Social housing in North

DWF

DWF has a first-class national affordable housing group led by Lee Pickett, with the majority of the firm’s housing specialists being based in Newcastle. The practice is distinguished by the unsurpassed strength of its public sector offering, an area in which its reputation is enhanced by appointments to the panels of clients of the calibre of Homes England. Regeneration scheme and residential development work are also areas of focus for the team. The group also regularly handles contentious issues for registered providers; Jonathan Smith is the key contact in this space. Senior associate Kelly Pearson is adept at advising registered providers on property transactions.

Practice head(s):

Lee Pickett

Other key lawyers:

Jonathan Smith; Kelly Pearson

Key clients

Riverside Group

Places for People Living+

Places for People Homes

Progress Housing Group

Home Group

Thirteen Housing Group

Joseph Rowntree Housing Trust

Manningham Housing Association

South Tyneside Council

Work highlights

  • Advised Riverside Group on a golden brick development agreement with Miller Homes.
  • Assisted Thirteen Housing Group with the negotiation of development agreements with Countryside Properties for two Yorkshire housing schemes.
  • Advised Places for People Homes on stock rationalisation disposals of tenanted housing portfolios in Todmorden and Darlington.

Ward Hadaway LLP

Ward Hadaway focuses on contentious and non-contentious work for a varied client portfolio consisting of housing associations, national and regional registered providers, and local authorities. The team’s recent workload demonstrates its ability to act on a multi-disciplinary basis, particularly in relation to property transactions and finance issues. The practice places an emphasis on planning law matters relating to social housing; Kamran Hyder has a wealth of experience in this regard. Julia Thomson sits at the helm of the department, which often works in conjunction with the Leeds-based team led by John Murray. Helen O’Neill departed to Gateley Plc in the spring of 2021.

Practice head(s):

Julia Thomson

Other key lawyers:

Kamran Hyder; Paul Scope; John Murray; Colin Hewitt

Testimonials

‘Ward Hadaway provides us with great legal services that are speedy and proactive. We have used the practice for several land and property transactions and planning services. Information is provided in a timely manner in easy to understand formats describing any risks to the organisation.’

‘Julia Thomson is always readily available and happy to pick up tasks whenever required. Her sensible, fast approach is a key quality that serves well for repeat business. Julia fully explains all legal issues in detail and in easily understandable language.’

Key clients

Livin Housing

Thirteen Group

South Lakes Housing

Yorkshire Housing

Byker Community Trust

Home Group

Mosscare St Vincent’s

Gentoo Group

Bernicia

Believe Housing Limited

Work highlights

  •  Acted for Hellens Land on its collaboration agreement with Homes England as lead developer.
  • Acted for Livin Housing on the acquisition of a 60 unit site to fulfil the affordable housing requirements on a larger development.
  • Acting for Yorkshire Homes on section 106 acquisitions and disposals across a number of sites.

Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP

Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP handles a wide range of housing-related matters for local and national affordable housing providers, housing associations and other public sector bodies. The team is adept at handling contentious issues relating to tenancy management and anti-social behaviour, among others. The department is equally strong on the non-contentious side, where it acts on property transactions and property management matters. Nigel Emmerson heads up the housing group and stands out for his specialism in residential property. National real estate practice lead John Ralph is also a key contact.

Practice head(s):

Nigel Emmerson

Other key lawyers:

John Ralph

Testimonials

‘Excellent firm, offering a complete service across a wide range of areas.’

‘Excellent knowledge and understanding of our requirements as a client in terms of financial, funding and legal agreements.’

Key clients

Karbon Homes Limited

Bernicia Group

Places for People Homes

Home Group Limited

Royal Masonic Benevolent Institute

Work highlights

  • Acting as lead adviser to Karbon Homes in relation to its ongoing development programme.
  • Acting for the Bernicia Group on a range of tenancy management issues, including claims to possession, injunctions to tackle anti-social behaviour, committals for breach and defending housing disrepair claims.
  • Acting for Places for People Homes on its ongoing development programme including acquisitions of sites, development agreements and the acquisition of units from house builders fulfilling their section 106 obligations.

Swinburne Maddison LLP

Swinburne Maddison's team in Durham is well versed in acting for registered providers on property transactions and development matters. In addition, the team is adept at handling contentious issues and housing management matters; property litigator David Low stands out in this realm. Victoria Walton and Kate Stephenson jointly sit at the helm of the department.

Practice head(s):

Victoria Walton; Kate Stephenson

Other key lawyers:

David Low

Testimonials

‘Approachable, working knowledge of the construction process.’

‘The team is willing to adopt a collaborative approach to working with clients.’

‘The team members are all very knowledgeable in their own areas of expertise, easily contactable and always willing to assist whether that be in a formal capacity in the matters they are instructed to undertake or in an informal capacity, when you just need a second opinion.’

‘We work with David Low and he is very approachable and responds promptly to queries. He is always fair, with his balanced approach.’

‘The team always completes the work on time. Nothing is too much trouble.’

Key clients

Beyond Housing Limited

Karbon Homes Limited

Livin Housing

Believe Housing

Leeds City Council