Construction in North

DAC Beachcroft LLP

With distinct contentious and non-contentious construction teams, led by Warren Kemp and James Harrison respectively, DAC Beachcroft LLP’s substantial practice excels at a national and international level and is highly regarded for its dominant expertise in the education and public sectors; the University of Newcastle upon Tyne, Gateshead Council and the Department for Education are notable clients. Stephen McLellan and Andrew Clough are also singled out for their construction and engineering litigation expertise, while legal director Rachel Gibson handles large transactions and energy and infrastructure projects, and Ruth Davidson was promoted to senior associate in mid-2021.

Practice head(s):

Warren Kemp; James Harrison

Other key lawyers:

Stephen McLellan; Andrew Clough; Rachel Gibson; Ruth Davidson; Ashley Simpson; Deborah Robinson

Key clients

Bellway Homes Limited / Bellway plc

Gracewood Construction Limited

University of Newcastle upon Tyne

The Passage

Gateshead Council

United Living

Nexus (Tyne & Wear Metro)


Places for People

Bowmer & Kirkland

Department for Education

Structuretone Limited

Ilke Homes Limited

Countryside Properties (UK) Limited

Crest Nicholson Operations Limited

Metnor Group / Metnor Construction Limited / Metnor plc

Robertson Construction Group Limited



LTE Group

Work highlights

  • Advised Gracewood Construction Limited on the terms of JCT Design and Build Contracts in relation to the construction of over 140 new rooftop homes on Eric Estate (London) along with further estate refurbishment work.
  • Advising the Passage on a pro bono basis in relation to extensive refurbishment works to its two sites at Passage House and Bentley House, both in Westminster.
  • Providing ad hoc project support to Newcastle University on the construction of The Sir Terry Farrell Building.

Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP

Praised for its ‘unrivalled knowledge and experience’, Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP handles a broad spectrum of projects and disputes at a national level, acting for key clients across the construction, real estate, chemical, energy and public sectors including the Department for Education, B&Q, Bellway and the Department for Transport. Simon Lewis is also recognised for his expertise in modern methods of construction and building information modelling (BIM) work. Other key names include practice head Simon Rowland, who handles transactional issues; Ian Atkinson, who focuses on infrastructure projects; and associate Helen Coxon, who supports on non-contentious mandates.

Practice head(s):

Simon Rowland

Other key lawyers:

Simon Lewis; Ian Atkinson; Helen Coxon


‘The legal team is very personable and works well in collaboration with other project team members.’

‘Simon Rowland specifically stands out and is an excellent team player, prepared to innovate and be involved in the whole project from inception to completion.’

‘Good knowledge of sector, responsive to our needs.’

‘Simon Lewis has been knowledgeable, responsive, able to explain legal issues concisely and in language understood by non legal people.’

‘The overall knowledge and experience of the team is unrivalled in my experience.’

‘Ian Atkinson has lead on the relationship for many years – he took the time to understand the business, the individuals and the approach to risk to ensure he was always able to offer appropriate advice at all times.’

Key clients

Department for Education/Education and Skills Funding Agency/LocatED


SABIC Petrochemicals UK Limited

Hargreaves Services plc

Sunderland City Council

Robertson Group

Bellway Plc

Grainger plc

IKEA Properties Investments Ltd

University of Durham

Department for Transport

Northumbrian Water Group

Northern Powergrid




Ministry of Justice

Department of Health

HM Court and Tribunal Service


Work highlights

  • Instructed to advise the Department for Transport on the design and construction of a multi-functional inland border facility at Sevington, Kent.
  • Advising Durham County Council on the procurement of its new Civic Headquarters project.

Clyde & Co

Clyde & Co is ‘personable, straightforward and takes the trouble to understand and consider what is right for the client in terms of level of advice’ on a range of national and international construction projects, particularly those in the energy and infrastructure sectors. The practice is also highly regarded for its contentious expertise handling construction litigation and arbitration proceedings. Litigator Mary Anne Roff heads up the department, which also includes senior associate Claire Cutmore, who primarily represents contractors in construction disputes.

Practice head(s):

Mary Anne Roff

Other key lawyers:

Claire Cutmore


‘Great expertise in Mary Anne Roff. Sensible and considered.’

‘Personable, straightforward, take the trouble to understand and consider what is right for the client in terms of level of advice, strategy and cost vs benefit, ensuring that they provide a service which does provide value for money.’

‘Mary Anne Roff is fairly unique in offering the perfect blend of being an expert in her field providing trusted technical advice, personable and a pleasure to work with, commercial and clear in strategy helping internal clients to understand what the plan is, what needs to be done, why and where it will take us. She is also surrounded by an excellent team that she is moulding in her form.’

Key clients

Laing O’Rourke

York Potash Limited

Metnor Construction Limited

Wartsila Projects Oy

Ro-Bal Steel

Norstead Limited

MW High Tech Projects UK Ltd

The Auckland Project

Work highlights

  • Represented a major contractor in the energy sector in a €180m dispute subject to ICC arbitration concerning offshore wind farm construction.

Muckle LLP

Under the leadership of Lucilla Waugh, Muckle LLP is highly active in advising across the full range of design and construction contracts and development projects and has also been notably active in advising clients on re-cladding projects as part of the fallout from the Grenfell Tower fire. Other growth areas for the practice include handling renewable energy projects, affordable housing issues and contractor insolvencies. Waugh works closely with Adam Aston, who excels in non-contentious mandates.

Practice head(s):

Lucilla Waugh

Other key lawyers:

Adam Aston


‘Advice provided is pragmatic with a good grasp of the industry standard construction contracts that we use and how these should be amended in relation to projects we are undertaking. I find Muckle LLP are particularly good value for money compared to other firms that we use.’

‘Adam Aston is a partner we have a particularly good working relationship with. He is very good at providing advice in a clear uncomplicated manner and in a timely manner.’

Key clients

Aura Newcastle Limited

Aura (Newcastle) Project Company Phase 2

Empress Heights RTM Company

Hardwicks (Wandsworth) RTM Company

Northpoint (Bromley) Management Company

Bromley and Blackheath Harriers Athletics Club

Tynexe Commercial Limited

Tarras Properties

Arriva Plc and associated companies

Gentoo Group Limited

Work highlights

  • Acting for the Aura Newcastle group of companies in relation to the implementation of Newcastle City Council‘s decarbonisation programme.
  • Acting for a number of Right to Manage limited companies, including Northpoint, Empress Heights and Hardwicks, in relation to the design and construction contracts for the removal of unsafe cladding on blocks of flats in Bromley, Southampton and Wandsworth respectively, for the replacement with non-combustible cladding, funded by grant funding from the Government.
  • Acting for Tarras Properties Limited on preparing a full range of construction documents required for the redevelopment of a city centre office space enabling an NHS tenant to continue to provide healthcare services in the North East.

Sintons LLP

Sintons LLP acts for a roster of employer, developer, contractor and sub-contractor clients on the full range of construction and engineering contracts relating to projects spanning food production facilities, care homes, schools, data centres and residential developments. The team has also seen its contentious workload expand including damages claims and adjudication proceedings. Alex Rayner leads the group and is ‘very good at providing advice in a clear uncomplicated manner’.

Practice head(s):

Alex Rayner

Other key lawyers:

Jay Balmer


‘Alex Rayner has a great understanding of the complex contractual and legal issues associated with construction and civil engineering disputes. Alex is particularly good at guiding and advising his clients as to the most appropriate strategy for resolving their disputes, and is measured and authoritative in his approach and advice.’

‘Very knowledgeable team with dedicated departments for differing areas of work which I found communicate very well between each other and appear seamless in conversation with them.’

‘Alex Rayner, very helpful and approachable man. He understood my strengths were not in the legal game as an engineer but he made the process very easy explaining my options and the consequences of each option to be able to make an informed decision.’

‘We have worked with the Sintons team and find them experienced and driven whilst also providing value for money. Alex Rayner as lead Partner in their team has a commercial construction background which supports his approach as an experienced lawyer.’

‘Alex Rayner and Jay Balmer lead the Sintons Construction team in Newcastle. Both Alex and Jay are able to understand and advise clients on the key matters in construction disputes and provide and deliver clear strategies to either resolve matters amicably with or without the need for formal dispute proceedings. Their attention to detail has led to successful outcomes in many disputes that we have worked with them on. Both are readily available and engage early and positively to provide clear direction.’

Key clients

Greggs Plc

West Midlands Combined Authority

Tolent Construction Ltd

Meldrum Group

Jerram Falkus Construction Ltd

McNally & Thompson (UK Contracts) Ltd

Compass Developments (NE) Ltd

Dalton Homes (North East) Ltd

Cussins (North East) Ltd

Hodgson Sayers Ltd

Work highlights

  • Advising West Midlands Combined Authority in relation to the contract for the design and construction of a new data centre in Birmingham.
  • Advising Dalton Homes (North East) Ltd, a regional specialist care home, on the construction contracts for the design and construction of a 71 bed care home in Hampshire.
  • Advising Jerram Falkus Construction Limited, a City of London based main contractor, on the construction contracts for the design and construction of new build low energy homes for the London Borough of Tower Hamlets.

Ward Hadaway LLP

Ward Hadaway LLP is highly regarded in the region for its expertise in development work, handling commercial developments alongside public sector projects and house building and care home construction mandates. The group also assists with construction disputes in the energy, pharmaceuticals, mining and rail engineering sectors and counts funder clients on its roster. Group head Paul Reekie focuses on contentious work, while Tim Craig has experience in international projects.

Practice head(s):

Paul Reekie

Other key lawyers:

Tim Craig; Alan Ross; Neil Williamson


‘The team at Ward Hadaway are very joined up in their approach meaning that there are no real conflicts in the advice or guidance they provide, they also ensure that any member of the team who will be dealing with a query from us is fully briefed on the issue and on my business to avoid me having to go over and over the issue.’

‘The main strength within the individuals at Ward Hadaway is the effort they have made to understand my business and our approach to contracts and risk management. This has allowed them to tailor their advice to the approach they know my business will take whilst ensuring that we are away of any areas of concern they may have.’

‘Helpful, efficient and excellent value for money.’

Key clients

Sunderland City Council

Able Humber Ports Limited

McAleer & Rushe Contracts UK Limited

Inn Collection Group

Northumberland Estates


Newcastle International Airport

Hellens Group

North East Procurement Organisation

Bedfordshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Hay & Kilner

Hay & Kilner’s ‘professional and knowledgeable’ construction and engineering team acts for design teams, contractors, sub-contractors and funders on contractual issues relating to a range of projects spanning housing schemes, shopping centres, care homes and commercial developments. The group also handles contentious work including adjudication proceedings and mediation processes. Group head Jan Rzedzian is active in the energy sector and Tom Whitfield focuses on professional negligence claims.

Practice head(s):

Jan Rzedzian

Other key lawyers:

Tom Whitfield


‘The team has true market and sector knowledge, meaning it can act on a range of construction matters both contentious and non-contentious and often appears against other large firms in the area. It is a personable, partner-led proposition that sets it apart from its regional competitors.’

‘Jan Rzedzian is a stand out partner.’

‘Professional and knowledgeable, with excellent relationship skills.’

Key clients

Howard Russell Construction Ltd

Arrowbuild & Civil Engineering Ltd

G A Smith Limited

Groundwork Services (Durham) Limited

Park Lane Healthcare Group

All Saints Construction Limited / High Street Group

Surgo Construction Limited

Hellens Group

R J Utility Services Ltd

Barrier Group

Work highlights

  • Advised a local contractor in relation to adjudication proceedings against a major regional housebuilder.
  • Advised Park Lane Healthcare on drafting and advising upon the construction documentation for a care home village in Barmby Moor, East Yorkshire.
  • Advised a contractor in relation to a dispute with a local restaurant chain following non-payment for fit out works.


The ‘approachable, adaptable and professional’ practice at Weightmans focuses on contentious mandates in the construction arena, particularly professional negligence claims, acting for public bodies, developers, contractors and insurers in litigation, mediation and arbitration proceedings. Sitting within the wider national practice, key names in Newcastle include professional indemnity specialists Richard Palmer and Anna-Marie Knight, and principal associate Natalie Keyes.

Practice head(s):

Colette Morgan-Ford

Other key lawyers:

Richard Palmer; Anna-Marie Knight; Natalie Keyes


‘Very knowledgeable and responsive team with specialists in many areas.’

‘Natalie Keyes has provided excellent advice and service to us in relation to complex contract reviews and dispute resolution.’

‘Competent and deliver on what they say they will.’

‘Approachable, adaptable and professional.’

‘The strengths are a broad professional team where the exchange and consultation on advice is clear and precise.’

Key clients

Hamilton Underwriting Limited

Tokio Marine HCC

C.N.A Hardy Underwriting

Hiscox Underwriting Limited

Sunderland City Council

Millbrook Proving Ground

BXB Interiors

K Home International

Towergate Underwriting Group

Camberford Underwriting


CoreCare Global


Work highlights

  • Advised an international insurance company and its insured, a design and build contractor in relation to a dispute concerning a project to construct residential units and associated external works at a residential block of apartments.
  • Advising a design and build contractor in relation to a dispute worth in excess of £20m concerning allegedly defective piling to a warehouse.