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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 > Scotland > Real estate > Commercial property: Elsewhere in Scotland > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings



Index of tables

  1. Commercial property: Elsewhere in Scotland
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Rising stars

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Rising stars

  1. 1

Brodies LLP has been notably active in the emerging build-to-rent sector while also maintaining its strong presence in the investment, development, hotel, retail and leisure, housebuilding and alternatives spaces. Glasgow-based practice head Johane Murray has a track record advising the government and industry bodies, while Aberdeen head Tracey Menzies has a particular focus on office developments, housebuilding issues and build-to-rent mandates. Also notable is Clive Phillips, who is an expert in agricultural law and leads the rural property team. Colin MacLaren retired.

Practice head(s):Johane Murray; Tracey Menzies

Other key lawyers:Clive Phillips


'The real estate team is properly focused on what the clients need and expect. Its experts are keen to get to the nub of issues and strive not to get bogged down losing sight of the endgame.'

'Its commercial understanding and nous makes Brodies stand out.'

Key Clients

Knight Property Group

University of Aberdeen


House of Hiranandani

Drum Property Group



APG Asset Management

GSS Investments

Aberdeen City Council

Maven Capital

Work highlights

  • Advised LCN Aksol Aberdeen on its purchase of the Aker Campus at Aberdeen International Business Park.
  • Acted for GSS Investments (Aberdeen) on the lease of the Stratus Building at ABZ Business Park to Noble Drilling.
  • Advised Knight Property Group on the sale of two investment properties at Westhill, Aberdeen to Balfe for £13m.
  • Assisted Ineos FPS with the lease of its office space at Prime View, Prime Four Business Park from Lloyds Register EMEA.

The real estate team at Burness Paull LLP regularly acts for blue chip corporate occupiers on asset management issues and office relocations, and assists occupiers with taking spaces in major shopping centres and high-street locations across Scotland. The firm's housebuilding group, led by Richard Goodfellow, advises housebuilders on projects as well as landowners on major residential developments. Practice head John Strachan has a notable strength in development work, regularly acting for funders on development transactions and for developers focused on delivering affordable housing; senior associate Sarah Stewart also handles development mandates.

Practice head(s):John Strachan

Other key lawyers:Richard Goodfellow; Sarah Stewart

Key Clients

A & J Robertson (Granite) Limited

Aberdeen Football Club PLC

Cats Management Limited (now Kellas Midstream Limited)

Clients of 90N Real Estate Partners LLP

Countesswells Development Ltd


Duke of Fife

Esson Properties

GE Oil & Gas

John Clark Motor Group

Manse LLP

Palmer Capital

Rowett Research Institute

Stewart Milne Group

Total E&P UK

University of St Andrews

Uppermill Farms Ltd

Work highlights

  • Acting for Uppermill Farms on the sale of the National Oilwell Varco office and industrial headquarters facility in Kintore, Aberdeenshire.
  • Handled the £28.9m sale of five tranches of residential development land consisting of 328 units for Countesswells Development.
  • Advised Aberdeen Football Club on its acquisition of land for a proposed new stadium and training facility.
  • Advised Manse on the sale of a significant mixed-use development site at Corton, Ayr with permission for 750 houses and retail space.
  • Assisting Cats Management with the lease of the seventh floor of the The Silver Fin Building.

The real estate experts at Pinsent Masons LLP regularly act for high-profile local and national developers operating across Scotland. The team is spread across Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeen and is recognised for its work for major oil and gas companies. Aberdeen-based Rodney Whyte leads the practice, which is also active in residential development projects. The team also handles energy developments, planning work and regenerations.

Practice head(s):Rodney Whyte

Other key lawyers:Mark McCall

Key Clients

CALA Group

BDW Trading Limited (Barratt Homes)

The Pilkington Trust

Avant Homes (Scotland) Limited

Taylor Wimpey plc

Persimmon Homes Limited

ABZ Development Limited

GSS Developments(Aberdeen) Limited

Aberdeen Harbour Board

Kier Property Developments

Baker Hughes

Mactaggart & Mickel

Wallace Land

Bellway Homes Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted for CALA Management on the implementation of a development agreement for the purchase of a residential development at Craibstone Campus, Aberdeen.
  • Assisted Avant Homes and CALA Management with the acquisition  of a 600 unit development at Mauricewood, Penicuik.
  • Advised Watt Taylor on the sale of a 120 unit development at Kirkton, Fraserburgh.
  • Acted for Aberdeen Harbour Board on the development of a new harbour at Nigg, Aberdeen.

Blackadders LLP's real estate expertise spans sales and purchases, leasing matters, property investments, property finance work, property developments, renewable energy projects and property disputes. Group head Emma Gray handles the full spectrum of commercial property issues with key experience in the retail and leisure sectors. The firm's recent merger with Plenderleath Runcie brought Neil Robb into the team, who has notable expertise acting for developers; Dundee-based Stuart King was also recently promoted to the partnership.

Practice head(s):Emma Gray

Other key lawyers:Neil Robb; Stuart King


'Blackadders is knowledgeable, approachable and always available to help.'

'The service provided by Blackadders is always professional, highly competent, timely and efficient. Each team member in the commercial property department is very approachable and offers clear and reliable advice, guidance and support which is well communicated and expertly executed.'

'Emma Gray is very knowledgeable and experienced when it comes to dealing with property attractions. She is very good at cutting through issues, identifying key risks and giving guidance where required.'

'Emma Gray is highly professional and knowledgeable. She has excellent awareness and a helpful, friendly and understanding approach. She is extremely pro-active throughout any transaction and I would not hesitate to recommend her and the Blackadders team to both small and large clients alike.'

Key Clients

James Hay Pension Trustees Limited

Salvation Army Trading Company Limited

Morris Leslie Group

Hotel Management International Limited

A & J Stephen Limited

Tayforth Properties

Salvation Army Trustee Company

Work highlights

  • Advised Tayforth Properties on the redevelopment of a listed building and former warehouse including handling the related head lease, occupational lease and co-working agreements.
  • Assisting with the acquisition of the entire share capital of Redwood Pubs, which owns and leases eight public houses operated in Dundee and a residential property portfolio

The main strengths of Ledingham Chalmers LLP's Aberdeen-based real estate team include development work, commercial leasings, residential development acquisitions and disposals, and secured funding issues. The housebuilding sub-group is led by Alan Michie, while Alasdair Maclure leads the commercial leasing unit. Also notable are practice head Stephen Morrice and John Mitchell, who acts for landlords and tenants on the letting of office, retail and industrial premises.

Practice head(s):Stephen Morrice

Other key lawyers:Alan Michie; Alasdair Maclure; John Mitchell

Key Clients

Kirkwood Homes Limited


Anderson Anderson & Brown LLP

Gilcomston Investments Limited

Bancon Homes Limited

Veitchi Homes Limited

Carlton Rock Limited

Skene Group Limited

Work highlights

  • Handled the acquisition of a 15 unit development site at Viewhill, Culloden for Kirkwood Homes.
  • Assisted Carlton Rock with the sale of an industrial unit at Blackness Road, Aberdeen to Northwards.

Stronachs LLP acts for a diverse range of clients in the private and public sectors across Scotland including national and international entities, private individuals and partnerships, oil and gas companies, public sector bodies, developers and investors. Practice head Duncan Campbell assists many public sector organisations and also handles the commercial property requirements of multiple oil and gas clients. Ross Linn is the main name to note in Inverness.

Practice head(s):Duncan Campbell

Other key lawyers:Emma Stephen; Liz Stewart; Ross Linn


'The Stronachs commercial team consistently delivers an exceptional level of service. Transactions are carried out in an efficient and diligent manner.'

'Clients rate the team particularly highly for complex land acquisition transactions in which it consistently excels.'

'Emma Stephen is a strong communicator with an expansive knowledge of property and land transactions. Emma is always quick to respond to requests in a timely manner. She consistently delivers solid advice and positive outcomes.'

Key Clients

Global Energy Group

Strathdee Properties Limited

Peterson (United Kingdom) Limited

Spex Services Limited

Xodus Group Limited

Weatherford U.K. Limited

DOF Subsea UK Limited

Aberdein Considine’s commercial property team advises Scottish clients from its key bases in Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow. The Aberdeen-based group has a particular strength in the oil and gas and marine industries; the arrival of practice head Paul Jennings in the Glasgow office has also substantially expanded the group's retail expertise. Ritchie Whyte is the key contact in the Aberdeen office and Anthony Quin is based in Stirling.

Practice head(s):Paul Jennings

Other key lawyers:Ritchie Whyte; Anthony Quin

Key Clients

Trump International

Ashfield District Council

West Coast Estates

Greggs plc

Currie European Limited


Rentokil plc

Jupiter Hotels

Mack Residential Group

Svenska Handelsbanken

Work highlights

  • Acting for Trump International Golf Club Scotland on a proposed 550 unit village development with additional leisure, commercial and retail premises.
  • Handling the refinancing of developments across Aberdeenshire and Moray for Svenska Handlesbanken including equity release to assist with purchase and development funding.
  • Handled the sale of an industrial unit at Stoneywood Park, Aberdeen for Caprock.
  • Advising S Lee on the lease of Unit 5 Beach Esplanade, Aberdeen for the expansion of the client's restaurant portfolio.

CMS' Paul Carter has a particularly strong track record in acting for clients including Aberdeen Asset Management, Credit Suisse and Union Investments on investment and development transactions. The team also has significant capabilities in the commercial leasing space, where it represents clients including Lloyds Register, Statoil and Hunting Energy Group.

Practice head(s):Paul Carter

Other key lawyers:Carol Nisbet

The Scottish commercial property team at Dentons fields a dedicated housebuilding unit, which advises major clients on project work, strategic options, consortium agreements, joint ventures and site acquisitions. Also notable is the group's strength in the renewable energy space, where practice head David Rose and members of the banking, corporate and real estate departments assist clients with acquisitions and disposals, leasings and joint venture arrangements.

Practice head(s):David Rose


'Dentons' partners are helpful, professional, proactive and reactive where appropriate and necessary.'

'David Rose is exceptional. He is helpful, patient and diligent in securing a site option agreement, even with a difficult client.'

Key Clients

Persimmon Homes Limited

PAL Trustees Limited

RQ Capital Limited

Agile Energy Recovery Limited

Santander UK plc

Bank of Scotland plc

Hughes Electrical Limited

Muirden Energy LLP

Kilmac Properties Limited

Duncan Farms

Barclays Bank UK plc

Work highlights

  • Advised Persimmon Homes on its purchase of a site at Moodiesburn, Lanarkshire for the development of 62 residential units.
  • Instructed by Speirs Wharf Development and RQ Capital to handle the sale of a development site in the West End of Glasgow.
  • Advised Santander UK on the phased acquisition of a site at Portstown, Inverurie.

Outside of the Central Belt, Harper Macleod LLP operates from its key bases in Inverness, Thurso and Lerwick. The team advises on rural, crofting and agricultural law through Calum MacLeod, who is based in Inverness and is a member of the energy and natural resources group. Other key practitioners include Ross Thomson, who handles property finance work; and department head John Meehan, who sits in the Glasgow office.

Practice head(s):John Meehan

Other key lawyers:Calum MacLeod; Ross Thomson


'Harper MacLeod's real estate team demonstrates a very positive and inclusive culture as well as a desire to do the best for its clients. When compared to many other firms, it demonstrates a high level of capabilities and resources to assist any proposal.'

'Harper Macleod is extremely professional and knowledgeable, and is known for its excellent customer service.'

'Harper MacLeod's partners are very proactive, take commercial decisions and work to tight timelines to ensure any legal tasks are delivered on time.'

Key Clients

G & A Barnie

Tulloch Homes Group

Hazledene Group

James Keiller

Meallmore Limited

Boyd Brothers Limited

Fairways Inverness Limited

Home Farms Partnership

TW Townsley Properties Ltd

DM PM Services Limited

Jacobite Cruises Limited

Parkland Developments Limited

Cromarty Firth Port Authority

James Evans & Sons Limited

Rural Projects & Developments Limited

Gael Force Engineering Group

Paterson Estates Limited

Rathven Investments Limited

Frankie & Lolas Limited

Independent Vetcare Limited

Britannia Hotels Limited


Clydesdale Bank Plc


Bank of Scotland Plc

St Andrews University

Wallets Marts Plc

Work highlights

  • Acted for Parklands Developments on its purchase of a development site in Inverness from Tulloch Homes for the development of a new care home.
  • Acting for Jacobite Cruises on its new 50 year lease from Dochfour Estate of Dochgarroch Hall and neighbouring land as part of the proposed development of a new visitor centre and tourist hub.
  • Advising the Cromarty Firth Port Authority on the negotiation of the terms of a proposed lease with Moray Offshore Windfarm (East) regarding the use of quayside, laydown and office facilities at the Port of Cromarty Firth.

MacRoberts LLP fields a real estate team that covers all aspects of commercial property work across Scotland. Practice head David Milne has a particular focus on commercial developments, investment deals and real estate finance work.

Practice head(s):David Milne

Key Clients

Unicorn Properties

Cullross Limited

Braemore Estates

James Hay Pension Trustees

Thomas Johnstone Ltd

Ceres Holographics Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted for West Developments on its purchase of listed hotel building located on the boundary of a golf course in Angus.
  • Advising 5SR Property Holdings on the exchange of neighbouring and contiguous commercial plots for the development of 48 commercial units.
  • Assisting Eastacre with the sale of an £8m residential development on the exclusive Scores at St Andrews.

Thorntons Law LLP’s commercial property team includes specialists in construction and project management issues. The group assists clients across the UK from its offices in Tayside, Fife, Angus, Edinburgh and Perth. With a notably strong presence in the education and healthcare sectors, the practice has recently expanded its work in the leisure and hospitality space, handling multiple hotel acquisitions. Housebuilding expert Graham Wilson and practice head Ewan Miller are the key names to note in Dundee.

Practice head(s):Ewan Miller

Other key lawyers:Graham Wilson

Key Clients

Leopard Guernsey RSC Witham Penzance Propco Limited

Lethendy Estates Limited

Schuh Limited

The Firm of Messrs Donald Laird

Robert Adam and Sons

Angus Housing Association

Hillcrest Housing Association Ltd

Caledonia Housing Association Ltd

An East Coast Port Authority

Work highlights

  • Instructed by Angus Housing Association to handle the purchase of land in three phases with separate building contracts for each phase from a national house builder for 54 new build affordable housing units on a greenfield site in Monifieth.
  • Assisting Hillcrest Housing Association with the purchase of a brownfield site in Aberdeen from a national house builder for the construction of 130 new affordable housing units.
  • Handled lease work for an East coast port authority as landlord to a distribution company.

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