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Clarke Willmott LLP

Work 0345 209 1000
Fax 0345 209 2003

South East: Corporate and commercial

Corporate and Commercial: Hampshire
Corporate and Commercial: Hampshire - ranked: tier 3

Clarke Willmott LLP

Clarke Willmott LLP works on a steady flow of management buyout deals involving private equity-backed entities. Its team is also increasingly sought out in cross-jurisdictional transactions. Richard Swain has a strong track record of acting for clients in the banking & finance and telecommunications sectors. The firm's ability to deliver full-service corporate and commercial advice is supported by expertise in ancillary areas, such as real estate, IP, and employment. Niall Murphy provides tax support to corporate clients.

Practice head(s):Kelvin Balmont

Other key lawyers:Richard Swain; Chidem Aliss; Emma Couch; Amy Kerr


'Richard Swain and Amy Kerr are both very helpful and efficient; they always meet their deadlines'.

'The team is pro-active and works towards deadline dates diligently. As a banking client, we are fully kept in the loop with regard to pending transactions and concerns as they are raised'.

'Clarke Willmott takes a balanced approach problem-solving; it looks for a solution that achieves client aims without clocking up unnecessary time in arguing over niche legal points for the sake of it'.

'The individuals I work with are always available to discuss matters or answer questions'.

Key Clients

Capital Cash

Total Rail Solutions

Eton Fire

Amiri Construction

Marindus Group

Import Services

Burgon and Ball

NetPay Solutions Group



Work highlights

  • Assisted sellers with the sale of online Islamic fashion retailer Inayah to Wed2b.
  • Assisted sellers with the multi-million pound sale of Total Rail Solutions through a private equity-based management buy-out.
  • Advised Orvis on a corporate reorganisation.
  • Assisted sellers with the sale of Eton Fire to venture capital-backed company Churches Fire Security.
  • Assisted sellers with the multi-million pound sale of Marindus Group to Axel Johnson International.  

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Corporate tax
Corporate tax - ranked: tier 1

Clarke Willmott LLP

Clarke Willmott LLP’s tax department has a wide range of expertise assisting clients in areas such as real estate and housing associations in addition to  corporate tax and includes related litigation. In particular, the team focuses on property structuring for the property investment market, the creation of property funds, de-enveloping issues, offshore property trading, SDLT, ATED, NRCGT and capital gains tax. Other areas of strength include the implementation of share incentive schemes and the negotiation of settling historic tax liabilities. Niall Murphy heads the practice.

Practice head(s):Niall Murphy


'They have been very good , responsive and fair.'

'Responsive, knowledgeable and practical. They do not waste time with unnecessary complexity.'

'Commonsense is applied and they get to the point quickly with a deep knowledge of their subject areas.'

'Niall Murphy is the most practical and down-to-earth lawyer I have met.'

Key Clients

Onecom Group Limited

Addnode Group AB

Aquis Exchange Plc

Oerlikon Drive Systems GbmH, Pfaffikon (now changed name to Graziano Fairfield AG)

Eduko Education Limited

Total Solutions (Southern) Limited t/a Total Rail Solutions

Eton Fire Limited

Marindus Group Limited

Import Services Limited

Burgon & Ball Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted for longstanding client Addnode (a Swedish listed IT group and Europe’s leading provider of software and services for design and engineering) on the strategic acquisition of Cadassist Limited and D2M3 Ltd.
  • Advised Addnode on the acquisition of Strategic Simulation & Analysis Limited (SSA) and Simuleon BV.
  • Advised Aquis Exchange Plc on the creation of an EMI share option scheme and unapproved share option scheme in preparation for its listing on AIM.
  • Acted for the sellers on the sale of shares of IT Group UK Limited to Blackrock Expert Services.
  • Advised the sellers on the sale of Total Rail Solutions, a private equity based management buyout.

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South East: Dispute resolution

Commercial litigation: Hampshire
Commercial litigation: Hampshire - ranked: tier 3

Clarke Willmott LLP

Clarke Willmott LLP's commercial disputes work includes complex contractual disputes, shareholder and partnership disputes, contested debt work, restrictive covenant disputes and professional negligence claims. Areas of sector expertise include retail and financial services. Greg Hughes acts for the likes of Sony, Bandai  and Wiggle. Hughes co-heads the practice with experienced solicitor advocate Owen Williams. Associate Cathy Harris is another key figure in the group.

Practice head(s):Owen Williams; Greg Hughes

Other key lawyers:Cathy Harris


'The team was friendly and truly passionate about understanding my business'.

Key Clients

Sony Europe


Bandai UK


The Student Room Group

Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)

Serocor Group

Peer 1

Onecom Group

Salhan Accountants

UK Land

Work highlights

  • Successfully acted for Sony Europe in contest contesting the wrongful seizure of the client's good by Brighton & Hove City Council from the premises of one of its franchised stores.
  • Defending Chambers Design & Build from a £50k contractual claim brought by Travis Perkins seeking payment of goods supplied on account.
  • Successfully acted for John Roffey as defendant in the strike out of a claim for the conversion of a premium Bentley car.
  • Acting for a leading British watch retailer in pursuing claims for breach of contract and breach of confidence against the client’s website provider.
  • Advising Marina Developments following the arrest of a vessel in its marina.

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South East: Finance

Banking and finance
Leading individuals

Rich Eldridge - Clarke Willmott LLP

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South East: Human resources

Employment: Hampshire
Employment: Hampshire - ranked: tier 2

Clarke Willmott LLP

Clarke Willmott LLP has an HR consultancy offering, which draws on the expertise of both lawyers and senior HR consultants. Elsewhere, its employment team has a specialist focus on tribunal work, and it also has a strong track record of advising on restructurings and obligations under TUPE. Partner and barrister Mark Long, who heads up the practice, has TUPE experience in relation to both public and private sector transfers. Other work arises from outsourcings, insolvency proceedings and corporate transactions.

Practice head(s):Marc Long

Other key lawyers:Nicole Adams; Emily Like


'An excellent team with a wealth of technical knowledge; always gives the right advice for the best commercial outcome'.

'Marc Long is extraordinarily talented and boasts a great breadth of legal knowledge'.

'Associate Nicole Adams delivers outstanding advice with confidence and professionalism'.

'The lawyers at Clarke Willmott are excellent; they provide advice which is straightforward and pragmatic and place a strong emphasis on making the client feel valued with the majority of advisory work getting partner input'.

'Marc Long and Nicole Adams are dependable and meticulous in their approach. Marc is extremely knowledgeable and Nicole is clearly dedicated and committed to the client'.

Key Clients

PEI Genesis UK

Onecom Group

Marsh & Parsons

Bandai UK

One Family Foundation

Huhtamaki UK

Marina Developments


Chelsea and Westminster Swimming Club

Work highlights

  • Assisted a large social housing client with undertaking an employment due diligence exercise in respect of another housing trust with which the client was considering a merger.
  • Advised a leading estate agent on the offer of a settlement agreement to a senior employee on maternity leave who was considering issuing a grievance regarding a prospective restructure and the impact this would have on her role.
  • Represented a leading swimming club in relation to claims of unfair dismissal, victimisation, harassment, whistleblowing, equal pay and unpaid holiday pay brought by an employee, including the negotiation of a settlement agreement.
  • Advised a multinational cup manufacturer on an unfair dismissal claim issued by a former employee, who was dismissed for being under the influence of cocaine whilst at work.
  • Advised a major telecommunications provider on an issue with an employee who had been defrauding the company by claiming commission that was not due.

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South East: Real estate

Commercial property: Hampshire
Commercial property: Hampshire - ranked: tier 2

Clarke Willmott LLP

Property finance is a key area of focus at Clarke Willmott LLP, which acts for names such as Interbay Funding and Lloyds Bank Plc, among others. The firm also demonstrates strong capabilities in property investment transactions, and generates a significant amount of work from London-based clients. Elsewhere, the group is highly reputed for commercial landlord and tenant matters, and is also sought out for its development expertise. Peter Swinburn leads the team.

Practice head(s):Peter Swinburn


'Professionals make it clear what they are going to do within a defined time frame and execute accordingly'.

'If a commercial judgement has to be made during a transaction, they are able to summarise the risks to the lender and client ensuring the process moves forward'.

'It is always a joy to work with this team; they bring the fun to business while remaining focused on the end goal. The individuals are very experienced and can cut through the noise to get to the heart of the issue'.

'Peter Swinburn is totally reliable, conscientious and someone you would want to have on side when dealing with property issues and transactions. He takes great pride in his work and delivers a great service for the client'.

Key Clients

Interbay Funding

Lloyds Bank

Fat Face

New Forest District Council

Meritas Properties

Horatio Properties Limited

Marina Developments Ltd

London and Cambridge Properties Limited

Sheet Anchor Evolve Limited

Farrow & Ball Limited

The Cornish Bakery

Countryside Properties

Taylor Wimpey UK

McDermott Will & Emery UK

Isle of Wight Council

Persimmon Homes

Work highlights

  • Assisting Sheet Anchor Investments with the acquisition of an existing community center site owned by Basildon Borough Council and an adjacent library site owned by Essex County Council in the context of a significant high street regeneration scheme.
  • Assisting Fat Face with all all aspects of its property portfolio management including acquisitions, disposals and lease renewals.
  • Assisted the Isle of Wight council with acquiring a lease of commercial site comprising a number of separate buildings with the aim of  renovating and sub-letting the buildings to generate employment.
  • Assisting Interbay Funding Limited with security arrangements pertaining to their short term finance proposition and property matters therein.
  • Assisted Sheet Anchor Evolve with a complex long leasehold acquisition of part of an integrated shopping centre on the outskirts of Newcastle comprising thirty tenancies.

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Social housing
Social housing - ranked: tier 3

Clarke Willmott LLP

On the housing management front, Clarke Willmott LLP handles the full range of tenancy management issues, such as enforcement proceedings, PRS tenancies, as well as exemptions, policies and procedures, and income recovery. The firm also has a dedicated home sales team, which guides social housing clients at all stages from site acquisition to plot sales. Property litigation is another cornerstone of the work, with the firm acting for clients in cases involving contentious leasehold and development issues. Hannah Langford divides time between London and Southampton. Associate Anne Jones, who specialises in planning and highways work, is another name to note.

Practice head(s):Hannah Langford; Lindsay Felstead

Other key lawyers:Anne Jones


'The team met my request in a very timely manner and went the extra mile to do so'.

'Charlotte Westwood has advised me and guided me in various land sales and selling our garage sites at auction; Charlotte's advice on each auction was invaluable'.

Key Clients

Radian Group

Sovereign Housing Association Limited

Merlin Housing Society – part of Bromford

GreenSquare Group

Yarlington Housing Group

Saxon Weald

Westward Housing Group

Ocean Housing Group

United Communities

LiveWest Homes Limited

Moat Homes Limited

Aster Group

Raven Housing Trust

Clarion Group

Work highlights

  • Assisted Radian Group with successfully obtaining a trespass order against a food van operator leaving his van and other property on Radian’s land overnight.
  • Represented a large registered provider in a dispute, which involved obtaining a mandatory possession order against a tenant convicted of grievous bodily harm, as well as other tenancy breaches.
  • Assisted Sovereign Housing Assocation with obtaining an urgent injunction against a tenant who had made threats of violence, including threats to kill, towards neighbours and staff members.
  • Successfully defended United Communities against an unmeritorious disrepair claim from a tenant of a property acting as a litigant in person.
  • Assisted GreenSquare with preparing a number of garage sites for sale by auction. Provided advice on adverse possession, termination of leases and licenses, as well as rights of way.

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South East: TMT (technology, media and telecoms)

Intellectual property
Intellectual property - ranked: tier 2

Clarke Willmott LLP

Clarke Willmott LLP is equally adept at advising clients ranging from SME's to large multinationals. The firm's dedicated IP team prosecutes and enforces trade marks and design rights, maintaining a large EU and UK filing practice. It also handles anti-counterfeiting work, as well as its work with franchisees and franchisors involving various IP rights. Practice head Daniel Berry spearheads the work in the South East and is noted for his management of trade mark and design portfolios, as well as his litigation work.

Practice head(s):Daniel Berry

Key Clients

Association of Chartered Certified Accountants

Organix Brands Limited

Medicom Healthcare Ltd

Evac+Chair International Ltd

Mozzo Coffee Limited

OneCom Limited

Revive-A-Phone Limited

Flexipads World Class Limited and Gekatex S.A.

Thermo Fisher Scientific, Inc

Navson Limited

Work highlights

  • Managing ACCA’s trade mark portfolio, instructing agents around the world to file and oppose trade marks and bring infringement proceedings on ACCA’s behalf.
  • Acting as an in-house IP team for OneCom.
  • Acting for both group companies; Flexipads World Class and Gekatex, on trade mark issues
  • Advising Thermo Fisher Scientific in respect of UK and EU prosecution and infringement matters.
  • Handles all contentious IP matters in the UK for a global company.
Leading individuals

Daniel Berry - Clarke Willmott LLP

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Further information on Clarke Willmott LLP

Please choose from this list to view details of what we say about Clarke Willmott LLP in other jurisdictions.


Offices in London

North West

Offices in Manchester

South East

Offices in Southampton

South West

Offices in Bristol and Taunton


Offices in Cardiff

West Midlands

Offices in Birmingham

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