The Legal 500


United Kingdom > London > Real estate > Social housing: local authorities and registered providers


Index of tables

  1. Social housing: local authorities and registered providers
  2. Leading individuals

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Trowers & Hamlins LLP provides ‘consistently excellent service and outcome-focused advice', and has particular strength in ALMO work. London practice head Sara Bailey advised Uliving@Hertfordshire and Bouygues Development on a £190m student accommodation project. Ian Graham heads the firm’s housing and regeneration practice. Catherine Hand’s ‘pragmatic, can-do attitude ensures that the most complex issues are satisfactorily resolved'. Scott Dorling acts for local authorities, and Robert Beiley advises on housing stock transfers. The team’s prestigious client list includes The Guinness Partnership, East Thames Group and Network Housing Group.

Devonshires Solicitors’ national practice is ‘responsive and effective'. Team head and firm chief executive Andrew Cowan advised Cosmopolitan Housing Group on its high-profile rescue by Sanctuary and issues related to its corporate recovery. Jonathan Jarvis specialises in council and ALMO work; Neil Lawlor is ‘a safe pair of hands'; and construction expert Mark London and Sharon Kirkham are also recommended. Notable clients include London & Quadrant. The team was strengthened by the arrival of Neil Toner from Lewis Silkin LLP and consultant Keith Jenkins from Winckworth Sherwood, and three additional partner promotions.

Winckworth Sherwood has an outstanding practice for registered provider clients, which include London’s largest housing associations, housebuilders, residential property funds and local authorities. Recent panel wins include Genesis Housing Association. Development specialist Charlie Proddow advised London & Quadrant on the acquisition of two development sites from Wandsworth Council. The ‘superb, responsive' team includes the ‘commercially astute'Louis Robert and was strengthened by the arrival of housing management expert Nikki Lynds-Xavier from an in-house role. Practice head Andrew Murray is advising Southern on stock disposals and acquisitions. Keith Jenkins joined Devonshires Solicitors.

Anthony Collins Solicitors LLP’s team in Birmingham is ‘knowledgeable about the sector and proactive in providing relevant updates'. Victoria Jardine advised Calico Homes on the formation of a new group parent and the accession of new group members. Practice head Jonathan Cox acted for Sentinel Housing Association on its purchase of 180 properties from Places for People. Also recommended are Helen Tucker, who ‘understands the current issues'; Peter Hubbard; and Ranjit Bassey, who joined the firm from Shoosmiths LLP, where he led the social housing team.

Led by Linda Convery, Lewis Silkin LLP’s ‘approachable, knowledgeable, responsive' team is representing several major housing providers on London regeneration projects, notably advising Peabody Trust on the Chambers Wharf development. Gillian Bastow is acting for Wandle Housing Association on the affordable housing elements of the Streatham Hub. Paul Hayes wins praise for his ‘no-nonsense approach to litigation', and Simon Bagg is noted for his ‘expertise and responsiveness'. Planning specialist Judith Damerell is also recommended. Neil Toner joined Devonshires Solicitors.

Pinsent Masons LLP’s national practice ‘combines commercial developer know-how with the best planning team around', acting for public bodies, homebuilders and developers. The team, led by David Meecham, was reappointed to the reduced HCA panel on both the programme and regulatory side. Anne Bowden, who advised Westminster City Council on its developer framework panel, wins praise for ‘her ability to think commercially and her absolute professionalism'.

Ashfords LLP (incorporating Rochman Landau) is ‘a top-drawer performer which can give the London firms a real run for their money'; it handles contentious and non-contentious housing and asset management matters for housing associations, ALMOs and councils, including several London boroughs. The Exeter-based team includes ‘masterful' team head Sian Gibbon; Joanne Young, who is ‘dependable, charming and always in full control of the case'; and Victoria Bonnet, who is ‘insightful, determined and someone you want on your side'. Key clients include The Guinness Partnership, London & Quadrant, and the London Borough of Croydon.

Berwin Leighton Paisner LLP advises private sector, not-for-profit and local authority clients on high-value housing transactions and developments. Andrew Yates heads the practice, which was reappointed to the HCA panel and advises on the Build to Rent fund. Other recent high-profile work includes advising the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park development. Janet Turner QC handles regulatory matters, and Brian Dowling is also recommended.

Clarke Willmott LLP hired Neil Brand from Devonshires Solicitors and Jessica Taylor from Clarkslegal LLP, and is recommended for its ‘robust, pragmatic advice'. Chimi Shakohoxha, who heads the London team, advised The Guinness Partnership and the East Thames Group. Jonathan Hulley is ‘knowledgeable, responsive and passionate about the quality of service that he and his team provide'. In Bristol, social housing head Anne Hayward has ‘a wealth of experience'.

DWF hired ‘rising star'Mitch Brown and others from Eversheds LLP to build a development-focused practice. The wider practice was boosted by the arrival Hugo Stephens, previously of Cobbetts LLP, who acts for a number of high-profile local authority and registered provider clients.

Wendy Wilks heads Maclay Murray & Spens LLP’s team, which advises housing and care providers, notably on regulatory, alternative funding and employment matters. Key mandates included working with registered providers on the implementation of the Community Infrastructure Levy. New partner David Knox joined from Dundas & Wilson LLP.

Clients appreciate Penningtons Manches LLP’s excellent service, swift comprehensive advice and clear guidance' on a broad range of matters including procurement, development and tenancy fraud. Linda Storey’s team ‘knows its specialist areas and is commercial about negotiation', recently winning panel positions with Spectrum Housing Group and One Housing Group. Andrew Casstles‘provides effective solutions to complex issues and is committed to achieving best value for his clients'. Peter Massey, whose clients include Family Mosaic, gives ‘clear and pragmatic' advice.

TLT handles high-value, complex regeneration projects for registered providers and local authorities. Kate Silverman heads the London team, with Bristol-based Paul Butterworth leading the practice nationally. Silverman acted for Peabody Trust on its acquisition of an island site on the Thames. Panel wins included Catalyst Housing Group and London & Quadrant.

Carter Lemon Camerons focuses on development work, but also handles property transactions and housing management matters for social landlords. Miles Eckersley and Roger Yates are recommended.

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe (Europe) LLP gives ‘useful, appropriate advice' and has ‘broad experience across the practice'. Team head Anne O’Neill‘is a good negotiator and explains clearly and helpfully'. Together with the ‘diligent, thorough'Sara Branch, she advised Notting Hill Housing Group in relation to Get Britain Building, a joint venture fund with the HCA. Other key clients include Genesis and London & Quadrant. Of counsel Jonathan Preece is also singled out for praise.

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Legal Developments in the UK

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  • Finding the 
right words

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    - Druces
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    In PGF II SA v OMFS Company 1 Ltd [2013], the Court of Appeal considered, for the first time, whether a failure by a party to respond to an invitation to mediate should be treated as an unreasonable refusal to mediate - previous cases having focused on situations where there had been an express refusal to do so. 

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Press Releases in the UK

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to