Water in London

Addleshaw Goddard

Addleshaw Goddard‘s team advises clients on a spectrum of water-related issues, with particular focus on Ofwat’s new project finance model, the Direct Procurement for Customers (DPC). In addition to financing expertise, the firm supports clients with M&A and regulatory issues. Team leader David Shaw is a project finance specialist and has advised major clients including Anglian Water and United Utilities on DPC projects. He is assisted in such matters by newly promoted partner Philip Dupres. Rona Bar-Isaac is a competition and regulatory specialist, handling contentious and non-contentious matters, including CMA investigations. Associate Joanne Holbrook assists with matters of environmental compliance, regulatory investigations and civil claims.

Practice head(s):

David Shaw; Rona Bar-Isaac

Other key lawyers:

Joanne Holbrook; Philip Dupres

Testimonials

‘They are very much our partner and trusted adviser, fully engaged with our debt recovery work, commercial litigation and wider business. They are our go-to firm with a deep insight into our business.’

‘Expert advice on water resource management planning, unrivalled in the industry.’

‘AG have immense gravitas when acting on our behalf, particularly with contentious matters. They really demonstrate an appreciation of the work we give them and the relationship we have. They have a wide breath of skills and knowledge so can provide a one-stop shop.’

Key clients

Affinity Water

United Utilities

Southern Water

Anglian Water

Castle Water

South East Water

Yorkshire Water

Water Resources South East

Work highlights

  • Advised United Utilities on its £1billion Haweswater Aqueduct Resilience Programme.
  • Advised Anglian Water on the first project to be formally designated a DPC.
  • Advising Water Resources South East in their collaboration, development and legal assurance of a regional resilience plan for 2024.

Baker McKenzie

The team at Baker McKenzie advises major clients on transactions and contentious matters pertaining to the water sector. It is particularly strong in the ports and cruise ports sector. The firm is able to provide assistance across the lifecycle of a project, from financing to M&A. Mike Webster specialises in advising clients on the development of major infrastructure projects. Andy Moody is well-versed in cross-border disputes. Neil Donoghue has over two decades of experience handling project development and M&A matters across borders. Senior associate Rhiannon Williams is recommended for project development.

Practice head(s):

Mike Webster; Neil Donoghue; Andy Moody

Other key lawyers:

Rhiannon Williams; Tania Arora

Testimonials

‘Strong team, attention to detail and diligence in highly complex projects.’

‘Mike Webster – strong know-how of the sector, meticulous and knows all details.’

‘Approachable, good availability, adaptable to client needs, excellent sector knowledge.’

‘Mike Webster and Rhiannon Williams are knowledgable, providing appropriate advice and support to the client circumstances.’

Key clients

Uniper Global Commodities

Fiera Infrastructure Inc.

CLDN Cobelfret: (Cobelfret NV)

CDPQ

Suez

Tailwind Energy Limited

Georgia Capital PLC and its subsidiary JSC Georgia Capital

Work highlights

  • Advising Anaklia Development Consortium on its port project in Georgia, the largest infrastructure project on the Black Sea.
  • Advising CLDN Cobelfret: (Cobelfret NV) on a number of real estate and construction projects and matters.
  • Advised Tailwind on the disposal of its entire interest in the Conwy licence and field (on the UKCS) to Eni UK.

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP‘s energy, environment and infrastructure team has a track record of advising clients on key water-related issues, ranging from project development to regulatory issues. The firm advises both domestic and international clients on a variety of complex matters and counts a number of major water companies among its clients, including Thames Water and Northumbrian Water. The team is led by Andrew Hockley, a regulation specialist who is primarily based in Sydney, and London partner Aidan Thomson, who provides advice to stakeholders in regulatory and contentious water matters. James Good is recommended for clients seeking to undertake major water infrastructure developments. James Parker specialises in regulatory and planning issues.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Hockley; Aidan Thomson

Other key lawyers:

James Good; Roger Cohen; James Parker; Alan Gutteridge

Testimonials

“Nice people who are easy to work with. They take time to understand your team and business, which means they can provide a better service.”

“James Good is always there when you need him and he has a good team under him.”

“Roger Cohen offers the best full solicitor service to major ratepayers concerned with their rateable values.”

“Roger Cohen has an excellent commercial, practical mind. He has considerable strategic and tactical acumen. His questions are usually the most penetrating.”

“The team is extremely knowledgeable and respected in this field. The lawyers have a wealth of experience and give confident and clear legal advice. I find BCLP lawyers really approachable and quick to respond too, which is appreciated with busy and fast moving projects.”

“James Parker is approachable and pragmatic, he provides clear and commercial legal advice and knows the industry extremely well. As a client he’s a pleasure to work with – he is always quick to respond and make my life easier, ensuring clear cost visibility and control.”

Key clients

Thames Water

Tideway

Port of London Authority

Northumbrian Water

Equitix Infrastructure Investments Ltd.

Work highlights

  • Advising Tideway on the development of the £4.2 billion Thames Tideway Tunnel.
  • Advising on the on the £800m bid for the United Utilities project HARP (The Haweswater Aqueduct Resilience Programme).

Gowling WLG

Gowling WLG has a strong water team representing a number of high profile clients including international water companies, government agencies and investors. Andrew Newbery heads the water practice and handles financing, project development and transactional work in regards to domestic and international matters. John Cooper heads the Public Law and Regulation team and is an expert in regulatory issues. Jonathan Brufal has extensive experience advising clients with business interests in the Middle East and Africa. He also sits on the International Desalination Association’s legal advisory board. Gareth Baker assists clients with international M&A matters and other cross-border collaborations. The team has recently been augmented by the arrival of partner Mike Stewart, who is an expert in complex international infrastructure disputes, with a particular focus on the Middle East.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Newbery; Gareth Baker; John Cooper; Jonathan Brufal

Other key lawyers:

Kieran Laird; Gordon Bell; Mike Stewart

Key clients

Almar Water

International Finance Corporation

eThkwini Municipality

AIB Group PLC

Group 42

Nova Innovation Limited

Longspur Capital

GVO

Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS)

The Water Services Regulation Authority (Ofwat)

Northern Ireland Authority for Utility Regulation (NIAUR)

Work highlights

  • Advised a consortium comprising four confidential water developers on their bid for the concession of the Glen Valley Wastewater Reclamation Project near Gaborone in Botswana.
  • Advised Ofwat, throughout the PR19 price review period on a range of public and administrative law matters and on the interpretation and application of the statutory and regulatory framework in respect of Ofwat’s draft and final determinations on the PR19 price controls.
  • Acted for Kansai Electric Corporation, a major Japanese utility based in Osaka, on its bid for the Project Lightning project. Lightning is a new underwater, subsea transmission project in Abu Dhabi with an estimated value of $3.2bn.

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP represents a number of key clients in the UK water market, handling complex, often contentious matters on behalf of water companies, regulators and investors. The firm’s broad expertise in this sector covers issues ranging from project finance to M&A work. It is increasingly involved in challenges against decisions made by Ofwat and the CMA. The team is led by Tim Briggs, a competition and regulatory specialist, and Malcolm Lombers, an M&A expert who also advises prospective investors. Tom Marshall is noted for his experience in advising clients on project development in regulated sectors. Also recommended are Kristen Roberts for debt financing and Veronica Roberts for competition questions.

Practice head(s):

Tim Briggs; Malcolm Lombers

Other key lawyers:

Tom Marshall; Kristen Roberts; Veronica Roberts

Testimonials

“A highly knowledgeable and expert water industry team, which provides us with business focused and pragmatic advice.”

Key clients

Anglian Water

Severn Trent

Tideway

Southern Water

Northumbrian Water

Thames Water

Water UK

Work highlights

  • Assisted Tideway to secure from Ofwat modifications to the revenue and incentive provisions of its licence.
  • Advised Severn Trent Water on several significant financings throughout 2021, to a total of £1.1bn.
  • Advised Severn Trent Water Ltd and Severn Trent Property Solutions in group litigation brought against all major water and sewerage companies in England and Wales.

Linklaters LLP

Linklaters LLP‘s water department is distinguished by its full service offering, providing advice in all key areas of the water sector, including M&A, finance, regulation and competition. Having been involved in the water sector since privatisation in the 1990s, the firm has a strong understanding of the sector. Julian Davies heads the water team and has expertise in financing and M&A matters. Natura Gracia, head of water regulation, specialises in competition law and has handled regulatory investigations and appeals to the CMA, including a successful price redetermination appeal in 2021 on behalf of Anglian Water and Northumbrian Water. Mark Nuttall heads the firm’s structured finance group and is an expert in infrastructure and utilities financing. Reza Taylor has acted on a number of restructuring matters and led on Anglian Water’s issuance of a sustainability-linked bond in 2021. Newly promoted counsel James McGivern is also recommended for infrastructure and utilities financing.

Practice head(s):

Julian Davies; Natura Gracia

Other key lawyers:

Mark Nuttall; Reza Taylor; James McGivern

Testimonials

“They are deeply involved in the sector and the issues.”

“Julian Davies, Mark Nuttall, Reza Taylor and James McGivern are all excellent at problem-solving – they are communicative, pragmatic and really get it.”

“An in-depth knowledge of issues impacting the sector. Strong team at all levels that reflects a well-established presence in the utilities sector. As a client it instils trust and confidence that challenging and/or time-pressured circumstances can be handled without serious concerns.”

“Mark Nuttall has continued to lead the Structured Finance Group with great aplomb. His advice and guidance has been highly valued during a challenging and busy period. Personally, it has been great working with Mark to find solutions that balance legal and commercial aspects.”

Key clients

Anglian Water

Assured Guaranty

South East Water

Southern Water

Sutton and East Surrey Water

Thames Water

South Staffs Water

Welsh Water

Yorkshire Water

Northumbrian Water

National Westminster Bank Plc

Work highlights

  • Acted for Anglian Water and Northumbrian Water in respect of the successful CMA redeterminations of PR19.
  • Acted for Anglian Water on the establishment of an innovative new capital structure and debut sustainability-linked bond.
  • Advised Southern Water on investigations by the Environment Agency.

Hogan Lovells International LLP

Hogan Lovells International LLP‘s multi-faceted energy and natural resources group provides clients with a full service offering, covering issues from project financing to regulatory matters. It also advises clients on international water project development and transactions. Charles Ford leads the team and assists a number of national clients with regulatory, project finance and structuring matters. Joint team head Sarah Shaw is an M&A specialist. Julian Craughan is recommended for structured finance and capital market transactions, both domestically and across Europe.

Practice head(s):

Charles Ford; Sarah Shaw

Other key lawyers:

Julian Craughan

Key clients

Affinity Water

Work highlights

  • Appointed to Affinity Water’s inaugural legal panel.
  • Advised Affinity Water with issuing its first green bond, a Class A £130 million, 0.01 per cent CPI Linked private placement due September 2038.

Pinsent Masons LLP

Pinsent Masons LLP‘s water team has vast experience advising clients on key issues in the market. The firm advises a number of national water companies on their Strategic Resource Options (SROs), while also assisting with regulatory and project development issues. Practice head Gordon McCreath has over two decades of experience advising clients in this sector and has expertise across a myriad of issues, including environmental regulation and planning issues. Robbie Owen is an expert in the field of infrastructure planning and is also active in the field of project development. Mike Pocock specialises in planning and consenting matters.

Practice head(s):

Gordon McCreath

Other key lawyers:

Robbie Owen; Mike Pocock

Testimonials

“The team is extremely knowledgeable and respected in this field. The lawyers have a wealth of experience and give confident and clear legal advice.”

“Gordon McCreath is approachable and pragmatic, he provides clear and commercial legal advice and knows the industry extremely well. As a client he’s a pleasure to work with.”

Key clients

United Utilities Water Limited

Cambridge Water

Thames Water Utilities Limited

Affinity Water Limited

Yorkshire Water Services Limited

Environment Agency

Southern Water Services Limited

Anglian Water Group

Severn Trent Water Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Anglian Water, Affinity Water and Cambridge Water on the consenting and regulatory submissions of the South Lincolnshire Reservoir, the Anglian to Affinity Transfer and Fens Reservoir.
  • Advised an Anglian Water and United Utilities JV in connection with the development of contracts for a new generation of projects processing industry waste products and realising commercial valuable products such as biogas.
  • Advised Southern Water on a wide range of matters relating to their proposed development of major new water supply infrastructure in Hampshire in order to meet a projected water supply deficit, the Hampshire Water Transfer and Water Recycling Project.

Shepherd and Wedderburn

Scotland-based firm Shepherd and Wedderburn is a strong player in the regulatory field of the water market, whilst also offering services pertaining to procurement and planning. Team lead Gordon Downie specialises in regulation and planning matters, in which he has over 25 years of experience. He is based in Edinburgh, and advises a number of national clients, with experience of working for the European Commission, focusing on the regulation of utilities. In Glasgow, Liz McRobb and John Grady specialise in regulatory issues and contentious contract matters.

Practice head(s):

Gordon Downie

Other key lawyers:

Liz McRobb; John Grady

Testimonials

“Good accessibility to individuals with regular updates. Upfront cost discussion and transparency of billing.”

“Professional, friendly and plain speaking.”

“Shepherd and Wedderburn are exceptional regulatory lawyers. They cut through the jargon and offer straightforward and actionable advice. This is quite different to many of their peers.”

“Long experience, attentive to need and circumstance.”

Key clients

Pennon Group

Caledonian Environmental Services

Northumbrian Water Group

Water Industry Commission for Scotland

Water Plus Ltd (Severn Trent and United Utilities JV)

Ayr Environmental Services

Anglian Water Business (National) Ltd, trading as Wave

Scottish Water

Ofwat

Work highlights

  • Advised Ofwat on changes to the Thames Tideway Tunnel licence, driven primarily by the effects of COVID.
  • Advising Ayr Environmental Services Limited and Caledonian Environmental Services plc on major variations to the Ayr and Levenmouth Waste Water PFI Projects
  • Appointed to the Scottish Water legal services panel in November 2021. Appointed to both the commercial services and real estate panels.

Tuppers Law

Tuppers Law‘s specialist competition and regulatory law team advises several national water companies on a number of issues, ranging from price control reviews to regulatory matters. The firm has represented water companies, including Northumbrian Water, during investigations by Ofwat and the Environment Agency. Notably, the firm has also assisted other law firms in their handling of competition matters. Team leaders Lisa Navarro and Stephen Tupper both specialise in regulatory matters and have represented some of the UK’s largest water companies in contentious cases before state regulators. Stephen Robson advises clients on regulatory and competition matters.

Practice head(s):

Lisa Navarro; Stephen Tupper

Other key lawyers:

Stephen Robson

Testimonials

“The team are great and a pleasure to work with. They are very easy to work with as external counsel and put in a real effort to understand how the client’s individuals and business in a wider sense operate.”

“Lisa Navarro has great regulatory and competition law experience. Stephen Robson always gives pragmatic advice based on his in-depth water sector knowledge and his wider commercial experience.”

“This team has deep experience of the Water Sector, and expert technical knowledge about competition, regulatory and state aid issues. They are efficient and get straight to the issues – turnaround times are prompt and they are very client-focused.”

“Stephen Tupper – very experienced and expert knowledge. A competition law and state aid expert. Lisa Navarro – deep knowledge of the water sector – lots of practical recent experience – very client-focused.”

“The TupperS Law team were flexible and accommodating. The matter they dealt with was done in a very short time and to a high standard. It was clear that there was a real commitment to client satisfaction.”

“Lisa Navarro led the team well. Her knowledge and ability to communicate the salient legal points to a group of clients was impressive.”

 

Key clients

Northumbrian Water

Bristol Water

Southern Water

Utilita

Electricity North West Limited

General Fusion

County Broadband Limited

Jurassic Fibre Limited

Swish Fibre Limited

Zzoomm plc

Work highlights

  • Advised one of the five water companies being investigated by Ofwat for potential breaches of licence conditions and statutory obligations.
  • Advised Bristol Water in having its Water Competition Act 1998 commitments lifted.
  • Advised Northumbrian Water on a range of regulatory and competition law issues arising from its position as the monopoly provider of water and sewerage services in its region.

Weightmans LLP

Weightmans LLP offers clients a range of water-related services, advising on regulatory and competition matters and assisting water and sewerage companies in meeting their statutory duties. Team leader Clive Mottram, who joined the firm in 2021, is a water specialist with over 35 years of in-house and private practice experience. He is an expert on water legislation and advises major water companies on their powers and duties with regard to regulators and customers. Environmental law expert Simon Colvin heads the energy and utilities team and advises companies as to their duties in regard to environmental protection regulations and enforcement actions. Navdip Wilson is recommended for contentious matters.

Practice head(s):

Clive Mottram; Simon Colvin

Other key lawyers:

Navdip Wilson

Testimonials

“They have a depth of knowledge in what is a specialised area of the law. Easy to work with and provide considered and commercial advice.”

“Clive Mottram is a real expert in this area, which is something of a rarity. His advice is always comprehensive and client-friendly, easily digestible by non-lawyers. His depth of experience is clear and he is always mindful of the wider picture, especially important in a heavily regulated sector such as water.”

“The team at Weightmans are easily accessible and approachable. Weightmans are there when you need them and get involved in all areas of an investigation. They align with our green approach, offering innovative solutions to the reduction of their carbon footprint.”

“The team at Weightmans are all focused and dedicated to the support of our claims handling function. Nav Wilson is our main point of contact and is fully supportive and committed to our claims handling approach.”

Key clients

Severn Trent Water

South Staffordshire Water

Pennon Group

Water UK

Gallagher Developments

Taylor Woodrow

Clarion Housing

North Lincolnshire Counsel

Peel Ports Group

Certas Energy Ltd