Oil and gas in Scotland

Brodies LLP

Brodies LLP fields a deep bench of oil and gas specialists, who have ‘an in-depth understanding of the industry’. The team, which handles national and international mandates, is able to draw on strengths across multiple disciplines, such as shipping, health and safety, IT, IP and employment. Practice head Clare Munro focuses on M&A and the more niche areas of field development, transportation arrangement and decommissioning. Sonia Love has considerable expertise in FPSO field developments, while Greg May is recommended for his expertise in the drilling sector. Rhona McFarlane is a name to note for UKCS upstream and midstream work.

Practice head(s):

Clare Munro

Other key lawyers:

Greg May; Sonia Love; Suzanne Hopkinson; Rhona McFarlane; Bryan Wilson


‘All of the partners in the Brodies oil and gas team have significant in-house experience, which means their advice is always on point and extremely pragmatic.’

‘The size of the team and depth of experience makes the Brodies team an excellent legal partner to support any project.’

‘Greg May makes himself available 24/7 and has unrivalled experience in the service sector, which makes him my “go-to” for expert oil and gas contract advice.’

‘Under the leadership of Clare Munro, probably the best real oil and gas firm, in my experience.’

‘Clare Munro understands the business, has an understated style and knows what the client is looking for.’

‘Everything that we have asked for has been done exceptionally well with no fanfare, on time and on budget.’

‘Rhona McFarlane has provided a huge amount of support for us over the past couple of years; she is great to have on your side.’

‘Very deep and broad range of experience in the team across the upstream oil and gas sector.’

Key clients

Spirit Energy

Nobel Upstream

Dana Petroleum


Metal NRG Plc


Work highlights

  • Advised Metal NRG plc on the acquisition by its subsidiary joint venture undertaking, BritNRG Limited, of the entire issued share capital of Sunswept Enterprises Limited and its subsidiaries.


CMS fields ‘an exceptionally talented team with genuine expertise in North Sea oil and gas’. The group is prominent in high-value M&A both domestically and internationally. It is also highly experienced in projects, supply chain contract negotiations and high-profile disputes. Norman Wisely, who leads the practice, is recommended for acquisitions and disposals of offshore and onshore assets. Judith Aldersey-Williams is a name to note for commercial contracts and regulatory issues, and Graeme Clubley handles joint ventures and contractual matters. Paula Kidd is recommended for her expertise in decommissioning security arrangements. Of counsel Frances Reilly left for an in-house role at TAQA Group.

Practice head(s):

Norman Wisely

Other key lawyers:

Judith Aldersey-Williams; Graeme Clubley; Paula Kidd; Frank Fowlie; Rob Wilson


‘Full service capability, deep industry knowledge and very pragmatic, solutions-focused advice.’

‘Extremely client-oriented and results driven. They listen to what the client needs.’

‘Depth and breadth of experience is top drawer – you will find they have been involved in most of the key deals in this sector in 2020.’

‘Graeme Clubley is an outstanding partner and a trusted adviser on a wide range of oil and gas topics.’

‘Graeme Clubley is super reliable and always delivers.’

‘Deep knowledge of oil and gas built up over years working with a wide range of clients.’

‘The team at CMS has an unrivalled knowledge of the UK oil and gas upstream arena.’

‘Paula Kidd is very receptive and an excellent adviser.’

Key clients




Repsol Sinopec

Premier Oil


Siccar Point











Decipher Petroleum


Beacon Oil & Gas

Zennor Petroleum

Humber Gathering System Limited (Antin)

Ratio Petroleum

Hermes Infrastructure

IFM Investors



Decom Energy (Fairfield)


Neo Energy



Dana Petroleum


Pale Blue Dot Energy

Saudi Aramco


Oil Spill Response


Antelopus Energy Pvt Limited

Assala Energy


Work highlights

  • Supported BP in the drafting and negotiation of a suite of contracts including a bareboat charter, operating services agreement and ancillary documentation including guarantees, indemnities and amendments of existing field contracts.
  • Following conclusion of litigation proceedings, advised TAQA on all legal aspects of effecting the transfer of operatorship including contract novations, OGA consent, employment and property matters.
  • Advising EnQuest in connection with the acquisition of Suncor’s entire 26.69% interest in the Golden Eagle field for an initial consideration of $325m.

Burness Paull LLP

Burness Paull LLP has a well-established reputation in the UK offshore sector, which dates back to the firm's inception. It has a strong track record acting for high-profile clients in both the upstream and service sectors, and is highly active in domestic and international transactions, with particular experience of the Egyptian market. Brian Hemming, who heads up the practice, is recommended for acquisitions and disposals, projects and upstream joint venture agreements. The team was bolstered in May 2021, with the arrival of Bob Ruddiman from Pinsent Masons LLP. Bruce McLeod has moved in the other direction.

Practice head(s):

Brian Hemming

Other key lawyers:

Bob Ruddiman


‘Experts in oil and gas, with an excellent customer focus and pragmatic solutions.’

‘Brian Hemming is extremely knowledgeable, pragmatic and personable.’

‘Easy to work with and they find common ground to solve any issues.’

‘The team has considerable knowledge and experience of oil and gas, having worked both in-house and externally across many companies in the industry.’

‘They work with us in a manner which makes the interface between our company and their external legal support as seamless as possible.’

‘Burness Paull’s team has excellent knowledge of the oil and gas sector and associated practices, which extends beyond the purely legal in to the commercial and technical spaces.’

Key clients


Dragon Oil

Tailwind Energy

Kellas Midstream

Neptune Energy

Anasuria Hibiscus

Wintershall Dea

Savanah Energy

i3 Energy

Spirit Energy

Work highlights

  • Acting for Wintershall DEA in negotiations relating to the partial disposal of interests in the East Damanhur onshore concession in Egypt.
  • Acting for Savannah Energy plc in relation to its readmission to the AIM market of the London Stock Exchange following its successful acquisition of certain of the Nigerian business and assets of Seven Energy International.
  • Acting for AIM-listed i3 Energy plc in connection with its £30m equity fundraising and acquisition of certain Gain Energy’s oil and gas producing assets in Western Canada and also in its acquisition of Toscana Energy and its oil and gas production portfolio in Western Canada.

Pinsent Masons LLP

The oil and gas team at Pinsent Masons LLP is well regarded for its M&A and equity capital markets expertise, and it advises on a large number of UKCS deals, as well as transactions across Africa, Asia Pacific and the Middle East. In addition, other work involves competition, employment, dispute resolution, anti-bribery and anti-corruption, as well as advice to regulatory bodies on industry initiatives. The global oil and gas team is now led by Rosalie Chadwick, who is recommended for domestic and international corporate finance transactions. Shirley Allen handles transactional and decommissioning work, while Neil Hehir assists clients with supply chain contracts. The team was recently joined by the hugely experienced Bruce McLeod, who can draw on more than 25 years’ experience both in private practice and in-house at BP.

Practice head(s):

Rosalie Chadwick

Other key lawyers:

Shirley Allen; Neil Hehir; Bruce McLeod


‘Very skilled in a wide range of oil and gas topics, including supply chain, banking and upstream asset issues.’

‘Shirley Allen is a top oil and gas lawyer and delivers high quality deals.’

‘What makes this practice unique is the knowledge and experience of the team.’

‘The individuals that worked with us stand out because of their knowledge and control of the legal practice that we required.’

‘A team of industry top tier professionals; hugely experienced and capable.’

Rosalie Chadwick is dedicated, extremely knowledgeable and provides balanced advice in a manner that is easily understood by non-lawyers.’

‘Pragmatic and responsive.’

Key clients

Total E&P UK Limited


Shell UK Limited

Jersey Oil & Gas Plc

Ithaca Energy

Solo Oil plc

Energetical Limited


Suncor Energy Services Inc

Talisman Energy

Aker Solution

Wood PLC

Repsol Group

Work highlights

  • Advised oil super major Total on its disposal of UK North Sea non-core assets to a subsidiary of NEO Energy, a vehicle backed by Norway-based private equity investor HitecVision.
  • Advised Ithaca on the acquisition  of Chevron North Sea Limited.
  • Advised Transocean following the boarding of the oil rig Paul B Lloyd, Junior at Cromarty Firth Port by environmental activists in June 2019.

Shepherd and Wedderburn

Shepherd and Wedderburn is well known in the market for acting for British independent exploration and production companies on cross-border M&A, as well as capital markets transactions. It has considerable experience of the upstream oil and gas sector, where it advises investment banks, sponsors and financial advisers. Stephen Trombala heads up the team.

Practice head(s):

Stephen Trombala

Other key lawyers:

Tom Swan; John Caldwell


‘Despite not being the largest, it is an incredibly well resourced team, who can always meet our needs.’

‘They are very responsive and well switched-on to the industry and the issues of the day.’

‘They are very commercial and understand the issues that matter to my company.’

‘Stephen Trombala and John Caldwell are both experts in corporate law and the industry.’

Key clients

Cairn Energy PLC

Aminex PLC

Deltic Energy plc (formerly Cluff Natural Resources plc)

Pharos Energy plc

North Sea Midstream Partners

CessCon Decom Limited/CessCon Limited

J de Jonge Flowsystems B.V.

Marin Subsea Limited

Rotojar Limited

Wellpro Group Limited

Garrick Group Limited

TDC (Aberdeen) Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Cairn on the $400m Class 1 disposal of its entre participating interest in the Sangomar development and surrounding acreage in Senegal to Woodside, together with the subsequent $250m return of value to shareholders.
  • Advised a syndicate of lending banks in connection with the $950m refinancing by Ineos of the Forties Pipeline System, UKCS.
  • Advised J de Jonge Flowsystems B.V. on the successful resolution of its $55m dispute regarding the refitting of the Petrojarl I, the North Sea’s first custom-built FPSO.

Stronachs LLP

Stronachs LLP is highly reputed in upstream acquisitions and disposals that involve domestic and international markets. It also handles midstream matters for clients, including the ownership of pipelines and terminals, as well as operational and contractual issues. The practice is led by Ewan Neilson, who is dual-qualified to practise in Scotland and England and Wales. James Downie is recommended for decommissioning work.

Practice head(s):

Ewan Neilson

Other key lawyers:

James Downie; James Muir; Malcolm Donald


‘Impressive breadth and depth of knowledge and understanding of oil and gas projects.’

‘Primarily we work with James Muir, who provides a consistent high standard of legal support to the project.’

‘James Muir is always accessible and continually delivers quality work against tight project deadlines.’

‘James Downie provides quick and pragmatic advice and knows the oil and gas industry well.’ 

‘James Muir is very quick to understand the issues being faced and is always willing to discuss with the project team to determine the best approach and path forward.’

‘Really strong team all based locally in Aberdeen in heart of oil and gas market.’

‘Stronachs adapted to our needs in the pandemic and provide flexible secondment support on terms that worked for us as a client.’

‘Small practice, but some real practical oil and gas experience from the firm’s long involvement in oil and gas.’

Key clients

Black Sea Oil & Gas S.A.

Dana Petroleum Limited

Eland Oil & Gas Limited


Ithaca Energy (UK) Limited

Premier Oil UK Limited

RockRose Energy

Well-Safe Solutions Limited

Enpro Subsea Limited

Intervention Group Limited

Work highlights

  • Acting for Eland Oil & Gas PLC on the disposal to Seplat.
  • Advised Enpro Subsea on its sale to Hunting PLC by means of a share acquisition.