Next Generation Partners

Commercial property: elsewhere in Scotland in Scotland

Brodies LLP

At Brodies LLP, the real estate team is some 120 legal professionals strong and is supported by extensive tax, planning, environment, litigation and construction capabilities. In Aberdeen, Tracey Menzies is one of the market’s most accomplished commercial property lawyers, specialising in transactions and developments within the build-to-rent (BTR), housebuilding and office sectors; she is supported by senior associate Jenna McCosh whose focus on development schemes has seen her amass significant exposure to pre-lets, development contracts, project management and forward funding arrangements. Karren Smith is the other key partner outside of the Central Belt, operating on investment, occupier and project affairs from Inverness.

Practice head(s):

Johane Murray

Other key lawyers:

Tracey Menzies; Karren Smith; Jenna McCosh


‘Tracey Menzies and Jenna McCosh provide a consistent high-quality service on complex property matters.’

‘Jenna McCosh is detailed and always very positive and works well in a collaborative manner.

‘Tracey Menzies provides an excellent service.’

‘Having worked closely with Tracey Menzies and Jenna McCosh over a number of years, I feel they are a great team and provide excellent service on complex deals.’

‘The team demonstrates great client commitment, and works well together and with business partners to ensure delivery of work within deadlines. They maintain good awareness and management of multiple workstreams relating to large commercial property transactions.’

‘Jenna McCosh and Tracey Menzies readily make themselves available and are always well-informed on transactional status and related matters for complex transactions, they are reliable and display great commitment in assisting the client, and are effective in proposing or contributing to pragmatic solutions when needed or when unexpected issues arise with transactions, in a manner that protects the clients’ best interests.’

Key clients

Aberdeen City Council

Aberdeenshire Council

Bancon Group

CALA Homes

Cater Property Investment

Cooke Aquaculture

Drum Property Group

GSS Developments

Knight Property Group

Lerwick Port Authority

Mandale Group

Montrose Port Authority


Tulloch Homes

University of Aberdeen

University of Edinburgh

University of West of Scotland

Warehouse 13

Work highlights

  • Acted for the University of Aberdeen in the lease for development of the £40m life sciences hub at Foresterhill, Aberdeen.
  • Acted for GSS Developments on the redevelopment and lettings at the multi-tenanted office building at 37 Albyn Place, Aberdeen.
  • Acted for Cater Property Investment in the sale of a property for regeneration of a neglected area of Dundee.

Burness Paull LLP

Key strengths of Burness Paull LLP’s national offering include development and regeneration, investment, corporate occupier, BTR, finance and English real estate projects. In Aberdeen, Richard Goodfellow leads the firm’s housebuilding practice though is likewise accomplished when it comes to commercial development schemes; he is based alongside John Strachan, a lawyer with extensive experience in supporting funders on development transactions and developers in respect of affordable housing projects.

Practice head(s):

Scott Peterkin

Other key lawyers:

Richard Goodfellow; John Strachan


‘Very responsive. Very committed to the deals.’

Key clients

Robertson Homes

CALA Homes

Countesswells Development Limited

Duke of Fife

First Endeavour

Stuart Milne Group

Baker Hughes

CALA Homes

Cognito Oak LLP

Impact Healthcare REIT

TGI Fridays

Work highlights

  • Advising First Endeavour in the acquisition and sale to Aberdeen City Council of the former Aberdeen Market and BHS site. The site is intended to be re-developed as a new £75m mixed-use leisure and market facility.
  • Acted for Grieg Seafood ASA in connection with the sale of its Scottish business, Grieg Seafood Hjaltland UK Limited to Scottish Sea Farms Limited. Grieg Seafood ASA operate 21 marine farms, a fresh water hatchery and a processing facility across Shetland and the Isle of Skye.
  • Acting for Cognito Oak LLP on the land sale contract and various development arrangements for a major land sale to Aberdeen City Council in relation to the proposed development of 536 affordable homes and community facilities at Bridge of Don, Aberdeen.

Pinsent Masons LLP

Pinsent Masons LLP’s Aberdeen practice is led by Rodney Whyte, a lawyer who dedicates the bulk of his practice to the housebuilding sector, supporting on planning matters, s75 agreements, large-scale developments and transactions. Senior associate Michael Shepherd works in close tangent with Whyte and provides purchase and option, land assembly, property finance and title examination knowhow.

Practice head(s):

Rodney Whyte

Other key lawyers:

Michael Shepherd; Leanne Hill


‘Offers clear, uncomplicated advice, geared around client requirements.’

‘Rodney Whyte- great ability to map out the route to delivery and manages his team well to achieve the timescales.’

‘The team at Pinsents are always on hand to timeously deal with any issues that arise, as well as regularly manage complex consortium matters that arise across our various sites.’

‘Michael Shepherd at Pinsent Masons provided a first-class service in dealing with various complex land issues that surfaced through the 2 year process.’

‘Team provide invaluable support. They are accessible and approachable with proactive team members, who manage contentious negotiations calmly and professionally.’

‘Rodney Whyte – strong leader showing excellence in finding solutions to complicated commercial negotiations. Resilient and proactive, and able to bring contentious discussions to a successful conclusion. Able to distil complicated matters down to the key problems quickly. Interacts with a range of clients in an approachable and modest way that sets clients at ease. Michael Shepherd – proactive team member able to focus on the key issues quickly. Supportive and accessible.’

‘Rodney Whyte and his team were very responsive to my client needs and went above and beyond to deliver a very professional service.’

Key clients

CALA Group

BDW Trading Limited (Barratt Homes)

Avant Homes (Scotland) Limited

Persimmon Homes Limited

GSS Developments (Aberdeen) Limited

Aker Solutions

Ithaca Oil and Gas Limited

Taqa Bratani (The Abu Dhabi National Energy Corporation)

Aberdeen Harbour Board

Kier Property Developments

Baker Hughes

Mactaggart & Mickel

Wallace Land Investment & Management Limited

Bellway Homes Limited

Bancon Homes Limited

Watt Taylor Limited

Robertson Homes Limited

John Dick (Farming) Limited

Almond Valley Limited

TLW Trading Properties Limited (Part of Telereal Trillium)

Simon Thomson (Parkdean Homes)

Miller Homes Limited

Oakridge Property Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised CALA in relation to site assembly of 980 unit development at Builyeon Road, South Queensferry, Edinburgh including associated S75 Agreement and prospective sub sales of residential and commercial phases.
  • Acting on behalf of Almond Valley Limited in connection with land assembly of the 1500 unit Almond Valley Village development site, variation of pre-existing s75 Agreement and advising on prospective sale of phase 1 of the development comprising 340 units.
  • Advised Wallace Land in connection with the proposed sale of a 187 unit development site under promotion by Wallace Land, the implementation of the buy in of the site on behalf of Wallace Land and contemporaneous onward sale to Miller Homes.

Blackadders LLP

Blackadders LLP fields lawyers in Dundee and Aberdeen with particular accomplishment in the development, landlord and tenant, portfolio management, acquisition and disposal fields, often acting in respect of housebuilding, student accommodation and care home assets. Practice head Emma Gray routinely acts on on-site acquisition and assembly matters, in addition to option agreements, and is especially well-regarded within the self-invested personal pension (SIPP) and affordable housing sectors.

Practice head(s):

Emma Gray

Other key lawyers:

Stuart King; Neil Robb

Key clients

Scape Homes

Curtis Banks

Morris Leslie Group

A & J Stephen Limited

James Hay Pension Trustees

Salvation Army Trading Company

Enterprise Investments (Dundee) Limited

Insights Learning and Development

George Martin Builders

Glendola Leisure Group

Work highlights

  • Advising client with an investment portfolio on a multi-million pound refinancing.          
  • Acting for client in acquisition of Scottish headquarters and subsequent refinancing.
  • Acting for private investors in several high value lettings in the Aberdeen Oil & Gas sector.


CMS is home to one of the largest real estate practices in the UK and the wider continent; its Scottish team is equipped to support on the full array of leasing, investment, finance, asset management and development mandates and its Aberdeen offering is fronted by Carol Nisbet; she routinely supports investment funds and occupational leasers on relevant affairs and is likewise well-regarded for her knowledge of energy assets.

Practice head(s):

Carol Nisbet; Paul Carter

Other key lawyers:

Karla Ritchie


‘Carol Nisbet possesses knowledge and attention to detail which is second to none. She has at her disposal a number of third party providers providing property law mapping (technology) which informs us as the client in a manageable way. Carol also understands the commercial importance of strategy decisions on certain areas surrounding the assets.’

‘CMS are open when it comes to providing quotes, competitive and keep accurate tracking of costs versus quotes to ensure we can manage financial expectations internally.’

‘Carol Nisbet is exceptional. She delivers and understands the needs/ambitions of the scope of work, end goal and will advise of the implications property law aspects in a manner.’

‘Carol, also is helpful in facilitating areas out with her area of expertise and collaborates well with other members of the firm to work towards a combined deliverable.’

‘Carol  Nisbet and her team provide clear advice, on time and on budget’

‘Carol Nisbet is clearly an expert in her field and is able to translate complicated issues to allow commercial decisions to be made.’

‘Carol Nisbet – exceptional commercial property knowledge.’

Key clients

Opportunity North East

Equinor plc

Abrdn (Aberdeen Standard Investments)

Knight Frank Investment Management

CBRE Investment Management

Columbia Threadneedle Investments

TAQA Bratani

Duncan & Todd Group

Hunting plc

Lloyds Register EMEA

Cordatus Real Estate

Linton Investments

Alpha Real Capital

Work highlights

  • Advised Opportunity North East in relation to the acquisition and development of their new £40m Bio Therapeutics Hub at the Forresterhill Health Campus in Aberdeen.
  • Advising Opportunity North East in relation to the acquisition and development of their new £21m SeedPod development in Aberdeen.
  • Acting on the sale of Boulevard Retail Park, Aberdeen for longstanding client, Abrdn.

Ledingham Chalmers LLP

Active on commercial leasing, development, investment, licensing and property-related corporate transactions, Ledingham Chalmers LLP caters to a broad array of clients, including multiple housebuilder, energy and hospitality entities. Practice head Stephen Morrice operates from Aberdeen and is particularly skilled in relation to the leasing and disposal of land to housebuilders and renewable energy development projects.

Practice head(s):

Stephen Morrice

Other key lawyers:

Alan Michie; David Scott; John Mitchell


‘Experienced and very competent with a practical approach. Look for solutions rather than problems.’

‘Recommended for their experience and knowledge of our company needs and requirements.’

‘We have dealt with the team at Ledingham Chalmers for a number of years and always had excellent service in a variety of aspects of commercial property law, from short term to longer term leases, several with complex conditions and terms. They have been exceptionally thorough when reviewing Heads of Terms, advising on pertinent topics and completing the contracts on our behalf in a timely manner. They are always open & friendly to communicate with and certainly make us feel that we are a valued client. The firm are keen supporters of local charities, often fundraising and supporting local charity events.’

‘David Scott has supported us with work on numerous leases. He has been diligent and timely on his review of documents. He has ensured that we have had all the pertinent information to make decisions and has offered his advice on various aspects that may have needed further explanation. David is always quick to respond to our questions when necessary. We have great trust in the firm being able to deliver what we need.’

‘The team at Ledingham Chalmers provide an excellent all round service which meets the needs of our business – they work closely with us as part of our project teams in addition to providing overarching property legal advice. They would always be our first choice in Aberdeen/Scotland.’

Key clients

Charlie House (Grampian Children’s Respite Care)

Ronnie & Fiona Moore

Magnus Beresford Limited

Streamline Shipping Agency

6DN Limited (Six Degrees North)

Harbro Limited

Nexus Property Company Limited

PB Development Company Limited

Carlton Rock Limited

Kirkwood Homes Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Kirkwood Homes Limited on the purchaser of multiple development sites worth in excess of £10m.
  • Advised Streamline Shipping Agency on a significant new lease at Aberdeen Harbour allowing them to double their local fleet.
  • Advised Charlie House on the lease of the site for their £8.7m respite centre in Aberdeen.

Thorntons Law LLP

The practice at Thorntons Law LLP counts healthcare, retail, office, leisure, education and energy assets among its key strengths, leveraging its expertise on a mixture of both locally generated and referral work. Janet McIntyre possesses notable expertise in disposal, acquisition, landlord and tenant, development and finance matters; she co-heads the practice jointly with Ewan Miller whose client base encompasses a number of Scottish universities, colleges, pharmacies and dental chains.

Practice head(s):

Ewan Miller; Janet McIntyre

Other key lawyers:

Ian Fraser; Gary Thomas; Graham Wilson; Hugo Allan; Aimee Gibbons


‘Thorntons have repeatedly proven their professionalism and efficiency. Their services have been invaluable in finalising some exceptionally complicated property transactions.’

‘We have found the expertise of Aimee Gibbons invaluable over the last 6 years during our many property transactions. She is knowledgeable, experienced, respectful and extremely patient, which is often demonstrated when negotiating challenging lease agreements. Aimee has shown real dedication often responding to emails out of work hours and during annual leave.’

‘Diverse team that understands the needs of the client. Fast acting.’

‘Aimee Gibbons is proactive in transactions with great attention to detail.’

‘We work on two fronts namely the commercial property side and also the contractual aspects, the team provide a positive position on the challenges and options explained to allow informed decisions to be made.’

‘Tremendous depth and strength with a real “can do” attitude. Well reasoned advice from highly experienced individuals. Strength across all sectors of the commercial market.’

‘Fantastic experience, manner of going about their business, and always able to provide a solution/workable way forward.’

‘Gary Thomas and his team have been impressive in their ability to communicate and keep matters progressing well during the challenges of the last two years. They are almost instantly available to deal with commercial property issues. They are proactive, helpful, friendly and consider all permutations of the issues I approach them with.’

Key clients

Irwin Mitchell LLP as agents for Park Homes (UK) Ltd

Shed5 Limited

Hillcrest Homes (Scotland) Limited (HH)

Angus Council

Shareholders of Kitchens International Group

Shed5 Limited

Messrs K & D Henderson

Work highlights

  • Acted for Irwin Mitchell LLP, as agents for Park Homes (UK) Ltd, on the purchase at over 8 Million of the business of Each Step care and 15 Care Homes across UK from Community Integrated Care.
  • Acted for Hillcrest Homes (Scotland) Limited on the £24m purchase of an area of land for development for 167 housing units in Cove, Aberdeen, conditional on a design and build contract with the seller.
  • Acted for the shareholders of Kitchens International Group on the sale of Kitchens International Group to James Donaldson & Sons (JDS).

Aberdein Considine

Aberdein Considine’s Aberdeen office is led by Gemma Perfect, a commercial property all-rounder with experience in leasing, acquisitions, disposals, refinancings, portfolio work and developments, both mixed-use and residential.

Practice head(s):

Paul Jennings


Other key lawyers:

Gemma Perfect; Lindsey McDiarmid


‘They are always on hand to provide practical and concise advise.’

‘Gemma Perfect is excellent.’

‘From initial enquiry, contact was set up quickly with good introductions. Individual solicitor who was day-to-day contact was approachable, had good knowledge and was interested. Meetings were by Zoom, for example, where needed. There were also other individuals within the company to assist. Billing and money transfers were clear and prompt.’

‘Lindsey McDiarmid is approachable, returned calls promptly, kept us updated each week. The latter kept stress levels low. When out of office clear contact instructions were provided. There were 4 transactions in all to transfer the business and buy a house- a lot going on. Seemed genuinely interested in us as individuals. Talked through options when we needed to. Kept a cool head throughout.’

Key clients

Handelsbanken plc

@SIPP (Pension Trustees) Limited

James F Donald (Aberdeen Cinemas) Limited

Norsea UK Limited

Dry Ice (Scotland) Ltd

Indigo Sun Retail Limited

Web Pharmacy Limited

Right Medicine Pharmacy Limited

The Royal Bank of Scotland plc

Latchcross Limited

ABZ Property Development Limited

Santander UK plc

Redmac Developments Ltd

Mostyns (Footwear) Limited

Les Enfants Nursery LLP

Aberdeen Distillery Limited

City Restoration Project Ltd

Pewag Real Estate UK Limited

Deeside Bike Collective

Curtis Bank Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Dry Ice (Scotland) Limited in relation to lease negotiations and security elements of their funding package relative to their new £4m production headquarters.
  • Advised Pewag Real Estate UK Limited in relation to the acquisition of their first UK property investment.
  • Advised Handelsbanken plc in relation to financing of finance transactions across a mix of industrial, residential and development properties in the North East of Scotland, Moray and Highlands.

Harper Macleod LLP

Lawyers at Harper Macleod LLP are engaged for their residential and commercial development, portfolio management and finance knowhow, in addition to their knowledge of healthcare, leisure and hospitality assets. Ross Thomson leads the Inverness practice.

Practice head(s):

Ross Thomson

Other key lawyers:

John Meehan


‘From my many years of experience relative to working with legal advisors I can honestly say that HM outshine the pack. One would expect all advisors to perform well however from my experience they generally fail to perform to all the desired/expected standards. In consequence HM’s uniqueness is that they actually do what they say they are going to do – do it exceptionally well- and all in an exceptionally timeous manner.’

‘The conveyance, construction and company law teams in Inverness all shine and really are at the top of their game in terms of knowledge experience and guidance imparted.’

‘John Meehan is an outstanding legal advisor.’

‘John Meehan’s knowledge of both Contract law and commercial undertakings – across a wide variety of scenarios is quite simply second to none. His response and follow up action times excel all others whom I have had the fortune and indeed, on occasions, the misfortune to work alongside.’   

‘John Meehan has the insight and ability to ask the right questions and understand the bigger picture of what a Client is seeking to achieve.’

‘Commercially astute, pragmatic and deal orientated. Also a pleasure to work with.’

‘John Meehann – one of the best in Scotland in the property sector. He is able to draw on his depth of experience and commercial savvy to solve problems whilst also being a genuinely nice guy. He is also listens intently to what us, his clients, and his junior colleagues have to say in order to find a path through any practical challenges that often emerge as a deal progresses. He is the most well-rounded lawyer I have come across.’

Key clients

CBRE Global Investors

RM Brora Ltd

RGH Dornoch Ltd

The Firm of D&L Forbes

Scotia Homes Group

Raymond Hutchison and Ingrid Austin & Nort Wind Enterprises Limited

MacDonald & Muir Limited (property company of Glenmorangie Whisky)

Orion Engineering Services

Morrison Community Care (CCG) Holdco Limited

Andrew Horne

Bracken Hide Ltd

L Williamson Limited

QA Fish Limited

Portman Healthcare (Properties) Limited

Fortrose & Rosemarkie Golf Club

Nairn Golf Club

Cairngorms Taverns Ltd

Active Parks Group (Innflate)

Medivet Group

Fulton Realty Ltd

Scottish Natural Heritage (NatureScot)

Moray Council

MacKenzie Harris Ltd

Ardersier Port Ltd

Orbital Express Launch Ltd (Orbex)

GDF Commercial Limited

Callander Consulting Limited

Caley Cruisers Limited

Caley Timber & Construction Services Limited

Shetland Recreational Trust

Shetland Amenity Trust

Wester Ross Fisheries Group

Whiterow Properties Limited

Saltire Business Parks Limited

Inceptum2 Solutions Limited

Myrekirk Developments Limited

G & A Barnie Group

Tulloch Homes Group

Upland Group

James Keiller Property Group

Hazledene Group

Meallmore Limited

Boyd Brothers Limited

Fairways Inverness Limited

Home Farms Partnership

Jacobite Cruises Limited

Parkland Developments Limited

James Evans & Sons Limited

Gael Force Group

Rathven Investments Limited

Independent Vetcare Limited


Clydesdale Bank Plc


Bank of Scotland Plc

Ashers Bakeries Limited

Ocean Kinetics Limited

Compass Building & Construction Services Limited

James Evans & Sons Limited

Whinhurst Properties Limited

Ardent Property Group

Loch Ness Homes Limited

Clyde Munro Dental Group

GF Job Limited

Craigton Foods Limited

Morrison Community Care Group

St Giles Shopping Centre Holdings Limited

AXM Investments Limited

Aquaship UK Limited

Tulloch Developments Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Upland Properties Limited and Rathven Investments Ltd in relation to the sale of a portfolio of commercial properties in the region including the two central shopping centres in Aviemore, other retail premises, and office, leisure and professional services properties as one of the biggest deals of the year in the Highlands Region.
  • Advised Ardersier Port (Scotland) Limited on the acquisition of Ardersier Port in Inverness, the UK’s largest ground field port and in relation to the agreement entered into with BW Ideol relative to the land & harbour in connection with manufacturing of concrete floaters and assessment of a serial production line for floating win substructures.
  • Advised RGH Dornoch Limited and RM Brora Limited, in relation to the sale of the two renowned hotels The Royal Golf Hotel in Brora and Royal Dornoch Hotels, on the North Coast 500 route.


Lindsays’s Dundee office caters to a mixture of residential and commercial developer, renewable energy, hospitality and leisure entities. David Rose leads the practice and runs a workload spanning acquisitions, landlord and tenant affairs, developments, real estate finance, investments and renewable energy projects.

Practice head(s):

David Rose

Other key lawyers:

Darren Leahy


‘Lindsays are professional and multi-skilled’

‘We have dealt with Darren Leahy for a number of years and he is always helpful and totally knowledgeable in a calm and professional.’

‘I work with this firm on both a professional and personal level. They have the staff at both partner and associate level to deal with a wide variety of aspects. On a personal level they have dealt promptly and efficiently with residential property purchases. On a professional level they have expertly assisted a number of clients with commercial property matters.’

‘In short, whilst obviously being experts in their field they are very personable/friendly and available to deal with and answer queries at short notice.’

‘The Team at Lindsays are very diligent and thorough in exploring a can-do attitude towards all challenges that arise, they are very professional in everything they undertake.’

‘David Rose stands out as a professional partner of this practice bringing an in depth contribution of Scottish property law and advice.’

‘We were in need of legal advice for a complex transaction which involved the sale and purchase of alternative property with ongoing rights of access to both to allow for business continuity (in the former) and conversion (of the latter).’

‘They appeared to us to be committed to the project and its successful delivery.’

Key clients

DJ Laing Homes Limited

Persimmon Homes Limited

GL Residential Limited

Scotia Capital Partners Limited

Kinnettles Mansion Limited

Kilmac Properties Limited

Greystone Estates (Scotland) Limited

AWT Development Holdings Limited

Ground Developments Limited

Agile Energy Recovery (Inverurie) Limited

Work highlights

  • Represented Persimmon Homes Limited on the acquisition of Phases 2 and 3 Lathro Farm Kinross.
  • Acted on the purchase of Mayrock Industrial Estate and Crail Airfield Fife, sold to Gilmore Property Limited.
  • Acting on behalf of Agile Energy Recovery (Inverurie) Limited in relation to the acquisition of a ground leasehold interest in land at Kirkwood Commercial Park, Inverurie (formerly Inverurie Paper Mill) for the proposed development of a state-of-the-art Energy Recovery Facility (ERF) valued at £200m.

Stronachs LLP

Duncan Campbell leads the Aberdeen-based practice at Stronachs LLP and is noted for his development, re-development, transactional, leasing and investment proficiency; he serves as the go-to for numerous oil and gas entities and is supported by Liz Stewart whose core strengths include development-related land purchases, renewable energy projects and option agreements. Emma Stephen is another key figure within the group and directs particular emphasis towards title and development transactions, compulsory purchases and environmentally contaminated sites.

Practice head(s):

Duncan Campbell

Other key lawyers:

Liz Stewart; Emma Stephen; Ross Linn; David Marshall


‘The team have a wide skill set covering all requirements for commercial property client’s needs. The team are knowledgeable, flexible and accessible.’

‘Emma Stephen is highly knowledgeable, approachable and accessible. Readily available to assist in a wide range of commercial property and development transactions.’

‘The team at Stronachs work closely with us to understand exactly how we want to work. They will condense their queries to allow us to respond quickly which works well for us when we work in a dynamic and pro-active way to make the most of market opportunities. Their legal knowledge is comprehensive and allows us to make the commercial decision with a full understanding of the possible risks. They have adapted well to Covid-19 and there has been no loss of service due to them not being in the office and this must be due to their IT capabilities.’

‘We work closely with Emma Stephen, she stands out because she provides her excellent legal expertise in a personable and practical manner. Emma takes the time to understand our business and is dedicated to working to our timelines. We value her adaptability, reliability, commercial awareness and eagerness to accept a challenge.’

Key clients

Global Energy Group

Strathdee Properties Limited

Peterson (UK) Limited

Spex Services Limited

Xodos Group Limited

DOF Subsea UK Limited