty of care existed under the Convention.

Notable practitioners  

Robert Carr is the Crown Estate Solicitor for Scotland and heads the firm's public, regulatory and healthcare team. He advises a wide range of governmental bodies on powers and obligations, including the Scottish Government and the Parole Board for Scotland.

The "fantastic" Fiona Killen attracts warm praise from clients and market sources, who laud her for having "a keen eye for detail" and for being "very thorough and reliable." She heads the firm's parliamentary and public law unit, and focuses on advising on statutory interpretation and handling judicial reviews.

Significant clients Scottish Information Commissioner, Scottish Public Services Ombudsman, Scottish Road Works Commissioner, Police Investigations & Review Commissioner, Scottish Children's Reporter Administrator.

Agriculture & Rural Affairs - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 5 partners
- 1 consultant
- 12 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Edinburgh

What the team is known for Market-leading practice advising on all aspects of agricultural law and rural activities. Covers disputes, land and commercial transactions, and energy projects. Clients include major landowners, private individuals and rural businesses.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"This firm is excellent for this work; its lawyers know the area very well."

"I find the lawyers very constructive - they want to engage and want to understand your business."

What's new? Adele Nicol and Sheonagh Richards were promoted to the partnership.

Work highlights Assisted the Buccleuch Group with negotiations over the payment of the restoration bond applicable to the Glenmuckloch surface mine.

Notable practitioners  

Consultant Alasdair Fox is admired for his considerable experience and expertise in this area, with one market source describing him as "someone who is very strong." 

John Mitchell heads the firm's land resources department and assists clients with a range of matters including agricultural dispute resolution, land diversification, and sporting and fishing rights. "He is excellent; he was involved enormously and worked very closely with the client," enthuse interviewees.

Adele Nicol is described by sources as "very knowledgeable in this area." Her practice focuses on the rural property aspects of agricultural law, advising clients on estate management, land and property transactions and tenancies.

Significant clients Roxburghe Estates, Penicuik Estate Partnership, The Crown Estate, Douglas and Angus Estates, National Trust for Scotland.

Banking & Finance - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 5 partners
- 13 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Edinburgh

What the team is known for Broad offering in the renewables sector that encompasses advisory work relating to onshore wind, waste-to-energy, solar, tidal and hydropower financings. Also highly regarded for its expertise in property finance.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"The partners involved in transactions remain available and fully engaged at all stages and are easy to work with. They are available and happy to deal with non-transactional specific enquiries as well, which allows them to serve as effective sounding boards."

"Good, solid practice we have used for many years. A relationship that long indicates a mutual satisfaction." 

What's new? Alex Innes joined from Semple Fraser as the new head of the banking practice. 

Work highlights Advised Helical Bar on a new £75 million revolving credit facility with Barclays, which required the team to liaise with Dutch and Jersey counsel.

Advised a lender client, as one member of a syndicate, on the funding of the high-profile acquisition of Busy Bees Nursery Group by Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan. 

Notable practitioners  

Gillian Anderson is a key contact for the practice area.

Significant clients Santander, Bank of Scotland, HSBC, Buccleuch Property, Handelsbanken.

Banking Litigation - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 3 partners
- 8 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Edinburgh

What the team is known for Covers a range of banking litigation cases including asset recovery, fraud and professional negligence, with significant cross-border experience. Also provides a well-resourced bulk debt recovery service.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They would be my first choice for Scottish matters." 

"They resolve issues quickly." 

Notable practitioners  

Ruari MacNeill is a key partner with over 30 years' experience. He has a number of institutional and banking clients, with sources describing him as "very well respected in the area - he has a high reputation."

Katrina Lumsdaine is described by one source as an "approachable, responsive and easy to deal with" solicitor advocate. Her skill in insolvency disputes is particularly commended.

Claire Martin is a senior associate and head of the credit recovery team. She attracts particular praise for "going the extra mile and working tremendously hard for the benefit of her clients," and sources also highlight her technical expertise and judgement.

Charities - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 6 partners
- 5 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Glasgow, Edinburgh

What the team is known for Accomplished legal advisers to a notable roster of public sector clients and charities established by private individuals and private organisations. Particularly stands out for its body of work in the education sector, which includes university construction projects, further education college mergers and advice on charity law issues affecting fee-paying schools.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Strong firm with diverse expertise, good problem-solving focus and good knowledge of the sector."

"The team offers good practical solutions. They're not afraid to be original and take the client's initial out-of-the-box thinking and turn it into a legally defensible position." 

What's new? Gained a number of new clients, including Edinburgh College.

Work highlights Advised Culture NL on establishing itself as a charity with an incorporated trading subsidiary, in order to assume operational responsibility for North Lanarkshire Council's cultural services.  

Advised the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland on updating its Royal Charter and Statutes.

Notable practitioners

Head of department John Kerr is a key contact within the firm.

Significant clients National Trust for Scotland, Northern Lighthouse Heritage Trust, National Schizophrenia Fellowship (Scotland), The Halo Trust, Buccleuch Charitable Foundation.

Civil Liberties & Human Rights - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 10 partners
- 10 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Edinburgh

What the team is known for Significant profile. Represents a range of public sector bodies on complex and high-profile work. Acts in inquests and appeals in areas such as prison law, healthcare and data retention.

Notable practitioners  

Solicitor advocate Chris Dickson maintains an impressive standing in the sector for his expertise in issues relating to children. He is also well versed in healthcare work and bolsters his practice with significant experience in criminal matters.

Catriona Watt's practice covers mental health and prison law. Sources praise her regulatory expertise. She is regularly instructed in work including adult protection cases.

Significant clients Parole Board for Scotland, Scottish Information Commissioner, Mental Welfare Commission for Scotland, Scottish Children's Reporter Administration, Scottish Prison Service.

Clinical Negligence: Mainly Claimant - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 2 partners
- 4 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Edinburgh

What the team is known for Handles a broad range of high-value clinical negligence cases. Offers specialist expertise in the areas of obstetrics and fatal claims, among others. 

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They are very knowledgeable about the relationship between medicine and law."

"They are at the top spectrum of people who know what they are doing."

Notable practitioners  

Chairman Robert Carr "has a great reputation and is very experienced." He heads the healthcare practice within the dispute resolution team and handles a variety of major complex claims.

Catriona Watt's broad clinical negligence practice includes particular strength in obstetric negligence claims. Sources describe her as "a very experienced litigator with a great knowledge of medical matters, and very tactically astute."

Kiera Dargie continues to assist clients in high-profile cases, including fatalities, obstetrics, failure to diagnose and drug error cases. One commentator says: "I trust her judgement. She is very calm - the kind of person you can't imagine getting ruffled."

Judy Williamson is praised by interviewees as "incredibly knowledgeable - a bank of expertise." She is particularly well known for her handling of fatal claims.

Construction - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 6 partners
- 5 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Edinburgh

What the team is known for Offers particular expertise in the public sector. Also acts for a number of education clients on student accommodation projects.

Work highlights Acted for City Legacy on various contractual matters relating to the building of the athletes' village for the Commonwealth Games in 2014.

Advised the University of Stirling on the procurement of a gas heating system to be installed across the campus.

Notable practitioners  

Head of department Keith Bishop is recognised as a strong practitioner. He has a diverse range of experience in acting for public and private clients on transactional and contentious matters. 

Significant clients Martifer UK, Edinburgh Napier University, Glasgow School of Art, Scotland Gas Networks, Urban Union.

Corporate/M&A - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 13 partners
- 12 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Glasgow, Edinburgh

What the team is known for Focuses on funding, acquisitions and buyouts. Represents clients in the publishing, infrastructure, retail and technologies sectors.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They understand what is important and are experienced in closing deals. They have always compared favourably to market peers, in service levels and cost."

"Anderson Strathern's corporate team are our lawyers of choice. Bruce Farquhar and Ewan Regan have a wealth of experience between them and in transactions they provide clear, concise and commercial advice."

What's new? Colin Young joined the team at partner level from Morrisons, and partner Alex Innes joined the team from Semple Fraser.

Work highlights Advised James Walker (Leith) on the £6.35 million sale of Gracemount Medical Centre's issued share capital. 

Notable practitioners  

Clients say publishing sector expert Simon Brown "combines excellent technical ability with real commercial acumen."

Bruce Farquhar impresses interviewees, one of whom said: "He is excellent to work with and has come to understand our business very well."

Ashley MacIntyre was part of the team that advised AP Asset Management on the £6 million purchase of a stake in the Wellgate student housing development in Edinburgh.

Ewan Regan earns solid feedback, with one interviewee saying: "He is very good at translating my commercial vision into sound legal documentation."

Significant clients INEOS, Uni Packaging, Mitsubishi Power Systems, City Legacy, John Martin Group.

Education - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 10 partners
- 20 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Well-regarded practice active on mergers, collaborations, construction projects and employment matters within the education sector. Represents a broad range of higher and further education institutes throughout Scotland.

Work highlights Advised the University of Stirling on funding and construction documents in connection to a £38 million residence project.

Advised Fettes College on the ramifications of the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator public benefit test.

Notable practitioners  

Alun Thomas is a key contact.

Significant clients Edinburgh Napier University, University of Edinburgh, University of St Andrews, University of Stirling, University of the West of Scotland.

Employment - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 6 partners
- 10 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Edinburgh, Glasgow

What the team is known for Significant experience advising clients from the education sector. Also works with public sector clients and trade unions. Areas of expertise include equal pay claims, discrimination litigation and ADR.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"I find this team very knowledgeable, across a variety of different issues. There is also a lot of added value, such as seminars and workshops."

What the team is known for Acted for a number of further education college clients on the employment aspects of the restructuring of college provisions in Scotland, including senior staff issues, TUPE and post-merger employment law.

Notable practitioners  

Experienced figure Alan Masson receives plaudits for his ability to "adapt well to different situations and clients, and tell people hard truths with conviction. He is also erudite - he knows everything!" His recent cases included advising public sector clients on complex equal pay claims, and unfair dismissal and race discrimination matters.

Department head Alun Thomas is widely renowned for his expertise in employment law, especially in the education sector. Interviewees describe him as a "top-class" practitioner, noting mediation as a particular strength.

Significant clients INEOS Chemicals Grangemouth, Scottish Government, Scottish Prison Service, RCN, University of Edinburgh.

Energy & Natural Resources - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 11 partners
- 16 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Advises clients on offshore and onshore renewable projects. Its role acting for The Crown Estate leads to involvement in all of the key Scottish offshore wind projects. Advises both developers and its traditional stable of landowner clients on onshore renewable projects.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They stand out, in that they are able to take things on, think commercially and make connections in a business sense. From a legal standpoint they have proven that they genuinely know what they are doing."

"They offer a high standard of service and additional value through provision of wider support."

What's new? Reappointed as sole legal adviser to The Crown Estate in Scotland.

Work highlights Advised Natural Biogas on its development of a portfolio of anaerobic digestion plants throughout the UK.

Counselled The Crown Estate on the commercial aspects of its agreement with Statoil to create a floating offshore wind farm.  

Notable practitioners  

Bruce Farquhar is a corporate lawyer who advises landowners, developers, state bodies and supply chain companies on renewable energy issues. He acted for Castillium on its development of a portfolio of solar farms across the UK. Sources say: "He has a good commercial head on his shoulders" and he is "good at arranging deals and seeing opportunities."

Significant clients Mitsubishi Power Systems Europe, Buccleuch Estates, Bluemerang Capital, Livos Energy, Emergya Wind Technologies UK. 

Environment - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 7 partners
- 3 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Edinburgh

What the team is known for Advises a wide range of clients on matters including contaminated land and regulatory issues. Also receives frequent instruction on contentious work, including prosecutions and objections.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They're a regional heavyweight."   

Work highlights Advised Greggs on environmental issues arising from its investment strategy in Scotland.

Represented a group of landowners in their objections to an underground cable and transmission substation near the Fife coast.

Notable practitioners  

Head of department Alastair McKie's practice incorporates significant experience in contentious and non-contentious work. He is well versed in representing clients in a wide range of industries, including energy and petrochemicals.

Significant clients Ross Estates Company, The Buccleuch Estates, INEOS, City Legacy, The Crown Estate.

Family/Matrimonial - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 1 partner
- 3 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Glasgow, Edinburgh

What the team is known for Broad practice covering a range of family matters, including divorce and child law disputes, relocation, and pre- and postnuptial agreements. Also strong in child care work for local authorities and has experience in international family cases, including those under the Hague Convention.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They got all the pertinent facts and did not get embroiled in the emotion, although they did acknowledge it. They always have the children at the forefront of their minds and look for the most practical and realistic solution."

"The team overall is excellent. We are very happy with the service."

Notable practitioners  

Susan MacLeod is described as "exceptionally good at defusing tension." She has extensive knowledge of a wide range of family matters and high-value and multi-jurisdictional divorce and child law in particular. One client praises her as "warm and genuine but with a no-nonsense approach."

Glasgow-based Denise Laverty is a dual-qualified senior associate in the team. As well as working on divorce and financial provision cases, she has expertise in matters involving child residence and contact. One source notes her "mature and calm" attitude throughout complex cases and another praises her "emotional intelligence" and "warm" manner.

Health & Safety - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 4 partners
- 4 other qualified lawyers
- Recommended office locations: Edinburgh

What the team is known for Notable strength in fatal accident inquiries and also sought after for its expertise in the defence of white-collar health and safety crime. Well known for providing reviews and high-level training to companies on how to deal with regulatory matters. 

Work highlights Advised the HSE on six separate enforcement notice appeals, regarding three Prohibition Notices and three Improvement Notices.

Notable practitioners 

Chris Dickson is a key contact for the department.

Significant clients HSE, INEOS, Scottish Prison Service, Buccleuch Estates, Scottish Midland Co-operative Society.

Healthcare - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 15 partners
- 24 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Edinburgh

What the team is known for Consistently recognised as one of the leading teams in the Scottish market, offering advice across the healthcare sector. Stands out for its work with healthcare regulators. Particularly well regarded for clinical negligence matters.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Absolutely first-class. The people we have been fortunate enough to work with are extremely good at what they do."

What's new? Catriona Watt is promoted to partner.

Work highlights Advised the GMC and RCN on a range of legal issues, including fatal accident inquiries.

Notable practitioners 

Head of department Robert Carr advises a broad range of Scottish public bodies in the healthcare sector. He is particularly sought after for his expertise in complex claims involving medical negligence.

Catriona Watt advises healthcare clients on a wide range of matters including regulatory issues and high-value clinical negligence claims. Sources say she has "great communication skills" and is "very accessible."

Significant clients Quercus Healthcare Property Partnership, Scottish Public Services Ombudsman, Scottish Social Services Council, RCN, NHP Limited.

Intellectual Property - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 7 partners
- 7 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Solid track record across the full range of IP disputes. Known for its work with universities, and also works with clients from the life sciences and publishing sectors.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"I am very happy with their work. They provide a helpful, professional and valued service."

Work highlights Advised the University of St Andrews on its activities as part of the Marine Alliance for Science & Technology, including IP ownership and usage issues.

Advised Buccleuch Estates on its trade mark portfolio.

Notable practitioners  

Shona Tennant has a substantial amount of experience in advising on IP ownership and exploitation. Clients are particularly pleased with her ability to give "good, solid commercial advice," and also point out that "the quality of her work is fantastic."

Significant clients Edinburgh Napier University, University of Stirling, Sudarshan Chemical Industries, Eulysis, Barrachd.

Licensing - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 2 partners
- 5 other qualified lawyers
- Office location ranked: Edinburgh 

What the team is known for Comprehensive licensing practice noted for its ability to obtain licences in contentious areas. The team acts for a number of high-profile public bodies as well as large companies.  

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They are able to deal with everything very quickly and accurately. If they're not sure about something, they will go away and research - they don't rush into decisions." 

Work highlights Advised Scotmid Co-operative on the succesful obtaining of a liquor licence in the face of objection from local competitors.

Secured a 24-hour licence for McDonald's in respect of its premises in Garthee Road, Aberdeen.

Notable practitioners  

Clients praise Jonathan Guy's level of knowledge as well as his advocacy skills, noting that he "he comes across very well and is very knowledgeable and very succinct."

Significant clients Midlothian Licensing Board and Licensing Committee, National Trust for Scotland.

Litigation - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 15 partners
- 42 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Glasgow, Edinburgh 

What the team is known for Diverse practice encompassing insurance litigation, IP and IT and banking litigation. Impressive client base features leading financial institutions and a range of public bodies. Particular experience advising legal regulatory bodies. 

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"Absolutely first-class. The team was great at managing our expectations and told us what to expect at every stage. The lawyers explained matters in a language we could understand."  

Work highlights Represented Sudarshan Chemical Industries in a £40 million patent dispute with Clariant Produkte. 

Advised INEOS Manufacturing on a breach of contract claim brought by C-Mist. 

Notable practitioners  

Katrina Lumsdaine is the key contact for clients. 

Significant clients RCN, Scottish Legal Complaints Commission, Symphony Equity Investments, Scottish Court Service, Law Society of Scotland.

Local Government - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 17 partners
- 16 other qualified lawyers 

What the team is known for Broad base of local government clients with notable expertise on advising on contentious matters. Other areas of strength include procurement and employment.

Work highlights Instructed by Midlothian Council to defend an appeal in the Sheriff Court against a school placing decision.

Notable practitioners  

Audrey Cameron is praised for her client service, with sources saying she is "good and always on the ball" as well as readily contactable. She heads the firm's local government department and is well known for her expertise on large transport projects.

Significant clients City of Edinburgh Council, Shetland Islands Council, West Dunbartonshire Council, North Ayrshire Council, East Lothian Council.

Parliamentary & Public Affairs - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 10 partners
- 8 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Edinburgh, Glasgow

What the team is known for Highly impressive parliamentary and public law unit, with a strong track record of acting at the cutting edge of parliamentary and legislative developments. Represents a hugely enviable array of Scottish public bodies.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"Really effective counsel, always timely and tailored." 

"A very good reputation in this area. A very strong practice that has historically done lots of parliamentary drafting." 

Work highlights Advised the Scottish Parliament's Non-Government Bills Unit on the drafting of legislation designed to help local authorities recover costs for repairs on defective and dangerous buildings. 

Acted for the Scottish Information Commissioner on a variety of matters, including advising it on a Supreme Court appeal brought by South Lanarkshire Council concerning the definition of 'personal data'.

Notable practitioners  

Fiona Killen leads the firm's parliamentary and public law practice. "I definitely give her ten out of ten," observes one client. "We think she's fantastic – always sound advice, always considered, and delivered on time." Sources also praise her "real effort to understand legislation and the statutory framework." She had a lead role for the Scottish Information Commissioner in a Supreme Court appeal against an earlier decision taken by the Commissioner.

Lorraine Currie acts for a number of public bodies, recently assisting the Scottish Information Commissioner in its Supreme Court dispute with South Lanarkshire Council. "She makes great efforts to understand the case and why particular lines are being taken," affirms one source.  

Significant clients Scottish Public Services Ombudsman, Scottish Government, Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, Royal College of Nursing, Scottish Legal Complaints Commission.

Personal Injury: Mainly Claimant - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 3 partners
- 4 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Well established in the market. Renowned for its long-term representation of the RCN. Focuses on complex, high-value work.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 
"They explained things in a language we could understand."

"An extremely professional and well-organised firm." 

What's new? Catriona Watt has recently been promoted to partner. 

Notable practitioners  

Robert Carr is chairman of the firm and a hugely experienced practitioner of "consistently high quality." Areas of focus include RTAs and workplace accidents.

Significant clients RCN; Smith & Grant; Masson & Glennie; Harper, Robertson & Shannon; R & R Urquhart.

Personal Injury: Mainly Defendant - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 5 partners
- 12 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Prominent defender counsel on complex, high-value cases often exceeding £100,000. Sole panel firm for the Scottish Government and Scottish Prison Service. Active in RTA and industrial disease litigation, and appears at Fatal Accident Inquiries (FAIs).

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They identified opportunities and risks with a clear path to resolution."

"The group are consummate professionals." 

"They are able to respond to our business needs in an efficient manner." 

Work highlights Acting for Co-operative Insurance on defending a £750,000 RTA case. The accident resulted in a six-year-old suffering serious head injuries. The case is pending litigation.

Advised The Scottish Ministers, on behalf of the Scottish Prison Service, in a case brought by the family of a man who committed suicide whilst in prison. The findings found no fault on the part of the defendant and the claim was abandoned. 

Notable practitioners  

Joint head of department Douglas Keir adopts a "very professional approach and exhibits first-class knowledge of the legal arena concerned." He has defended Co-operative Insurance in several RTA cases of late. 

Sources state that Sarah Phillips has "detailed knowledge of the Scottish legal system" and "understands her clients' requirements." Her areas of focus include RTA and occupational disease claims.

Significant clients Cunningham Lindsey Construction, Scottish Midland Co-operative Society, INEOS, Gallagher Bassett International. 

Planning - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 2 partners
- 3 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Glasgow, Edinburgh

What the team is known for Maintains an excellent reputation for planning expertise, representing private and public sector clients in a range of complex mandates. Highly regarded for its strength in energy developments, alongside impressive depth of experience in transport infrastructure.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"The lawyers understood the politics of the situation and marshalled their arguments in incredible detail."

What's new? New client wins include Greggs, Gladman Developments and Livos Energy.

Work highlights Advised on the proposed £150 million regeneration scheme for Woking Town Centre, including planning applications and environmental statements.

Represented INEOS in its application for a hazardous substances consent for its main site at Grangemouth.

Notable practitioners  

Alastair McKie covers areas such as compulsory purchase orders (CPO), appeals and objections in industries including energy, transport and retail. Sources say he is "absolutely first-rate - very prompt and knowledgeable, and his letters of objection have been a model of well-substantiated objections," adding: "He's really one of the top people in Scotland for planning law."

Sarah Baillie is highly regarded for her expertise in the sector. Sources note her deep knowledge and strong track record of handling sophisticated and high-profile retail development work.

Significant clients Ross Estates Company, Buccleuch Estates, Walker Group (Scotland), intu Properties, Crichie Developments.

Private Client - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 9 partners
- 14 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Edinburgh, Glasgow, East Lothian

What the team is known for Large team noted for its personal touch. Offers significant expertise in succession planning and complex will drafting for business and dynastic families, in addition to dealing with multi-generational matters and contentious probate cases.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They are big enough to have all of the bases covered, but they provide a very attentive service as well. It feels collaborative and they have a lot of good input. From a client's point of view that's the ultimate. They have pride in the delivery of their work."

Notable practitioners  

Colin Henderson has a wide-ranging private client practice and is particularly well regarded for tax planning matters. He has been described as "thoughtful, strategic and responsive."

John Biggar manages heritage work for traditional clients, in addition to handling contentious probate and significant compensation cases.

Professional Negligence - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- Office locations ranked: Edinburgh 

What the team is known for Broad practice that handles claims for claimants and for professionals subject to a negligence claim. Increasingly retained by banks and other financial institutions to pursue claims against solicitors, surveyors and architects. 

Notable practitioners

Robert Carr is a key contact for the professional negligence team.

Significant clients Edinburgh College, Edinburgh Napier University, ICAS, Law Society of Scotland, Scottish Legal Complaints Commission.

Real Estate - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 15 partners
- 31 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Recognised for its strong renewable energy, healthcare and retail practice. Frequently instructed on residential and mixed-use developments by an impressive client roster.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They are strong, they deliver and they go the extra mile." 

"Their work ethic and attention to detail are what stand out."

What's new? New client wins, including Greggs, Aon and McGinnis Group.  

Notable practitioners  

The "smart" Paul Jennings heads up the commercial real estate department, focusing on development and investment work. He regularly acts for private investors, financial institutions and high-street retailers. 

Deborah Lovell has a range of commercial real estate experience, including landlord and tenant work, corporate acquisitions and portfolio management.

Gillian Anderson has broad experience in the market with a particular focus on property finance. She acts for a range of clients on matters including facility agreements, development finance and site acquisition. Sources highlight her "very balanced and level-headed" approach.

Real Estate Litigation - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 6 partners
- 6 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Edinburgh

What the team is known for Extensive experience in the full scope of contentious property matters, including agricultural, housing and commercial expertise.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They are well informed and concerned with giving the right advice."

Work highlights Acted for Roxburghe on a rent review case regarding an agricultural holding.

Notable practitioners  

Fiona Stephen heads the department and enjoys an outstanding reputation among peers as an "excellent" litigator. Clients are also particularly impressed by her responsiveness.

Joan Devine has further expertise in commercial real estate, but clients single out her "hands-on knowledge of litigation" as one of her top strengths.

Significant clients Buccleuch Estates, intu Properties, The Coal Authority, The Crown Estate.

Restructuring/Insolvency - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 6 partners
- 5 other qualified lawyers
- Office location ranked: Glasgow, Edinburgh

What the team is known for Well-regarded offering in contentious personal and corporate insolvency with a dedicated litigation team. Increasing focus on restructuring work. Strong relationships with insolvency practitioners, government agencies and banks.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They have a thorough understanding of insolvency legislation backed up by practical experience."

"The client service is excellent. They are always available to respond quickly where advice and assistance is needed."

Work highlights Acted on behalf of Computer Application Services on a complex restructuring of the company, including a share buy-back.

Notable practitioners  

Katrina Lumsdaine leads the specialist insolvency litigation team. She is noted by clients for her "ability to identify the core issues and provide a practical, cost-effective solution."

Significant clients HMRC, Insolvency Service, RBS, Lloyds Bank, Accountant in Bankruptcy.

Retail - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
-7 partners
-12 other qualified lawyers 

What the team is known for Focus on real estate work for landlords and tenants in the retail sector. Its work in this area is strengthened by complementary expertise in planning.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They are very approachable and good at conveying legal jargon in layman's terms." 

Work highlights Represents Jamie's Italian in all aspects of its Scottish property portfolio, including work on leases and acquisition.

Notable practitioners Paul Jennings leads the practice, and he is a key contact for the team.

Significant clients Intu Properties, Greggs, Wagamama, Iceland, Thomas Sabo.

Social Housing - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 13 partners
- 8 partners
- Office locations ranked: Edinburgh

What the team is known for Full-service social housing team with particular expertise in handling housing management issues, such as antisocial behaviour and possession orders.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Advice is practical and very logical. They look at the pros and cons very effectively."

What's new? New panel appointments include Dumfries & Galloway Housing Association.

Work highlights Assisted Aberdeenshire Housing Partnership with obtaining an antisocial behaviour order against joint tenants, leading to possession proceedings.

Acted for Kingdom Housing Association on the development of a mid-market rental scheme, advising on lease agreements and short assured tenancy agreements.

Notable practitioners  

Shirley Evans is an experienced housing management practitioner, advising clients on complex antisocial behaviour cases and rent arrears evictions. "She is an energetic and enthusiastic person who tackles problems professionally," according to one client.

Significant clients Castlehill Housing Association, East Lothian Housing Association, Hillcrest Housing Association, Margaret Blackwood Housing Association, Places for People Developments.

Sports Law - Scotland

What the team is known for Acts for governing bodies on a wide range of disciplinary, governance, child protection and other regulatory matters. Also acts for estates and development companies on commercial contracts and corporate matters related to sporting activities.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They are always there to answer questions, and turn work around very quickly."

Work highlights Acting for Buccleuch Estates on contractual issues, risk management and ownership matters in relation to extreme fitness, horse trials and country sports taking place on two of their estates.

Acting for Gullane Golf Club on obtaining consent to develop a new members' clubhouse, and advising on the financing methods necessary to raise the required capital for development.  

Notable practitioners 

John Kerr has a wealth of experience in acting on regulatory matters for governing bodies across a number of sports, including cricket, tennis and cycling. He also has considerable experience in advising on corporate issues relating to sport. One source said: "He's always made himself available for advice and guidance for legal matters. He's outstanding, technically excellent and his ability to come to a conclusion is excellent."

Significant clients Cricket Scotland, Tennis Scotland, Braemar Golf Developments, Scottish Sports Association, Badminton Scotland.

Professional Discipline - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 7 partners
- 12 other qualified lawyers
- Recommended office locations: Edinburgh 

What the team is known for Acts for regulators and regulated individuals in disciplinary proceedings. Noted for its expertise in a variety of sectors, including healthcare, sport and accountancy.

Work highlights Successfully defended two nurses in a Fatal Accident Inquiry concerning a man who died from septicaemia after phoning NHS 24 on three different occasions.

Notable practitioners  

Catriona Watt represents regulators and regulated individuals from sectors ranging from healthcare to teaching. Sources report that she is "very user-friendly and good at client care."

Significant clients Scottish Social Services Council, GMC, GDC, General Teaching Council for Scotland, Scottish Legal Complaints Commission.