Commercial property: Edinburgh and Glasgow in Scotland

Aberdein Considine

Aberdein Considine is noted for its strong coverage across Scotland. Paul Jennings heads up the team, which is noted for its landlord and tenant work, as well as residential, office, leisure, retail and mixed-use development expertise.

Practice head(s):

Paul Jennings

Other key lawyers:

David Orr

Key clients

Trump International

Ashfield District Council

Greggs plc

Westerwood Developments

Marquis of Bute

Steak Limited

Deans Civil Engineering Limited

Rox Jewellers

Sweeney Kincaid

Rentokil Initial plc

Work highlights

  • Advised Trump International Golf Club Scotland Limited on proposed 550 unit village development with additional leisure, commercial and retail premises.
  • Advised Ashfield District Council on the acquisition of the Hercules Portfolio.
  • Advised Greggs plc on a conditional lease contract for its new flagship store at 50 Argyle Street, Glasgow.

Addleshaw Goddard

Addleshaw Goddard handles real estate matters for large corporates, UK financial institutions, and domestic and overseas-based private funds. It is particularly focused on the transport, telecoms, student accommodation and private rented sectors. Alternative asset classes (such as healthcare and caravan parks) are another area of strength. Team head Miles Ede is increasingly gaining prominence in transactions of national significance. Alison Newton is experienced in office redevelopments, mixed-use developments, office and hotel leasing, and regeneration projects. Neil Hogg joined as a partner from Pinsent Masons LLP. Mark Fitzgerald has retired.

Practice head(s):

Miles Ede

Testimonials

‘The team have taken the time to understand our business and identify key risks in a transaction and provide suitable commercial solutions.’

‘Always proactive in providing advice and moving a transaction forward to completion.’

‘Neil Addis is an expert in the sector with excellent market knowledge.’

Key clients

BauMont Real Estate Capital

KanAm Grund

Aviva Investors

Asda Stores Limited

British Telecommunications plc

Legal and General

SSE plc

Staycity Limited

Deka Immobilien

Ediston Real Estate

Work highlights

  • Acting for KanAm as asset and fund manager (on behalf of a German pension fund) in relation to a new- build multi-let/mixed-use asset at 4/8 St Andrew Square, Edinburgh.
  • Advised SSE plc on the property aspects of its £500m sale of SSE Energy Services to OVO Energy Limited.
  • Advised British Telecommunications plc on the sale and short-term leaseback of BT’s HQ building at St Paul’s in London and the acquisition of a new leasehold HQ building in Aldgate to be known as One Braham, being an 18 storey new build development of which BT will be sole occupier.

Anderson Strathern

The real estate team at Anderson Strathern is noted for its strength in commercial and residential matters, including those involving the build-to-rent sector, investment, development, retail and housebuilding. The team generates mandates from blue-chip clients, local businesses and public sector bodies. Anne McGregor, who leads the practice, has over 25 years of experience handling commercial property deals. Euan Mellor joined from Brodies LLP.

Practice head(s):

Anne McGregor

Testimonials

‘In depth but pragmatic advice.’

‘Anne McGregor consistently provided great advice showing depth of understanding and knowledge but always with an eye on the deal and maintaining a level of pragmatism that is often needed to get the deal done.’

‘Breadth and depth of specialist people is impressive. Proactive not reactive.’

 

Key clients

Buccleuch

Bruce Walker and others

CCG (Scotland) Limited

Iceland Foods Limited

Walker Holdings (Scotland) Limited

Scottish Midland Co-operative Society Limited

Intu Properties plc

J Smart & Co (Contractors) plc

Fife Council

Quercus Healthcare Property Partnership

Blake Property Company LLP part of Blake Engineering Group, leading steel and metal fabrication experts in the UK

BMO UK Property Fund ICVC

Buccluech Property

Crown Estate Scotland

Goldentree Financial Services plc

The Hutcheson Family

Places for People

Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance plc

James Walker (Leith) Ltd

Clyde Gateway Urban Regeneration Company

Ineos Chemicals Grangemouth Ltd

CALA Management Limited

Moyallen Properties Limited

S1 Developments Limited

Teague Homes (UK) Limited

Halo Kilmarnock Limited

Urban Union Limited

Apex Hotels Limited

City of Glasgow College

The Scottish Government

Scottish Water

Vento Ludens Limited

Alexander Dennis Limited

CMS Hasche Sigle Partnerschaft von Rechtsanwälten und Steuer

Edinburgh Airport (Edinburgh Airport Limited)

Northwind 5S Limited

Silvermills Limited (Locogen)

Aedifica

NextEnergy

Shetland Islands Council

Work highlights

  • Advising on management and development of Intu Braehead, Soar at intu Braehead and intu Braehead Retail Park.
  • Advising Halo Kilmarnock Limited on the purchase, funding and construction of a £63m urban regeneration project.
  • Acting for S1 Developments Limited on the development of 338 build to rent units.

Bellwether Green

Bellwether Green acts for high-profile landlords and property developers, and counts Virgin Media and Liberty Global as notable clients. It often receives referrals from London firms to act on the Scottish aspects of property deals. Glasgow-based John Bingham leads the team.

Practice head(s):

John Bingham

Other key lawyers:

Steven Templeton

Testimonials

‘Bellwether Green provide a partner-led approach that is very personal to the client’. 

‘You always know you will be speaking with an experienced solicitor who will be able to offer on the spot advice and are willing to take a commercial approach’.        

‘John Bingham is highly personable, straightforward and pragmatic’. 

‘They will pick up the phone first rather than write a lengthy email and their no-nonsense approach also means the client feels like they are getting value for money’.

‘Under John Bingham’s calm and authoritative leadership, the real estate team at Bellwether Green naturally connect with their clients and understand their needs’.

‘John Bingham is inspiringly calm and considered making him a first choice trusted advisor and a go-to sounding board to help ensure that risks are ironed out before they create a business impact’. 

‘Excellent interpretation of the law and its practical application’.

‘Good negotiators combined with a commercial approach’.

Work highlights

  • Advised Catalina General Insurance Limited on funding for £27m acquisition of a portfolio purchase of eight industrial estates across Scotland.
  • Advised a Virgin Media on a broad range of matters, including the negotiation of an infrastructure agreement with The City of Edinburgh Council in respect of Phase 2 of the Edinburgh tram network.
  • Advised Brookhouse Group on borrowings in respect of a large multi-let retail park with asset value of circa £50m.

Brodies LLP

Brodies LLP continues to perform well in emerging sectors of the commercial property industry and has been involved in many recently announced build-to-rent projects. The firm has dedicated practitioners focusing on the investment, development, hotels, retail and leisure, and housebuilding sectors. On the leisure and hospitality side, the team is active in finance, real estate, private equity investment, hotel management agreements, construction, financing and licensing matters. In the retail arena, the practice acts for blue- chip clients on corporate and real estate transactions. Johane Murray is the overall head of the real estate practice. Colin Morrison heads up the hotels and leisure & retail groups. Managing partner Nick Scott continues to provide strategic advice to key clients. James Roscoe is recommended for investment matters, forward funding and development deals, and property finance. Elaine Farquharson-Black joined from Burness Paull LLP, while Graeme Leith was promoted to partner. In other developments, Robert Forman departed for Burges Salmon LLP and Kevin McGlone moved to DWF.

Practice head(s):

Johane Murray (Real estate); Colin Morrison (Hospitality, leisure and retail)

Testimonials

‘They have depth at all levels and are extremely responsive to our needs’.            

‘Johane Murray, our client relationship partner, is exceptional’.

‘Johane is in our opinion the leading practitioner in Scotland’.

‘Excellent practical and legal knowledge’. 

‘Good relationships with counterparts make for a smooth transaction process’.           

‘Johane Murray is very hands-on and hard-working’.    

‘The team always respond immediately with great expertise and support’.             

‘Colin Morrison is an outstanding individual with all-round skills, having built a superb support team around him’.

Key clients

Drum Property Group

Ediston Real Estate

Knight Property Group

Orion Capital Partners

PGIM

Ashby Capital

Moorfield

Aberdeen City Council

Greenridge Investment Management

AEW

CALA

Accor Hotels/Fairmont

Starwood Capital/Yotel

AJ Capital/Graduate Hotels

Everyman Cinema

Marathon Capital/Bryant Hospitality

Casual Dining Group

Marston’s

Great Century Investors/London & Oriental

The Restaurant Group

The Ivy Restaurant Group

Zara

Sportsdirect.com

New Look

Pandora

Pret a Manger

B&Q

Pull & Bear/Bershka/Stradivarius

Matalan

B&M

Clarks

Work highlights

  • Advised Drum Property Group on an £85m deal to acquire a development site at Buchanan Wharf, Glasgow and contract with L&G for the subsequent disposal for construction of a new Build to Rent scheme.
  • Acted for Bryant Hospitality (owned by Marathon Capital) on the disposal of a portfolio of Crowne Plaza and Hilton hotels to DTP Infinities Corporation.
  • Acting for Sportsdirect.com on the expansion and ongoing management of the Sportsdirect Scottish portfolio.

BTO Solicitors LLP

The real estate team at BTO Solicitors LLP has broad expertise, which includes commercial development, retail, investment, estates diversification, estate management, housebuilding and property finance. Practice head Jane Steel has recently been involved in large investment acquisitions and disposals for substantial private investment companies. Nicolas McBride heads up the leisure and hospitality side of the practice and is renowned for his licensing expertise. Alan Borthwick retired.

Practice head(s):

Jane Steel

Key clients

Adil Group plc

Calmont Group

R J Holdings (New Zealand)

Kamani Group

A.S. Homes (Scotland) Limited

Isle of Arran Distillers Limited

Mactaggart & Mickel Group

TUI Group

Wirefox Management/Wirefox Investment Group

Standard Real Estate Ltd

Taco Time Limited

Radley

OCO West End Ltd trading as Starbucks

Burton & Speke Limited trading as Starbucks

Mungo Park Limited trading as Starbucks

Sood Enterprises Limited

Cashino Gaming Limited

Benihana

Rubadub Limited

Sneakerser Ltd

Mohair Ltd

Rhythm Base Limited (T/A Drummers Only)

Allure Medical Aesthetics Ltd

Energie Fitness franchisees

Shearings Hotels / Bay Hotels / Coast & Country Hotels

GBK Restaurants Limited

Crieff Hydro Limited

Viva Brazil Limited

Lane 7 Limited

Kimble’s Chocolates Limited

Jewel Trustees (Hotel Company)

Calmont Developments Limited

AK Investments (Scotland) Ltd

Treffiano Ltd

Isle of Arran Distillers Limited

Work highlights

  • Advising leading NZ based property investors R. J. Holdings on the circa £6m purchase of The Beacon, 176 St. Vincent Street, Glasgow and expanding its Glasgow based portfolio towards £30m.
  • Advised Briar Homes Limited on acquisition, development and plot sales on all Scottish sites – circa £70m developed value.
  • Advised prominent A. S. Homes (Scotland) Limited, a Glasgow based and family-owned housebuilder, on site acquisition programme to the value of £60m across all sites, and on onward sales to registered social landlords.

Burges Salmon LLP

Since the arrival of new practice head Robert Forman from Brodies LLP in 2019, Burges Salmon LLP’s Scottish real estate offering has continued to go from strength to strength. The firm is uniquely well-placed to provide in-depth cross-border expertise with many Scottish-qualified lawyers being based in its offices south of the border. The team leverages mandates from investors, institutional funds, household-name retailers and major landowners, including The Crown Estate. It also handles property matters in the hotels and leisure, energy, renewables, transport and rural sectors.

Practice head(s):

Robert Forman

Other key lawyers:

Claire MacLean

Key clients

Starwood Capital Group

BSW Timber

Priory RE

Puma Property Finance Limited

David Lloyd Leisure Limited

Larch Life

Tilhill Forestry Limited

The Crown Estate

St Modwen Properties

Lloyds Banking Group

Work highlights

  • Acting for major US-based investor, Starwood Capital Group, on the intra-group lease of two new Yotels – the 280 room Yotel Edinburgh, at Erskine House of Queen Street, and the 256 room Yotel Glasgow opposite Glasgow Central Station.
  • Advising Priory RE, an investment vehicle for a group of Dutch HNWIs, on the £15m acquisition of 180 St Vincent Street, Glasgow.
  • Acting for BSW Timber, the UK’s largest integrated forestry business, on its acquisition of Maelor Forest Nurseries Ltd.

Burness Paull LLP

The real estate team at Burness Paull LLP is well regarded for its high-profile development and regeneration work. The team acts for a wide range of investor clients on cross-border transactions and handles corporate occupier matters for blue-chip corporate clients. It continues to advise on large-scale developments in the build-to-rent sector, and also handles real estate finance in the private residential, social housing and student accommodation sectors. Team head John Strachan is supported by Graeme Bradshaw, who leads on the retail and leisure and hospitality side. Nick Naddell focuses on high end investment deals, funding packages, and landlord and tenant work for large global retailers. Richard Rennie, who acts for high-profile investor clients, and Tamar Tammes are also recommended. Neil Bruce made partner.

Testimonials

Burness Paull are incredibly responsive, delivering a really good quality of work product in a fast turnaround time’.

Their lawyers are clever and provide succinct commercially focused advice’.

Burness have strength and depth in the retail property area’.

Commercially focussed and adaptable to changing situations’.

Very good lines of communication throughout contact and excellent grasp of subject area’.

Burness Paull is always very prompt to respond and the quality of work is always high and delivered on time’.

The approach of Burness Paull has very much been a collaborative one with my position as in-house solicitor’.

A quick personal service and competent to provide a property service in a very personal manner’.

Key clients

Union Real Estate Investments GMBH

The UNITE Group plc

Glasgow City Council

HGIT Glasgow (Hines Subsidiary)

KKR/ Quadrant Estates

LSPIM

Verdant Leisure

Aedifica S.A

Barratt Homes West

CALA Homes

Longmore House Properties Limited

Hamilton House Investments Limited

Springfield Properties Plc

Wilkies

Nordic Outdoor

Louis Vuitton

Urban Outfitters

LK Bennett

Sharp Bedrooms

Poundstretcher

Papa John’s

Ladbrokes Coral

Dobbies

Homebargains

Neal’s Yard Remedies

Max Mara

Warren James

Jigsaw

Smiggle UK

M&Co

Jessops

London & Scottish

Aberdeen Football Club

Dobbies

KFC

Lothbury Trust Holdings

Pizza Express

Pizza Hut

Tony Macaroni

Union Real Estate Investments GMBH

Glasgow City Council

Verdant Leisure

Carefree Universal Corp

Hamilton House Investments Limited

Yum! Brands, Inc

Signature Pubs

Work highlights

  • Acted for German fund Union Real Estate Investment GMBH on the acquisition of the historic grade-A listed Custom House on Glasgow’s riverfront.
  • Continuing to act for Aberdeen Football Club on its new training facility and stadium at Kingsford, Aberdeen.
  • Acting for Unite Group on its highly-publicised acquisition of Liberty Living comprising 53 properties across the UK with 7 in Scotland, comprising a total of over 24,000 beds nationwide.

CMS

The CMS real estate team handles matters involving a broad range of sectors, including energy, public sector, student accommodation, build-to-rent, office, hotel, and leisure and hospitality. Managing director Allan Wernham, who heads up the group, is noted for his retail development and investment expertise and focuses on major regeneration projects. Iain Doran is recommended for real estate development deals, property tax and dispute resolution (including arbitration) matters. Stuart Tait handles real estate investment, development and funding transactions for blue-chip clients. Of counsel Roland Smyth leads the hotel and leisure team. Associate Teresa Bradshaw-Wong is also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Allan Wernham

Testimonials

‘Expert, responsive and commercial.’

 

Key clients

Nuveen Real Assets

SSE

ASI

NewRiver REIT plc (“NRR”)

The Lister Property Partnership

KW UK Assets Holdco Ltd

Standard Life Assurance Limited (per Aberdeen Standard Investments)

Franklin Templeton Investments

Credit Suisse / Commerzbank

UBS

Accor

citizenM

Fattal Hotels/Jurys Inn

Gleneagles Hotel

Nuveen Real Assets

Aberdeen Standard Investments

Oaktree Capital

M&G Investments

DTGO Prosperous

Hawksmoor

Barclays Bank

Pearkal Property Investments Limited

NewRiver REIT plc – Hawthorn Leisure

Kennedy Wilson

Sircle Collection (formerly known as Europe Hotels Private Collection)

The Entourage Group

Deliveroo

Stack and Still

Bross Bagels

Cup/Gin 71

Social Bite

Matthew Hunter Fitness

Work highlights

  • Provided ongoing legal advice to Nuveen Real Assets on all property development, planning, CPO, competition/state aid, construction and related issues in relation to the Edinburgh St James shopping centre.
  • Advising SSE on the real estate aspects of the sale of a 49.9% stake in its Stronelairg and Dunmaglass wind farms to Greencoat UK Wind plc in partnership with a major UK pension fund whose investment is managed by Greencoat Capital.
  • Advised Aberdeen Standard Investments on the sale of 4-8 St Andrews Square, Edinburgh to German Pension Fund AVWL managed by KanAm Grund Group for circa £120m.

Davidson Chalmers Stewart

On 1st May 2019, Davidson Chalmers merged with Glasgow corporate boutique Kergan Stewart to form Davidson Chalmers Stewart. The real estate team is well regarded for its experience in the investment, housebuilding, healthcare and veterinary sectors. It is regularly instructed by English and international law firms to handle Scottish matters. Team head Andrew Chalmers is experienced in acting for large developers and family office investment funds.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Chalmers

Other key lawyers:

Gavin Maclean; Bruce Lancaster

Testimonials

‘The practice is truly partner-led and they are incredibly practical and proactive’. 

‘They are very efficient and provide clear advice at competitive rates’. 

‘The team has been consistent and supportive throughout’.      

‘I’ve worked with Andrew Chalmers for many years on Scottish property transactions and he is my “go-to” lawyer for all transactions for several years’. 

‘Andrew is always very responsive and pragmatic’.

‘My clients have been impressed with Andrew Chalmers efficiency and the clarity he provides as many of my clients are not familiar with the Scottish legal system’.

‘Efficient, practical and professional’.   

Key clients

Chris Stewart Group

Peveril Securities Limited

Crosslane Group

Muir Group

Suez Group

Peel Group

Highbridge Properties plc

Ministry of Justice

Pizza Hut

Burger King

Edinburgh Castle Limited

Stonehealth Alpha

Scottish Historic Buildings Trust

Yours Clothing

Stone Acre

Work highlights

  • Advised Chris Stewart Group on development, letting and sale of completed asset at Mint Building, Edinburgh for in excess of £50m.
  • Advised Palm Capital on re-gear and sale of Centrica Building, Granton, Edinburgh at circa £25m.
  • Advised new client Motability Operations Limited on complex new lease of flagship premises at South Gyle Business Park, Edinburgh.

Dentons

Dentons is well-placed to advise clients on national and international real estate deals; its work in Scotland is often written under English law. In addition, the firm has a number of Scotland-based dual-qualified fee earners. The Scottish practice is noted for its experience of the shopping centre, retail, energy, and leisure and hospitality spaces. Glasgow-based partner Gordon Aitken, who is a co-head of the team, has over 30 years of real estate experience. He is notably adept at handling institutional investment and funding. Another co-head is Simon Etchells, who is particularly experienced in cross-border deals. Allan Cairns, who is based in Edinburgh, handles investment acquisitions and disposals, leasing and development work, secured lending and the property aspects of corporate transactions.

Practice head(s):

Gordon Aitken; Simon Etchells

Other key lawyers:

Allan Cairns; Brian Hutcheson

Testimonials

‘Excellent service from the partner down to the junior lawyers who work on the account. They always come up with deliverable solutions for any problems we have.’

‘Very commercial and respond quickly and solve problems.’

‘They are very dedicated to providing a very high quality service for us as a valued client.’

‘The Dentons real estate team are a pleasure to work with. They are commercial, practical and provide very prompt advice.’

 

Key clients

M & G Real Estate

Aviva Investors

Hammerson Plc

Doosan Babcock Limited

Aberdeen Standard

Peel Retail Developments Limited

The Light Cinemas Limited

The Student Hotel

Inmark Asset Management Co. Limited

Malin Marine Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Hyundai Asset Management on a multijurisdictional deal in the acquisition and financing of a large Edinburgh office building.
  • Acted for an international investor client of M&G Real Estate in their acquisition of the landmark and prime office asset, Exchange Plaza, 50 Lothian Road.
  • Advised Doosan Babcock Limited on the negotiation and conclusion of five new leases.

DLA Piper

DLA Piper is known for its domestic and international experience acting for developers, property funds, corporate occupiers, student accommodation and retail clients. It also acts for leisure and hospitality clients, including investors, operators and developers of hotels. Drew Wallace, who leads the real estate team, has over 30 years of experience in investment and development. Steve Edgecombe leads the hospitality and leisure team, focusing on transactional issues. Sheila Irvine is recommended for leasing, investment and development work.

Other key lawyers:

Sheila Irvine

Testimonials

‘Sheila Irvine is easy to build a relationship with and have open and frank conversations. She has an air of calm and professionalism as well as solid credentials and a human approach.’

Key clients

Admiral Taverns

Aggregate Industries  UK plc– procurer and supplier of construction materials

Alba Group

Ambassador Theatre Group

Artisan Real Estate Investors Limited

Aviva

AXA

British Airways

Campus Living

Greencoat

Harrison Street Real Estate

Heineken UK Limited

Henry Boot Developments

Hines Global

LaSalle Investment Management

Ministry of Defence

Odeon Cinemas

Osborne & Co/Vanguard Limited

Places for People

Proprium

RBS

Structured House Group

St Enoch Trustee Company (Blackstone and Sovereign)

St James’s Place

Timpsons

Work highlights

  • Following the acquisition of over 1800 pubs from Punch Taverns we have continued to act throughout the UK on the Heineken property portfolio. including a number of required (by the Regulator) disposal programmes including the Project Tokyo UK wide sale to Admiral Taverns.
  • Acted for Artisan St Enoch Quarter Limited on the acquisition, letting of two hotels and forward sale of the development at Custom/Spectrum House, Glasgow to Union Management.
  • Advised Osborne & Co on a proposed 14 storey, 270.000 square foot office development for JP Morgan Chase.

DWF

DWF’s Scottish is noted for its strength in investment, development and finance work. The scope of its practice covers the retail, distribution, leisure and tourism, education and energy sectors. The team is jointly led by Chris McLeish, who acts for key investor and developer clients, and David Ratter, who acts for blue-chip corporate clients. Iain McHardy leads on the retail side with an impressive array of household-name clients. Kevin McGlone joined as partner from Brodies LLP.

Practice head(s):

David Ratter; Chris McLeish

Key clients

Babcock Group

M7 / Mileway / Blackstone

McAleer & Rushe

Aberdeen City Council

Shell

Ambassador Group

Costa / Whitbread

Marks and Spencer p.l.c.

Hermes Parcelnet

Mowi (Marine Harvest)

Morrisons

JD Weatherspoon

McCarthy & Stone

David Samuel Properties

Apollo Real Estate Investments

Lake Merritt Group

Jet 2

C& C Group (Magners & Tennents)

Buxani Group

Arcadia

Next PLC

Marks & Spencer plc

Travis Perkins Plc

Debenhams

Halfords

Greggs

Gant

Costa

Holland & Barrett

Homebase

Fat Face

Dunelm Mill

Oasis Stores

Warehouse

Nando’s

The White Company

River Island

Swarovski

Work highlights

  • Acting for Blackstone on the Scottish refinancing of the £483m Sunflower portfolio.
  • Acting for WP Carey on the combined sale of eight industrial/trade-counter estates totalling over 400,000 sq.ft
  • Acting for Marks and Spencer on all acquisitions, disposals, leases and asset management throughout its Scottish and Northern Irish real estate portfolios

Eversheds Sutherland

Eversheds Sutherland’s real estate practice is active in big-ticket real estate deals, with a focus on major institutional and inward investment mandates and development transactions. It has particular experience of leasing and portfolio management work, and has recently seen growth in its real estate finance practice. Edinburgh-based principal associates Steven Dick and Dixcee Fast jointly lead the team.

Practice head(s):

Steven Dick; Dixcee Fast

Other key lawyers:

Hazel Tait

Gillespie Macandrew LLP

Gillespie Macandrew LLP has recently seen an uptick in work from lenders, including primary lenders, alternative lenders and foreign banks. Practice head Kenneth Irons, who is experienced in both commercial property and property finance matters, acts for multinationals, SMEs and family businesses. Harry Smith leads on the housebuilding side. The practice also provides support in related corporate, litigation and restructuring matters. Nikki Dundas joined from Clyde & Co LLP.

Practice head(s):

Kenneth Irons; Harry Smith

Other key lawyers:

Nikki Dundas; Greg Peebles

Testimonials

‘The team are proactive and practical and importantly are always contactable’. 

‘The service they provide is always of the highest quality and they have a tailored approach to clients’ needs’. 

‘They resource instructions appropriately and as a consequence their fee basis is always competitive’.     

‘Professional, personable, knowledgeable and confident’.

‘An approachable team who provide straightforward advice, with a good appreciation of the commercial realities of the market’.

‘Kenneth Irons is a commercially minded partner with an eye for seeking practical solutions to complex problems’.

‘Gregor Peebles is personable, quick to respond and deals with instructions promptly and professionally’.   

‘Kenneth Irons provides an exceptional service’.

Key clients

West Ranga Group Limited

Assetz Capital

Binn Group Limited

Bellway Homes Limited

Westerleigh Group Limited

Majestic (Belford) Limited

Robertson Partnership Homes Limited

HR Consultancy (Scotland) Ltd

Syneos Health Inc

Brady PLC

Work highlights

  • Advising West Ranga on the acquisition of 120 West Regent Street, Glasgow in a deal with £7m.
  • Advising Channel 4 on the lease of its new Creative Hub in Glasgow.
  • Advising National PLC Housebuilder on the acquisition of a significant development site comprising next phase of major residential development involving multiple developers in a deal worth £16m.

Gilson Gray

In 2019, Gilson Gray acquired Millar Campbell Solicitors, bolstering its licensing capability. The team works across all real estate sectors, including office, leisure, industrial, hotels, residential, healthcare, retail, rural and mixed-use developments. The group generates mandates from investors, occupiers, developers and corporates. Murray Stewart leads the team. Another key figure is John Fulton, who was promoted to partner.

Practice head(s):

Murray Stewart

Other key lawyers:

John Fulton

Key clients

Global

KPMG

SRA Ventures

BrewDog

GTC

Paint Traders

Gloria Jean’s Coffees

Caley Water

Work highlights

  • Acting for Gloria Jean’s first franchisee on establishing a chain of US-based coffee shops in retail premises throughout Scotland.
  • Appointed as Scottish legal advisers to GTC Infrastructure Limited.
  • Sole legal advisers to SRA Ventures Ltd on the acquisition, disposal and management of a circa £25m portfolio.

Harper Macleod LLP

Harper Macleod LLP’s real estate team draws on the expertise of its planning, construction, banking and insolvency, energy, corporate and rural practices. Team head John Meehan is experienced in lease management, distressed property and property finance matters. David Bell specialises in commercial leasing, and in addition to Chris Noble, is a key practitioner for the firm’s retail, hospitality and leisure offering. Limor Wolfe handles insolvency, property finance and development. The team was recently bolstered by the arrivals of Caroline Summers, who was hired from Miller Samuel Hill Brown Solicitors, and Ian Davidson, who joined the Elgin office from Wink & Mackenzie. Ross Thomson has recently shifted his focus to commercial property work.

Practice head(s):

John Meehan; David Bell

Testimonials

‘Great and efficient service, always available for consultation.’

‘Chris Noble is understanding and pragmatic to needs and requirements.’

 

Key clients

Halfords Autocentres Limited

Persimmon Homes Limited

James Keiller Group

MCR Property Group

Telecom Services Centres Limited

Tulloch Homes Group

Last Mile Infrastructure

Hazledene Group

James Keiller Group

Upland Property Group

Ardent Group

City Vale Developments

CBRE Global Investors

Aprirose Real Estate Investment

Upland Property Group

Camlin Group

James Keiller Group

Xafinity

Yorsipp

@Sipp

AJ Bell

Hagan Homes Limited

Loch Ness Homes Limited

New City Vision Group

William Hill

JD Sports

Halfords

Charles Tyewhitt

Caffé Nero

BP

NCP

Smyths Toys

Card Factory

Optical Express

Dulux Decorator Centres

Eden Springs

Gerry Weber

Jacobite Cruises Limited

Ashers Bakeries Limited

Pizza Punks

Compass Building & Construction

National Savings & Investments

Glasgow City Council

Strathclyde Passenger Executive

National Records of Scotland

Accountant in Bankruptcy

Scottish Natural Heritage

Work highlights

  • Acted for Halfords Autocentres Limited (part of Halfords plc group) on the purchase of a competitor business with 63 properties throughout Scotland and England.
  • Advised JD Sports on the lease of 28 Royal Exchange Square, Glasgow, being the site of its new Glasgow Size store.
  • Advised Caffe Nero on the lease of a new flagship store at St Vincent Plaza, Glasgow.

Lindsays

Lindsays' team is well regarded for its investment and property finance expertise, and is particularly experienced in the retail, healthcare, charity and corporate occupier sectors. The practice often receives instructions from London-based companies and law firms. Group head Derek Nash is known for his experience of investment transactions, development and corporate occupier work. Stuart Rowson left the firm.

Practice head(s):

Derek Nash

Other key lawyers:

Kenny Gray; Susan Law

Testimonials

‘Lindsays deal with matters efficiently and professionally’. 

‘Lindsays are particularly impressive in that they take the time to find out what is important to their clients and understand their business fully which enables them to provide a very tailored service’.

‘Derek Nash is always professional, knowledgeable and supportive’.     

‘Lindsays are responsive and committed and are able to sync into being part of a wider team well’.

‘They always adequately resource our work with them and we value their input’.

‘Derek Nash is a good team leader and organiser’.

‘Knowledgeable Edinburgh-based team providing a breadth of experience across all disciplines’.   

‘Kenny Gray is always on-hand to contact and happy to take calls at any time; he is excellent at explaining everything and highly recommended.

Key clients

Waterstones Booksellers Limited

Telegraph Media Group Limited

Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB)

Grafton Group plc

The University of Edinburgh

Octopus Real Estate

Community Windpower Limited

Aldermore Bank plc

Sampension

Scottish Water

Work highlights

  • Advised Bakkafrost on its acquisition of the entire share capital of The Scottish Salmon Company plc.
  • Advised Sampension on the complete redevelopment of the eight-storey office premises at 10 George Street, Edinburgh and the pre-let to Aberdeen Standard Investment.
  • Advised Waterstones on its new five-year lease of Unit B9 Silverburn Shopping Centre, Glasgow.

MacRoberts LLP

MacRoberts LLP is noted for its expertise in property development, investment, residential development and real estate finance which it provides to public and private sector clients. Practice head Gillian Campbell handles all aspects of commercial property work and counts charities such as the Scottish Government and National Trust for Scotland as key clients. Ian Bowie, who also leads the team, has particular experience of the quarrying and energy sectors. Kelsey Gibson, who leads on the retail side, is noted for her leasing work for landlords and tenants. Gordon Murray, John Macleod and Pippa Snell all joined as partner, as part of the firm’s acquisition of Murray Snell in March 2019.

Testimonials

‘MacRoberts is my go-to firm for Scottish commercial property work. The work is always high standard and saves me an enormous amount of time because I know that I can rely on its quality.’

‘Ian Bowie particularly stands out, for his depth of knowledge and experience. He’s good to work with and very practical at dealing with unexpected complications.’

‘John McQuillan is another safe pair of hands who can be relied upon for solid but practical advice.’

Key clients

Wm Morrison Supermarkets plc

Scottish Power

BAM Properties Limited

Muse Developments Limited

CBRE Global Investors

Hamilton Capital Partners (HKIP)

Clydeside Regeneration Ltd

Chivas Brothers Limited

VPZ/CCHG

Work highlights

  • Represented CALA Homes in the acquisition of a large site for development.
  • Acted for Menzies in the cross-border sale and leaseback portfolio sale of 8 industrial properties to Custodian REIT.
  • Acted for Wm Morrison Supermarkets PLC in relation to the long lease disposal of supermarket car park land at stores in Glasgow, Dundee and Stirling for the development of McDonald’s and Starbucks drive thru restaurants.

Morton Fraser

Morton Fraser is noted for its strength in student accommodation, public sector property matters, residential housing development, cross-border deals and investment issues. Team head Michael Ramsay handles investment and development matters and is the lead partner for key client Diageo. Elspeth Carson, who heads up the retail sub-group, is known for her strength in landlord and tenant issues, lease management, planning and construction. Alan Stewart joined as a partner from Dentons.

Key clients

Robertson Homes

Stagecoach

Keepmoat

Tesco Stores

Diageo

Bloc Hotels

Patrizia

BAM Properties

Scottish and UK Ministers

Empiric Student Property

VisitScotland

Bloc Hotels

Diageo

Curo

Accor

SRUC

City of Edinburgh Council

Schuh

Riverside Capital

Squarestone

Work highlights

  • Acting for Diageo in the development of its new multimillion pound Johnnie Walker global visitor attraction on Princes Street, Edinburgh.
  • Acting for BAM Properties on the development and letting of an eight storey office scheme at Capital Square, Edinburgh.
  • Acting for Aberdeen City Council, who are the planning authority for the multimillion pound proposed extension to the Bon Accord and St Nicholas Centres in Aberdeen.

Pinsent Masons LLP

Pinsent Masons LLP fields a large Scottish real estate team which draws on its global network of offices to deliver investment and development deals both locally and internationally. The practice leverages mandates from funders, investors, occupiers and private property companies. Energy is another area of focus for the group, which handles project development, implementation and financing. Team head Katharine Hardie focuses on commercial and residential developments. Russell Munro is noted for his experience of the acquisition, management and disposal of large portfolios of assets, retail parks and shopping centres. Paul Connolly is also recommended. Neil Hogg joined Addleshaw Goddard.

Practice head(s):

Katharine Hardie

Testimonials

‘Technically excellent lawyers, but they are also very commercial and pragmatic and work very well together and with us to get the deal done. They also have excellent market and sector knowledge.’

‘Paul Connolly is a technically excellent lawyer, but also very commercial and pragmatic.’

 

Key clients

Barclays Bank

HFD Group Limited

Legal & General UK Building to Rent Fund

CALA Management Limited

Legal & General

HECF Mint S.A.R.L

E.ON Energy Solutions Limited

Seagreen Wind Energy Limited

Orsted Hornsea Project 3 (UK) Limited

Diamond Transmission Partners RB Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Barclays Bank on the development of its new Tradeston campus in Glasgow, involving over 450,000 sq ft of new office accommodation for 7,500 employees,
  • Advised HFD Group on the development and sale of £80m of Sir Ian Wood House in Aberdeen (Wood Group’s headquarters) to New York-based private investors.
  • Advising Winchburgh Developments Limited on delivering the £1bn Winchburgh Village development in Scotland.

Shepherd and Wedderburn

Under the joint leadership of David Mitchell and Andrew Hall, Shepherd and Wedderburn's team demonstrates broad commercial real estate expertise, which includes office, retail and mixed-use projects. It also handles land acquisitions, regeneration projects, property finance and residential developments. Hugh Smith and Jamie Grant co-head the leisure and hospitality group, which acts for hotel operators, investors, financiers and managers. James Dobie is recommended for development work and land disposals. Scott Ritchie is experienced in leasing and asset management. Richard Turnbull joined as partner from TLT, while Judith Stephenson was promoted to partner.

Testimonials

‘Jamie Grant is the lynchpin that holds everything together, he anticipates problems and brings in the relevant expertise to solve them’.

‘Jamie Grant is dedicated, intelligent and thorough, with a laser focus’.

‘They feel more like an in-house team of my own company as opposed to an external consultant, that approach creates a very relaxed, but very effective way of working’.

‘David Mitchell is first-class and I have recommended him to many other contacts and colleagues’.

‘Shepherd and Wedderburn are major players in the development sector and provide a very wide range of advice which is based on in-depth experience and knowledge of the subject matter’.

‘Andrew Hall has very detailed knowledge of the subject and offers clear top quality advice’

‘Jamie Grant has a great eye for detail which can often identify issues quickly’.  

‘Shepherd & Wedderburn have delivered a consistent and high quality full legal service’.

Key clients

British Land plc

Hermes

BlackRock

Tilstone/Warehouse REIT

CBREGI UK Property Fund

Miller Homes

Aberdeen Standard

Sainsbury’s/Argos

BAE Systems

Taylor Wimpey

Trump Turnberry

Dakota Hotels

Balmoral Hotel

Molo Hotel (formerly Polcom Developments)

Fraser Suites

Crerar Hotel Management

BDL Select Hotels Limited

Chardon Trading

Eurohostels

BDL Shetland Limited

HPMC Limited (owners Crowne Plaza London Docklands)

Work highlights

  • Advising JP Morgan Chase on its plan to build a new technology base in Glasgow, at the 13 storey, 270,000 sq ft development at Argyle Street, Glasgow, in the heart of the city’s International Financial Services District.
  • Advised M2 Dyce Limited on entering into an Agreement for Lease with NYSE-listed Oceaneering International Services Limited for delivery of a 100,000 sq ft warehouse at D2 Business Park, Aberdeen.
  • Advised Safestay, the owner and operator of an international brand of contemporary hostels, on the acquisition of the freehold of its 15th hostel, currently operating as ‘Best Western Glasgow City Hotel’, for £3.15m.  

Shoosmiths

Shoosmiths recently expanded its Scottish footprint with the opening of a Glasgow office. The real estate team was bolstered by the arrival of partners Barry McKeown and Fraser Mitchell from gunnercooke LLP and Shepherd and Wedderburn respectively. Another name to note is Sheelagh Cooley, who was promoted to partner. Stephen Dougherty, who leads the group, acts for retail clients and also handles development, investment and general landlord and tenant work. The practice also handles residential development, hospitality and leisure, property finance, social housing, student development, public sector and telecommunications work.

Practice head(s):

Stephen Dougherty

Testimonials

‘Barry McKeown is extremely well experienced, in depth knowledge of the market, and how he can always find a way through a deal.’

‘Shoosmiths stands apart from other practices as they constantly push and pull with land owners to drive the deal to a conclusion.’

Key clients

Tarmac

Cemex

Intelligent Land Solutions limited

Whiteburn Projects Limited

Ediston Land Limited

Travelodge

Wireless and Infrastructure Group

Rocco Forte

Civil Nuclear Constabulary

NATS Limited

Carriden Developments Limited

Balloch Farm Limited

Mactaggart and Mickel Homes

Bellway Scotland East Division

Perseus Land Limited

Marstons Developments

PfP Capital Fund

Clinton Cards

Fulcrum

Oddbins

Leonardo MW Limited

Straiton Park Limited

Euro Car Parks

Fitzwilliam

Coleby Investments Limited

Highland Properties Limited

Bellway Homes Scotland

Watkin Jones Group

Frontier Estates

Vita

Paladin Ventures Limited

North Berwick Golf Club

Dunbar Golf Club

Port of Leith Housing Association

CLSA

British Car Auctions

Hitachi Rail Europe Limited

Edinburgh Woollen Mill/Peacocks

Robertson Living Limited

Robertson Homes Limited

AAIM Bishopbriggs Unit Trust

Robertson Property Limited

Sigma Capital Group plc

Fortus Properties limited

ARP Properties limited

Johnstone House Properties Limited

Dyers House Properties Limited

HRP Properties Limited

Robertson Group Limited

Balfour Beatty Group Limited

Boots

Euro Garages

EWM/Peacocks

Screwfix

Estee Lauder

The Works

Ann Summers

Next

Topps Tiles

American Golf

Poundland

MKM Building Supplies

Hamleys

Cineworld

Guess

Russell & Bromley

Krispy Kreme

Kingdom of Sweets

Lush

Bob & Berts

Keepmoat Homes Limited

Arbuthnot Specialist Finance Limited

Urbanite (Glasgow) Limited

Forus Investments Limited

Sancus

Santander

Ultimate Bridging Finance

Abbey Properties Cambridgeshire Limited

Handelsbanken

Dunkeld House Hotel LLP

ETEL Group of companies

Work highlights

  • Advising leading PRS developer Sigma as it rolls out its highly successful PRS platform to Scotland.
  • Sole supplier of property legal services to Boots and Boots Opticians in Scotland.
  • Acting for Edinburgh Woollen Mill’s investment arm in a number of prime location acquisitions.

TLT

TLT is noted for its strength in the investment, development, leisure, retail, property finance, hotel and clean energy sectors. The firm’s real estate offering operates on a cross-office basis across the UK. Glasgow-based partner Kenneth Meldrum is experienced in commercial property transactions, residential developments, business park site acquisitions and disposals, and commercial leasing. Richard Turnbull left the firm for Shepherd and Wedderburn.

Practice head(s):

Kenneth Meldrum

Testimonials

‘TLT manage to combine a very personal touch with the reassurance of a larger firm. Very well organised and competent team who specialise but can also provide more general advice.’

 

Key clients

Q-Park

Town Centre Securities plc

William Pears Group

Frogmore

Market Halls

Reiss

Tapi Carpets & Floors

Beaverbrooks the Jewellers Ltd

Game Retail

Oxfam

Greene King plc

W H Smith

Q-Tel

Arc Cinemas

Yo! Sushi

Punch Taverns

Handelsbanken

TUI

Kingston Estates Limited

Tim Horton’s

Work highlights

  • Advised Q-Park on the sale and leaseback of three car parks in Scotland (two of which as part of a UK-wide portfolio disposal).
  • Advised Frankel Property Holding (5) Ltd and Frankel Property Holding (6) Ltd on the acquisition of a multi-let office building at 4 Atlantic Quay, Glasgow.
  • Advised Greene King plc on all Scottish matters relating to a UK-wide securitisation and loan note issue by Greene King plc.

Weightmans LLP

Weightmans LLP’s Scottish real estate team works as part of the wider national group. It handles commercial real estate transactions in the office, retail, leisure and industrial sectors. Clients benefit from the group's expertise in investment transactions, development, finance and litigation. Cassandra Auld is the head of the practice.

Practice head(s):

Cassandra Auld

Other key lawyers:

Claire Thornber; Andrew Warren

Key clients

Regent Capital

GreenOak

Caudwell Properties

Co-op

Certas Energy UK Ltd

Thorntons Ltd

M.G.F. (Trench Construction Systems) Ltd

Blythswood Property Management Ltd

Octopus Group

Santander

Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP

The Scotland real estate team at Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP works as part of the larger national group. It is active in the energy, residential development, finance, retail, office and build-to-rent sectors. Edinburgh-based Michael Spence, who is the head of the team, specialises in development work.

Practice head(s):

Michael Spence

Key clients

Renewable Energy Systems Limited

Ashfield Land (Glasgow) Limited

Edison Oakapple Limited

ESB Asset Development UK Limited

Statkraft Ireland Limited (formerly Element Power Ireland Limited)

Bridon International Limited

Airwave Solutions Limited

Lloyds Banking Group (Scottish panel)

Ministry of Justice (Scottish real estate)

Brent Infrastructure IBV

Post Office Limited (Scottish real estate)

Smartsheet UK Limited

Carpetright plc

Work highlights

  • Acting for Renewable Energy Systems Limited on its continuing development of onshore wind farm opportunities in Scotland.
  • Assisting Edison Oakapple Limited with the development of a portfolio of solar power facilities and disposal of the resulting project.
  • Acting for Lloyds Bank Plc on the provision of refinancing facilities to a borrower.

Wright, Johnston & Mackenzie LLP

Wright, Johnston & Mackenzie LLP's client roster includes family businesses and SMEs. In addition, it also acts for large corporates and institutional clients, such as banks and investment funds. The firm acts on real estate matters connected with leisure, licensed trade, renewables, agriculture and rural real estates. Colin Brass leads the team.

Practice head(s):

Colin Brass

Key clients

Lotus Group

Dundas Heritable

Cairn Group

Rosemount Taverns

GAP Group Limited

J W Filshill Limited

Colhoun Family

Pagazzi Lighting Limited

Macfarlane Group PLC

JWR Holdings Limited

RGI Group

Work highlights

  • Acting for The Prudential Assurance Company Limited on the sale of the former Homebase unit at Riverway Retail Park, Irvine.
  • Advised Scottish wholesaler JW Filshill on the relocation of its operations to a new purpose-built 120,400 sq. ft. distribution centre at Westway Park near Glasgow Airport.
  • Advising Speymalt Whisky Distributors Ltd (trading as Gordon & MacPhail) on all aspects of the acquisition of land and construction of a new distillery in the Cairngorm National Park.