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Mills & Reeve LLP

Work 0344 880 2666
122891 CAMBRIDGE 4

Beverley Firth

Work 01223 222235
Mills & Reeve LLP

Work Department

Real estate planning.


Beverley‚Äôs recent work includes advising Urban&Civic, the owners and developers of Alconbury Weald, in connection with the planning application for its development. In 2011, Alconbury Weald was selected to become one of the government‚Äôs coveted Enterprise Zones and the project as a whole plans to create 8,000 jobs and 5,000 new homes over the next 25 years. Initially Beverley advised on planning strategy and provided a legal review of key application materials, including an extensive environmental statement, and on community infrastructure levy issues. Subsequently, Beverley has advised this client throughout the planning application processes and on the section 106 agreement and planning conditions. The section 106 has been negotiated using bespoke and novel drafting in order to maintain flexibility throughout the development and to aid marketing and disposals. Beverley has acted for BT and Aviva Investors in connection with their planning application to develop the Rugby Radio Station site ‚Äď a planned expansion of Rugby. She has acted for the developers of CB1 in Cambridge. This is a mixed use scheme which is regenerating the railway station area of Cambridge. In relation to the same site, Beverley has advised a developer client on a number of joined appeals relating to the refusal of reserved matters and consent for demolition of existing properties contrary to officer advice (with a successful costs application). Beverley has acted for O&H, the developers of Hampton, the southern expansion of Peterborough. This has involved dealing with numerous variations to the original outline planning consents, to update these following viability reviews and changes in requirements, and handling a full range of planning enquiries, additional and supplemental planning consents and addressing issues arising from a phased disposal programme. Beverley has acted for the Ministry of Defence (MOD) in the section 106 agreement to release the planning permission for the redevelopment of Deepcut Barracks in Surrey. Beverley continues to work for Addenbrookes NHS Trust on planning matters relating to its ‚Äė2020 vision‚Äô, which involves a major expansion into the Cambridge Green Belt Advising and NHS Trust on the redevelopment of two previous hospital sites to provide over 300 dwellings, land for retail and community uses and public open space.


Trainee solicitor Newcastle City Council 1979-81; solicitor Langbaurgh Borough Council 1981-83; solicitor Newcastle City Council 1983-85; solicitor North Hertfordshire District Council 1985-86; assistant legal director South Cambridgeshire District Council 1986-89; partner Mills & Reeve 1989.


University of Newcastle upon Tyne (LLB).

East Anglia: Real estate

Commercial property: Cambridge

Within: Commercial property: Cambridge

Mills & Reeve LLP‚Äės has ‚Äėcommercial and responsive lawyers‚Äô that¬†represent 'good value for money in relation to London-based practices'. Planning partner¬†Beverley Firth¬†is national head of the firm‚Äôs real estate practice, which has an extremely talented bench. 'Strong property partner'¬†Christine de Ferrars Green¬†is ‚Äėalways available to try and help manage her team and assist with all matters‚Äė.¬†Nick Finlayson-Brown¬†has more than 20 years' experience in real estate matters and his role as head of the firm's China team sees him handle many cross-border property matters. He is 'entirely commercial in his approach and provides excellent service and advice'. Partner¬†Charles Staveley¬†leads the firm's real estate investment sector group, which advises institutional pension funds, management houses, property companies, onshore and offshore investors. He assisted HPG Gonville Ltd with the ¬£6.5m purchase of properties and their lease back to Cambridge Education Group.¬†Vincenzo Maggio¬†focuses on investment work and landlord and tenant matters with an emphasis on science parks. He acted for Babraham Institute on a review of its multimillion-pound portfolio. Also recommended are¬†Michelle Cookson, who specialises in complex investment and development projects; real estate finance specialist¬†Tim Allsop, who is¬†is ‚Äėexcellent ‚Äď detailed, commercial and very responsive on more complicated matters‚Äė; and senior associate¬†Tom Nash, who¬†is praised for ‚Äėhis clarity of thought, expression and delivery, which are invaluable‚Äė.

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Within: Leading individuals

Beverley Firth - Mills & Reeve LLP

Within: Planning

Mills & Reeve LLP is 'not just cost-efficient compared to London firms, it operates at the same level in terms of quality'. The firm is among the leading national firms for real estate development work, and its work includes not only on some of the largest projects in East Anglia, but also major projects across the UK and overseas. The vasty experienced Peter Seaborn is head of the planning department and he specialises in the promotion of complex planning and compulsory purchase projects including residential led strategic land schemes, new settlements, urban extensions and town centre regeneration projects. He advised Marshall Group Properties on the promotion of an urban extension to Cambridge that comprises 1,200 new homes, as well as commercial and community developments. Senior associate Howard Felstead played a key role in that deal. Head of the firm's real estate group Beverley Firth is 'an exceptional lawyer, technically sound, incredibly proficient and persuasive; she is able to find solutions that work for everyone', according to one client who adds that 'she is the best planning lawyer I have ever come across'. She worked with Seaborn to advise South Kesteven District Council on the determination of a significant retail planning application for a designer outlet village near Grantham. She also assisted Urban&Civic with its 9,000-home Waterbeach development built on land owned by the Ministry of Defence. The firm's stellar team includes senior associate Saskia Molekamp and associate Jack Robinson.

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London: Real estate

Commercial property

Within: Commercial property

Mills & Reeve LLP advises development vehicles, investors and landowners in residential development projects, and investment mandates involving single assets and complex property portfolios. In the development space, Christine de Ferrars Green is advising O&H Properties on the development of an urban extension to Peterborough, which aims to deliver 13,000 new homes. Similarly, Carina Cobbold is acting for Sue Developments in relation to a sustainable urban extension at Houlton, Rugby, and Caroline Dean advised a group of landowners on land sales for a residential development ion Norfolk. Investment highlights have included Orla O’Sullivan assisting Fidelity UK Real Estate Fund with the £28.5m sale of a long leasehold to a subsidiary of a newly formed REIT, and Charles Staveley acting for Pandox in relation to the property due diligence and post-deal structuring of its £800m acquisition of Jurys Inn’s hotel chain. Beverley Firth acts as national head of real estate, and Dominic Hodern heads the real estate asset management group. Rachel Pitman and Mike Edge joined the team from Pinsent Masons LLP; Pitman has experience in a range of investment and development work, while Edge specialises in regeneration projects.

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