Leading Individuals

Next Generation Partners

Commercial litigation: elsewhere in the North in North


The Carlisle and Cumbria based commercial litigation team at Burnetts ‘is a regional heavyweight, able to deliver a service which is on a par with larger practices in the major city centres’. Practice head James Johnston advises regional clients on agribusiness-related disputes, such as proprietary estoppel cases and partnership issues. Consultant Sally Johnson and associate Georgina Nicholls are names to note for advising clients on corporate disputes. The team also work on commercial family litigation, calling upon the support of senior associate Johnny Coulthard in the contentious trusts and probate team. The firm also handles insolvency disputes, misrepresentation issues, and unfair prejudice claims.

Practice head(s):

James Johnston

Other key lawyers:

Sally Johnson; Georgina Nicholls; Johnny Coulthard


‘The team is a regional heavyweight, able to deliver a service which is on a par with larger practices in the major city centres.’

‘James Johnston is astute and very capable. He brings a wealth of experience.’

‘Burnetts’ dispute resolution team is commercial, pragmatic and efficient. The lawyers see the bigger picture and get to the heart of the matter’.

Endeavour Partnership LLP

Endeavour Partnership LLP’s commercial litigation team, based in Stockton, has ‘a fantastic group of experienced lawyers who specialise in advising clients on a wide range of matters’, including unfair prejudice claims, shareholder payback disputes, breach of warranty and contract issues, as well as repayment of loans and winding up disputes. Head of the disputes and insolvency team Ged Flanagan routinely acts for a number of clients across different sectors in fraud cases, professional negligence claims and product liability matters. Alex Smith heads the contentious real estate team, while newly promoted partner James Craddock brings expertise in dealing with construction and corporate disputes.

Practice head(s):

Ged Flanagan

Other key lawyers:

Alex Smith; James Craddock


‘Endeavour Partnership’s litigation team is a fantastic group of experienced lawyers who specialise in advising clients on a wide range of matters. The team has a strong reputation for providing practical and commercial advice to clients.’

‘A talented team – very much partner led. High calibre individuals leading talented junior lawyers.’

‘Ged Flanagan is conscientious and dedicated litigator. Pragmatic and honest. Alex Smith is a high-quality property litigator’.

‘Endeavour Partnership has constructed a remarkable team of expert lawyers in the field of commercial litigation. They have multiple individuals who are widely respected and considered pre-eminent in their fields.’

‘The below individuals stand out because they are razor sharp and exceptionally smart. They do however have the unique quality of commercial savviness about them.’

‘Alex Smith and James Craddock are first-rate solicitors. James is a rising star. Alex is already a well-established partner. They stand out because they are true to the firms ethos in bringing commercial insights to vastly complex legal disputes.’

‘Ged Flanagan has the benefit of over two decades of experience, which is absolutely evident from the advice he provides. He wears his expert knowledge lightly, which ensures his ability to speak with clients on a commercial level and in a straightforward manner. He has the brilliant ability to condense the most complex issues into easily digestible explanations and advice. He is an expert and approachable.’

‘Alex Smith excels in construction disputes and is often the first port of call for local businesses.’

Key clients

Taylor Goodchild Limited

Growth Capital Ventures Ltd

Work highlights

  • Advising Taylor Goodchild on long-running Unfair Prejudice petition, which includes three reported judgments, including a Court of Appeal decision.
  • Advising a lift maintenance company on a shareholder dispute relating to the interpretation of what was agreed in respect of shareholdings.
  • Advising Growth Capital Ventures in respect of a software development agreement with the claimed losses being in excess of £19million.

Swinburne Maddison LLP

A diverse range of companies, including sole traders, SMEs, LLPs and various partnerships, call upon Swinburne Maddison LLP’s Durham-based commercial litigation team to work on a wide range of disputes. Head of the dispute resolution and employment law team Jonathan Moreland guides clients through court proceedings and mediation. David Low is the key contact for breach of contract and professional negligence claims, while Abigail Zuk specialises in debt recovery and directors disputes as well as insolvency matters. Recent promotion to associate level Lewis Brown is a name to note for nuisance actions and disputes involving the sale of goods. The team provides a niche specialism in personal and corporate insolvency matters, involving bankruptcy applications.

Practice head(s):

Jonathan Moreland

Other key lawyers:

David Low; Abigail Zuk; Lewis Brown


‘The litigation team quickly grasped the essence of the litigation matter and clearly articulated a route to potential resolution.’

‘Lewis Brown’s very professional, yet personable approach, made dealing with often challenging litigation matters very simple and straight-forward. His no-nonsense approach ensured he got to the heart of the matter without any fuss.’

‘Abigail Zuk provides detailed updates, well thought out advice and is proactive in keeping the momentum going towards achieving the outcomes we seek as a client.’

‘I have dealt with David Low who has been exceptionally helpful and informative. He clearly explained the legal terms that have been used and explained what happens next at every stage.’

‘A strong team of accessible and professional colleagues who take the time to understand the nuances and specific needs of their clients. I have always had a high quality and timely service at a competitive price.’

‘David Low is my point of contact. He is personable, approachable and sensitive to the specific requirements of my organisation. He takes time to explain technical legal matters and does so within the framework of my organisation. He provides a top rate service. David will always make time to attend a meeting of the governing body. He is well respected and trusted.’

‘David Low is a very clever and capable lawyer, able to deal efficiently with knotty legal and practical questions and to explain clearly to clients what is going on. I have no hesitation in referring work to him.’

‘Jonathan Moreland is a calming influence, who gives litigation advice diligently and with assurance when dealing with differing issues that both myself and our business has encountered over the last 12 months. Unlike others I have used in the past, Jonathan offers clear guidance and structure to allow solutions or a way forward in tackling problems.’

Key clients

Ramside Estates Limited

The Esh Group

Durham Cathedral

Durham Cathedral Schools Foundation

The Enquire Learning Trust Limited

Martin Gray Football Acadamy

Baker Tilly Creditor Services LLP

Smart Office Systems Limited

Teescraft Engineering Limited

Allure Developments Limited

JEM Road Construction Limited

Northern Freight Services Limited

Evenmore Properties Limited

Durham County Council

Ingleford Scaffolding Limited

AKV Cladding Products Ltd

Aetrio Holdings Ltd

Box. North East Ltd

Certa Roofing and Cladding Ltd

North Shire Limited

Stichting Duits-Nederlandse Windtunnels

North East Pipeline Solutions Ltd

Land Technologies Limited

Manolete Partners plc

Beyond Housing Limited

Gas and Water Solutions Limited

Wirac Automation Limited

Man Co 1 Limited

Savanna Group Ltd

Soccarena Holdings Ltd

Berger Closures Limited

F&I Management Limited

The Auckland Project

Work highlights

  • Advising on a settlement proposal arising out of a complex insolvency dispute which concerned assets valued at £18 million.
  • Acting on behalf of a client in defending an £800,000 claim for repayment of a company buyback of shares.
  • Acting on behalf of the shareholders of a company in defending a £600,000 claim by a former director who believes he was unfairly prejudiced by the payment of a fixed dividend payment.