Banking and finance in East Midlands

Browne Jacobson LLP

Browne Jacobson LLP provides market-leading advice across all major types of financing work, though the team has particular expertise in asset-based lending matters, real estate financings, private equity work and financings relating to the health sector. The group also has strong expertise in restructuring and refinancing issues, regularly assisting with pre-pack insolvency transactions. Nottingham practice head Shaun McCabe 'stands out from the crowd' in the East Midlands market and advises private equity houses on cross-border financings. Paul Ray leads the national banking team across the Birmingham, Nottingham and Manchester offices, and Mark Lewis leads the property finance group.

Practice head(s):

Paul Ray; Shaun McCabe

Other key lawyers:

Mark Lewis; James Busby


‘Personable and always willing to provide ad-hoc advice, the team provide legal advice in an extremely commercial manner which makes them the go to firm in the area.’

‘Shaun McCabe stands out from the crowd through his commerciality, where some partners will sometimes sit on the fence, Shaun will guide and is an expert in finding solutions to get deals over the line. James Busby is a really credible associate – over the last few years he has taken the lead on a number of transactions under Shaun’s oversight, and shows many of the same admirable traits – he provides excellent advice without losing sight of the getting the deal done.’

‘I have dealt with them for many years and have received consistently excellent service over that period. They have a real strength in depth to their Banking and Corporate teams and are extremely focused on client management with strong commercial negotiating skills.’

‘Browne Jacobson’s various practices are incredibly well integrated and client focused, and so their Banking Team can swoop in and add value when we need them. Led by Shaun McCabe, the team provide reliable, commercial advice incredibly quickly.’

‘I particularly value Shaun McCabe as a trusted partner and business adviser. His work ethic and availability is extraordinary. Earlier this year I woke early pondering an issue so mailed him to get it off my chest. He had provided a thoughtful, thorough reply by 6:30am and nailed the follow-on by 7 am. Quite incredible.’

Key clients

HSBC UK Bank plc

National Westminster Bank plc

Investec Bank plc

Clydesdale Bank plc (CYB)

Northedge Capital

Shawbrook Bank Limited

Belvoir Lettings plc

Wise Living/Shepherd Direct



Santander UK plc

Homes England

Work highlights

  • Advising Shawbrook on its ABL line into United Tooling Solutions Limited.
  • Advised FSI in connection with its successful acquisition of certain EfW assets from SSE plc.
  • Acted for Northedge on the disposal of the entire issued share capital of Bridge Farm group to Sundial UK Limited.

Freeths LLP

Freeths LLP' banking team has notable strength across the board, and is particularly highly valued for its expertise in advising funders in the healthcare sector and acting for real estate funds and overseas banks. The Nottingham office fields national banking lead Chris Freeston; a specialist in project and real estate finance matters, Freeston frequently works with non-bank lenders on complex transactions. Many of the firm's bank clients work closely with John Heaphy, who advises on corporate lending and acquisition finance mandates. Katie Hillier is recommended for real estate investment and development finance issues.

Practice head(s):

Chris Freeston

Other key lawyers:

John Heaphy; Katie Hillier; Gary Richardson


‘Deep technical knowledge complimented by commercial instinct. Act with ease on multi-layer structured finance including senior, junior, mezz, pref equity, equity, deep discounted securities.’

‘Chris Freeston – the best all round solicitor in banking, deep technical understanding with instinctive commercial acumen.’

‘Professional, reliable and knowledgeable team. Proactive team and first class for professionalism and advice.’

‘Good relationships have been built between ourselves and Freeths. We know we can rely on their expertise.’

Key clients

Allied Irish Bank


Lloyds Banking Group (Including Lloyds Development Capital)

Clydesdale Bank / Yorkshire Bank

Alhi United Bank

Redwood Bank

Cambridge & Counties Bank

Frontier Development Capital

Icg Longbow


Work highlights

  • Advising Reflex Group Limited on a £47.5m ABL facility with ABN AMRO.
  • Advising Redwood Bank Limited on over 50 transactions and preparing standard form finance documents.

Gateley Plc

The 'very responsive, pro-active and helpful' group at Gateley Plc is widely respected for its activity in the East Midlands market, where it advises both banks and lenders on a range of transactions. The team also has notable expertise in other niche areas including asset finance work, consumer credit issues and asset-based lending matters. Anna Mayfield, in addition to leading the national banking team from Nottingham, has experience in funding transactions in the higher education and healthcare sectors. Associate Megan Kirby regularly assists Mayfield with advising high street banks on loans to businesses.

Practice head(s):

Anna Mayfield

Other key lawyers:

Megan Kirby


‘The banking team are very responsive, pro-active and helpful. ’

‘Anna Mayfield and Megan Kirby are both very responsive and keep the transaction moving.’

‘Great understanding of the business and the people within, going the extra mile to know what matters in our business. Excellent legal counsel in all aspects coordinated through a well organised and managed Managing Partner. Availability is excellent, day and night, seven days per week.’

‘Understanding of our business and key individuals within. Feel the relationship is as strong as if had internal counsel. Coordination via a Managing Partner is excellent, but all contacts are always fully informed and current on legal matters/projects we working on.’

‘No-nonsense approach; ability to work effectively in a team with in-house counsel clients.’

Key clients

Lloyds Bank Plc

United Tooling Solutions

HSBC UK Bank plc

BGF Investments

Clydesdale Yorkshire Bank

Lloyds Development Capital

Shard Credit Partners

Maven Debt Finance

The Royal Bank of Scotland plc/ National Westminster Bank plc

Leumi ABL Limited

Santander UK plc

Work highlights

  • Acted for United Tooling Solutions on obtaining finance from Shawbrook Bank to fund three acquisitions.
  • Acted for Marlborough Property Co Limited on the refinancing of its large property portfolio with Handelsbanken.
  • Acted for HSBC UK Bank plc on amendments to term and revolving facilities to a private equity backed group operating residential care homes in England.

Geldards LLP

Geldards LLP houses an extensive range of expertise within its banking team and is able to advise lender banks as well as borrower companies and individuals on refinancings, real estate finance work and management buy outs, particularly in the health and franchising sectors. Public sector financing work is one of the firm's niche areas of knowledge; the team, led by Jenny Chatten and David Watson, work with key local clients including Derby City Council and Nottinghamshire Country Council on transactions of significant importance to the development of the local area.

Practice head(s):

Jenny Chatten; David Watson

Other key lawyers:

Simon Davers


‘They simply deliver. No drama, no fuss, they know what they are doing. I’ve never had any concerns about their billing. In commercial terms they give value for money. They are really easy to work with.’

Key clients

M J Birtwistle & Co


Lloyds Bank PLC

Loscoe Chilled Foods Limited


Nottinghamshire County Council

Newark & Sherwood District Council

Derby City Council

Work highlights

  • Advised Gellaw Newco 204 Limited, owner of Pride Park Stadium, on its loan from MSD UK Holdings Limited.
  • Advised Lloyds Bank Plc on a multimillion-pound refinancing involving a large security net and a large property portfolio.
  • Advised a food and hospitality company on a CLBILS loan in light of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Howes Percival LLP

With offices in Leicester and Northampton, Howes Percival LLP has a strong presence in the region. The team, which works closely with the firm's Milton Keynes office, is highly capable in acquisition finance and real estate finance transactions, advising UK clearing banks, private banks and institutional investors. Haydon Simmonds leads the practice and handles leveraged and acquisition financing transactions for various lenders, often with a cross-border element. Lucy Lord is the key contact for real estate financing work and acts for a number of developers.

Practice head(s):

Haydon Simmonds

Other key lawyers:

Lucy Lord; Harriet Rogers


‘HP are highly visible as a Team and regular make sure that they are actively talking to the Professional Community. They build up an excellent rapport and are seen as a ‘go to firm’. Large, commercial and approachable Team.’

‘Great collaboration between areas and always available / approachable. The culture at HP is very similar to how we work with a real team ethos, and everyone is treated with equal respect regardless of seniority.’

‘The banking and finance team at Howes Percival stand out from other firms in the region due to their market presence and visibility of key individuals. The team interacts seamlessly with their corporate M&A colleagues and for the East Midlands and wider region offer a sizeable and joined up presence, ideal for lower-mid and mid-market deals. Haydon Simmonds is a key part of the deal-making scene in the Leicester market in particular, since he joined the firm.’

‘Haydon Simmonds offers a highly responsive, hard-working, professional and friendly attitude which makes him a great lawyer to work with.’

‘Howes Percival are a forward thinking and client centric firm, that have a depth of experience across various legal disciplines.’

‘Their Banking Partner, Haydon Simmonds, is most helpful and is always willing to provide help and guidance on more generic legal matters.’

Key clients

HSBC UK Bank plc

National Westminster Bank plc

Santander UK Plc

Handelsbanken Plc

RQ Capital Limited

Barclays Bank plc

Lloyds Bank plc

Bank of Scotland plc

Cambridge and Counties Bank plc

Work highlights

  • Advised a national trade association on a complex £100m RCF.
  • Advised a leading financial services business on a complex, cross-border, multi-lender restructuring and refinancing.
  • Advised Santander UK on a CLBILS RCF provided to the UK division of a European multinational.

Nelsons Solicitors Limited

Nelsons Solicitors Limited's team, which spans its Nottingham, Leicester and Derby offices, is able to advise on a broad range of financing transactions; acquisition financings, bridge loans, refinancings and development funding issues were key areas of activity for the team in 2020. David Kaplan and Chris Rees lead the team; the former regularly acts for banks on asset-based lending transactions, while the latter is instructed by private lenders to assist with syndicated loan arrangements in the property and development sectors.

Practice head(s):

David Kaplan; Chris Rees

Other key lawyers:

Ziaur Rahman; James Coningsby


‘All staff are accessible even the most senior partner.’

‘Chris Rees is so approachable. Even on areas that are not his specialist subjects he will draft in appropriate support where needed.’

‘Chris Rees: Extremely diligent and experienced lawyer that focuses on the client’s objectives but has a measured appreciation of risk and deal dynamics. Provides our team “magic-circle” level of service and guidance and is available to meet our ever increasing deal flow and complexities of financing and investment structures.’

‘David Kaplan was able to provide an expert legal view in a commercial, pragmatic and easily understood way. This meant it was easy to trust his advice, knowing it was in the best interest of the company to raise queries on the relevant and important parts of the banking arrangement we were entering into, yet avoid spending time (and costs) on the less consequential areas.’

‘Solution orientated, can-do attitude, collaborative approach, effective team players, transparent billing, willingness to go the extra-mile.’

Ziaur Rahman: Solution oriented attitude and provides our team with a superb level of service and legal guidance. There have been a number of time sensitive matters where Ziaur has gone the extra miles to get our deals across the line.’

Key clients

National Westminster Bank PLC

The Royal Bank of Scotland

Svenska Handelsbanken

Prime Life Limited

Rushcliffe Care Limited

Cambridge & Counties Bank Limited

4Syte Structured Finance Limited

Nucleus Commercial Finance Limited

Nucleus Property Finance Limited

Nucleus Cash Flow Finance Limited

Nucleus Business Cash Advance Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Rushcliffe Care (a large operator of residential and nursing care homes) on its refinancing and increase of facilities with Lloyds Bank plc.
  • Drafted Nucleus Cash Flow Finance Limited’s CBILS loan facility and ancillary documents.
  • Advised Aimrok Holdings Limited on development finance provided by Maslow Capital and Leicester City Council.