UK

South West

Real Estate


Due to the number of tables in this section, the editorial is in alphabetical order by firm name.

Real Estate - South West

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Basic facts about the department

- 14 partners 
- 18 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Exeter

What the team is known for Frequently instructed on acquisitions and disposals of development land for house builders and landowners. Also noted for work in the public services sector.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Responsiveness: "They're at hand so we get our advice quickly; we have a good working relationship." "We get face time with them quickly."

Efficiency: "A well-organised firm. You don't get a disjointed answer, you get a rounded answer."

Work highlights Advising Exeter City Council on the £200 million-plus redevelopment of the Exeter Bus and Coach Station site.

Acted for Five Directions on the acquisition of the Plymouth Pavilions site for £83 million redevelopment.

What's new? Caroline Frampton, Patricia Negus-Fancey and Jonathan Wiese joined the firm from Rochman Landau.

Notable practitioners 

Andrew Rothwell specialises in development. One peer siad: "He's my nemesis really! H e's the one to watch – he's very charming with a very easy way, and he stands head and shoulders above the crowd."

Clients praise head of department Tim Heal for "good sound commercial advice, and he's personable – you can develop a good strong relationship with him."

James Heath acts on a range of property development matters, specialising in property financing. He recently advised on the redevelopment of the Theatre Royal Plymouth. He recently joined the firm from Foot Anstey.

Significant clients Airgen Renewables, The Courtney Group of Companies, Sovereign Housing Association, Devon and Cornwall Police Authority, Landmark.

Basic facts about the department

- 6 partners 
- 20 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Bristol

What the team is known for Acts on a range of property matters for major players in the public services sector. A key choice for NHS trusts.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Industry knowledge: "They are very pragmatic in their approach. They have a deep understanding of how the NHS works, they are responsive and they're very easy to work with."

Client service: "They're certainly very open, attentive to our needs, and very accurate with their work."

Work highlights Acted for the Department of Health on the transfer of primary care trust-owned properties into NHS Property Services in the London, Midlands, and East and South of England regions.

Acted for Slough Council on its local asset-backed vehicle regeneration scheme.

Notable practitioners

Rob Harrison, notably strong on real estate finance matters, acts for East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust, amongst other clients.

Significant clients Enfield Council, Croydon Council, Orbit Housing, Aspire Housing, Second Step Housing.

Basic facts about the department

- 5 partners (3 Bristol, 2 Plymouth) 
- 22 other qualified lawyers (16 Bristol, 6 Plymouth)
- Office locations ranked: Bristol, Plymouth

What the team is known for Particularly noted in the renewable energy sector. Advises high-profile investors and land owners on portfolio management matters.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Client service: "Quality commercial and practical advice every time. They truly put themselves in their client's shoes. The client service is exceptional – no task or request is too small."

Technical ability: "Superb; I can't fault them. They are approachable, knowledgeable, efficient and effective."

Work highlights Acted for DONG Energy on the £100 million-plus expansion of its Burbo Bank wind farm, negotiating the onshore land agreements required to connect the turbines to the National Grid.

Acted on the assignment and transfer out of administration of over 300 Game Group retail stores.

Notable practitioners 

Nigel Theyer specialises in development and investment work. He advised Princess Yachts International on the acquisition of land in the Devonport Royal Dockyard.

Craig Moore heads the department and regularly leads on key real estate finance matters. His clients include Bath Row Developments. 

Associate Nikki Cobb is described by one client as "very nice, very efficient and very precise; you get replies from her very quickly."

Significant clients Royal Mail Group, Centrica, Renewable Energy Systems, Flybe, Babcock.

Basic facts about the department

- 7 partners 
- 4 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Cheltenham

What the team is known for Acts for major retailers and leisure sector operators. Active real estate finance team, notably advising lenders. Well-reputed logistics practice.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Industry knowledge: "By really understanding our business they have been able to provide a pragmatic approach to problems."

Commercial awareness: "They're prepared to make commercial decisions, which is a massive advantage."

What's new? Tim Williams joins the firm.

Jo Bewley is promoted to partner.

Work highlights Acted for Walsall Road Medical Practice on its £4 million development of a super-surgery.

Notable practitioners

Antonia Shield heads the commercial property team and acts for retail clients around the country, as well as handling development matters.

One of Richard Handley's clients says: "He's very approachable, very commercially minded, and exceptionally good when he meets our customers."

Significant clients Pure Gym, Supergroup, Gloucestershire Airport, Bond Helicopters, Howard Tenens.

Basic facts about the department

- 25 partners 
- 74 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Bristol

What the team is known for A well-established Bristol firm with a strong presence throughout the UK. Noted for its work with international investors. Acts for leading landowners and developers on high-profile matters.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Commercial awareness: "They start off from a point of view of 'let's get this done' not 'let's make this difficult'. A commercial, can-do attitude."

Breadth of services: "As a team they are very effective; they cover an awful lot of specialisations, so we never feel that we might be out of our depth."

What's new? Will Woodall, who specialises in investment work and renewable energy, is promoted to partner.

Work highlights Advised The Crown Estate on its St James's portfolio, including its £87 million acquisition of Princes House, Piccadilly.

Acted on the £17.5 million acquisition of 28-29 Savile Row, London, for the trustees of the Savile Row Investments Unit Trust.

Notable practitioners

Head of department Richard Clark advised The Crown Estate on the £36.5 million disposal of the Grade II-listed 88 St James's Street, London. 

Real estate finance specialist Paul Browne's clients include the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority.

Significant clients Aviva Investors, CBRE Global Investors, Lloyds Banking Group, Infinis, St Modwen.

Basic facts about the department

- 2 partners 
- 8 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Cheltenham

What the team is known for Frequently instructed by residential investment funds and SIPP trustees. Also active in the corporate occupier market, particularly for charity retailers.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Commercial awareness: "They walked us through all of the legal implications in very easy to understand terms. They spent a long time discussing our plans to make sure they knew what we wanted."

Client service: "They're down-to-earth; they always deal with you on a level you understand."

Work highlights Advised Isle of Wight Council on an agreement for a lease with The Crown Estate of an area of the sea bed for testing new wave and tidal energy systems.

Acted on the £30 million portfolio sale of apartment blocks in London and the South for Grosvenor Real Estate Investment Fund.

Notable practitioners

Ian Brothwood's clients include SIPP providers and landowners. Clients say: "He's very personable and approachable, and very good at explaining complex issues in simple language."

One of Jonathan Wilkinson's clients says he is "very approachable – he's more than happy to answer queries, be they generic or related to a specific case. What he offers is absolutely spot-on."

Significant clients Marie Curie Cancer Care, Morgan Lloyd, Fairbridge, Save the Children, Cantel Investments.

Basic facts about the department

- 8 partners 
- 10 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Bristol

What the team is known for Frequently instructed by clients in the retail and leisure sectors. Also noted for acquisition and development work for large house builders and commercial developers.

What's new? Clare Wood is promoted to partner. She focuses on landlord and tenant matters as well as property investment.

Work highlights Acted on the £18 million acquisition of development land for BDW Trading.

Acted on investment property transactions totalling £34 million for the Ashville Group portfolio.

Notable practitioners 

Chief executive Stephen Rosser is a landlord and tenant specialist, and is also instructed on major regeneration projects.

William Juckes specialises in the retail and leisure sectors, for clients including Burger King.

Greg Lovett primarily acts for developer clients. Sources comment on his ability to close deals.

Timothy Walker acts for house builders and developers. He is noted for his commercial awareness.

Significant clients Mapeley Group of Companies, Crest Nicholson, Bath and North East Somerset Council, Bristol City FC, Henry Boot Developments.  

Basic facts about the department

- 5 partners 
- 32 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Bristol

What the team is known for A national firm with a strong Bristol property offering. Noted for its work with major public sector clients, particularly in the healthcare industry. Also acts for large landowners.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Market standing: "They have a national reach and strong lawyers."

What's new? Julitta Yates is promoted to partner.

Work highlights Acted for Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust on its £11 million estates rationalisation programme, including the development and restructuring of existing assets.

Advised Dorset Primary Care Trust and Bournemouth & Poole Primary Care Trust on the transfer of their assets into the new NHS Property Services holding company.

Notable practitioners

One of Michael Bothamley's peers says: "He's been straightforward in the way he's dealt with me – he's a good tactical lawyer but also pragmatic."

David Esam is well regarded by peers, and specialises in retail work for shopping centres. He also acts on landlord and tenant matters, for both owners and occupiers.

Head of department Graham Brothwood acts for clients including Everything Everywhere. He handles commercial development matters, with a particular specialism in negotiating conditional contracts and option agreements.

Significant clients Westfield Shoppingtowns, Lend Lease, Deeley Freed Estates, C&J Clark International, Her Majesty's Courts and Tribunals Service.

Basic facts about the department

- 2 directors 
- 10 associate directors 
- 3 senior associate solicitors 
- 8 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Taunton

What the team is known for Specialists in public services property and planning work, acting for public bodies including government departments and local authorities, as well as for private providers to the public sector.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Client service: "Very good client care – they keep us updated and, importantly, they get on with it."

Technical ability: "Really good players at the top who know their onions."

What's new? Robin De Wreede joins the firm from Teignbridge District Council.

Work highlights Advised The Royal Parks on property issues arising out of London 2012 Olympic events held on its properties.

Acted on the £5.5 million sale of the Lithuanian Embassy at Gloucester Place, London.

Notable practitioners

Stuart Bould regularly advises on business tenancy matters, acting for HMRC and other clients.

Significant clients Natural England, Surrey County Council, Defence Science & Technology Laboratory, Audit Commission, Plymouth City Council.

Basic facts about the department

- 9 partners (3 Bristol, 4 Exeter, 2 Plymouth) 
- 29 other qualified lawyers (5 Bristol, 20 Exeter, 4 Plymouth)
- Office locations ranked: Exeter, Plymouth

What the team is known for Strong offering in the retail and leisure sectors. Also noted in the property investment market, particularly in acting for investors on student accommodation developments.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Breadth of services: "Excellent service. They have a member of staff with expertise in all areas of law."

Market standing: Peers praise the firm's strong client base.

Work highlights Acted on the sale of land at Firepool, Taunton, for Abbey Manor Developments.

Acted on the development of the new Engineering and Technical College, Exeter, for Exeter College.

Notable practitioners

Simon Gregory acts for developers, investors and landowners. Clients call him "a very commercially astute lawyer." He has recently advised Atlantic Park on various residential and commercial development matters.

Imam Qazi specialises in Islamic finance, acting on Shari'a-compliant property finance deals for clients including 90 North Real Estate Partners.

Richard Sutton's clients include Wrigley. Peers say he is "very resourceful and very knowledgeable."

Significant clients University of Plymouth, Clydesdale Bank, Daily Mail General Investments, Lloyds TSB, National Marine Aquarium.

Basic facts about the department

- 5 partners 
- 4 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Cheltenham

What the team is known for Frequently instructed in the education and healthcare sectors, acting on development matters, acquisitions and disposals. Also involved in secured lending transactions and refinancings.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Market standing: Peers note the firm's strong standing in the Cheltenham market.

Work highlights Advised on over 60 academy school conversions.

Notable practitioners

Mark Fabian leads the commercial property team. Peers say he is "thoroughly pleasant to deal with and very commercial – he helps his client get the deal through."

Significant clients Headlam Group, Interserve, Cheltine, Police and Crime Commissioner for Gloucestershire, Simon Smith Group.

Basic facts about the department

- 5 partners (2 Exeter, 1 Plymouth, 2 Torquay)
- 5 other qualified lawyers (3 Exeter, 2 Torquay)
- Office locations ranked: Exeter

What the team is known for Deals with a variety of commercial and residential property matters from its three offices in the region. Particularly strong on leisure sector property and licensing matters.

Work highlights Acted for a bank on the £1.2 million financing of the acquisition of a block of flats.

Acted on the property aspects of the refinancing of a chain of hotels that was facing insolvency.

Notable practitioners

Peter Boyne's clients say "his level of service is always impeccable, with excellent turnaround time and accuracy on all matters." He recently acted on the refinancing of a large portfolio of commercial and retail properties.

Cameron Caverhill heads the commercial property team in Exeter. He specialises in property finance, acting for banks on taking security over property. He also acts for landowner clients on acquisitions and disposals.

Significant clients CG Fry & Sons, Buccaneer Inns, Leander Developments, Millwood Homes, Arbuthnot Latham & Co.

Basic facts about the department

- 13 partners 
- 35 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Exeter

What the team is known for Acts for major developers on commercial and residential projects as well as regeneration programmes. Often instructed by public bodies on property matters. Also active on development matters in the renewable energy sector.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Client service: "I was very impressed with Michelmores – they were extremely good."

What's new? Paul Paling joins the firm from Nabarro, Thornton Allen joins from Ashfords, and Caroline Taylor joins from Wilsons.

Work highlights Acted for British Solar Renewables on the development of solar parks in the South West.

Acted for New Fitness Exchange on the acquisition of four Fitness First health clubs.

Notable practitioners

Head of department David Howe acts for residential developers on strategic land acquisitions. Clients say: "He is able to simplify matters and put them across in plain English so they are easily understandable."

Significant clients Barratt Homes, St Modwen Developments, Cavanna Group, Santander Bank, University of Exeter.

Basic facts about the department

- 9 partners 
- 42 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Bristol 

What the team is known for Acts for major developers and investors on a range of property matters, including major inward investment in the student accommodation sector. Also active on large residential developments for house builders. Acts for a broad base of institutional clients.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Bench strength: "Where Osborne Clarke are better than others is in presenting themselves as a team rather than funnelling everything through partners."

Client service: "They are willing to help, they go out of their way to make sure things get done, they're good at communication, and commercial as well."

Work highlights Acted on Mulberry Group's acquisition of land for development of a second factory in Bridgewater.

Advised Niam on the structuring and launch of its Niam V Nordic Investment Fund.

Notable practitioners

Simon Speirs specialises in work for pension funds. One client praises his long experience, saying: "Simon has been there and seen it all."

Ian Wilkinson specialises in property investment and finance, particularly for institutional clients. Clients say: "He's adept at problem solving – he's resourceful and imaginative about getting round any issues that come up, knowing what's important to us and doing what he can to get us there."

Development specialist David North acted for Moorfield Group on the acquisition of a site for a 500-bed student accommodation site.

David Powell is noted for his work in residential development, and acts for Persimmon Homes, amongst other clients. He often acts on acquisitions of land for development.

Significant clients Barratt, Aviva Investors, Imperial Tobacco Pension Fund, Marks & Spencer, Galliford Try.

Basic facts about the department

- 17 partners (8 Exeter, 9 Plymouth)
- 12 other qualified lawyers (5 Exeter, 7 Plymouth)
- Office location ranked: Exeter

What the team is known for Noted for its expertise in the mining and minerals sector, and for its large and growing renewable energy practice. Acts for landowners and developers on strategic acquisitions, promotion and option agreements over land for residential development.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Bench strength: "A very good firm, with good individuals."

What's new? Sonya Bedford and Susie Murray are both promoted to partner.

Work highlights Acted on the sale of a quarry at Bishops Court, Exeter, for Aggregate Industries.

Notable practitioners

Managing partner Robert Camp specialises in mining and minerals work. He is also frequently involved in acquisitions and disposals of development land.

Described by peers as a "knowledgeable and astute property lawyer," Jonathan Hoggett acts for development clients. He specialises in strategic land acquisitions.

Peers say residential development specialist Michael Northcott is "sensible and good to deal with."

Significant clients Strategic Land Partnerships, Waddeton Park, Wolf Minerals, Imerys Minerals, Cavanna Homes.

Basic facts about the department

- 6 partners 
- 13 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Bath

What the team is known for Often instructed on property matters in the charities sector, particularly for churches, church dioceses and religious orders. Also noted in the education sector, acting for academies and maintained schools.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Efficiency: "They were efficient and pleasant to deal with."

Industry knowledge: "They're great charities and public sector lawyers."

Work highlights Acted for Somerset Redstone Trust on the £17 million development of Dorchester Care Village.

Advised Rydens Enterprise School and Sixth Form College on the sale of part of the school site to fund a £20 million rebuilding programme.

Notable practitioners

Clients say head of the commercial property department Hugh Pearce is "very efficient and prompt in responding to everything we've put before him." He specialises in work for education institutions, including academy conversion work and developments.

Significant clients Ormiston Academy, E-ACT, Clifton Diocese, Nazareth Care, Gloucester Diocese.

Basic facts about the department

- 3 partners 
- 5 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Exeter

What the team is known for Specialist in landlord and tenant matters for both corporate occupiers and investor landlords. Also active on residential development matters, for landowners and developers.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Efficiency: "A good firm to deal with."

Work highlights Acted for London & Devonshire Trust on the acquisition of 21 acres at a former factory site for development as an energy park.

Acted on the acquisition of a site on the River Dart by Dart Renewables, for the construction and operation of Archimedes screw hydroelectric turbines.

Notable practitioners 

Christopher Rundle is head of the commercial property department and specialises in business tenancies.

Significant clients FWS Carter & Sons, London & Westcountry Estates, Devonshire Homes, Scot Group, Drew Construction.

Basic facts about the department

- 17 partners 
- 16 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Bath, Bristol

What the team is known for Frequently instructed on residential development matters. Also acts on business tenancy matters for landlords and corporate occupiers. Noted retail and leisure sector practices.

Work highlights Acted on sales of leasehold and freehold properties in Bath, totalling £3.1 million, for WIA Group and DSP (Bath).

Notable practitioners

Residential development specialist Colin Stratton heads the South West real estate practice. Peers describe him as "friendly and approachable." He acts on strategic land transactions and on negotiating promotion agreements.

Significant clients Bath Rugby, Milsom Place, St John's Hospital, Dorothy House Foundation, Future Publishing.

Basic facts about the department

- 17 partners 
- 35 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Bristol

What the team is known for Noted in the retail and leisure sectors, and also frequently instructed by corporate occupiers. Acts on a range of property matters in the renewable energy sector.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Technical ability: "They have a good property team who understand restructuring."

 Bench strength: "They have a national reach and strong lawyers."

What's new? David Sanson joins the firm from DLA Piper's Dubai office, bringing expertise in the hospitality sector.

Work highlights Acted for the Canal and River Trust on a lease of dock facilities for the operation of a boat service for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Acted on the £80 million refinancing of a portfolio of 17 crematoria for Westerleigh Group.

Notable practitioners

Head of department Andrew Glynn specialises in property finance matters. One peer said: "I like him,  he's a sensible lawyer with a good profile in the market."

Maria Connolly heads the renewables team. She acted for RidgeWind on the development of a 12-turbine wind farm in Yorkshire.

Tim Rowe specialises in commercial development matters for clients including major energy sector operators.

Significant clients Punch Taverns, Barclays Bank, Ecotricity Group, WHSmith, Ladbrokes.

Basic facts about the department

- 14 partners 
- 21 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Bristol

What the team is known for Particularly noted in the education and healthcare sectors. Regularly acts for health sector clients, with a particular focus on surgery developments. Acts for government departments and local authorities.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Client service: "We've had nothing but excellent service from them. They have a wider understanding of our business."

Bench strength: "They've gone from strength to strength; there's strength in depth there."

Work highlights Advised EDF Energy on site assembly and infrastructure issues connected with the proposed Hinkley Point C nuclear power station development.

Acted for iQ Property Partnership, a joint venture between the Wellcome Trust and Quintain Estates & Development, on the development and £70 million refinancing of a 673-bed student accommodation scheme in Shoreditch, East London.

Notable practitioners

Tim Smithers acted for Crest Nicholson on large-scale regeneration projects at Bath Riverside and Bristol Harbourside. One satisfied client says Tim is "very practical – he doesn't want to make a mountain out of a molehill, and he gives clear and concise advice."

Significant clients Education Funding Agency, Airbus Operations, Defence Infrastructure Organisation, Bath Spa University, PwC.

Basic facts about the department

- 4 partners 
- 1 other qualified lawyer
- Office locations ranked: Cheltenham

What the team is known for Strong occupier-side practice in the retail sector, particularly in charity retail. Also acts on landlord and tenant matters for corporate occupiers. Frequently instructed on acquisitions and disposals of development land.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Technical ability: "Their knowledge base is really good; they're always very helpful and just generally give very sound advice."

Market standing: "They are very good locally and have a good client base. Nice people."

What's new? Nigel Whittaker joins the firm from Charles Russell, bringing expertise in a variety of commercial property matters.

Work highlights Acted for Western Computer Group, a reseller of Apple products, on leasing matters for its new stores in the South West and Preston. 

Acted on the sale and leaseback of a portfolio of charity retail stores for Sue Ryder.

Notable practitioners

Jonathan Mills heads the department. He acts on retail leasing matters for clients including Weird Fish, as well as business tenancies. Clients say: "He's concise, makes us aware of the important issues and doesn't waste our time. He keeps things focused on what matters – where the risks are. We seem to be on the same wavelength all the time."

One of Susie Wynne's clients says: "Her knowledge is exceptional, she is good at dealing with strong characters and she's approachable – it's easy to have a conversation with her and you'll get a straight answer." Wynne acts for retailers on landlord and tenant matters, and on strategic land transactions.

Significant clients Spirax-Sarco, Eagle Strategic Property, Kohler Mira, Kier Construction, Clydesdale Bank.

Basic facts about the department

- 3 partners 
- 2 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Bath

What the team is known for Noted for real estate work in the charities sector. Also strong in commercial and residential property development matters, particularly acting for developers. 

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Market standing: "They are significant players in the local market."

Work highlights Acted for the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust on the Steart Peninsula project, creating a new wetland site of 500-hectares.

Acted on the acquisition of eight care homes from Viridian Housing by Gold Care Homes.

Notable practitioners 

Edward Cooke acted for Kersfield Developments on residential development site acquisitions in Wokingham and Bristol. He is also noted in the charities sector.

Head of department Paul Daniels acted on the acquisition of Cheswick Village Neighbourhood Centre for residential, retail and commercial development by Mansell Construction Services. He specialises in property development and investment.

Significant clients Kier Construction, St John's Hospital Bath, Andrews Estate Agents, Raymond Brown Minerals & Recycling, Orega (Management).

Basic facts about the department

- 4 partners 
- 3 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Plymouth

What the team is known for A long-established Plymouth firm acting on commercial property matters and residential conveyancing.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Market standing: "We've a lot of respect for the firm and for a lot of the people there."

Notable practitioners

Peers say Clare Magill is an "experienced operator and good to work with – she can understand both sides so you can work together to achieve things."

Other Ranked Lawyers 其他上榜律师

Sources say Keith Biggs of OTB Eveling LLP is "a very, very good lawyer and well respected." He joins OTB Eveling from Foot Anstey, where he specialised in development matters with a particular focus on the leisure sector.

Foreign Experts

Foreign Experts are individuals with expertise in a different jurisdiction to the one they are based in. These individuals are particularly highly regarded for international and cross-border work. Usually, they will be identified in the jurisdiction in which they are based and in their country of expertise.