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Who Represents Who

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Birketts LLP is best known for acting for registered social housing providers in development, sales, funding, planning, housing management, employment and specialist constitutional and regulatory matters. It also advises on the set-up of new registered providers for private housebuilders, of which it completed two in 2017, and also assists with the set-up of assets and liabilities registers. Among its clients are Orbit Group Limited, Flagship Housing Group Limited, Broadland Housing Group and Havebury Housing Partnership. Peter Goddard leads the social housing and residential development practices, with support from a deep multidisciplinary team. Senior associate Emily Groom handles development and regulatory matters; partner John Scannell deals with housing management and property litigation; Tom Newcombe and senior associate Sue Chadwick focus on planning matters; associate Lottie Fletcher advises on corporate structures; and newly promoted associate Sarah Fish handles development matters including the acquisition of s106 sites. For Orbit Group, the practice handled the multimillion-pound acquisition of a scheme in Norfolk with 220 dwellings, and for Chelmer Housing Partnership Limited it assisted with the acquisition of 99 freehold and leasehold units, as well as the leaseback of a commercial unit at Taylor Wimpey’s Waterside site in Chelmsford.

Spire Solicitors LLP¬†has one of the market's recognised leading lights in Kevin Oelrichs, who leads the social housing practice. He focuses on¬†property matters for social landlords, which encompasses site acquisition, development, planning, infrastructure agreements, property portfolio transfers and securities matters. The practice grew in 2017 with the hire of Estelle Corner, who previously worked in the commercial property department of Baker McKenzie¬†before becoming senior counsel in the legal team at Aviva. She handles large property transactions for housing associations, for which litigator Si√Ęn Carrel¬†deals with landlord and tenant disputes, possession proceedings, anti-social behaviour injunctions and committal proceedings. Newly promoted senior associate Susan Ward¬†has more than 35 years' experience in local property transactions. The firm recently acted for a social landlord with more than 300 property units in East Anglia.

Buckles Solicitors LLP is the leading firm in Peterborough for social housing matters and it has a large client base of registered providers across the whole of East Anglia and further afield with new client wins in the West Midlands, Norfolk, the East Midlands. It now acts for more than 65 social housing providers including Cross Keys Homes Limited, Saffron Housing Trust Limited, Hundred Housing Association and Waterloo Housing. Its core areas of expertise are housing management, anti-social behaviour and construction law. Practice head Gail Sykes is a leading light in the market. Her recent cases included pursuing a possession claim for against the occupant of an extra care scheme, who had preyed upon other elderly and vulnerable residents whilst being vulnerable herself. An outright possession order was successfully obtained. She also handled an indirect discrimination claim brought against a social housing client in relation to their shared ownership scheme. The matter was ultimately dismissed. Property partner Michael Rabbett advised Axiom Housing on the £3.6m purchase of 35 social housing units in a deal that involved development and build agreements and s106 issues.

The property team at Howes Percival LLP frequently acts for social housing clients on site acquisition and construction matters. Commercial property partner Simon Murphy leads the multi-disciplinary practice from Cambridge. He calls upon the 'excellent' Michaela Henson, who is highly recommended for development work, Helen Stewart who handles acquisitions for East Cambs Trading Company Limited, solicitor Scott Smith who deals with development and golden brick agreements for Hundred Houses Society Limited, and conveyancer Clare Best who undertakes site acquisitions and plot sales for clients including Luminus Homes. Highly experienced property litigator Jamie Kidd in Norwich is a volunteer board member at Norwich Housing Society and regularly handles contentious matters for the firm's housing association clients.

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Legal Developments in East Anglia for Social housing

  • Parking rights: here to stay? Consent might be the surprising answer ‚Ä©

    In the field of the acquisition of easements by prescription, little has caused more consternation over the last decade or so than the question of whether a right to park cars can be acquired by twenty years user as of right. The types of property capable of being adversely affected range from individual residential units all the way up to major development sites. The establishment of such a right can have a devastating impact on the value of the burdened land.‚Ä©
    - Falcon Chambers

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