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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In the United Kingdon, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for eight years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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United Kingdom > East Midlands > Private client > Agriculture and estates > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings



Index of tables

  1. Agriculture and estates
  2. Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

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Hewitsons’ ‘deeply knowledgeable and responsive’ team provides an ‘extremely high level of service’. It assists clients with renewable energy projects as well as restructuring, tax planning and a wider range of complex transactions, including purchases and disposals of farmland. ‘Bright and client-focusedGareth Williams is ‘on top of his game’, ‘constantly impressing with his technical knowledge and commercial acumen’. He assisted landowners with several negotiations of options for disposal of various development sites across the region, managed seven-figure sales of farms, and negotiated farm business tenancies for estate owners. The group also managed a deed of surrender of a farm business tenancy for an institutional client. James Fowler left the firm to join a family business.

Langleys Solicitors LLP’ ‘excellent’ group provides ‘effective solutions’ to clients in a range of property transactions such as sale, purchase, easement and leasing agreements as well as matters arising from renewable energy projects. Managing mineral leases is another area of expertise. Landowners such as Melbourne Holdings, Maurice Mason and Flawborough Farms are clients. Highlights included handling a purchase of stables, advising a client with the seven-figure sale of agricultural land and assisting a farming family business with a transaction involving a surrender of tenancy and purchase of a listed farmhouse. David Wood and Françoise Vandale are recommended, and Andrew Fearn is now a consultant.

Roythornes Solicitors’ ‘first-class’ practice houses ‘very personable and professional industry leaders’, advising on matters ranging from tax and succession planning to land transfers. Julie Robinson heads the department, which also includes Alan Plummer, Vember Mortlock and Peter Cusick. Much of the team’s work includes assisting landowners with commercial property transactions, corporate deals and restructurings. The group handled a freehold farmland purchase involving transfer of over thirty titles, multiple sub-agreements regulating the family-owned business and an agreement with a third-party contractor. It also drafted a share farming agreement between two businesses operating across 15 sites.

Wilkin Chapman LLP’s ‘exceptionally thorough’ team provides ‘outstanding’ support in matters ranging from complex corporate transactions to high-value ownership transfers of agricultural property including acquisitions of residential developments as well as succession planning. The group also handles farming arrangements and diversification projects in the renewable energy sector. It advised Lincolnshire Farming Company with the mortgage-financed purchase of a farm, including transfer of 43 separate legal titles, and assisted a landowner with granting an option for a lease to a developer tenant in an anaerobic digestion plant project. Other highlights included acting for Hammond Produce during the acquisition of a part of a historic trust estate. Practice head Catherine Harris and Jonty Pearson show ‘genuine commitment in terms of skills, knowledge and availability’, and Flora Bennett and James Lloyd are also noted.

Arnold Thomson provides ‘thorough yet concise’ advice on matters including development of farmed property, partnership and promotional agreements, and renewable energy projects. The client base comprises landowners and farmers, and the group assisted a group of clients with transactional and real estate aspects of the construction of the A45 road. It also handled the sale of a family farm, which involved securing reservation of mineral rights in favour of a third party and managing the administration of a complex farming estate. Mike Thomson is ‘pragmatic, diligent and dedicated’; Matt Hawkins is an ‘excellent communicator with exemplary attention to detail and extensive knowledge of agricultural property law’; and the ‘very proficient’ Kate Austin ‘thinks outside a box’ to ‘provide practical solutions’.

Browne Jacobson LLP’s team adopts a ‘straightforward and common-sense’ approach while being ‘experienced in the field and providing focused advice in a timely manner’. Its clients include public and regulatory bodies. A team led by Richard Barlow acted for the Welsh government in the appeal related to a remediation notice commanding a landowner to revert the land to a semi-natural state. Highlights also included advising a public sector client on the acquisition of agricultural land, assisting a group of landowners with a joint option and promotion agreement, and handling several ownership transfers of agricultural property. William Colacicchi and property specialist Robert Wofinden lead the practice.

Freeths LLP’s ‘highly competent’ team has ‘significant sector knowledge and market awareness’, and assists clients with tax, succession, partnership and agricultural property matters. Paul Thompson leads the practice in Nottingham, and the ‘sensible, pragmatic and thoroughMark Keeley specialises in contentious matters. Highlights included managing succession planning and tax strategy of an agricultural estate, advising a family of agricultural landowners on inheritance and succession planning, and representing a farming family in a dispute arising from a planned commercial development.

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Legal Developments in East Midlands for Agriculture and estates

  • New ‘ROE Bill’ draft published

    Following from the recent public outcry regarding the lack of ‘transparency’ in the UK property market, a new ‘ROE Bill’ draft has now been published.
    - Hudson McKenzie

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