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UK Guide

Real Estate — East Midlands


Browne Jacobson LLP - Real Estate Department

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Band 1

第一等

Chambers Commentary (based on the Chambers research)

Basic facts about the department
- 7 partners
- 43 other qualified lawyers
- Office location: Nottingham

What the team is known for Outstanding real estate practice with significant development expertise, acting for a broad range of clients. Particularly adept at handling matters in the retail, health, education and public sectors. Also handles significant urban regeneration projects, including residential and transport-related schemes.

Strengths A client says: "They have been brilliant - they felt like part of the team, which made things much easier."

Another source describes the team as "very client-centric."

Work highlights Advised Enfield Council on the £150 million regeneration of the Alma Estate in Ealing.

Instructed by Miller Birch in relation to its redevelopment of Nottingham's Guildhall into a mixed-use site containing office, retail and hospitality facilities along with student accommodation.

Significant clients Walgreens Boots Alliance, Morrisons, HMRC, Homes & Communities Agency, Metropolitan Housing Trust.

Notable practitioners

Barry Sully is noted for his expertise in property development work, which includes significant urban regeneration and social housing projects. Sources characterise him as "sensible, straightforward and collaborative."

Sarah Parkinson is particularly skilled in retail property work, advising high-profile clients on acquisitions, redevelopments and complex relocations. She also provides real estate advice to a number of sports teams and public sector organisations.

Dominic Swift has considerable experience in complex property work, most notably for clients in the public sector. He is particularly active advising on strategic site assembly and development matters relating to new schools and academy conversions.

About the Team (content provided by Browne Jacobson LLP)

Real Estate transactions can be complex, costly, pressurised and at times politically sensitive. A multi-disciplinary approach and access to legal specialists who understand your environment is essential for success. From planning and construction, to funding, tax advice and litigation, our conscientious and responsive team aim to provide commercial advice to mitigate risk, to ensure your projects are delivered on time.

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Freeths LLP - Real Estate Department

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Band 1

第一等

Chambers Commentary (based on the Chambers research)

Basic facts about the department
- 22 partners
- 33 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations: Derby, Leicester, Nottingham

What the team is known for Impressive full-service property offering with an enviable regional presence. Acts for clients across both the public and private sectors on matters ranging from commercial development and healthcare property to real estate finance. Additional strength handling projects in the transport and logistics sectors, including warehousing and distribution facilities.

Strengths One client says: "I hold them in high regard - they are cost-effective without compromising on quality of service, and they fully understand the needs of our business."

Work highlights Advised BDW Trading and Davidsons Developments on their acquisition of the first released land for a new 4,250-unit residential development site at Leicester Forest East.

Acted for LNT on the £25 million sale of a portfolio of four bespoke residential care home developments to Oakdale Care Homes and Target Healthcare.

Significant clients Tarmac, Chancerygate, Travis Perkins, Bellway, Eddie Stobart.

Notable practitioners

Gary Reynolds is particularly known for his residential development work. He advises promoters, developers and house builders on all aspects of major projects, and also deals with matters related to social housing. Sources say: "He's a calm hand at the tiller when you need one."

Simon Abbott heads the firm's property team in Leicester. He advises clients from both the public and private sector on property development and portfolio management, with a notable focus on retail property.

Head of the Derby property group Michael Taplin handles a wide range of commercial and residential development matters, including significant mixed-use schemes. His clients include major house builders and developers.

Darren Williamson is head of the firm's national real estate group, and focuses on commercial property matters. He has notable strength in portfolio management, and also advises clients from the logistics sector on substantial leasing arrangements. Clients say: "His attention to providing excellent service is exemplary, and his advice is always sound and commercial."

About the Team (content provided by Freeths LLP)

Our Real Estate team not only provides strength in depth but it also brings together all aspects that a client needs to ensure a successful transaction and hence is a true one-stop shop. The team of around 100 lawyers covers site acquisition, planning, environmental, procurement, construction/development, property management and sale/ acquisition by investment vehicles and institutions. We also integrate tax and dispute resolution advice.

Our experience in both the public and the private sectors gives us an added insight, allowing us to identify and avoid issues before they become problems. We are praised for our pragmatism and commercial awareness, which is why we work with so many household names such as those listed in the client lists below. We are also dealing with high net worth clients and complex cases. Within the team we also specialise further into these groups:
o    Commercial Development
o    Distressed Property
o    Fund Management/Investment Property
o    Healthcare/Care Homes
o    Licensing
o    Litigation/Dispute Resolution
o    Property Finance
o    Public Sector Property
o    Regeneration Projects
o    Residential Conveyancing
o    Residential Development (site acquisition through to plot sales)
o    Retail
o    Social Housing


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Geldards LLP - Real Estate Department

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Band 2

第二等

Chambers Commentary (based on the Chambers research)

Basic facts about the department
- 6 partners
- 9 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations: Derby, Ilkeston, Nottingham

What the team is known for Highly regarded practice advising on all aspects of real estate work. Acts for regional and national clients across the public and private sectors, including retailers and utility companies. Particular areas of expertise include development and property finance. Also active on numerous urban regeneration projects and matters arising in the education sector.

Strengths A source says: "They take time to understand their clients' businesses and the environment in which they work, adapting their service accordingly."

Work highlights Advised Leicester City Council on the first phase of its multimillion regeneration of the Waterside area of Leicester.

Advised Sheffield City Council on the restructuring of development and funding agreements, along with leases and other ancillary documents, relating to the potential redevelopment of Park Hill, a listed council estate in Sheffield.

Significant clients Pentagon Motor Holdings, Office Depot Group, Derby City Council, Lichfield Diocesan Board of Education, Derbyshire County Council.

Notable practitioners

Graham Banks is head of the real estate team in Derby and maintains a property practice primarily focused on commercial matters. He advises on development, finance and portfolio management, with additional expertise in planning and environmental law.

Heather Dixon is an experienced property lawyer with a notable focus on projects in the industrial, retail and education sectors. She advises on a broad range of matters, from commercial leasing to major mixed-use development schemes. "Her attention to the client is outstanding," one interviewee says: "She presents confidence and knowledge - she takes time to understand her clients' businesses, priorities and the context for the work she is undertaking."

Jamie Gordon specialises in handling real estate matters on behalf of clients in the utilities and telecoms industries. He leads the firm's work for Western Power Distribution, handling a wide range of matters.

Paul Hilsdon advises mainly public sector clients, including educational institutions and local authorities, on a wide array of real estate issues. His practice encompasses complex land transactions, as well as residential development schemes and urban regeneration projects.

Head of the Nottingham real estate team David Watson has particular expertise handling portfolio sales and acquisitions in the retail sector. He also advises property developers and public sector clients on a range of development work. A client describes him as a "very good pragmatist" who gives "solid legal advice."

About the Team (content provided by Geldards LLP)

Department profile not yet provided by Geldards LLP. Please see their firm profile.

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Shoosmiths LLP - Real Estate Department

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Band 2

第二等

Chambers Commentary (based on the Chambers research)

Basic facts about the department
- 6 partners
- 11 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations: Nottingham

What the team is known for Diverse team with a wide-ranging client base, including national corporates, international retailers, investors and developers. Demonstrates strong credentials in real estate portfolio matters, complex joint ventures, and acquisitions and disposals. Also has a strong presence in the logistics sector, advising on the acquisition, disposal and redevelopment of key industrial sites.

Work highlights Continued to advise Mountain Warehouse on the management of its property portfolio, including the restructuring and expansion of its head office in central London.

Advised Stainton International, as part of a joint venture, on the management of a portfolio of industrial properties.

Significant clients Pizza Hut, Central England Co-operative, IKEA, Safestore, Thomas Cook.

Notable practitioners

Market commentators recognise Deborah Gordon Brown for her strong reputation in the retail sector, where she represents a number of nationally recognised occupier clients. She also acts for investment funds on key transactions and portfolio management.

Retail specialist Ellis Gardner-Browne works with a host of major names in the sector, advising on all aspects of portfolio management, including significant acquisitions and disposals. He has notable experience in complex projects, as well as joint venture transactions.

David Morley handles acquisitions, disposals and other transactional matters for a range of clients, including investments funds and corporate occupiers. He also regularly dispenses advice on UK real estate law to international clients. Sources describe him as "a people person - excellent at client care and very approachable."

About the Team (content provided by Shoosmiths LLP)

Department profile not yet provided by Shoosmiths LLP. Please see their firm profile.

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Gateley PLC - Real Estate Department

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Band 3

第三等

Chambers Commentary (based on the Chambers research)

Basic facts about the department
- 4 partners
- 8 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations: Leicester, Nottingham

What the team is known for Broad property practice advising a variety of clients, including a number of developers, investors and occupiers. Regularly called upon for its expertise in real estate finance and distressed property transactions. Noted experience handling substantial acquisitions of student accommodation and retail developments.

Strengths A client reports that the firm offers "excellent value for money and good service."

Work highlights Advised Custodian REIT on its acquisition of a portfolio of three tenanted properties in Wolverhampton, Castle Donington and Cheadle from Helical Bar for £11.5 million.

Acted for US-based private investment firm Starwood Capital on its £50 million acquisition of purpose-built student accommodation in the UK.

Significant clients Clowes Developments, Jaguar Land Rover, Henry Davidsons Developments, Southampton City Council, HSBC.

Notable practitioners

Head of the Nottingham team Adam Youatt advises on investment transactions and property development, with notable expertise in healthcare property and student accommodation. A source describes him as "commercially astute," while clients also praise him as "very responsive, knowledgeable and efficient."

Simon Taylor leads the property group in Leicester and handles a range of property development matters. He is particularly well versed in retail and leisure schemes, including significant city centre regeneration. Clients say: "He is very knowledgeable and happy to deal with the most complicated transactions"

About the Team (content provided by Gateley PLC)

Department profile not yet provided by Gateley PLC. Please see their firm profile.

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Shakespeare Martineau - Real Estate Department

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Band 3

第三等

Chambers Commentary (based on the Chambers research)

Basic facts about the department
- Office locations: Leicester, Nottingham

What the team is known for Notable real estate practice advising clients on an array of property matters spanning commercial and residential development, finance, retail and renewable energy. Clients include banks, national house builders and well-known retail occupiers. Handles substantial city centre developments, including urban regeneration schemes and student accommodation projects.

Work highlights Advised The Drummond Trust on numerous matters regarding the development of New Lubbesthorpe, a new community west of Leicester.

Advised Zone Student Developments on the sale to Empiric Student Property of three development sites in Leicester with a combined value of over £15 million.

Significant clients Barratt Homes, Camborne Capital, Everards Brewery, Linden Homes, Vision Express.

Notable practitioners

Brendan Walsh handles a broad array of development projects, including retail, leisure and residential schemes. He also advises clients in the energy sector. Commentators describe him as "an excellent lawyer."

About the Team (content provided by Shakespeare Martineau)

Department profile not yet provided by Shakespeare Martineau. Please see their firm profile.

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Spearing Waite LLP - Real Estate Department

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Band 3

第三等

Chambers Commentary (based on the Chambers research)

Basic facts about the department
- 7 partners
- 13 other qualified lawyers
- Office location: Leicester

What the team is known for Experienced team with established expertise across development, secured lending and retail property matters, among other areas. Frequently advises a number of blue-chip clients. Regularly instructed on complex site acquisitions and investment transactions.

Work highlights Acted for The White Company on the sale of two leasehold stores on Marylebone High Street, linked to the negotiation and completion of a new lease to provide a consolidated flagship store in London.

Advised Brayford Holdings on the £13 million refinance of a large building in Lincoln containing a number of student lets.

Significant clients Dunelm, Poundstretcher, Glenstone Property, Jelson, Travis Perkins.

Notable practitioners

Thomas Bower advises on commercial developments along with substantial transactions, including the acquisition and disposal of investment property. He also handles commercial leasing matters for clients in the retail sector.

Richard Wyvill advises on the sale, purchase and leasing of property, with a focus on retail and industrial premises. He also has significant expertise in real estate finance matters.

About the Team (content provided by Spearing Waite LLP)

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Wilkin Chapman LLP - Real Estate Department

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Band 3

第三等

Chambers Commentary (based on the Chambers research)

Basic facts about the department
- 8 partners
- 8 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations: Grimsby, Lincoln

What the team is known for Accomplished team particularly adept at handling the full gamut of commercial and residential development matters. Also regularly handles work in the renewables and healthcare sectors. Notable strength in the residential sector, advising on land acquisition, options agreements and affordable housing schemes.

Strengths One client says: "They have strength in depth over a variety of fields."

Another client praises the team's "good specialist knowledge on property matters, particularly in relation to agricultural land."

Work highlights Advised Ferenway Hotels on its purchase for £1.6 million of a development site with planning permission for a new 165-bedroom hotel and conference centre.

Acted for Bailgate Court on its purchase of a listed former university building in the historical quarter of Lincoln for potential future development into luxury apartments.

Significant clients Galliford Try, Acis, Cyden Homes, Aga Rangemaster, Vernon Holdings.

Notable practitioners

Head of real estate Ruth Brewin handles substantial residential and commercial development projects, as well as high-value lettings in the retail sector. Clients say: "She is an impressive lawyer - technically and commercially astute, hard-working, and will put in whatever is required to ensure that her clients' objectives are achieved."

Martyn Chilvers advises on a broad range of real estate transactions, from landlord and tenant matters to high-value investment acquisitions and disposals. He is also very experienced in the education sector. A source describes him as "very hard working and tenacious, with a fantastic understanding of the law and clients' needs."

About the Team (content provided by Wilkin Chapman LLP)

Department profile not yet provided by Wilkin Chapman LLP. Please see their firm profile.

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BHW Solicitors - Real Estate Department

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Band 4

第四等

Chambers Commentary (based on the Chambers research)

Basic facts about the department
- 3 partners
- 4 other qualified lawyers
- Office location: Leicester

What the team is known for Offers expertise across a range of sectors including retail, agriculture and distribution. Also skilled in secured lending matters and the full range of investment transactions. Additional strength in development matters, including site assembly and promotion agreements.

Strengths A client says: "They're prompt, they're quick and they also offer the personal touch - they're invested in what they're doing for us."

Work highlights Advised Gardner Group on the £326 million sale of its property portfolio to Shaanxi Ligeance Mineral Resources and one of its subsidiaries.

Advised Marks Electrical on a significant relocation project, including two freehold purchases and four disposals. The total value of the transactions was over £11 million.

Significant clients Next Holdings, UK Mail Group, T System, Lavendon Group, NatWest.

Notable practitioners

Beverley Merrell handles a range of property matters, including commercial landlord and tenant work, office relocations and secured lending. A client notes: "She has consistently offered a high standard of service, is accessible and communicates in a clear manner to move projects to a prompt conclusion."

Julie White is head of the firm's commercial property group, and has many years' experience in the market. She has particular expertise in transaction matters concerning retail units, distribution depots and data centres. A client speaks highly of her commercial approach: "I rate her really highly - she understands where I'm coming from and understands my business."

About the Team (content provided by BHW Solicitors)

Commercial Property. BHW's Commercial Property Department advises on all aspects of freehold and leasehold property for its business clients.

Retail and Leisure. BHW acts on major acquisitions in shopping centres, high streets, retail parks and industrial parks. We are the principal advisers to several well-known companies for real estate matters.

Development. BHW acts on major development projects across the UK, including site acquisitions, promotion agreements, option agreements, infrastructure agreements, management agreements, site setups and plot sales and purchases.

Distribution and Data Centres. BHW specialises in leases for Distribution and Data Centres. Our clients include national and multinational companies.

Investment Properties. BHW acts for a number of property investment companies and regularly acts on the acquisition, funding and sale of substantial properties ranging from office blocks, business parks and retail premises.

Secured Lending. BHW is a key player in lending where commercial property is used as the sole or primary security and both banks and peer to peer lenders are included in our client portfolio.

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Flint Bishop Solicitors - Real Estate Department

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Band 4

第四等

Chambers Commentary (based on the Chambers research)

What the team is known for Regional firm with a strong commercial development practice receiving regular instructions on retail and industrial development projects. Also continues to handle large property portfolio transactions, often for well-known clients.

Strengths One client says: "We have always received an excellent service - they are big enough to have the professional expertise to assist, but not so large that we are just a number to them. They know our business almost as well as we do."

Notable practitioners

Ian Beardmore is a key contact.

About the Team (content provided by Flint Bishop Solicitors)

​Overview

We are one of the East Midlands' leading law firms in this complex and evolving market acting for a diverse client base, ranging from small to medium sized organisation, large privately owned regional and national developers to global publicly quoted companies and public bodies.


​Type of Work Handled

  • ​Commercial & Residential Site Acquisitions
  • Funding Arrangements & Agreements
  • Planning & Infrastructure Agreements
  • Joint Ventures, Options & Conditional Sale Agreements
  • Environmental Issues
  • Housing Association Law
  • Commercial Leases & General Landlord & Tenant Advice
  • Sale & Purchase of Investment Property


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Band 1

Spearing Waite LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Thomas Bower advises on commercial developments along with substantial transactions, including the acquisition and disposal of investment property. He also handles commercial leasing matters for clients in the retail sector.

^ See whole ranking table

Band 1

Wilkin Chapman LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Head of real estate Ruth Brewin handles substantial residential and commercial development projects, as well as high-value lettings in the retail sector. Clients say: "She is an impressive lawyer - technically and commercially astute, hard-working, and will put in whatever is required to ensure that her clients' objectives are achieved."

^ See whole ranking table

Band 1

Geldards LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Jamie Gordon specialises in handling real estate matters on behalf of clients in the utilities and telecoms industries. He leads the firm's work for Western Power Distribution, handling a wide range of matters.

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

Freeths LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Simon Abbott heads the firm's property team in Leicester. He advises clients from both the public and private sector on property development and portfolio management, with a notable focus on retail property.

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

Geldards LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Heather Dixon is an experienced property lawyer with a notable focus on projects in the industrial, retail and education sectors. She advises on a broad range of matters, from commercial leasing to major mixed-use development schemes. "Her attention to the client is outstanding," one interviewee says: "She presents confidence and knowledge - she takes time to understand her clients' businesses, priorities and the context for the work she is undertaking."

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

Ellis Gardner-Browne

Shoosmiths LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Retail specialist Ellis Gardner-Browne works with a host of major names in the sector, advising on all aspects of portfolio management, including significant acquisitions and disposals. He has notable experience in complex projects, as well as joint venture transactions.

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

Deborah Gordon Brown

Shoosmiths LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Retail specialist Ellis Gardner-Browne works with a host of major names in the sector, advising on all aspects of portfolio management, including significant acquisitions and disposals. He has notable experience in complex projects, as well as joint venture transactions.

Market commentators recognise Deborah Gordon Brown for her strong reputation in the retail sector, where she represents a number of nationally recognised occupier clients. She also acts for investment funds on key transactions and portfolio management.

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

Shoosmiths LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

David Morley handles acquisitions, disposals and other transactional matters for a range of clients, including investments funds and corporate occupiers. He also regularly dispenses advice on UK real estate law to international clients. Sources describe him as "a people person - excellent at client care and very approachable."

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

Browne Jacobson LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Sarah Parkinson is particularly skilled in retail property work, advising high-profile clients on acquisitions, redevelopments and complex relocations. She also provides real estate advice to a number of sports teams and public sector organisations.

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

Freeths LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Gary Reynolds is particularly known for his residential development work. He advises promoters, developers and house builders on all aspects of major projects, and also deals with matters related to social housing. Sources say: "He's a calm hand at the tiller when you need one."

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

Browne Jacobson LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Barry Sully is noted for his expertise in property development work, which includes significant urban regeneration and social housing projects. Sources characterise him as "sensible, straightforward and collaborative."

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

Freeths LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Darren Williamson is head of the firm's national real estate group, and focuses on commercial property matters. He has notable strength in portfolio management, and also advises clients from the logistics sector on substantial leasing arrangements. Clients say: "His attention to providing excellent service is exemplary, and his advice is always sound and commercial."

Head of the Derby property group Michael Taplin handles a wide range of commercial and residential development matters, including significant mixed-use schemes. His clients include major house builders and developers.

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

Gateley PLC

From the Chambers UK guide

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

Shakespeare Martineau

From the Chambers UK guide

Brendan Walsh handles a broad array of development projects, including retail, leisure and residential schemes. He also advises clients in the energy sector. Commentators describe him as "an excellent lawyer." 

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

Geldards LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

Darren Williamson

Freeths LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Darren Williamson is head of the firm's national real estate group, and focuses on commercial property matters. He has notable strength in portfolio management, and also advises clients from the logistics sector on substantial leasing arrangements. Clients say: "His attention to providing excellent service is exemplary, and his advice is always sound and commercial."

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

Gateley PLC

From the Chambers UK guide

Simon Taylor leads the property group in Leicester and handles a range of property development matters. He is particularly well versed in retail and leisure schemes, including significant city centre regeneration. Clients say: "He is very knowledgeable and happy to deal with the most complicated transactions"

Head of the Nottingham team Adam Youatt advises on investment transactions and property development, with notable expertise in healthcare property and student accommodation. A source describes him as "commercially astute," while clients also praise him as "very responsive, knowledgeable and efficient."

^ See whole ranking table

Band 3

Geldards LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Graham Banks is head of the real estate team in Derby and maintains a property practice primarily focused on commercial matters. He advises on development, finance and portfolio management, with additional expertise in planning and environmental law.

^ See whole ranking table

Band 3

Wilkin Chapman LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Martyn Chilvers advises on a broad range of real estate transactions, from landlord and tenant matters to high-value investment acquisitions and disposals. He is also very experienced in the education sector. A source describes him as "very hard working and tenacious, with a fantastic understanding of the law and clients' needs."

^ See whole ranking table

Band 3

Geldards LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Head of the Nottingham real estate team David Watson has particular expertise handling portfolio sales and acquisitions in the retail sector. He also advises property developers and public sector clients on a range of development work. A client describes him as a "very good pragmatist" who gives "solid legal advice."

Paul Hilsdon advises mainly public sector clients, including educational institutions and local authorities, on a wide array of real estate issues. His practice encompasses complex land transactions, as well as residential development schemes and urban regeneration projects.

^ See whole ranking table

Band 3

BHW Solicitors

From the Chambers UK guide

Beverley Merrell handles a range of property matters, including commercial landlord and tenant work, office relocations and secured lending. A client notes: "She has consistently offered a high standard of service, is accessible and communicates in a clear manner to move projects to a prompt conclusion."

^ See whole ranking table

Band 3

Browne Jacobson LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Dominic Swift has considerable experience in complex property work, most notably for clients in the public sector. He is particularly active advising on strategic site assembly and development matters relating to new schools and academy conversions.

^ See whole ranking table

Band 3

BHW Solicitors

From the Chambers UK guide

Julie White is head of the firm's commercial property group, and has many years' experience in the market. She has particular expertise in transaction matters concerning retail units, distribution depots and data centres. A client speaks highly of her commercial approach: "I rate her really highly - she understands where I'm coming from and understands my business."

^ See whole ranking table

Band 3

Spearing Waite LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Richard Wyvill advises on the sale, purchase and leasing of property, with a focus on retail and industrial premises. He also has significant expertise in real estate finance matters.

^ See whole ranking table