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Work 01223 461155
Fax 01223 316511
133155 CAMBRIDGE 8

James Simpson

Work 01223 461155

Work Department

Real Estate


Partner in the real estate team in Cambridge dealing with a wide range of matters including development, investment, landlord and tenant, and funding work. James has particular experience of site assembly, collaboration agreements, promotion agreements, options and pre-let agreements.


Frere Cholmeley Bischoff 1994-96; qualified 1996; Harbottle & Lewis 1996-2000; Hewitsons 2000 to date; made partner 2004.


Law Society.


Lancing College; University College London (BSc Hons 2(1)); College of Law, London (CPE; LPC).


All sports (both watching and playing), cinema and theatre.

East Anglia: Finance

Banking and finance

Within: Banking and finance

Hewitsons has 'a responsive team with decent strength in depth'. The firm's practice spans its entire office network and is led from Northampton by Neil Harpham, but the Cambridge office has significant expertise in the form of corporate partner James Lawrence, commercial real estate partner James Simpson and residential property partner Tim Middleton. The firm handles a broad range of secured lending work, particularly in deals in which property is used as security, as well as acquisition finance and debt funding transactions for SMEs. Among its lender clients are domestic banks, multi-national companies and private investors, and it also acts for numerous borrowers. It is on the panels of Santander UK, Lloyds Bank and Svenska Handelsbanken. A highlight from 2017 was its work for both the lender and the borrower in a multimillion-pound mortgage deal secured against a large portfolio of residential properties.

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East Anglia: Public sector


Within: Education

Hewitsons is 'overall a very good firm - its knowledge of the education and charity sectors is very good'. One client remarks that the firm 'offers a very thorough and comprehensive service that we value greatly'. It has a diverse client base consisting of schools and further or higher education institutions, to which it provides expertise in real estate and construction projects, freedom of information and data protection issues, academy and independent school restructuring, commercial matters and employment law. Practice head Chris Knight now works from the Northampton office but the firm retains highly recommended practitioners in the Cambridge office such as 'very thorough and knowledgeable' senior solicitor Martyn Robinson. Robinson acted with Knight for a multi-academy trust on a sponsor licence to allow access to students from outside the European Economic Area. Clients also recommend property partners James Simpson and Susanne Hinde for their 'prompt responses, pragmatic and commercial advice with deep specialist expertise'.

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East Anglia: Real estate

Commercial property: Cambridge

Within: Leading individuals

James Simpson - Hewitsons

Within: Commercial property: Cambridge

At Hewitsons¬†‚Äėthe level of service is good‚Äė and the ‚Äėuser-friendly, sound and practical team has an excellent knowledge base and is both quick to respond and comprehensive in its protection of clients‚Äô interests'. One client describes it as¬†‚Äėthe best all round local firm for those dealing in property and development'. The firm has a long-established and respected commercial property practice that has recognised expertise in¬†site acquisitions and disposals, strategic land transactions, development projects and property asset management across East Anglia and further afield. Its client base includes standout names such as¬†the Homes and Communities Agency, Turnstone Estates and Hill Residential Limited, and the firm receives regular instructions from¬†technology, biotechnology and life sciences companies based in Cambridge, as well as from numerous Oxbridge Colleges.¬†James Simpson¬†leads the Cambridge real estate practice and is ‚Äėpragmatic - he has no ego to fuel'. He handled several joint venture agreements for Hill Residential last year, and also advised it on the University of Cambridge‚Äôs North West Cambridge development site, which has a development value of ¬£150m. The project will create¬†a new mixed academic and urban community on the¬†140-hectare site, which currently contains a mix of farmland and University buildings.¬†Susanne Hinde, who handles property investment and landlord/tenant matters,¬†is ‚Äėin tune with clients‚Äô requirements and always approachable'. Partner¬†Graeme Sampson, senior associate¬†Ceri Riddell¬†and associate¬†Michael Russell¬†are also recommended.¬†Martin Smith¬†joined¬†Maples Teesdale LLP.

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