Firms To Watch: Planning

Handling both contentious and non-contentious issues, the planning team at Brecher LLP works closely with the firm’s real estate practice to provide clients with a tailored and integrated offering. Practice head Wesley Fongenie regularly acts for developers, investors, and property companies, while Stephen Webb advises local authorities and high-net-worth individuals.  
The planning team at Buckles Solicitors LLP, in tandem with the firm’s commercial property and construction departments, provides a personalised service to both corporate and private clients with a primary focus on planning, infrastructure, and environmental issues.

Firms in the Spotlight Planning

Ronald Fletcher Baker LLP

Ronald Fletcher Baker attracts a diverse client base from financial institutions, high-net-worth individuals and substantial freehold corporate investors, as a result of which the firm has considerable expertise acting for corporate investors based in the BVI, Bahamas, Mauritius, Seychelles, Turkey and Isle of Man. This department also acts for sellers and buyers, and buy-to-let investors, …

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Planning in London

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner’s experienced planning team is co-led by Tim Hellier, who has over 28 years’ experience in planning, compulsory purchase matters, and environmental law. The firm handles large-scale development schemes across the UK; James Good advises a range of clients, from central government and local authorities to public and private companies, on their development projects. Tim Smith strengthens the team’s international reach, advising clients in England, Wales, and overseas on all aspects of complex regeneration schemes. The team has a ‘first-class‘ infrastructure practice and handles major projects, which is a particular area of strength for James Parker. Giles Pink boasts expertise in the promotion of large retail, residential, and mixed-use schemes, as well as on commercial development projects in Central London. The group is involved in significant energy projects; practice co-head Christian Drage ‘stands out' as a key practitioner for promoters of energy and transport infrastructure, and the team is handling DCOs for high-profile clients, such as National Grid. The practice is also at the forefront of data centre, battery storage, and small nuclear power station projects. Senior associate Emma Perring leads a significant proportion of the team’s contentious work, with particular experience in judicial reviews, environmental assessments, and CPO compensation mandates.

Practice head(s):

Tim Hellier; Christian Drage

Other key lawyers:

Tim Smith; James Good; Giles Pink; James Parker; Emma Perring


‘Really lovely, professional, and approachable staff who know their stuff inside out and are willing to listen, debate, and formulate solutions for their clients, taking due consideration of all factors. The advice provided is always sensible and pragmatic.’

‘Approachable, friendly, willing to listen, and collaborative. I have always been presented with a ‘no boundaries or hierarchy’ type of approach.’

‘The BCLP planning team have a breadth of experience in their field. The advice they provide is delivered with confidence and gives you the comfort of knowing that whatever situation you are trying to resolve, they have been there before and know how to navigate their way through it.’

‘The individuals in the team are very approachable and user friendly, and they give you clear advice on what is required. They present you with considered options and a clear recommendation. In particular, Christian Drage stands out and has been a wealth of knowledge and of great support as we navigated our way through a planning process with a difficult local authority.’

‘The BCLP legal team is very well led and motivated. Exceptional quality and experience, especially from the more senior members of the legal team, with high-calibre juniors in support. The team are very easy to work with; it feels like a partnership and not at all stuffy or superior.’

‘Christian Drage is exceptional in his no frills, practical approach to problem solving and advice, using his many years of experience to the benefit of the client. He provides a high-level of confidence and clarity of advice in response to often daunting and complex situations. Christian is very likeable and a real pleasure to work with.’

‘The planning team at BCLP are first class and leaders in the industry, which is why they have been appointed on complex linear infrastructure projects. The strength and depth of the team’s expertise and ability to simplify complex planning issues is exceptional. They are absolute trusted advisors and a safe pair of hands.’

‘Christian Drage, James Parker, James Good, and Giles Pink all make up an exceptional team.’

Key clients

Lendlease Euston

National Grid



Precis Holdings


C.GEN Killingholme



Derwent London

Work highlights

  • Advising Lendlease on a 60-acre transformation of an area that aims to reconnect neighbourhoods that have, to date, been divided by the station and its tracks.
  • Advising National Grid on various matters, including complex linear network reinforcement and connection projects such as East Anglia Green, Snowdonia VIP, and London Power Tunnels 2.


The planning practice at CMS handles both development planning and energy and infrastructure consenting. The team is led by ‘exceptional partnerAshley Damiral, who took over the role as head of UK planning in October 2022 and advises on regeneration schemes, logistics projects, and data centres. Led by Robin Hutchison, the group’s energy practice handles a significant number of DCOs acting for the promoter, and Robert Garden acts on significant energy and infrastructure projects. Residential development is still a key area of focus, and the firm has noted an increase in sub-sectors of residential development, such as student accommodation, senior living, and co-living – a particular area of expertise for Joshua Risso-Gill. The practice has a national and international reach, with pan-European portfolio deals being an area of strength. The team grew in 2022, following Stephen McNaught‘s retirement in April, taking on Shabana Anwar from BDB Pitmans in September, as well as David Hardy in August, an ‘impressive recent recruit’ who has strengthened the group’s advocacy capability.

Practice head(s):

Ashley Damiral

Other key lawyers:

Martin Evans; Joshua Risso-Gill; Robin Hutchison; Robert Garden; Katy Abrahams; Nicola Insley; Shabana Anwar; David Hardy


‘Well-rounded and detailed team with considerable experience across a number of development sites and well-tuned to policy.’

‘Attention to detail, responsiveness and commercial acumen all rank highly when considering the individuals.’

‘One of the best small planning teams in the country.’

Key clients

All England Tennis Club


Dogger Bank Offshore Wind Farms

Arch AA UK Limited

Jeremy Clarkson

St Edward Homes


HyNet Project

Mitsubishi Estates

Columbia Threadneedle

Basio Holdings

Morecambe Offshore Wind Farm

Aviva Life & Pensions Limited

Taras Properties




Old Truman Brewery Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised the All England Lawn Tennis Ground Plc on all planning and highways matters in connection with its proposal to expand the club to deliver a new stadium, a large number of new grass courts, and an array of public benefits.
  • Advised Quintain on Wembley Park which is a strategic regeneration of over 1.4 million sq. ft. surrounding Wembley Stadium, including scheme amendments, planning obligations, CIL, and highways matters.
  • Advising Dogger Bank Offshore Wind Farms on the newly proposed commercial scale green hydrogen production project.

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

The planning team at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP demonstrates ‘exceptional experience and expertise’ across commercial development and energy and infrastructure projects. Practice head Matthew White has a wealth of experience advising developers on the promotion of commercial regeneration schemes and mixed-use developments, working on projects across the UK and internationally. Senior associate Martyn Jarvis also advises on significant mixed-use commercial development projects. Catherine Howard has ‘capably led’ the growth of the energy and infrastructure practice, and the team is acting on an increasing number of solar DCOs. The group has a strong judicial review practice; Ben Hazenberg has experience in all aspects of contentious planning law and Charlotte Dyer has led on advising EDF Energy on the judicial review regarding the DCO for the Sizewell C nuclear power station. The firm is also advising on other developing areas within the planning space, including life sciences projects, data centres, and logistics; senior associate Ian Mack is taking a lead role advising Gatwick and Luton Airports on their DCO expansion plans.

Practice head(s):

Matthew White

Other key lawyers:

Catherine Howard; Charlotte Dyer; Martyn Jarvis; Ian Mack; Ben Hazenberg


‘Experienced, insightful, and straightforward advice each and every time. The team at HSF continue to provide us with strategic, tactical and detailed advice, which keeps our project moving forward.’

‘Catherine Howard brings so much to any conversation; her advice is tailored and to the point.’

‘Charlotte Dyer has a powerful input; no stone is left unturned and no detail missed.’

‘Catherine Howard’s NSIP and DCO knowledge and experience is second-to-none. Charlotte Dyer has possibly the most thorough legal mind I have ever encountered.’

‘HSF’s planning team is the very best in the City. It has truly exceptional experience and expertise, and offers a level of analysis and insight that is very rare. The team has grown in recent years, building a strength in depth that has significantly increased the firm’s capacity to deal with the biggest and most complex projects.’

‘Catherine Howard is in a league of her own. I cannot think of any solicitor who is as clever, incisive and tactically astute as her. Catherine’s team really look up to her, and clients know that they can trust her completely. She is 100% committed to the client’s interests, and pursues them with rigour and determination at all times.’

‘Charlotte Dyer is an outstanding associate.’

‘Matthew White is very easy to deal with and understands clients’ requirements and objectives.’

Key clients

British Land

EDF Energy

EDF Energy

British Land and GIC

Brockton Everlast

Gatwick Airport Limited


AQUIND Limited

London Luton Airport Operations Limited

Greater London Authority and Transport for London

Berkeley Homes

London Legacy Development Corporation


Sellar Property Group

bp Exploration Operating Company Limited


Evolution Power


The British Library

SMBL Developments Limited


Work highlights

  • Advising British Land on their development proposals for the Canada Water Masterplan in the London Borough of Southwark and British Land and a sovereign wealth fund on all planning matters in relation to its 32-acre iconic Broadgate campus in the heart of the City of London.
  • Advising EDF Energy on its £20bn new nuclear power station at Sizewell in Suffolk (Sizewell C).
  • Advising Gatwick Airport on its DOC promotion to authorise a £500m airport reconfiguration project to turn the existing emergency runway into a second operational runway and related plans for enhanced airport infrastructure.

Pinsent Masons LLP

The ‘premier‘ planning team at Pinsent Masons LLP added to both its client base and its offering in 2022. The group’s strong energy practice continues to grow in new areas, including water projects regarding both reservoirs and infrastructure, which is a particular area of expertise for Robbie Owen. Gordon McCreath also focuses on the water sector, as well as offshore wind and highways. Promoted to legal director in May 2023, Claire Brodrick is involved in the team’s work on solar farm NSIPs. Practice head Richard Griffiths has extensive DCO experience, including large-scale solar and energy DCO projects. Griffiths leads the team alongside the ‘exemplaryRichard Ford and Nicholle Kingsley, who is involved in large-scale regeneration schemes in London. Iain Gilbey focuses on residential and mixed-use developments, as well as commercial and large ‘garden’ settlements.

Practice head(s):

Nicholle Kingsley; Richard Griffiths; Richard Ford

Other key lawyers:

Iain Gilbey; Robbie Owen; Gorden McCreath; Claire Broderick; Alexis Coleman; Matt Fox; Reza Newton-Sanders


‘It is the premier UK team when it comes to large-scale consenting projects and DCO work in the planning space. The team is knowledgeable and approachable from the top down.’

‘Richard Griffiths is at the top of his game and really understands his client’s projects.’

‘Richard Ford is exemplary – his legal and sectorial knowledge is vast. He proactively seeks to introduce opportunities to clients, whether in the legal field or otherwise, ensures that his clients are well informed and personally ensures clients are well looked after. He is pragmatic yet tenacious in his approach and very approachable. Definitely someone I would want on my side rather than opposite me.’

Key clients

The Greater London Authority

National Highways

Orsted Wind Power


Transport for London

BYM Capital

Southern Water

Drax Power Limited

Berkeley Group

London Borough of Croydon


Old Oak Common and Park Royal Development Corporation


The Silvertown Partnership


Ebbsfleet Development Corporation

Stone Hill Park Limited

BSF International

Cory Riverside Energy

Portman Estate

Grosvenor Estate


Sunnica Limited

Southampton International Airport Limited

Scottish Power Manweb

City of London Corporation

London Borough of Southwark

London Borough of Newham



Moda Living

Caddick Developments Ltd


Sir Richard Sutton

Wellcome Trust

Island Green Power

University London Hospitals Charity


RP Assets

Royal London


Port of Tilbury London Limited

Portsmouth City Council

Downing LLP

Work highlights

  • Advising Elephant & Castle Properties on all planning aspects of the redevelopment of Elephant & Castle shopping centre and London College of Communication in the London Borough of Southwark, including successfully defending a judicial review challenge in the Court of Appeal.
  • Advising EDF-R on three utility-scale solar DCO applications, being Longfield Solar Farm in Essex, Springwell Solar Farm in Lincolnshire, and Custodian Solar Farm in Buckinghamshire, together totalling nearly 1.5GW of new solar energy.
  • Advising Anglian Water on all aspects of its Strategic Resource Option water resource projects, including the proposed South Lincolnshire Reservoir SRO, Fenland Reservoir SRO, and Anglian to Affinity Transfer SRO.

Town Legal LLP

Town Legal LLP is a ‘highly specialised’ firm focusing purely on planning law matters. Jointly chaired by Clare Fielding and Duncan Field, the practice advises clients on all aspects of planning law. Fielding’s specialisms include CPO and CIL work, and Raj Gupta also specialises in compulsory purchase and compensation law. The firm is at the forefront of developing areas within the sector, noting an increase in life sciences projects, an area in which Juliet Munn, who was promoted to legal director in July 2023, has been heavily involved. The practice also sees a significant amount of activity within the logistics space, advising on large-scale logistics schemes, as well as urban logistics and last-mile logistics projects. Meeta Kaur handles both non-contentious and contentious planning matters, including judicial review and statutory challenges, and Mary Cook has a wealth of experience acting on planning appeals. The firm brings together experts within the sector: Patrick Robinson has more than 40 years’ planning experience; Simon Ricketts has a wide local government practice; Michael Gallimore has over 30 years’ experience spanning regeneration and mixed-use schemes; and Spencer Tewis-Allen, promoted to partner in October 2022, is a specialist in large scale, complex developments.

Practice head(s):

Clare Fielding; Duncan Field

Other key lawyers:

Elizabeth Christie; Mary Cook; Raj Gupta; Meeta Kaur; Simon Ricketts; Louise Samiel; Spencer Tewis-Allen; Victoria McKeegan; Juliet Munn; Chris Todman; Michael Gallimore; Patrick Robinson; Matt Speed; Chris Todman


‘Highly specialised and focused on planning.’

‘Very high-quality partners and staff.’

‘The best firm for planning advice.’

Key clients

Curzon Park Limited

London Borough of Islington

Brookhouse Group Limited

The Crown Estate

Vistry Partnerships

Imperial College

Reselton Properties Limited


Battersea Power Station Development Company

Montreaux Cricklewood Developments Limited

Chelmsford Garden Community

Metropolitan Thames Valley Housing Association

Arun District Council

Great Portland Estates

Clan (Guildford) LLP

Langwith Developments

Southend Borough Council

Work highlights

  • Advised the London Borough of Islington on the redevelopment of Holloway Prison, a residential-led Peabody scheme to provide a new estate of 985 new homes, 60% of which will be affordable housing.
  • Advising the Chelmsford Garden Consortium on the planning strategy for the optimum delivery of a major new garden community totalling 5,500 homes in Chelmsford, Essex.
  • Advising Native Land on proposals to redevelop a landmark riverside site in a prominent town centre location in Guildford, involving the demolition of the former Debenhams department store and its replacement with two high quality residential-led buildings (including nearly 200 flats), along with retail floorspace and a cinema.


Ashurst’s broad planning practice has three key areas of focus: acting for developers, representing clients from the public sector, and its standalone infrastructure work. The team participates in energy and energy from waste projects, and has experience in transport infrastructure, counting companies such as Aviva and TfL among its clients. As well as significant regeneration projects in London, the firm is also advising on urban extensions and new settlements outside of the capital. The team handles contentious planning matters, including CPOs and appeals, seeing matters through to both the High Court and the Supreme Court. Practice co-head Trevor Goode’s extensive experience in CPOs and town centre regeneration enables him to lead on several of the team’s key projects. The ‘excellent’ Claire Dutch specialises in all aspects of planning law and she was promoted to practice head of the firm’s wider UK real estate team in November 2022. Charlie Reid was recently promoted to counsel and, alongside senior associate Ben Groves, has been advising some of the team’s key clients.

Practice head(s):

Trevor Goode; Claire Dutch

Other key lawyers:

Eleanor Reeves; Charlie Reid; Ben Groves; Olivia Barton; Brian Cheung


‘Claire Dutch provides clear and calm advice. She is someone who always fights her client’s corner. She has an energetic disposition and is a team player, as well as a leader, and is respected by her peers.’

‘Incredibly collaborative, team-orientated, and an absolute pleasure to work with on complex planning matters. The wealth of knowledge and experience from across the team is particularly standout and necessary to execute a successful planning strategy and delivery.’

‘An excellent eye for detail, commercial awareness and natural collaborative approach across a range of planning matters. Particular standout work from Claire Dutch and Ben Groves, advising on section 106 and general legal strategy.’

Key clients




Urban & Provincial




Hill Group

Poplar HARCA






Al-Mubarakia Limited


EastSide Partnership

The Crown Estate

The Arch Company

Homes England

Westminster City Council

Worcestershire County Council


Work highlights

  • Advising Lendlease, on defending the judicial review claim by Tottenham Hotspurs and on its £2bn+ regeneration of the High Road West site allocation in Tottenham, Haringey, which will deliver vital new homes (2,900 including 500 council homes), jobs, and open space, alongside new retail, office, leisure, and community floorspace.
  • Advising the Transport for London on multiple strategic planning applications in London, including Newcombe House, Thameside West, Bishopsgate Goodsyard, Stratford Waterfront, MSG Sphere, Bollo Lane and Nine Elms.
  • Advised Urban & Provincial on all stages of the application and the appeal on its Windsor Grove scheme, a project that involves two applications on two sites in Lambeth: Shakespeare Road, a large site proposed for residential use; and the relocation and upgrade of the existing waste use to Windsor Grove.

BDB Pitmans

The planning team at BDB Pitmans continues to consolidate its reputation in the infrastructure sector, thanks to its ‘great strength in depth in the field of infrastructure planning’. The firm handles significant infrastructure projects in a range of areas, including road, rail, and air, dealing with DCOs and orders under the Transport and Works Act and the Harbours Act. Mark Challis heads the planning team, leading major projects for National Highways alongside Angus Walker. With its established preeminence in DCOs, the group is expanding its energy practice, participating in projects involving solar, hydrogen, and offshore wind. Richard Marsh leads the energy DCO practice within the team. The group’s continued development is reflected in its growing client list; the firm secured new clients in the area of over-station development and won a significant DCO promotion for East West Rail, led by Duncan O’Connor. Other prominent figures in the team include Sarak Clark, who is leading on significant flood prevention schemes, and Tom Henderson, who led the team on its involvement in the Lower Thames Crossing. Mustafa Latif-Aramesh, who is praised for his ‘encyclopaedic knowledge and case law’, was elevated to partner in July 2023.

Practice head(s):

Mark Challis

Other key lawyers:

Angus Walker; Sarah Clark; Tom Henderson; Nicholas Evans, Richard Marsh; Duncan O’Connor; Mustafa Latif-Aramesh; Oksana Price; Mark Challis


‘The BDBP team have great strength in depth in the field of infrastructure planning. It is a very knowledge-led team and produces an outstanding infrastructure planning law blog for clients and others. This means that it is always completely up to date with all the latest developments in the field, which it uses to its clients’ benefit.’

‘Angus Walker is a high-profile and very experienced infrastructure planning solicitor. Tom Henderson is a really smart young partner who is definitely going places.’

‘The team has a leading position in infrastructure planning with a wealth of experience held by members of the team.’

‘Mark Challis is a reassuring presence in any case. Sarah Clark is very clear-minded and calm. Tom Henderson is excellent at driving a project through. Mustafa Latif-Aramesh has a great eye for detail. Angus Walker has an encyclopaedic knowledge of infrastructure planning.’

‘There is nothing BDBP doesn’t know about the planning and legal issues for major infrastructure. It has an eye on future trends and constantly contributes to consultations to ensure we have an effective and fair infrastructure regime.’

‘It gives expert advise on how to deliver your project, but also has the foresight on how the regime is changing to ensure flexibility is embedded to minimise change later on.’

‘Mustafa Latif-Aramesh’s mastermind topic would be legal and planning matters. He is an encyclopaedia of knowledge and case law that he practically applies to his work. He works calmly with all project team members to help them understand the legal issues of the work, so they have sufficient information for making decisions. I would want Mustafa by my side on any project I work on.’

‘Tom Henderson is always the expert in the room who can work under pressure to ensure success. He has passion on the projects he works on and he is not afraid of conflict where needed and will constantly challenge the client and others on the why to ensure success.’

Key clients

National Highways

London Luton Airport Operations Limited

The Environment Agency

Alternative Use Boston Projects Limited

RiverOak Strategic Partners Limited

East Suffolk Council

South Tees Development Corporation

London Borough of Lambeth

Transport for London


Green GEN Cymru

East West Railway Limited

Northumberland County Council

Work highlights

  • Advising National Highways on the proposed Lower Thames Crossing, a project that is the largest investment in the road network since the M25 and that will be the subject of a major DCO examination in 2023.
  • Advising London Luton Airport Ltd. on a proposed expansion of the airport, a large project that will be the subject of a major DCO examination in 2023.
  • Advising on environmental flood defence schemes, including advising East Suffol Counsel on a forthcoming transport and works application for a major flood defence scheme in Lowestoft, East Sussex.

Addleshaw Goddard

The ‘collaborative and proactive' planning team at Addleshaw Goddard continues to participate in significant housing and regeneration schemes in London and across the country, drawing on the firm’s regional strengths. The group frequently handles high-profile Transport and Works Act and DCO promotions. Marnix Elsenaar is the head of the firm’s national planning and infrastructure consenting team, in addition to the group’s transport practice. The transport sector is a key focus area for the team; Francis Tyrrell joined the firm in February 2023 from Pinsent Masons LLP in order to bolster the transport practice, bringing a full spectrum of expertise that spans ports, airports, rails, canals, and roads. Managing associate Sarah Hodge leads for some of the firm’s key transport clients. Led by Gary Sector, the group’s energy practice also continued to bolster its London presence in 2022 through the hiring of Michael Dempsey in June from Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, as well as through significant projects in growing fields such as carbon capture and renewable energy.

Practice head(s):

Marnix Elsenaar

Other key lawyers:

Gary Sector; Sarah Hodge; Michael Dempsey; Francis Tyrrell


‘Very collaborative and proactive.’


Key clients

Pocket Living

British Land

Watkin Jones

Angelo Gordon and Beltane





AB Agri

British Sugar PLC

Work highlights

  • Represented Watkin Jones in winning a planning appeal for a purpose built student accommodation development in Guildford.
  • Advising British Land on a major scheme in Ealing.
  • Advising Aviva on the promotion of a major mixed-use scheme in central London.

Burges Salmon LLP

The planning team at Burges Salmon LLP handles a large number of NSIPs across various sectors, including rail, highways, and pipelines, with Elizabeth Dunn taking a lead role in the consenting of these schemes. The practice handles a range of energy projects, and solar is a particular growth area for the team; Julian Boswall has significant experience in both energy and transport projects and ‘brilliant‘ senior associate Jen Ashwell advises on the consenting of local authority-led transport and regeneration schemes. Practice head Gary Soloman takes a lead role in the team’s increasing CPO work as an expert in the planning, compulsory purchase, and compensation aspects of regeneration projects, large-scale developments, and highway proposals. Alex Minhinick, also an expert on CPO compensation matters, was promoted to partner in May 2023.

Practice head(s):

Gary Soloman

Other key lawyers:

Julian Boswall; Elizabeth Dunn; Alex Minhinick; Jen Ashwell; John Arthur; Cathryn Tracey; Daniel Whittle; Paula McGeady


‘Jen Ashwell is a brilliant associate, one of the best team leaders I have worked with, a skilful lawyer and skillful motivator.’

‘Gary Soloman is an excellent team leader, wise and very bright. Cathryn Tracey has a sharp mind with very good judgement.’

‘Jen Ashwell is superbly efficient. Daniel Whittle demonstrates very clear thinking.’

‘The individuals that we have worked with have been in place for over 10 years which provides both continuity as well as a mutual understanding of needs, building trust and respect. This includes Gary Solomon and Paula McGeady.’

‘Alex Minhinick’s clear, calm advice has been essential to managing the risks and meeting procedural requirements. He provides an actual, measured answer which is implementable and makes decision making as a client far easier. Alex knows his industry and is always at the forefront of networks and knowledge.’

‘Elizabeth Dunn is very responsive and is also helpful. She works collaboratively with her clients to find pragmatic and sensible resolutions to any issues that are identified. Liz is also proactive with advice.’

‘Julian Boswall’s profile within the industry is particularly high as he chairs the Renewables UK Offshore Consents and Licensing Group. This means that he is very up to speed on all issues that affect the wider industry, and he is well connected and knows who to talk to about various issues.’

‘Elizabeth Dunn and Cathryn Tracey are the standout team members for us. In both cases their calm confidence is backed by genuine expertise.’

Key clients

Isle of Anglesey County Council

Environment Agency

Historic England

National Trust

Department for Transport

National Highways

YTL Property Holdings

Stratford-on-Avon District Council


Torbay Council

Progressive Energy Limited

North Somerset Council


Bute Energy



RWE Renewables

Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew

South Hams District Council

Work highlights

  • Advising GLA on the development of the Gallions Quarter site located between the Royal Docks and River Thames near Beckton, leading on all aspects of planning, highways and CPO advice.
  • Advising the Transport Infrastructure Planning Unit on making its decisions on Transport and Works Act Orders and non-National Highways DCO applications.
  • Advising Equinor New Energy Limited on the application for an order to grant development consent to construct, operate, maintain, and decommission two offshore wind farms known as the Sheringham Shoal Extension Project and the Dudgeon Extension Project.

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's planning team covers a full range of planning matters, including contentious matters, and the firm has a successful track record in planning appeals. The group is involved in fast-growing areas within the sector, including hydrogen projects, as well as experience in more niche areas of planning, such as projects in the minerals and engineering sectors. Claire Fallows heads the team, with experience in significant London regeneration schemes and strategic land projects for landowners and developers.

Practice head(s):

Claire Fallows

Other key lawyers:

Rachael Davidson; Sophie Willis


‘The team at CRS works like clockwork. Everyone is on the same page and their commitment is always 100%.’

‘Their understanding of the matter is clear. Compared to other firms, CRS stand out beyond others.’

‘My main contact is one of the best, if not the best. Claire Fallows’ service level is outstanding.’

‘The distinguishing characteristic of the team is their understanding of the client and the knowledge of the subject. Town planning is always moving, and Claire Fallow is always sharp on these matters.’

‘Very strong planning and compulsory purchase practice, led by Claire Fallows, with a strong supporting team. Experience and strong judgement in terms of strategy and good outcomes. Pragmatic and practical in its outlook.’

‘Claire Fallows has extremely good judgement and is not afraid to take difficult calls on the basis of her knowledge and experience. She doesn’t just execute (although she does that very well); she contributes invaluable opinion and recommendation. She is supported by a very capable team, in particular Sophie Willis.’

‘The planning practice team at CRS is highly professional and works at a very efficient level providing valued professional advice.’

‘The planning practice team works to make its client queries its priority and ensures that we feel we are a much-valued client with every query we send their way. Claire Fallows works very hard to lead her team on a professional level providing an outstanding level of service.’

Key clients

The Church Commissioners for England

Greenwich Millennium Village Limited

Air Products Limited

Bellway Homes Limited

Higgins Homes plc

Countryside Properties

Biomed Realty

Eton College

David Lloyd Leisure Limited

MCA Developments Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised the Church Commissioners for England on a number of major residential-led and mixed-use developments across its strategic land portfolio.
  • Acted for Air Products on a major hydrogen project and the associated application for a development consent order.
  • Assisting Biomed Realty with a successful appeal for a new life sciences development in Cambridge.

Clifford Chance LLP

Clifford Chance LLP's planning team has a strong focus on complex and large-scale developments and regeneration schemes. The team is involved in large infrastructure projects and has continued to expand into the energy sector in 2022, reviewing a DCO application for a significant energy project. Practice head Nigel Howorth has a strong background in energy, as well as in major development and regeneration schemes. The group has also developed a niche expertise in construction above or adjacent to railway lines. In 2022, the team continued to expand its high-profile client roster, which includes Canary Wharf Group; senior associate Katie Kempthorne has played an active role in the team’s work for Canary Wharf Group.

Practice head(s):

Nigel Howorth

Other key lawyers:

Katie Kempthorne; Anneke Theelan; Kate Mackintosh


‘Brilliant commercial analysis delivered quickly and always on time. There are backup research resources if deeper and broader consultation is needed.’

‘Nigel Howorth has a huge wealth of experience allied to very sound commercial feel for any scenario presented to him.’

‘Kate Mackintosh gets to grips with the core issues and quickly and efficiently weaves everything together so that the salient themes are analysed thoroughly and explained in an easy-to-understand manner.’

‘Kate Mackintosh is very prompt in dealing with queries and issues as they arise, and has deep technical knowledge and experience in her field, which has been of great assistance to us in such a complex area. Kate is also able to communicate these esoteric topics in a client-friendly manner such that we can easily understand and make decisions.’

‘They are all very good technically and, over the years they, have acquired an intimate knowledge of our business which enables them to make informed decisions and draft and align their advice to our needs.’

‘The team is very personable and responsive. They have a very commercial and pragmatic approach to planning and development. They look to find innovative solutions to problems and think outside the box!’

‘Nigel Howorth and Katie Mackintosh are very easy to deal with and have always been very responsive. They care about the work they are doing and will go the extra mile to deal with issues. They are reliable and have a solid commercial understanding of planning and development.’

Key clients

Angelo Gordon and the Ridgeback Group

Canary Wharf Group

Helical Plc

International Airlines Group

British Airways Plc

NorthWest Healthcare Properties REIT

Legal & General


CBRE Global Investors


AIG Global Real Estate

Work highlights

  • Advising Canary Wharf on the continuing 750,000 sqm urban quarter project at Wood Wharf and on the North Quay development (a mixed-used office and residential towers scheme) on a 7.3 acre site.
  • Advising Helical plc on all planning aspects of the ongoing major redevelopment of 100 New Bridge Street, London EC4, to deliver a grade A sustainable office building.
  • Advising Canary Wharf on its landmark North Quay development to feature a mixed-used scheme on a 3.8 hectare site forming a major extension to the Canary Wharf site.

Clyde & Co

Clyde & Co’s full-service planning offering encompasses all aspects of transactional and contentious planning and environmental work, from NSIPs to sustainable settlements. Ian Ginbey co-leads the team, advising on both non-contentious and contentious matters, appearing in public inquiries and before the High Court, and handling CPOs and related litigation. Practice co-head Brian Greenwood has consolidated the team’s DCO expertise across major infrastructure projects, as well as ports, highways, airports, and railways. The practice has a strong team of senior associates, including Emma Barkas, who advises on NSIPs, and Carolyn Morgan-Welker, who specialises in environmental law and areas such as minerals planning permission and biodiversity net gain.

Practice head(s):

Ian Ginbey; Brian Greenwood

Other key lawyers:

Carolyn Morgan-Welker; Emma Barkas: Anna Simpson; Rajpreet Uppal


‘Ian Ginbey is at the very top of the planning tree; a truly superb planning lawyer and huge fun to work with too.’

‘Extensive knowledge and in-depth experience in port-related planning projects.’

‘Brian Greenwood has exceptional in-depth experience in port-related planning projects.’

Key clients

Associated British Ports

Pinewood Studios Ltd

Corinthian Land Limited

CEMEX UK Operations Limited

Freshwater Group of Companies

Dignity plc

Oikos Storage Limited

Taylor Wimpey

Reading Borough Council

Regal London

Hutchison Whampoa

Peel Holdings plc





U + I

North London Collegiate School


Connected Living London Limited

Project Genesis Limited

Pall Mall Investments Limited

Slough Borough Council

Halley Developments Limited

Burlington Developments Limited



Riverside Group JVs

The Thames Club Limited


The planning team at Dentons has a varied client base, ranging from national and local government to investors, developers, and infrastructure providers. Roy Pinnock leads the team in advising on all aspects of planning law, including large-scale development and housing, in addition to urban and mixed-use regeneration schemes. The group expertly handles various aspects of residential developments, and Rachael Herbert specialises in developments in the elderly care sector. Michele Vas has demonstrable experience in energy and transport-related infrastructure, advising on Transport and Works Act and development consent orders. At the senior associate level, Lucy McDonnell and Katie Scuoler have extensive experience in compulsory purchases, and the addition of Chris Robinson in February 2022 further strengthens the team’s expertise in CPO advice.

Practice head(s):

Roy Pinnock

Other key lawyers:

Michele Vas; Lucy McDonnell; Rachael Herbert; Katie Scuoler; Chris Robinson


‘Michele Vas and Katie Scuoler are standout lawyers.’

‘A very well organised, efficient, and young team with great sector expertise.’

‘Katie Scuoler is extremely capable, knowledgeable and charismatic, with the confidence to challenge the thinking and drive things forward. A privilege to work with.’

Key clients

Anschutz Sports Holdings Limited

Bedford Borough Council

Peabody Development Limited

Places for People Developments Limited

Sainsbury’s Supermarkets Ltd

South Cambridgeshire District Council

Southend on Sea Borough Council

Taylor Wimpey UK Limited

Telereal Trillium

Tide Construction

David Wilson Homes


Regal London

Royal Borough of Greenwich

Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead

Regal London

Bedford Borough Council



Chelmsford City Council

Marks and Spencer plc



Work highlights

  • Advised Marks and Spencer plc on the forward planning strategy for the landmark Oxford Street store, progressing the application through the public inquiry held in October/ November 2022 after it was called in by the Secretary of State in June 2022.
  • Advising Chelmsford City Council on the new Chelmsford Garden Community, which involves working collaboratively with Ptarmigan, Halley, and Countryside developers on a planning framework agreement.
  • Advising Places for People on the Gilston Park Estate proposal project, which includes up to 8,500 homes and supporting infrastructure, including six primary schools and two secondary schools.

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP

The planning team at Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP’s London office focuses on strategic residential development, urban regeneration, and significant infrastructure projects. The team is experienced in energy infrastructure, and practice head Stuart Andrews specialises in the promotion of international energy projects. The group advises on technical planning matters, including water neutrality, legacy planning, and equalisation. The team handles a range of contentious matters, including judicial reviews and statutory challenges, and is bolstered by Daniel Freiman’s ‘fantastic practical and legal planning knowledge' from across the transport, water, energy, and waste sectors. Freiman also has particular expertise in the consenting of major infrastructure projects. Matthew Nixon left the firm in March 2023.

Practice head(s):

Stuart Andrews

Other key lawyers:

Daniel Frieman; Hannah Abu-Harb


‘A knowledgeable team that is building depth.’

‘Daniel Freiman has fantastic practical and legal planning knowledge. He knows the pressures on clients and how to get things moving.’

‘Superb attention to detail and high-quality legal drafting and analysis.’

Key clients

Marlow Film Studio

Berkeley Homes (North London) Limited

Henley Camland

St Congar

Gowling WLG

Practice head Vicky Fowler, an expert in CPO matters, sits at the helm of Gowling WLG's planning team and advises both public and private clients on the making and implementation of CPOs, particularly for regeneration schemes. The department handles a range of contentious work, including planning appeals, High Court planning litigation, and judicial review work; several members of the team are sought after due to their advocacy in the Planning Court. Ben Stansfield has continued to develop his reputation as an environmental lawyer, spearheading projects involving sustainable infrastructure, biodiversity net gain, and mineral neutrality.

Practice head(s):

Vicky Fowler

Other key lawyers:

Ben Stansfield; Tim Sharp; Laura Nation


‘Ben Stansfield has a very commercial, wide experience that he can apply to different situations, and a genuine passion for sustainability.’

Key clients

Greater London Authority

Transport for London

Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation

Westminster City Council

Land Securities

London Borough of Barnet

Legal & General (Strategic Land) and Modular Homes

The Crown Estate

St Modwen

Ebbsfleet Development Corporation

Suffolk Constabulary


Galliard Homes Limited


National Highways

Valero Energy

Bloor Homes

London Borough of Barking and Dagenham

Be First


Cherry Orchard Homes and Villages

Fornax Environmental

Work highlights

  • Advised Westminster City Council on the redevelopment of the Ebury Bridge Estate regeneration.
  • Advised Land Securities (U+I) on the redevelopment of Morden Wharf for a mixed-use development, including the provision of 1,500 residential apartments.
  • Advised Ryan Property Group on its successful planning appeal for a continuing care retirement community at Rochford in Essex.

Hogan Lovells International LLP

Hannah Quarterman leads the broad planning practice at Hogan Lovells International LLP and supports clients across the full range of planning matters, including regeneration and infrastructure projects. Quarterman is an ‘excellent lawyer’, with particular specialisms in compulsory purchase and CIL work. Senior associate David Wood advises on projects in the infrastructure and energy sector, and the team is experienced in environmental and ESG matters, such as biodiversity net gain. The practice demonstrates expertise in specialist planning matters, such as rights of light, and senior associate Robert Gowing brings heritage-related experience to the team.

Practice head(s):

Hannah Quarterman

Other key lawyers:

David Wood; Caroline Stares; Robert Gowing; Rosie Shields;


‘We have been very impressed with the partner-led commercial advice.’

‘Robert Gowing is dedicated and an excellent planning lawyer.’

‘Hogan Lovells’ planning team is the perfect combination of genuinely lovely people who are also exceptional at their jobs. As a group, they are responsive, clear, and willing to go above and beyond always with a friendly and collegiate manner. They are a pleasure to work with.’

‘Hannah Quarterman is second-to-none. She is whip-smart and an excellent lawyer. She gives clear, considered advice and is able to think through the knottiest issues with clarity and certainty. I trust her judgment implicitly. She is also a joy to work with.’

‘Rosie Shields is a talented associate who goes above and beyond and is also able to consider and advise on difficult issues with clarity.’

‘Polished, commercially minded, perceptive and straightforward about both the weaknesses and strengths of the client’s position’

‘Hannah Quarterman and Caroline Stares produce carefully thought through, illuminating and immensely helpful instructions.’

Key clients

AXA Real Estate Investment Managers UK Ltd

Greystoke Land Ltd

Related Argent

The Berkeley Group



Bishopsgate Goodsyard Regeneration

M&G Real Estate

Intermediate Capital Group

J.P. Morgan

British Land


Create Commercial REIT



The Church Commissioners for England



Work highlights

  • Advising Related Argent on all planning matters relating to the redevelopment of Brent Cross Town, an £8bn 180 acre mixed-use regeneration scheme providing 6,700 new homes and workspace for over 25,000 people.
  • Advising Bishopsgate Goodsyard Regeneration Limited on obtaining planning permission and listed building consents for the £1bn regeneration of Bishopsgate Goodsyard.
  • Advising Veolia on the impact to its landfill operations at South Ockendon of National Highways’ proposed Lower Thames Crossing, a 23km motorway linking Essex, London and Kent and including two 4.2km long tunnels under the Thames.

Mishcon de Reya LLP

Brilliant planning partner’ Anita Rivera heads the planning practice at Mishcon de Reya LLP, advising commercial and residential property developers, property companies, investment funds, and high-net-worth individuals. The team has a wealth of experience across the build-to-rent, co-living, and elderly care sectors, and Daniel Farrand has extensive knowledge of the private rented sector and student housing. The firm noted an increase in activity in the life sciences and the energy sector, handling projects related to onshore and offshore wind, green energy, and solar farms. The team manages a range of contentious matters; Tom Barton leads matters concerning public inquiries, such as planning enforcement and compulsory purchase matters.

Practice head(s):

Anita Rivera

Other key lawyers:

Daniel Farrand; Tom Barton; Roisin Hogan; Martyn Hanmore


‘The service is Rolls Royce from start to finish. The team fight passionately for their clients and obtains incredible results. I have never worked with a firm who have so demonstrably placed their clients’ interests at the forefront of their minds. The quality of legal drafting, analysis and representation is exceptional.’

‘Tom Barton, a managing associate, is one of the finest planning solicitors in the UK. He invests everything in his cases and is well-liked by both his clients and counsel he instructs. He’s hugely thoughtful and has very good judgment, and the quality of his written work is always high.’

‘Anita Rivera and Daniel Farrand are two brilliant planning partners who bring a huge wealth of experience and knowledge to the support of their clients. They are a complete pleasure to work with.’

‘Unlike some of the big city firms, Mischons have strength across the whole of planning law, including areas such as enforcement and planning prosecutions.’

‘Daniel Farrand is tenacious, with an excellent understanding of the intricacies of enforcement law, and always has an eye on the bigger picture.’

‘Anita Rivera has a good oversight of projects.’

‘Martyn Hanmore has a real eye for detail and is prepared to get into the nitty gritty of the legislation and case-law.’

‘Good negotiating skills.’

Key clients

Stratford Village Property Holdings 1 Limited and Stratford Village Property Holdings 2 Limited

Nammos Restaurant London Limited

Ealing Studios Operations Limited

74 Long Lane

Leslie Jones

Notting Hill Genesis

Forge Life Sciences

Bridge UK Properties

London Residential Houses Limited

Higgins Homes PLC

Brookfield Properties

334 Ramsbury Oxford Limited

The Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Ocado Retail Limited

Pisach WII Limited

Healey Development Solutions (Dulwich) Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised a client on the redevelopment of Ealing Studios, the oldest continuously working studio facility for film production in the world.
  • Advised Forge Life Sciences on all real estate and planning matters relating to a joint venture for a major life science campus in Stevenage, Hertfordshire.
  • Acting for Brookfield in a full range of planning matters in relation to a number of UK deals.

Winckworth Sherwood LLP

The planning group at Winckworth Sherwood LLP has an in-depth understanding of the residential development sector. The group advises on complex, residential led mixed-use projects, which is a particular area of expertise for Lindsay Garratt. The group focuses on residential development in London, with key clients including Barratt London and other significant social housing providers. Practice head Colette McCormack supports key clients such as the London Borough of Wandsworth and is leading on significant estate regeneration schemes in London, with support from senior associate Matt Steinbrecher. The team also noted an increase in instructions regarding CIL matters.

Practice head(s):

Colette McCormack

Other key lawyers:

Lindsay Garratt; Tim Fogarty; Matt Steinbrecher; Alex Woolcott


‘Approachable, responsive, excellent interpersonal skills, great to worth with.’

‘The Winckworth Sherwood planning team, led by partner Colette McCormack, are clear leaders in the field of planning law. As planning law/policy becomes ever more complex, they are always ahead of the curve.’

‘It is not just the team’s expert planning knowledge, but their understanding of the development industry and the political context of planning law at local and community level, as well as the need to deliver, that sets them apart.’

‘Colette and her team deal with highly complex planning issues and you can always rely on them to lead the project forward.’

‘They always work with local councils to find the right solution in very complex legal planning areas, such as the CIL Regs, the regeneration and delivery issues in VNEB, and the complex legal issues around estate regeneration.’

‘The team is led by planning partner Colette McCormack and she is assisted by senior associate Matt Steinbrecher. They are proactive and very solutions driven. They are team players and work closely with the officers advising on highly complex planning and development issues.’

‘Colette McCormack and her team have the commerciality required in the development process to enable them to think outside of the box to find the right solution. We can always rely on Colette to lead projects and provide clear advise to allow the planning process and delivery to continue.’

‘Colette McCormack and Matt Steinbrecher are always committed to delivering the right solution to their projects.’

Key clients

Barratt London

St George

Keystone & Partners

Weston Homes

The London Borough of Wandsworth

Notting Hill Genesis

A2Dominion Homes Limited

Barking Riverside

Bellway Homes Limited

Reside Developments Limited

Work highlights

  • Advising Barratt London on planning, section 106, and CIL matters for the final phase of the redevelopment of Springfield Hospital, Wandsworth for up to 449 new homes.
  • Advising Keystone & Partners on a proposed joint venture redevelopment of Thameside West alongside GLA Land and Property Limited, including 5,000 new homes, flexible employment, and industrial uses.
  • Advising Weston Homes PLC on planning, section 106, CIL, and judicial review on the extensive redevelopment of a 10-acre Tesco site adjacent to Goodmayes Railway Station for 1,280 homes, commercial and community use provision, and a 3FE primary school.

Davitt Jones Bould

The highly experienced planning team at Davitt Jones Bould is led by Madeleine Davitt, who handles significant planning projects. Yohanna Weber has demonstrable expertise handling DCOs and Transport and Works Act and compulsory purchase orders, with a particular strength in urban regeneration projects and the promotion of NSIPs. Bringing his experience advising both local authorities and private clients, John Qualtrough advises on CIL matters and handles judicial reviews and statutory challenges. The practice advises on landmarks across the country and Nigel Hewitson is an expert in listed buildings. With public-sector experience, Stephanie Hall acts in CPO-related matters, highway mandates, and local government law issues.

Practice head(s):

Peter Allinson; Madeleine Davitt

Other key lawyers:

Yohanna Weber; John Qualtrough; Nigel Hewitson; Stephanie Hall


‘The whole team, from business managers to lawyers, is highly responsive, professional and knowledgeable.’

‘Stephanie Hall is clearly a real expert in the field of planning 106 agreements. She is practical, commercially minded, approachable and clear in her advice.’

‘It has been a pleasure working with Stephanie Hall, who is knowledgeable, very responsive, and highly competent.’

‘DJB is very much focused on building strong relationship with clients and keeping them fully informed of how matters are progressing. It specialises in and understands how local government works and consistently performs to a very high standard, handling work efficiently and always meeting client timescales. I would have no hesitation in recommending DJB as a legal practice or its planning team.’

‘Stephanie Hall is excellent, dealing with a wide range of planning matters, providing practicable and clear and easy to understand advice and always delivers on time. She is calm and efficient, and is an excellent communicator.’

‘Stephanie Hall works exceedingly well with planning officers and the wider team. Stephanie is approachable and a pleasure to work with.’

Key clients

The Royal Parks

Surrey County Council

Woking Borough Council

Brighton and Hove City Council

Habitat for Humanity

Office for National Statistics

Bath and North East Somerset Council

Runnymede Borough Council

North Somerset Council

Wiltshire Council

UK Health Security Agency

National Highways

Natural England

Exeter Science Park

Department of Health and Social Care

Farrer & Co

Farrer & Co’s planning team has an ‘excellent commercial understanding of the market’ and a strong background in urban development and community projects. The team is led by Karen Phull, who is praised by clients for her ‘clear, pragmatic and helpful advice’. The firm has also been building on its environmental expertise, with Claire Sheppard taking a leading role in this area.

Practice head(s):

Karen Phull

Other key lawyers:

Claire Sheppard; Anthony McNamee; James Davies


‘The Farrer & Co Planning team, led by Karen Phull, is quick on its feet and provides timely, practical advice. Farrer & Co is outstanding in dealing with property issues and that has been my family’s experience over many years.’

‘The ability to understand what is important in a given set of circumstances is critical. Having the knowledge and experience of the day-to-day operations of local authorities in planning matters is key. Having these attributes, Karen Phull continues to be enormously helpful.’

‘Farrers’ long-established history and reputation in the planning property and landed estate management industry is wholly well deserved and unique.’

‘The breadth of experience, quality of legal advice and client care is exemplary. Karen Phull is a go-to for planning and property advice, including the financial implications of improving land value through planning.’

‘I was impressed by the quality and detail of Karen Phull’s instructions in a specialist area and her responsiveness to requests for further information; her ability to locate and access historic documents within a short period of time was a testament to her investigatory abilities.’

‘Overall, I have had an excellent experience of dealing with the real estate team at Farrer & Co. The team work well together across a number of disciplines and have an excellent commercial understanding of the market.’

‘Karen Phull provides excellent advice on town planning legal matters and is my go-to expert in this field.’

‘Karen Phull provides clear, pragmatic and helpful advice.’

Key clients

The British Library

Shinfield Studios Limited

Graven Hill Purchaser Ltd

Porcelanosa UK Limited

Duchy of Cornwall

Agenda S1 Limited

Burghley House Preservation Trust

Paul Saggers Associates Limited

Welbeck Estates

Pelham Street Residents Association

Pelham Residents Association

Onslow Neighbourhood Association

Work highlights

  • Advising the British Library on the St Pancras development, which involves the disposal of the 2.8 acre St Pancras development site for commercial investment and the construction of gallery facilities and a public realm for The British Library.
  • Advising Shinfield Studios Limited on a transaction with The University of Reading for the construction of a major film studios complex in Shinfield, Berkshire.
  • Acted for a US-based investor on entry into a conditional agreement for the acquisition of a former MOD site in Bicester.

Forsters LLP

Forsters LLP’s ‘strong planning team’ advises clients on large-scale urban development and regeneration projects. Practice head Victoria Du Croz leads the team in carving out an area of expertise advising film studios, including Warner Bros. The firm has also seen an increase of work within the residential sector, in particular the living and retirement care arenas. Matthew Evans offers advice to clients across the commercial, retail, and hotel industries, from developers to local planning authorities.

Practice head(s):

Victoria Du Croz

Other key lawyers:

Matthew Evans; Alice Gordon-Finlayson; Georgina Reeves; Sophie Smith; Ella Jones


‘The team is collaborative, approachable, gives advice in plain English to ensure clients understand, and takes a pragmatic approach.’

‘Always sound knowledge on up-to-date legislation and thinking on the front foot.’

‘Always offer a personable service and happy to discuss anything in detail.’

‘You receive a service where thought has been given to your client’s need. A strong planning team with a wide range of knowledge and specialism that is keen to find solutions for planning issues.’

‘Matthew Evans responds to queries quickly and with clarity and goes beyond the requests of client’s needs.’

‘The planning team takes a robust yet pragmatic approach to legal matters. A pleasure to deal with them.’

‘Victoria Du Croz and Alice Gordon-Finlayson continually strive to do the best for the client.’

Key clients

Knight Dragon

Mount Anvil and Newlon Housing Trust joint venture

Warner Bros.

British Airways Pension Fund

HG Construction Group

Danescroft (PCDF IV Swindon) LLP

Peel Logistics Partnerships Limited

Notting Hill Genesis

Consolidated Developments

Montgomery’s Wharf LLP

Aitch Group

Citystyle Fairview VQ LLP

British Airways Pension Fund

London George Unit Trust

Hondo Enterprises Ltd.

McDonald’s Restaurants Limited

Work highlights

  • Assisted Knight Dragon with securing planning permission for a new masterplan regarding an additional 1,750 new homes with 50% provided as affordable housing.
  • Advising the Mount Anvil and Newlon Housing Trust joint venture on all planning matters relating to the extensive estate regeneration of the Barnsbury Estate in Islington.
  • Advised Warner Bros on securing planning permission for the significant expansion of their film studios at Leavesden.

Howard Kennedy LLP

Howard Kennedy LLP's planning team, led by the ‘astute and hard-working' Jade Chalmers, advises on a full range of contentious and non-contentious planning matters in the commercial, mixed-use, housing, retail, and hotel sectors. The group assists a number of property developers and provides specialist advice on CIL regulations. In 2022, the team experienced increased activity in the private rented sector and a growing need for student accommodation and retirement space. Renewable energy projects and affordable housing are also growth areas for the team.

Practice head(s):

Jade Chalmers

Other key lawyers:

Bob Sadler; Caitlin Spence


‘A very good planning team under the headship of Jade Chalmers. Excellent and clearly close relationship between a property private client base and the planning division, therefore offering a multi-disciplinary approach. The planning team has grown under Jade Chalmers and is a young, hardworking outfit.’

‘Jade Chalmers heads up the planning team. She is brilliant with clients, astute and hard-working. An absolute pleasure to work with.’

‘A great team who are great collaborators. It is always at the forefront of the most interesting cases, highly responsive and dilligent in what it does. It is led by a true leader in Jade Chalmers, with a great crop of talent alongside her.’

‘Jade Chalmers is just an absolute star. She is always great with handling clients, ensuring that cases are managed well, and only the best arguments pursued.’

‘The entire team was involved at each stage, including the head of planning and partners down to juniors and trainees.’

‘Friendly and a pleasure to work with. In particular, Jade Chalmers and Caitlin Spence were just a joy to work with, extremely knowledgeable and always on hand to assist.’

‘We have always found the level of research and understanding of the complex planning system and legal complexity to be up there with the best. A recent complex agreement has involved the team in extensive dissection of a complex masterplan arrangement. It was reassuring to know that we had our backs covered on this.’

‘Jade Chalmers leads on the planning support for our business and has demonstrated on many occasions her in-depth knowledge of the complex planning system that we operate. She leads a team that is tenacious in its review of documents yet clear in its reporting and advice, something that is critical to enable quick decisions to be made.’

Key clients

Fairview Hotels (Ipswich) Limited

Leos UK Holdings Limited

Atlantic Green UK Limited

Work highlights

  • Represented Fairview Hotels (Ipswich) Limited in the landmark case handed down by Mr Justice Holgate concerning accommodating asylum seekers in hotels, successfully arguing that the injunctive proceedings put in place to prohibit any asylum seekers staying at the hotel were not justified.
  • Represented Leos UK Holdings Limited in a public inquiry appealing the refusal of planning permission to provide a 29-storey building for 121 residential units and flexible commercial space by the London Borough of Croydon Council.
  • Advised Nofar and Interland on the ‘Cellarhead’ project, Nofar’s entry into the UK renewable energy market, and the UK’s largest planned battery energy storage project, which has an estimated construction cost of £214m and will provide storage capacity of approximately 700 MWh.

Irwin Mitchell

Irwin Mitchell advises clients across the country on both contentious and non-contentious planning matters. The team has expertise in environmental issues, including contaminated land and the regeneration of brownfield sites. Nicola Gooch is the lead partner for the South, handling large-scale, mixed-use developments and advising a number of developers. Sejal Patel was promoted to senior associate in May 2022, and has led on some of the team’s largest development projects. Practice head Claire Petricca-Riding is based in Manchester.

Practice head(s):

Claire Petricca-Riding

Other key lawyers:

Nicola Gooch; Pamela Chesterman; James Pavey; Sajel Pate


‘Excellent service, with their highest calibre planning lawyers carefully and simply describing all the key information to us.’

‘Their ability to carefully and simply describe all the key information to us.’

Key clients

Millwall Football Club

Artisan Saltaire Limited

Chase New Homes Limited

Chesterfield House Management Limited

Whitley Parish Council

Wilter Associates Limited

Berkeley Homes

Jaspar Group

EC1 Residences Limited

Soho Estates

Work highlights

  • Advised Millwall Football Club on their application for a brand new, state of the art, football academy and training ground in West Kingsdown, Sevenoaks.
  • Advised Chase New Homes on the first residential permission granted directly by the Planning Inspectorate under section 62A of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990, after Uttlesford District Council was placed in special measures due to an unacceptable number of major planning decisions being overturned at appeal.
  • Advising Soho Estates on residual post-development issues involving their flagship development at Ilona Rose House.

K&L Gates LLP

The ‘incredibly efficient and focused’ planning team at K&L Gates LLP acts on both sides of development matters, working across a range of sectors for both public and private clients. The team handles regeneration and infrastructure projects, urban redevelopment, and strategic planning, as well as some cross-border transactional work. Practice head Feroze Abbasprovides consistently strong advice’ and has developed expertise in niche areas of the planning sphere, including vires and transactional structuring. ‘Diligent’ and ‘knowledgeable’ senior associate Rebecca Daniels plays an active role in the majority of the team’s planning projects.

Practice head(s):

Feroze Abbas

Other key lawyers:

Rebecca Daniels


‘The team have expert skills in all aspect of planning law. As a local authority client, the most value of the K&L Gates team is the confidence it distils in advocating on our behalf, especially in high-value and complex cases. The team have advanced the skills of the wider time and ensured we remained equipped with latest case law and legislative developments.’

‘Feroze Abbas, Rebecca Daniels, and the team have always stood out as fantastic lawyers, but are also able to engage with a variety of partners and stakeholders – from developers to local councillors. They have excellent sector knowledge and are highly respected. They go the extra mile to ensure they understand the position prior to entering negotiations and have been intimately involved in developing new and bold ways of securing additional value. They are strong advocates.’

‘The people in the K&L Gates team are the best of the best.’

‘K&L Gates always provide insightful, excellent advice which is easily digestible and go above and beyond to help explain to junior members of the client team when needed. They are renowned for being personable and enjoyable to work with, but robust in defence and all advice given.’

‘Feroze Abbas is exceptionally personable and will make himself available to help.’

‘Rebecca Daniels is extremely through, whilst also very friendly and approachable, which helps to mark her out from other firms.’

‘The team is incredibly efficient and focused, providing robust and well-constructed advice to the client.’

‘Feroze Abbas provides consistently strong advice and exceptional client care.’

Key clients


Coty Inc

Elysian Residences

London Borough of Hounslow

London Borough of Bromley

London Newcastle

LRC Group

Nuveen Real Estate

Patrizia AG

Stroud District Council

Workspace Group PLC

Work highlights

  • Advising the London Borough of Hounslow on all aspects of planning, including negotiation of section 106 agreements on multiple development sites.
  • Advising Workspace Group PLC on the re-development of the Chocolate Factory in Wood Green, now part of an area wide regeneration scheme.
  • Continuing to advise Avanton on its strategic Old Kent Road project, as well as Avanton’s new Culvert Close, London development which is currently in planning.

Lewis Silkin

For the planning department at Lewis Silkin, new areas of growth include media and entertainment, as well as ESG-related matters. The planning team has also been active in the retail, leisure, and hospitality sectors, as well as conducting due diligence for corporate freehold or leasehold acquisitions and sales. Practice head Sara Hanrahan is highly recommended, with over 20 years’ experience in the planning sector and specialising in redevelopment and urban regeneration projects.

Practice head(s):

Sara Hanrahan


‘The quality I appreciate most is the fact that I am listened to, and they do attempt to find the legal legs. If they can’t find them, then there is a confirmation as to what they understand by my words, so that we come to a common understanding.’

‘Sara Hanrahan is a very strong planning lawyer with a vast range of experiences to call upon.’

‘In Sara Hanrahan, Lewis Silkin LLP has a partner with an excellent feel for the bones of a case.’

‘Sara Hanrahan of Lewis Silkin is highly recommended and our experience concurs with this recommendation.’

‘There is strong team work and a belief that everyone can contribute.’

‘Sara Hanrahan is very approachable; she is willing to discuss, amend where necessary, agree consensual approach and go the extra mile.’

‘Responsive, engaging, and very competent.’

‘I have received a first-class service from the knowledgeable partners and associates, covering all aspects of commercial property and highways issues.’

Key clients


Pizza Express

London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham

London Legacy Development Corporation

Camden Borough Council

Southern Water

Jones Knowles Richie Ltd

The Arc Collection

Withers LLP

The Liliesleaf Trust UK

Norton Rose Fulbright

With its ‘extraordinary bank of legal knowledge and powerhouse lawyers’, the planning team at Norton Rose Fulbright offers advice on a wide range of matters. The firm has a particular focus on London-based redevelopment and compulsory purchases, but it is also experienced in mixed-use schemes and constrained or brownfield development projects. The team also handles contentious matters, and has an active enforcement practice. Practice head Sarah Fitzpatrick has developed the team since her arrival at the firm in 2020, with ‘top tier judgment born of long experience in the field’, and she is supported by ‘standout’ associate Carina Wentzel.

Practice head(s):

Sarah Fitzpatrick

Other key lawyers:

Carina Wentzel


‘Undoubtedly one of the best City law firms for planning.’

‘Has that rare combination of humanity and ultra efficiency. An extraordinary bank of legal knowledge and powerhouse lawyers who work incredibly hard to get the best possible result and are always a genuine pleasure to deal with.’

‘Partner Sarah Fitzpatrick has top-tier judgment born of long experience in the field. She is able to provide advice at the drop of a hat and also to marshall evidence from an impressive team of experts when necessary.’

‘Standout junior Carina Wentzel is one of the best planning associates. She is a joy to work with adored by client and barrister alike. Her capacity for hard work is matched only by her endless enthusiasm.’

‘The practice was unique in having experts in a very specific area of discretionary purchase and were able to pull together the various aspects of that expertise within the organisation.’

‘Carina Wentzel was my point of contact, and she was extremely diligent and both knowledgeable and professional.’

Key clients

Setha Canterbury Limited

Bellaview Properties Limited

Hampstead Asset Management Limited

Ocubis Limited

ATS Euromaster Limited

ABC International Bank plc

DB Cargo (UK) Limited

DB Cargo International Limited

AIG Asset Management

Arcabas Limited

Berliet Limited

Hotchkiss Limited

Brookfield Asset Management Inc.

Centurion Corporation Limited

Linea Homes Group

St George City Ltd

Dome Assets Limited

Greenergy International Limited

Haitong Bank S.A.

Civitas Social Housing PLC

Industrial Commercial Bank of China

National Westminster Bank PLC

Prime London Ventures Limited

Standard Chartered Bank

VMM Limited

Suez Recycling and Recovery UK Ltd

PPR Estates

Builder Depot Ltd

Kenmin (HP) Limited

Residential Land

Aedifica Limited

Samson Capital Southern Limited

Bellway Homes Limited

Funding Affordable Homes Housing Association Limited

Work highlights

  • Advising Berliet Limited on the redevelopment of four linked sites to provide a residential led scheme of 550 residential units.
  • Advising DB Cargo (UK) Limited and DB Cargo International Limited on multiple high-value compulsory purchase compensation claims concerning HS2 and a highway DCO, as well as opposing a CPO being promoted by the Environment Agency.
  • Advised Setha Canterbury Limited on a complex town centre redevelopment in Canterbury, with significant heritage, ecclesiastical, and nutrient neutrality aspects.

Osborne Clarke LLP

The planning group at Osborne Clarke LLP, led by John Baird, offers advice on mixed-use development and large-scale homebuilding schemes. The practice handles a range of contentious matters, with associate Anna Sidebottom promoting and defending judicial review applications. Logistics is another area of recent activity; associate Katherine Chambers focuses on urban logistics schemes in particular. Senior associate Ben Naish negotiates planning and infrastructure agreements for large residential schemes. Anna Fouracre left the firm in July 2023.

Practice head(s):

John Baird

Other key lawyers:

Ben Naish; Katherine Chambers; Anna Sidebottom


‘Good knowledge of the sector and the problems facing house-builder and developer clients; therefore able to come up with pragmatic solutions.’

‘John Baird is good with clients, has excellent sector knowledge, and great depth of commercial and practical experience.’

‘Anna Sidebottom is good on technical detail and good with clients.’

Key clients


Welbeck Strategic Land


Taylor Wimpey

Henry Boot Developments

Gleeson Land





St Modwen

British Land

Lifestory Group


Long Ashton Land Limited

John Lewis Pension Fund

Packaged Living

Work highlights

  • Advised Welbeck Strategic Land on an outline planning consent for 2,200 homes to be built in a major new urban extension in South Worcester.
  • Advised GLP on logistics developments across the country.
  • Advised Henry Boot Developments Limited and Enfield Borough Council on delivering a major logistics regeneration project across the 27-acre Montagu Industrial Estate in Enfield, North London.

Sharpe Pritchard LLP

The planning team at Sharpe Pritchard LLP is led by planning and licensing specialist Bernadette Hillman, who has over 30 years’ experience in this area. The firm handles the full range of contentious and non-contentious matters, and offers advice on regeneration, transformation, and infrastructure projects. It is regularly sought out by local and public authorities to bring and defend challenges. Contentious planning is the remit of ‘class act’ senior associate Andrew Swaffer.

Practice head(s):

Bernadette Hillman

Other key lawyers:

Alistair Lewis; Emry Thomas; Andrew Swaffer; Emily Knowles


‘Huge experience.’

‘Andrew Swaffer has great care and devotion to detail.’

‘The market leader for public sector and parliamentary work.’

‘Andrew Swaffer is super efficient and well-liked by clients.’

‘Bernadette Hillman is quick to respond, clear on timescales to advise, and meets those timescales.’

‘In-depth knowledge, particularly of how local government works, as well as the confidence of the sector through many years hands-on experience.’

‘Andrew Swaffer is a class act who should get greater credit and profiling.’

Key clients

London Borough of Lambeth

London Borough of Redbridge

Guildford Borough Council

Countryside Properties

Southend-on-Sea Borough Council

London Borough of Merton

London Borough of Tower Hamlets

Portsmouth Water

Peterborough City Council

Worthing Borough Council

Waverley Borough Council

London Borough of Redbridge

Baz UK Limited

Buckinghamshire Council

Thanet District Council

London Borough of Southwark

Mr Alan Pearce

Work highlights

  • Act for Lambeth Council in relation to their planning and highway work on a number of significant matters.
  • Acting for Guildford District in several large projects, including the Weyside Urban Village, Debenhams redevelopment and two successful judicial reviews.
  • Advising Portsmouth Water on planning and CPO matters associated with the first new reservoir to be built in the South East since the 1970s.

Taylor Wessing LLP

At Taylor Wessing LLP, the planning team sits within the real estate, infrastructure, and energy department. The group has a strong background in the hotel, hospitality and leisure sectors, as well as the luxury living, build-to-rent, and private rented sectors. Alistair Watson leads the planning team with 28 years’ experience advising on significant projects concerning stadia, airports, and real estate developments. Promoted to partner in 2022, Emma Tait continues to bolster the team’s involvement in urban regeneration projects.

Practice head(s):

Alistair Watson

Other key lawyers:

Emma Tait


‘This team genuinely understands the client and its needs.’

‘A personal touch and clear desire to see important tasks through to completion.’

Key clients

Cain International

S. A. Damm


R&F Properties

Comer Homes


Brentford FC

Southampton FC

AFC Bournemouth

Bleeding Heart Restaurant Group

McLaren Property

The Westbury Hotel Limited



Canada Life

Work highlights

  • Advising Estrella Damm on it’s acquisition of Eagle Brewery from Carlsberg and on the long-running project to expand the brewery and make it more sustainable.
  • Advised BentallGreenOak’s on the planning and highways agreements to facilitate the development of a logistics pipeline and advised on planning matters relating to the acquisition and financing of its portfolio.
  • Advising the Comer Homes Group on all of its development sites across London and the South East, including major schemes in the London Borough of Barnet and the Royal Borough of Greenwich.

Trowers & Hamlins LLP

Trowers & Hamlins LLP has a strong public and private sector focus, advising private developers, local authorities, and registered providers. Specialist planning and CPO lawyer Jacqueline Backhaus leads the team, with over 25 years’ experience advising both public and private sector clients. Rob Walker has a wealth of experience in complex regeneration schemes, a key focus area for the team. Another growth area for the group is ‘build-to-rent’ schemes and the department has specialist knowledge in other developing areas of the residential sector.

Practice head(s):

Jacqueline Backhaus

Other key lawyers:

Rob Walker; Tim Brown; Halah Al-Zamel; Jasmine Ratta; Lucy James; Michael Rhode


‘Trowers & Hamlins have a specialist planning and compulsory purchase team who have provided strong pragmatic and strategic advice to find a way through a variety of complexities. The team can navigate complex technical evidence to ensure the legal advice is very solid and any risks involved are understood.’

‘Jacqueline Backhaus leads an excellent team and is on hand at all times to assist with any queries. Jacqueline is able to articulate issues well and understand their impact on the development. She attends all project meetings and is available to offer clear recommendations to help achieve commercial outcomes.

‘Rob Walker is fantastic and plays a strategic role in regeneration projects. He listens and understands where we are coming from. He is very collaborative in his approach, and we have a good working relationship.’

‘Jasmine Ratta is easy to work with, highly intelligent, and her strategic thinking is crucial to the project.’

‘The Trowers & Hamlins team are responsive to a range of complex issues. It is always able to provide expert advice and to access further external advice if needed.’

‘Jacqueline Backhaus is an authoritative voice on complex planning issues.’

‘Trowers & Hamlins have a specialist planning and environment team who have provided innovative and tactical advice to resolve complex and challenging issues. Trowers have been faultless at fostering good working relationships with our staff. The team are proactive in coming forward with practical solutions and the advice is clear and comprehensive.’

‘Rob Walker at Trowers & Hamlins is always available when required and provides comprehensive and concise advice. He is very knowledgeable, is never flummoxed by any request, and provides pragmatic solutions when problems arise.’

Key clients

Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council

London Borough of Enfield

Cheltenham Borough Council

Tewkesbury Borough Council

Gravesham Borough Council

Norwich City Council

Clarion Housing Group

Hyde Housing Association Limited

Museum of London

Stevenage Borough Council

Epping Forest District Council

Graven Hill Developments

Watkin Jones Group PLC


Grosvenor Estates

Richmond Housing Partnerships

Ellison Oxford Limited

Catalyst Housing Group

Work highlights

  • Advising Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council on a complete outsource planning legal function.
  • Acting for Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council in a claim for breach of planning law and seeking injunctive relief against an individual landowner.
  • Acted for Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council in defending a judicial review claim against the grant of retrospective planning permission for a swimming pool enclosure.

A&O Shearman

The planning group at A&O Shearman, led by Christopher Woolf, has demonstrable knowledge of European planning matters, which sees the practice assisting on Europe-wide transactions and advising foreign investors, financial institutions, and private equity firms. The firm provides traditional planning advice, as well as support with growing areas, including data centre development. Robert Share, promoted to counsel in May 2023, is an experienced planning lawyer with three main areas of focus: real estate investment and development; real estate finance; and energy and infrastructure.

Practice head(s):

Christopher Woolf

Other key lawyers:

Nick Saner; Robert Share


‘A commercial and considered approach to planning challenges.’

‘Robert Share has a good command of planning issues and great attention to detail.’

‘Robert Share brings long experience of planning and property matters. He is very sound and clear as a solicitor, qualities which he brings to his advisory work with clients. He is very good at communicating client’s needs and discussing them in the legal context.’

‘Robert Share is a good person to work with and very thoughtful, both legally and in terms of his soft skills.’

‘They offer an excellent and comprehensive service in respect of planning matters.’

‘We have worked with Robert Share and have found him to give excellent advice and to be a good team player within a multi-disciplinary team.’

Key clients




C C Land

China Vanke

Kennedy Wilson


Orion Capital Managers

Oxford Properties

Asserson Law Offices

Daniel Drukarz leads the planning team at boutique firm Asserson Law Offices, and is adept at handling complex developments and regeneration schemes. The practice has a focus on private sector planning work, specialising in private infrastructure, and has recently taken on a new energy infrastructure project instruction. Senior associate James Kon manages planning appeals and applications, with demonstrable experience in the High Court and the Court of Appeal.

Practice head(s):

Daniel Drukarz

Other key lawyers:

James Kon


‘Assersons has a small but very well-focused team of planning lawyers. They are knowledgeable and experienced in the constantly changing minutiae of planning law. They are also good team players and know whom to bring in when a case needs a broader set of expertise in order to be taken forward to a satisfactory conclusion.’

‘Daniel Drukarz is a very seasoned planning and property law professional with decades of valuable experience behind him. He knows his way around the planning world and gives his clients excellent service.

‘James Kon is Daniel Drukarz’s trusty lieutenant. He is very hardworking and conscientious and throws his all into a preparation for a case.’

‘Asserson has a very boutique planning practice, which means that they are completely focussed on each and every client. Whilst small, Asserson has a very experienced team that really does go the extra mile.’

‘Daniel Drukarz is a very able planning solicitor who has worked for a number of much larger planning practices and brought his experience to Asserson, where he delivers a first-class service to his clients.’

‘Danny Drukarz has seen it all and done it all, and is one of the sagest planning solicitors out there and a lovely guy!’

‘James Kon is a great lawyer with searing intellect.’

‘Danny Drukarz is a strategist second-to-none in the business. James Kon has a phenomenal ability to master detail.’

Key clients

Recharge One Limited

Basildon Estates Limited

Old Kent Road Regeneration Limited

City and Docklands Property Group

Ilford (Jersey) Limited

Createfuture Limited

Albany Homes Limited

Shaviram Aldershot Limited

P Win Solihull Limited

Stadium Capital Holdings Limited

VFund Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Recharge One in the South Downs National Park on a successful appeal for an innovative sustainable development providing off-grid EV charging at scale and carbon-neutral lodging.
  • Advised Basildon Estates Limited on a successful appeal to regenerate the town centre and provide 500 residential units.
  • Acting for Winston Group in an application for the tallest building in Solihull Town Centre.

Bevan Brittan LLP

The planning team at Bevan Brittan LLP is the lead advisor to NHS Property Services, acting on NHS regeneration projects across London. Practice head Dalee Kaur has a wealth of experience in all areas of planning law and offers advice on infrastructure-related development. The practice advises a significant number of London Boroughs and local authorities on regeneration and development schemes, and the team also has experience in CPO work; Kathryn Lawrance deals with compulsory purchase processes for regeneration projects.

Practice head(s):

Dalee Kaur

Other key lawyers:

Kathryn Lawrence; Matthew Tucker


‘When I have appointed this firm, I feel very confident with the quality of staff, and I am impressed that the partners are always on hand and take a personal interest in every case.’

‘Dalee Kaur in the planning team has exceptional knowledge, not only on the legal side, but also of the full town planning process.’

‘Dalee Jaur holds authorities to account and does not relent on securing the best for her client. She is straight forward in her advice.’

‘The team is well-regarded in the planning field, including being particularly involved in complex planning litigation.’

‘Dalee Kaur is a standout partner. She is approachable, easy to work with, and is strongly focused on providing commercial, practical advice.’

‘Dalee Kaur gives excellent advice, is commercial in her outlook, straight-forward, and to the point’. 

Key clients

South Lakeland District Council

Barts Health NHS Trust

Royal Holloway University of London

London Borough of Tower Hamlets

Anthology (Kennington Stage) Limited

NHS Property Services Limited

London Borough of Hillingdon

Work highlights

  • Acting for Barts Health NHS Trust on all planning matters relating to the redevelopment of Whipps Cross Hospital, an 18 hectare site on the edge of Epping Forest, as part of the government’s flagship new hospital building programme.
  • Assisting NHS Property Services Limited with objecting to a compulsory purchase order where the process of negotiated acquisition has not been proactively progressed, and the comprehensive redevelopment of the land, including NHSPS’s interest, has not been fully and properly considered by the acquiring authority.
  • Advising the London Borough of Hillingdon on two parallel compulsory purchase schemes for Hayes Town Centre and for land at Avondale Road, which will result in the delivery of more than 750 high-quality residential units and associated economic and social benefits.

Blake Morgan LLP

Blake Morgan LLP handles the full spectrum of planning and environmental matters. The planning team is regularly involved in residential-led schemes, and marine planning work is a particular area of growth for the group. Practice head Amardip Healy boasts public sector experience and over 30 years’ experience as a solicitor, specialising in all aspects of planning and highways. Keith Lancaster left the firm in June 2022.

Practice head(s):

Amardip Healy

Other key lawyers:

Victoria Charlesson


‘My go-to planner at Blake Morgan is Amardip Healy, former chair of the Local Government Lawyers’ Association. She has unique insight into both the public and private sector workings of the planning system, drawing on her a wealth of experience on both sides of the fence.’

‘Amardip Healy has a sure sense of the commercial realities of a case. Her client care skills are unparalleled, and she has a refreshingly calm and unflappable approach to even the most complex cases.’

Fladgate LLP

Fladgate LLP’s boasts a ‘strong', full-service planning offering and provides clients with advice on development proposals, site assembly, and planning applications. The team has experience handling matters involving listed buildings, and light and environmental issues. Practice head Mark Harnett provides ‘very clear and considered strategic advice' to developers and property investors, as well as clients in the hotel and leisure sectors. Senior associate Miles Crawford has particular experience in permitted development.

Practice head(s):

Mark Harnett

Other key lawyers:

Miles Crawford


‘Fladgate LLP is a high-quality firm with excellent individuals at all levels.’

‘Fladgate LLP has an outstanding reputation in the planning sphere.’

‘Mark Harnett is a brilliant solicitor; he is measured and sensible at all times, and highly effective at cutting directly to the key issues in any case. He has a good sense of overall objectives.’

‘A very strong team.’

‘Mark Harnett provides very clear and considered strategic advice.’

‘Mark Harnett is unflappable; he approaches any difficulty calmly and carefully.’

Key clients

Hodson Developments Limited

4C Hotels

BYM Capital

De Vere Partners

Noe Group

London Wall

Music Walk of Fame Limited

Work highlights

  • Advising Hodson Developments on a substantial residential development at Chilmington Green, Ashford.
  • Advising a client on the planning aspects of a redevelopment in Aldgate to provide a new office building with 18,537 sq. m. retail space, and the change of use of existing offices to a hotel, a new restaurant, and a new residential building, providing 87 flats.
  • Advised BYM Group on a number of development projects over the past year, including a project in the Treaty Centre in Hounslow and a planning application for a former Xerox site in Uxbridge.

Freeths LLP

The planning team at Freeths LLP regularly advises clients on large-scale developments and infrastructure projects. The department has also developed specialist expertise in minerals planning, in addition to its experience with highway and public right of way issues. Practice head Robert Bruce ‘stands out’ for his ‘wealth of experience’ in planning matters and his ability to ‘think outside the box’.

Practice head(s):

Robert Bruce; Mark Harris; Paul Brailsford; Penny Simpson

Other key lawyers:

Jennifer Roe; Edward Peel; David Bowes


‘Knowledge and professionalism in the planning field are excellent. They have knowledge of local government planning law.’

‘One of the few legal practices that has a dedicated team of planners attached to the team. This gives Freeths an advantage over others because of the collaboration with their expert planning practitioners. It has the capability to provide the entire service in house.’

‘Robert Bruce is engaging and has a wealth of experience. He challenges clients and is realistic about their chances.’

‘Robert Bruce values other people’s opinions and is very respectful; he knows there is often more than one solution to a problem. His greatest attribute is to think outside the box and raise issues no one has even started to consider.

‘The team has experience, expertise, and enthusiasm.’

‘Robert Bruce stands out. He thinks outside the box and always has the client’s aims in mind.’

‘The team is extremely capable and very supportive. It is viewed by staff as giving good advice and turning matters around quickly.’

‘Robert Bruce is very knowledgeable and always willing to go the extra mile.’

Key clients

Central Bedfordshire Council

City of Lincoln Council

Royal Borough of Greenwich

Aldi Stores Limited

Cumbria County Council

Runnymede Borough Council

Tarmac Trading Limited

Keystone Law

Keystone Law’s planning team provides a boutique service, covering a broad range of planning matters. The firm handles large projects for corporate clients, as well as Planning Court litigation, enforcement matters, and compulsory purchases. Ben Garbett and Yohanna Weber are noted for their expertise in permitted development rights and environmental law. Anna Fouracre joined the team from Osborne Clarke LLP in July 2023.

Other key lawyers:

Yohanna Weber; Ben Garbett; Anna Fouracre


‘Ben Garbett is always available and is creative with his approach to planning.’

‘Ben Garbett who is a first-class lawyer.’

‘A wide variety of practice areas under one roof, which facilitates multi-disciplinary crossovers.’

‘The expert planning knowledge of the planning solicitors at Keystone is very helpful.’

‘They have a grasp of not just the relevant law and practice but also what is the most appropriate strategy to assist the client, which is so often key in planning.’

‘Ben Garbett is excellent. I work with him regularly and he is a pleasure to work with.’

‘Ben Garbett has a sharp legal mind and is always brilliant at finding the nub of a case in order to deliver for the client. I highly recommend him.’

‘Yohanna Weber is very experienced in private and public sector. Very bright. Very diligent.’

Key clients


Valley Ridge Holdings Ltd

The Trustees of Crossflatts Cricket Club

Blakesley Estates (Weymouth BQ) Ltd Ltd

Bembridge Harbour Trust

Macintosh Village (Management) Limited

Luxury Leisure Limited

Oyster Wharf Developments Limited

Mansion House Partnership

Organiclea CIC

Blakesley Estates (Kingsbridge) Ltd

Coventry Gliding CLub

Zero Carbon Farms Ltd

Work highlights

  • Advising Blakesley Estates on various contentious matters relating to the development of a housing site in Kingsbridge.
  • Advised Valley Ridge on its objection to the Viridor planning application.
  • Advised Enfinium on the application for the Wheelabrator Kemsley Generating Station and Wheelabrator Kemsley North Waste to Energy Facility.

Maples Teesdale LLP

The ‘excellent’ and ‘very knowledgeableJohn Bosworth leads the planning team at Maples Teesdale LLP. The firm has experience advising on all aspects of the town and country planning system, assisting clients with the full range of contentious and non-contentious matters, from compulsory purchase and appropriation, to environmental matters, building regulations, and affordable housing mandates. Recently, the firm has also increased its focus on strategic land cases.

Practice head(s):

John Bosworth

Other key lawyers:

Robin Barnes


‘The advice given was legally sound and, most importantly, strategic and effective.’

‘John Bosworth is a very knowledgeable professional with experience that enables him to advise on how best to obtain the desired result with minimum fuss.’

‘John Bosworth is excellent, super responsive, and nothing is too much trouble. We always refer our planning queries to John as we know our clients are in safe hands.’

‘The planning team provides concise and effective advice at pace.’

‘John Bosworth is an exceptionally knowledgeable and practical planning specialist.’

Key clients

Dominus Group


University of London

Trenport Holdings

Aylesbury Vale Estates

Royal Sun Alliance

Lands Improvement Holdings

J Gliddon and Sons Ltd

Yoo Capital


Beaumont Hotel

Work highlights

  • Advising Dominus Group on a £35.5m mixed use redevelopment at The Green in Southall, a 23 storey tower close to the new Elizabeth Line.
  • Advising Trenport on its 950 dwelling development at Eccles in Kent, undertaking a legal review of the planning application, drafting the section 106 agreement, and advising on a non-determination appeal.
  • Advising a private landowner on a successful judicial review of a decision of West Oxfordshire District Council to adopt a masterplan for land that included the client’s land.

Russell-Cooke LLP

The ‘diligent and experienced’ team at Russell-Cooke LLP, led by Alex Ground, handles a broad range of contentious and non-contentious planning matters. The group has noted an increasing number of 100% custom-build and self-build schemes, and has taken on new clients in 2022, including Lok ‘N’ Store. The team has also grown, with the addition of Catherine Knight, who joined from Bradford City Council in March 2023. Benjamin Cochrane is praised as a ‘hardworking and very reliable’ associate. John Webster left the firm in October 2022.

Practice head(s):

Alex Ground

Other key lawyers:

Ben Cochrane


‘I have had an excellent experience working with members of the team at Russell Cooke. They deliver a first-class service to their clients and are a pleasure to work with as counsel.’

‘They are very diligent and experienced in all aspects of planning litigation. I would highly recommend them to any of my clients.’

‘Alex Ground is approachable, professional, knowledgeable, and a go-to solicitor for any difficulties in the planning arena.’

‘Attention to detail, prompt response to enquiries, sound knowledge of case law, and user-friendly advise for clients.’

‘Alex Ground has provided high-quality and consistent advice over the years we have been in contact.’

‘Alex Ground is wonderful to work with and has a calming, reassuring approach.’

‘Ben Cochrane is very hardworking and very reliable.’

Key clients

Vistry Partnerships

Countryside Properties Plc

Sirosa Properties Establishment


Goldcrest Land

Triplerose Limited

Redcar Bulk Terminal Limited

Copperwood Developments Limited

Reichmann Properties plc

Nueva Limited


Viewranks Limited

Lok’n Store Group PLC

Quantum Land and Planning Limited

Gorillas Technologies UK Limited

Woodcock Holdings

Work highlights

  • Acting for Triplerose Limited in an enforcement appeal to be determined following a public inquiry.
  • Assisted AG Bloom with the planning side of its portfolio of six ultra-urban development properties located throughout London.
  • Advised Viewranks Limited on the planning and Section 106 requirements for the redevelopment of the site as a co-living development scheme in Kingston Upon Thames.

Shoosmiths LLP

Shoosmiths LLP’s planning team assists a range of national clients at each stage of the planning process. The practice handles a range of contentious and non-contentious matters, from regeneration and CPO schemes, to High Court challenges and enforcement cases. Particular sectors of strength for the group include residential, elderly housing, and care homes. Kathryn Jump and Lisa Tye are the joint national heads of the practice, and Matt Nixon joined the team as legal director in March 2023 from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP. Karen Howard left the firm in May 2023.

Practice head(s):

Kathryn Jump; Lisa Tye

Other key lawyers:

Matthew Stimson; Kayleigh Chapman


‘Versatile skills and distinctive style, very personable, and relaxed working relationships.’

‘Lisa Tye has brilliant client care skills and is a relationship builder; she brings a lightness in her style while carrying weight with her professional skills.’

‘They are a trusted partner of ours as we’ve worked alongside them for many years. As a result, you know what to expect from each other. This helps move transactions along without the need for constant management of people and the processes.’

Key clients

S & J Padfield and family

DPE Estates

Essex CC

Attic Self Storage Limited

Shearer Property Group

Telereal Trillium

GSE Group

Impact Developments (Sevenoaks) Limited

Storefast Solutions Limited

Hill Residential

Scott Properties


Thurrock Council

Ackroyd & Abbot Limited

Vistry Partnerships London

Frontier Estates Limited

Perseus Land

Taylor Wimpey


BDW Trading Limited

Stuart Mee and family

William Lacey Group

Vistry East Midlands


London Borough of Hertsmere

Churchill Retirement Living

Jacuna Kitchens

Work highlights

  • Acting for S & J Padfield on the redevelopment of two sites in Brentwood which been removed from the Green Belt as part of the recent Brentwood Local plan review process.
  • Acting for Shearer Property Group in the Coventry scheme to transform Coventry City Centre through a mixed-use regeneration scheme, which is expected to deliver 1,300 homes, a hotel, a cinema, and restaurants, as well as co-working and community spaces.
  • Advising the Hill Group on their planning application proposals for the regeneration of Ham Close, which will include 452 new homes, community facilities, and a range of public green spaces.

Slaughter and May

The planning department of Slaughter and May’s real estate practice handles a range of transactional work, from property acquisitions and disposals to HQ relocations. Led by Richard Keczkes, the planning group advises clients on both transactional and development work across various sectors. Jane Edwarde is head of real estate at the firm, assisting clients with all aspects of real estate, including planning.

Practice head(s):

Richard Keczkes; Jane Edwarde


‘Extremely accommodating and well-rounded team.’

‘The team has a unique ability to distil very complex transactions and issues into simple language, and, as a consequence, we have managed to complete a number of complex, high-value transactions without delay and difficulty.’

‘Knowledgeable delivery of valuable advice.’

‘Clear, concise advice with good explanation of implications.’

Key clients

Arsenal FC

Clifford Chance

The Clothworkers’ Company

Derwent London


Elysian Residences


Everton FC


The Fishmongers’ Company

Halsbury Homes

IPI Partners LLC

John Lewis Partnership

Legal & General

Marks & Spencer


Octopus Renewables

Therme Group

Work highlights

  • Advised John Lewis Partnership on its £500m long-term joint venture with abrdn to develop 1,000 new homes at John Lewis properties in Bromley, West Ealing and Reading.
  • Advised Marks and Spencer on its called-in planning application to demolish and rebuild its flagship Marble Arch store.
  • Advised Derwent London on its acquisition and proposals to comprehensively redevelop the 2.5 acre site of Moorfields Eye Hospital and UCL’s Institute of Ophthalmology.

Watson Farley & Williams LLP

Watson Farley & Williams LLP has a wide ranging planning and environment health and safety offering. The planning team advises on both non-contentious and contentious matters, from onshore and offshore consents, compulsory purchases, development planning, and regeneration, to judicial reviews and inquiries. The team also has an environmental focus, advising on minerals and waste matters, as well as new energy technologies. Nick Walker leads the team with a particular focus on the energy and infrastructure sectors.

Practice head(s):

Nick Walker

Other key lawyers:

Valentina Keys

Key clients

Ropemaker Properties

InfraRed Capital Partners

Lightsource BP

Work highlights

  • Advising Ropemaker Properties on a number of multi-million pound developments, including planning and EHS matters.
  • Advising Ropemaker Properties on the forward funding development, comprising 27 industrial units of 581,040 sq. ft in Bristol.
  • Advising Ropemaker Properties on securing planning permission for the £32m redevelopment of a former office building in central Cardiff.