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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 > North > Private client > Charities and not-for-profit > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings



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The ‘excellent’ team at Muckle LLP handles the full remit of charity sector work including corporate governance, fundraising, employment, property, regulatory and tax matters, and is particularly rated for its strength in the community sports sector. This specialist expertise is reflected in the team’s client roster, which includes various professional and amateur sports clubs alongside national sports governing bodies. Advising education sector clients on charity law and governance matters constitutes another key element of the practice, which is led by the ‘exceptional’ John Devine. He continues to advise parkrun Global and its subsidiaries on various matters, and, in 2017, he assisted the client with its corporate restructuring and registration with the Charity Commission for England and Wales. Joanne Davison advised Auckland Castle Trust on various trading, governance and property issues in order to preserve the castle as a visitor attraction. Other clients include Alnwick Garden Trust, the Football Association and Children’s Heart Unit Fund.

With particular expertise in the education, health and religious charity sectors, Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP is noted for its ‘excellent level of service’, providing clients with ‘timely and detailed advice’ on strategic, governance and operational charity law matters. This includes assistance with registrations with the Charity Commission and preparing governing documents for the establishment of a charity as well as advice on regulatory compliance and charitable trust matters. ‘Outstanding’ team head Emma Moody ‘is always prepared to go the extra mile’; she advised Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums on its governance structure, the establishment of a strategic board and the set-up of a trading company as a joint venture to enable the client to develop new revenue streams. In other work, Moody assisted Gateshead College with a review of the college’s complaints system, and continues to provide the Roman Catholic charity Saint John of God Hospitaller Services with on-going strategic advice. ‘Knowledgeable’ managing associate Samantha Pritchard is another key member of the team and praised for her ‘common sense approach’.

Sintons LLP provides a broad range of commercial services to various charity sector players with a focus on education, medical research and public sector work. The practice also acts for a number of religious institutions. Team head Amanda Maskery assisted Family Gateway with Charity Commission approval proceedings required to extend its remit to a national level as well as rebranding matters. Corporate and commercial partner Adrian Dye advised Newcastle Eagles Community Foundation on planning and funding issues pertaining to the client’s development of a new baseball stadium and community facility. Other key individuals include Alan Dawson and Laura Peace. Auckland Castle Trust, Newcastle Diocese and Carlisle Diocese are also clients.

Ward Hadaway acts for an extensive roster of registered and exempt charities as well as social enterprises including Alnwick Garden Trust, County Durham Community Foundation, Newcastle Rugby Foundation and the Land Trust. Much of the team’s work pertains to governance, trading, fundraising and restructuring issues, while various other matters are dealt with in co-operation with the relevant department. In recent work, IP team head Alex Shiel advised Changing Lives on various charity and governance matters alongside employment and property issues, and assisted Newcastle University with charity law, commercial and IP issues. Vindolanda Trust retained the team to advise on a grant of approximately £1.3m from the Heritage Lottery Fund to expand the client’s existing museum at the ancient Roman fort. The practice is jointly led by Colin Hewitt and Fiona Wharton and also includes consultant Gaynor Jackson.

Hay & Kilner advises charity sector clients on governance matters and business structures alongside property, employment and corporate matters. Managing partner and team head Jonathan Waters assisted the British Blood Transfusion Society and the Circle of Women with various governance issues. In another highlight, the team acted for Foundation of Light - Sunderland Association Football Club’s registered charity - on a number of employment law matters including reorganisations, redundancies and grievances. Consultant Martin Soloman and senior associate John Luke are key members of the team.

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