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At CMS, Martin McKervey and Fraser Askham jointly lead the department; McKervey is noted for his contentious expertise and knowledge of the regional infrastructure market and Askham focuses on dispute resolution, transactional matters and project advisory work. The team regularly handles infrastructure and construction projects in the development, regeneration, energy, renewables and waste sectors; recent examples include advising Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council on the procurement of a development management organisation for the Glass Works retail and leisure development and acting for Hammerson and Aberdeen Standard Life on the implementation of a mixed-use regeneration scheme. Other mandates include defending Daventry District Council in multi-party litigation proceedings in the High Court relating to a seven-year waste management and recycling services agreement, acting for Biffa Waste Services in a High Court dispute against MW High Tech Projects relating to defects and termination issues linked to its new energy-from-waste plant in Horsham, and representing Sibleco in a judicial review of a decision by the Devon County Council to grant planning permission for a new highway infrastructure that would’ve affected mineral resources. Amey Communities, New Era Development and Henry Boot are also clients. Chris Bowes is the key contact for planning work.

Key names in DLA Piper UK LLP’s Leeds team includes Robert Smith, who focuses on the transport sector; Allison Page, who specialises in highways and street lighting projects; Natasha Luther-Jones, who leads the firm’s renewable energy group and Andrew Batterton, who heads the development and infrastructure planning teams. Ian Doig in Sheffield and legal director Ben Peecock are the main contacts for construction and engineering matters. The department covers infrastructure comprehensively covering projects, finance, litigation, regulatory advice, restructurings, competition work, planning, construction and environmental issues. Recent highlights include advising Merseytravel on the construction elements of its new depot facilities on the Merseyrail network, assisting Highways England with its procurement of the Lower Thames Crossing Project, and acting for Gazprom Energoholding on the design, construction and commissioning of a power plant and pipeline for the supply of LNG. The team also advised the Department for Transport on the development of the Southern Eastern rail franchise and is acting for Tyne and Wear Passenger Transport Executive on the MetroFutures project including the replacement of existing rolling stock.

Pinsent Masons LLP’s ‘absolutely brilliant’ practice is ‘incredibly punctual, knowledgeable and commercial’ and ‘approaches every project with the aim of getting the best possible outcome for its clients and won’t let anything get in its way’. ‘Rain maker’ Kate Orviss is the key name for healthcare projects and ‘is a strong communicator who can put anyone at ease’; she has experience in PFI and PPP mandates and social infrastructure projects. John Bruce handles complex infrastructure and energy projects at a national and international level with particular experience in the energy-from-waste sector, Melanie Grimmitt focuses on energy projects, Stacey Collins is a construction and engineering expert and senior associate Gemma Wilson specialises in PPP work. Recent highlights include advising on the implementation of the Indo UK Institute of Health Programme, assisting the University of Essex with its procurement of a student accommodation development and acting for BH Energygap on its delivery of a thermal treatment plant in Walsall.

Key figures at Squire Patton Boggs include James Duckworth, Matthew Mulqueen, Richard Glover and David Hardy; Duckworth divides his time between Leeds and Dubai while Mulqueen is based in the firm’s Leeds, London and Houston offices. Duckworth regularly acts for clients in the energy, waste, transport and healthcare sectors; his recent work includes advising a developer on the development of an urban mixed-use development in a GCC capital city and assisting a GCC government with the structuring and financing of an extension to a metro network. Mulqueen focuses on international infrastructure and energy projects, and Glover and Hardy are key names for planning-related mandates; Glover acted for SP Manweb on the planning elements of its construction of an overhead power line in North Shropshire. New clients for the department include Alkane Energy, Egdon Resources, Lincolnshire County Council and The Energy Networks Association.

Walker Morris LLP’s ‘in-depth knowledge of the legal issues at hand makes it incredibly commercial’ and its ‘thorough, approachable and practical team is a clear choice for clients’. David Kilduff leads the group and clients also praise the ‘excellent’ Ben Sheppard; Kilduff handles infrastructure and public sector projects and Sheppard is a key name for energy-from-waste matters. Recent mandates include advising Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council on The Glass Works Scheme, which is a two stage urban regeneration project; acting for Watford Health Campus Partnership on a scheme of commercial units, residential houses and the related infrastructure, and assisting Abu Dhabi United Group with the New Islington mixed-use regeneration in Manchester. Construction expert Jules Harbage is ‘very impressive and able to communicate in a straightforward and understandable way’ and Gwendoline Davies handles contentious matters. Director Victoria Bradley joined from Addleshaw Goddard.

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