Oil and gas in Scotland

Brodies LLP

Brodies LLP has a strong track record in transformational M&A in the oil and gas sector. It also advises clients on field developments, transportation arrangements and decommissioning. Clare Munro, who leads the team, has over 20 years of experience. Greg May is well regarded for his drilling sector knowledge, while Sonia Love is noted for her FPSO field developments expertise. Rhona McFarlane is renowned for her experience of complex decommissioning matters.

Practice head(s):

Clare Munro


‘Clare Munro is excellent, she has a deep understanding of the sector with experience to back it up’.

‘Sonia Love is a very experienced and capable oil and gas lawyer with a pragmatic approach’.

‘Brodies’ extensive industry experience has earned them a formidable reputation in the oil and gas sector, not only locally but internationally’.

‘Greg May’s in-house experience is invaluable and helps him deliver exceptional service to his clients’.

‘Excellent team, very knowledgeable in oil & gas, both in the upstream and service sector areas’.

‘Clare Munro is an expert in her field, with many years of energy experience’. 

‘Clare Munro has an exceptional ability to pick up complicated issues’.

‘Suzanne Hopkinson is very thorough and has an ability to narrow in on commercial issues’.

Key clients

Chevron Corporation

Spirit Energy

Ithaca Energy UK Ltd

Premier Oil UK Ltd

Dana Petroleum

INEOS Upstream

Transocean Ltd

Shelf Drilling

Japex E&P

Awilco Drilling Plc

Work highlights

  • Sole legal adviser to Japex E&P UK Limited for its first UKCS development, including an industry first complex contractual structure.
  • Advising Chevron North Sea Limited on the sale of its Rosebank interest to Equinor.
  • Providing specialist and bespoke oil & gas legal services to a Middle East National Oil Company.

Burness Paull LLP

Burness Paull LLP advises domestic and international clients on operations in the North Sea. It is working on an increasing number of energy transition projects and also continues to be highly regarded for its exploration and production (E&P) work. Practice head Brian Hemming is adept at handling agreements relating to the acquisition and disposal of oil and gas field interests. Bruce McLeod is recommended for upstream M&A, as well as field development agreements between oil companies.

Practice head(s):

Brian Hemming

Other key lawyers:

Bruce McLeod


‘Customer focus, in depth knowledge and experience which is always applied in a pragmatic and timely manner.’

‘Brian Hemming’s service has always been first class. He is extremely experienced in his field and can always come up with pragmatic solutions to any issues and consequently provides a very efficient and focused service.’

‘Very experienced and thorough. Provide clear and helpful advice. Deep oil and gas experience and understanding of complicated issues.’

‘Bruce McLeod has deep oil and gas experience and gives calm, clear-headed advice on complicated issues. An excellent negotiator.’

‘Industry top tier professionals with Brian Hemming and Bruce Macleod. Hugely experienced and capable.’

‘Brian Hemming is a calm, unflappable professional with an enviable combination of legal expertise and in-house experience.’

‘Calm, considered advice based on a depth of experience, with a friendly and accessible approach.’

‘Depth of experience, with a friendly and accessible approach. A willingness to provide pragmatic and balanced advice.’

‘Bob Ruddiman has superb industry knowledge and experience from legal and commercial perspective.’

Key clients


Dragon Oil

Tailwind Energy

Kellas Midstream / Humber Gathering System

Neptune Energy

Parkmead Group

Wintershall Dea

Savannah Petroleum

The Oil & Gas Technology Centre

Work highlights

  • Advised Dragon Oil on its acquisition of 11 Gulf of Suez oil concessions in Egypt from BP.
  • Advised i3 Energy plc in respect of a funding package, comprising a junior loan note facility and a share placing, to fund its 2019 appraisal and drilling programme.
  • Advised Kellas Midstream on the amendments that needed to be made to a suite of Transportation and Processing Agreements covering the Armada, Seymour and Maria fields to convert them into a single Armada Hub Transportation and Processing Agreement.


CMS has a standout reputation undertaking high-profile and high-value oil and gas transactions for industry-leading companies. Its varied work portfolio includes North Sea and international M&A, carbon capture and storage projects, advice on supply chain agreements and dispute resolution. The practice is led by Norman Wisely, whose wide-ranging expertise includes all issues relating to hydrocarbons. Graeme Clubley has extensive experience of acquisitions and disposals of upstream assets. Judith Aldersey-Williams is knowledgeable about regulatory and antitrust issues. Also recommended are Paula Kidd, who is an expert in decommissioning security arrangements, and of counsel Frances Reilly.

Practice head(s):

Norman Wisely


‘The Aberdeen and London energy teams at CMS are responsive, knowledgeable (about the law, the market and their client), and efficient in delivery’.

‘They do not waste time on unnecessary activity, but focus on the client request and execute it’.

‘CMS are experts in oil and gas, they provide local advice but are also able to draw on particular specialist expertise from elsewhere in their organisation when required’. 

‘We have a good relationship with the firm, they know and understand our business and give prompt, consistent, pragmatic, commercial advice’.  

‘Very strong panel of partners with wide variety of experiences’.

‘Graeme Clubley is a great lawyer and very user friendly’.

‘Paula Kidd is a very good junior partner with superb experience and is very client-friendly’.

‘Norman Wisely is excellent to deal with, very pragmatic, business-focussed and responsive’.

Key clients



Equinor (Statoil)

Repsol Sinopec

Premier Oil







Decipher Petroleum


Zennor Petroleum

Humber Gathering System Limited (Blackrock / GIC)

Ratio Petroleum

Fairfield Decom (Fairfield)





Neo Energy



Dana Petroleum

Ramco Tubular Services Limited

Pale Blue Dot Energy

Saudi Aramco

Work highlights

  • Advised ConocoPhillips on the sale of its entire upstream UK business to Chrysaor for $2.65bn.
  • Advised TAQA Bratani and Others on a dispute arising from the decision by TAQA, JX Nippon and Spirit Energy to replace Marathon as operator of the Brae fields and infrastructure.
  • Advised EnQuest Heather Limited on reducing operating costs in the North Sea.

Pinsent Masons LLP

The oil and gas team at Pinsent Masons LLP handles the full gamut of industry-specific matters, including licensing, regulatory, joint ventures, decommissioning, competition, procurement, M&A, and anti-bribery and anti-corruption. Shirley Allen leads the decommissioning practice, while Rosalie Chadwick heads up the global corporate finance practice. Legal director Neil Hehir is recommended for banking, financing and restructuring matters.


‘Great international experience available locally in Aberdeen.’

‘A highly skilled and experienced team.’

‘Shirley Allen is a great partner who will always work hard to deliver deal or project for the client.’

‘Rosalie Chadwick is a true expert in her field. Extremely dedicated and commercially aware.’

Key clients


Shell UK Limited

Total E&P UK Limited

Ithaca Energy

Siccar Point Energy

Suncor Energy Services Inc

Talisman Energy

Aker AS


Repsol Group

Work highlights

  • Advised on the sale by Total of package of 10 oil and gas fields to Petrogas NEO – mix of operated and non-operated assets.
  • Advised Ithaca Energy UK Limited on the acquisition  of Chevron North Sea Limited.
  • Acting for Transocean following the boarding of the oil rig Paul B Loyd, Junior at Cromarty Firth by environmental activists in June 2019.

Shepherd and Wedderburn

Shepherd and Wedderburn’s oil and gas team is led by Stephen Trombala  in Edinburgh, who specialises in M&A and equity financing transactions. The team is noted for its experience of working for British independent exploration and production companies on M&A and capital markets transactions. It also acts for investment banks and sponsors on upstream oil and gas matters. John Caldwell joined as a consultant from an in-house position at Pharos Energy Plc.

Practice head(s):

Stephen Trombola

Other key lawyers:

Paul Hally; Tom Swan; John Caldwell


‘Slick team headed by Stephen Tromabala, that provides excellent service with a unique blend of corporate technical knowledge coupled with in-depth sector nous.’

‘Stephen Trombala is very accessible and always relevant. John Caldwell has been a welcome addition to the team and knows the connections between corporate issues and the oil and gas sector.’

‘Go above and beyond to understand our business and issues.’

‘Stephen Trombala is technically expert and understands our industry very well. Very responsive.’

‘Tom Swan has excellent attention to detail and is very knowledgeable.’

‘John Caldwell has excellent industry knowledge and has years of top-class in-house experience he can bring to the table.’

Key clients

Cairn Energy plc

iGas Energy plc

Delonex Energy Limited

Gulf Marine plc

North Sea Midstream Partners

Ervia (formerly Board Gais Eireann, Irish state multi-utility)

Cluff Natural Resources plc


Pharos Energy plc (formerly SOCO International plc)

Marin Subsea Limited

TDE Services Kft.

BRL Limited

CessCon Decom Limited

Oil States Industries, Inc.

Work highlights

  • Advised main market premium listed Cairn Energy PLC on its farm-out of a 40% non-operated interest in UKCS Licence P2312 to Suncor Energy, and a further 15% interest in that licence to DNO.
  • Advised AIM-listed Cluff Natural Resources plc on its farm-out to Shell U.K. of interests in SNS Licences P2252 and P2437.
  • Advised decommissioning business CessCon Decom Limited on its acquisition of Walker Mitchell Holdings Limited, an engineering, welding and fabrication business based in Cambuslang.

Stronachs LLP

Stronachs LLP is noted for its domestic and international upstream acquisitions and disposals work. Other areas of focus include decommissioning projects and midstream matters. Practice head Ewan Neilson counts oil companies, energy companies and technology companies as key clients. James Downie handles decommissioning issues for operator and non-operator clients.

Practice head(s):

Ewan Neilson

Other key lawyers:

James Downie; James Muir


‘James Downie is thorough and pragmatic, with an eye for detail’.

‘A long history of dealing with oil and gas clients’.

‘A sound understanding of UKCS activities and practice’. 

‘Their lawyers are pragmatic in their approach and do not “over-lawyer” things for the sake of it’.

‘James Downie consistently delivers sound, pragmatic advice in a clear and concise manner’. 

‘James Downie has a deep understanding of the upstream oil and gas sector and has an ability to understand what is important for his client’. 

‘Very strong in both the oil and gas and corporate offering’.

‘Key strengths are the commercial experience and support available beyond pure legal advice’.

Key clients

Azinor Catalyst Limited

Black Sea Oil & Gas S.A.

Dana Petroleum E&P Limited

Eland Oil & Gas plc

Enpro Subsea Limited

EnQuest Britain Limited


Premier Oil E&P UK Limited

RockRose Energy

Work highlights

  • Acting for AIM-listed and Scottish-registered Eland Oil & Gas in respect of a recommended £382m cash acquisition by Seplat Petroleum Development Company plc of the entire share capital of Eland.
  • Continuing to provide support to Black Sea in terms of its ongoing $400m Midia Gas Development on various contractual matters.
  • Advising RockRose (as operator of Brae Group – comprising RockRose, TAQA, JX Nippon and Spirit Energy) on all issues relating to the SAGE Pipeline and the SAGE Terminal at St. Fergus.