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Turcan Connell


Turcan Connell - Edinburgh
  • Princes Exchange
  • 1 Earl Grey Street
  • Edinburgh
  • City of Edinburgh
  • UK
  • EH3 9EE
  • Senior Partner   Douglas Connell
  • Managing Partner Ian Clark
  • Number of partners 21
  • Assistant solicitors 69
  • Other fee earners 66

THE FIRM The Turcan Connell Group is one of the UK’s premier private client firms with offices in Edinburgh, Glasgow and London. It commands a unique position in UK professional services by providing clients with an integrated range of legal, tax and wealth management advice. The firm’s success is due to Turcan Connell’s continued focus on meeting the needs of individuals, families, charities and family businesses.

Trust & Tax:
With 12 tax and succession partners and 21 other tax and succession lawyers, Turcan Connell Group’s breadth and depth of experience create clear blue water between it and other firms. The firm has over 12,000 clients and administers some 2,500 trusts. It acts for a wide range of clients including families with inherited assets, entrepreneurs, senior executives and owners of family businesses.
Family Office: Turcan Connell Family Office is the group’s flagship wealth management service, which combines tax and succession advice, financial planning and investment management services.
Land & Property: The Land and Property Team is the largest rural property team in Scotland. It has 22 lawyers dealing exclusively in property work. The team’s expertise in Scottish agricultural and property law has resulted in the continuing transfer of major land owning clients from other law firms. Clients include the owners of country estates, historic houses, national institutions and land owning charities. The team handles large estate transactions, development land sales, agricultural law and crafting community transactions. It has particular expertise in renewable energy, rural planning, environmental law and in all aspects of land reform.
Charities: Turcan Connell’s Charity Group is one of the largest in the UK. It advises more than 300 charities, from national institutions and heritage charities to grant-giving trusts and private foundations. As well as acting for large charities, the firm helps small charities through Turcan Connell Charity Office, an administration service designed to help grant-making foundations reduce their overhead costs.
Family Law: The team is now widely recognised as the leading Family Law Practice in Scotland for high net worth divorce cases. With partner level expertise in Scottish and English law, it acts in many crossjurisdictional divorces and specialises in collaborative law and divorces involving business valuations and share schemes.
Employment: The Employment Law Practice provides employment advice and representation to private clients, charities and rural employers. The team has represented many of Scotland’s most senior business figures.
Family Business: The family business team is an interdisciplinary team of professionals drawn from across the Turcan Connell Group, each of whom has significant experience in advising family members and their business interests as well as the family business. They take a proactive approach to their clients’ businesses, identifying appropriate legal solutions to manage risk at an early stage.
Asset Management: The group’s investment management and financial planning services are provided by Turcan Connell Asset Management Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary company which offers a consolidated wealth management service to private clients. The Investment Team manages approximately £850 million of clients’ funds and the Financial Planning Team provides wealth structuring, pensions and life assurance advice.

Areas of Practice

  • Tax & Trusts 30%
  • Agriculture & Estates 24%
  • Pensions & Investment 24%
  • Charity 12%
  • Family Law, Employment & Litigation 10%
  • Agriculture & Estates Jonathan Robertson, Adam Gillingham, Grierson Dunlop
  • Business Law Mike Kane
  • Charities Simon Mackintosh, Gavin McEwan
  • Family Alasdair Loudon, Gillian Crandles
  • Heritage Property Douglas Connell
  • Litigation/Employment David Ogilvy
  • Private Client/Trusts Douglas Connell, Simon Mackintosh, Robin Fulton, Tom Duguid
  • Tax Ian Clark, Heather Thompson, Turcan Connell
  • Asset Management Alex Montgomery


  • Sutherland House,
  • 149 St Vincent Street,
  • Glasgow,
  • Glasgow City
  • UK
  • G2 5NW
  • Tel 0141 441 2111
  • 12 Stanhope Street,
  • London,
  • Greater London
  • UK
  • W1K 1AW
  • Tel 0207 491 8811

Agriculture & Rural Affairs - Scotland

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

What the team is known for Impressive outfit advising on a number of key agricultural topics, notably in connection with rural and agricultural property. Assists with rural residential property transactions, farm, estate and forestry purchases and sales as well as contentious matters. Also noted for expertise on land development options, advising clients on mineral extraction and a range of renewable projects.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
“There’s nothing to improve – I found these lawyers to be absolutely sound and rock solid.” 

"A firm with a strong reputation, good support and a strong bank of clients involved in this area for many years."

Notable practitioners  

Jonathan Robertson heads the firm’s land and property practice and has long-standing experience in the area. Clients appreciate his direct approach: "He tells it like it is, which I appreciate. He gets to the point and gets things sorted out."

Grierson Dunlop has significant experience on transactional and development work concerning rural and agricultural property. Market sources note his increasing profile, with one describing him as "an up-and-coming solicitor in this area." 

Adam Gillingham is noted for his expertise in property law, notably developments and diversification matters. His experience extends to the environmental aspects of rural property law.

Senior associate Lewis Kermack has "outstanding knowledge of the agricultural holdings legislation," according to one source. His principal area of activity in this area is dispute resolution, notably between agricultural landlords and tenants.

Property specialist Niall Stringer is particularly experienced handling matters in the agricultural and rural sector. Key areas of focus include leases, minerals and renewables projects.

Significant clients RSPB, John Muir Trust.

Charities - Scotland

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

What the team is known for Undisputed market leaders in the Scottish charities sector, renowned for its handling of issues including governance and constitutional review, charity formations, mergers and wind-ups. Undertakes a profusion of cross-border work for English and Welsh charities. Firm grasp of regulatory issues due to frequent liaisons with OSCR (Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator) and HMRC.  

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"One of the firms that I come across most in terms of what they're doing for charities clients. A standout firm."

"Client service is second to none. They always exceed our expectations, listen carefully to what we're asking of them and respond quickly and pragmatically."

Work highlights Advised National Trust for Scotland on the amendment of its constitution, a lengthy process, which involved the introduction and passage of a new private Act of the Scottish Parliament, consultations with the Parliament and Scottish Government and assent from HMRC.

Advised on the establishment of The National Galleries of Scotland Foundation.  

Notable practitioners  

The "absolutely exceptional" Simon Mackintosh is head of the firm's charities department and continues to be widely regarded as a pre-eminent charity lawyer within the Scottish marketplace. Peers have great respect for this "very wise practitioner," as do clients, who value his "clear and consistent answers."   

Senior partner Douglas Connell is a respected figure within the Scottish charities sector and is chiefly recognised for his in-depth knowledge of charity formation and governance. He frequently advises on charity law matters involving illustrious art and heritage clients.  

Significant clients Big Lottery Fund, Lloyds TSB Foundation for Scotland, The MacRobert Trust, Maggie's Centres, Royal Society for the Protection of Birds. 

Family/Matrimonial - Glasgow, Edinburgh and surrounds

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

What the team is known for Established team with experience across the family law spectrum, including high net worth divorce matters, cohabitation issues, and pre- and postnuptial agreements. International work forms a significant part of the team's workload and complex financial elements such as pensions, capital gains tax and share options are dealt with frequently. 

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Their client skills are really good all round. There is a real degree of consistency there."

"They were very accommodating and I was very reassured."

"They do everything the way it should be done." 

Notable practitioners  

Gillian Crandles is a specialist in complicated divorce cases involving substantial assets, and is also experienced in cohabitation matters and international separations. Her "attention to detail" is praised by peers, as is her "excellent client manner." "Her knowledge is exceptional, she listens to facts and figures, and she brings a personal approach," one source comments.

Alasdair Loudon's pedigree as a family lawyer is renowned. He is known as a practitioner who makes "strategic decisions" and is a real "pragmatist." He has a wealth of experience in negotiating complex and high-value financial settlements in divorce cases. 

Private Client - Scotland

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

What the team is known for Outstanding private client boutique that provides excellent advice on trusts and tax planning to high net worth families and individuals.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Turcan Connell distinguish themselves by being there purely for the private client. They are specialists."

Notable practitioners  

Douglas Connell provides a pre-eminent service to landed and business clients alike, and is viewed as a first port of call for tax planning concerns. Commentators also commend his knowledge of charity law.

Simon Mackintosh advises historical owners of wealth in Scotland on matters pertaining to succession and tax planning, the establishment of trusts and estate administration.

Tom Duguid deals with a number of the cross-border and tax issues that confront business clients. Clients report that he "spots detailed precise points that might trip us up later. He's good at sorting things out upfront and not compromising, and he doesn’t lose sight of the core issues or worry about pedantic detail."

Robin Fulton focuses on advising leading business individuals on all matters pertaining to succession planning and tax mitigation.

Ian Clark acts for wealthy clients and landowners, and advises under the umbrella of asset protection, with cases on tax and succession planning as well as trust arrangements.