Pensions in North

Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP

The large pensions team at Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP receives instructions from listed companies from a range of sectors as well as also advising clients in the public and voluntary sectors. In addition to assisting trustees, providers, insurers and sponsoring employers with non-litigious matters, the practice also offers clients advice on contentious matters. Key individuals include practice head Martin Poore, a restructuring specialist who frequently advises on the use of contingent assets; regulatory expert Suzanne Duff; and Tracy Walsh, who focuses on the pensions aspects of corporate and outsourcing transactions.

Practice head(s):

Martin Poore

Other key lawyers:

Suzanne Duff; Tracy Walsh


There is a strong communication network between the individuals with whom we deal. This means that we can speak to any of them with the confidence that they are on our case.

Suzanne Duff is knowledgeable and practical.

Always very pro-active in response to new legislation.

Pro-active and definite in the advice they give.

Suzanne Duff is technically able.

Key clients

Procter & Gamble


Go-Ahead Group plc

Taylor Wimpey plc

Bellway plc

Newcastle Building Society

Northern Powergrid plc

Sabic UK Petrochemicals Limited

Research Machines plc Pension Scheme

2020 Trustees

WSH Group

Work highlights

  • Advising the trustee of the Go-Ahead Group Pension Plan on projects including its ability to implement a switch from RPI to CPI.
  • Assisting the trustee of the 600 Group Pension Scheme following the buy-in of scheme benefits on an all risks basis.
  • Advised Mpac Group on its acquisition of the entire issued share capital of Lambert Automation for an initial consideration of £15m.

Irwin Mitchell

Kate Byers is at the helm of the pensions team at Irwin Mitchell in Newcastle, while Martin Jenkins leads the firm's national practice from London. Byers also heads the pension documentation offering and advises on all aspects of pensions law and the regulatory environment within which registered schemes operate, focusing particularly on drafting pension scheme documentation and providing technical support. Clients from a wide range of sectors, including chemical, manufacturing, education, and construction, instruct the practice. The team has particular expertise in providing a legal advisory service for trustees and sponsoring employers of occupational pension schemes.

Practice head(s):

Martin Jenkins; Kate Byers

Key clients

PAN Trustees Limited

Trusteeship : Fishing Co-operative (UK) Ltd Retirement & Death Benefits Scheme

Work highlights

  • Advising the administrators of a SIPP provider on its roles and responsibilities in relation to pension arrangements and sale of the business.  
  • Assisting the trustees of a multi-section pension scheme with the re-design and de-segregation of its defined contribution sections.
  • Providing training and advice to the trustees of the pension scheme of a major food manufacturer regarding their obligation to equalise for the unequal effect of  guaranteed minimum pensions (GMPs).

Neon Legal

With a strong focus on providing advice to SMEs and smaller schemes, boutique pensions firm Neon Legal advises across a range of advisory and contentious matters. On the litigious side, work includes conducting claims against HMRC, the Pensions Regulator, and former directors and trustees of pension schemes. The practice also assists a number of international clients with UK pensions restructuring work. A key contact at the firm is practice head Tushar Bhate, who frequently acts on behalf of a number of independent Trustees.

Practice head(s):

Tushar Bhate

Key clients

Barratt Developments PLC

Trustee of the Barratt Group Pension & Life Assurance Scheme

Federal Signal Corporation

Minky Homecare

Trustees of the James Walker pension schemes

Trustees of the TechnipFMC plc pension scheme

Trustees of the Grand Lodge of Mark Master Masons pension scheme


Sir John Fitzgerald Limited