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Agriculture and estates in South East

Boodle Hatfield LLP

The Oxford team at Boodle Hatfield LLP specialises on the intersection of property and tax law, advising high-net-worth individuals with landed estates and landowners on tenancy issues, estate management, and asset protection. It is particularly experienced advising on matters related to renewable energy, viniculture, significant farming projects, and complex probate for the landed gentry. Private client practice co-head Natasha Hassall leads on both onshore and offshore trusts, tax planning, and long-term estate planning. Co-head Andrea Zavos splits her time between Oxford and London. She advises on probate and administration of estates, as well as private wealth disputes.

Practice head(s):

Andrea Zavos; Natasha Hassall

Cripps Pemberton Greenish

Operating from offices in Tunbridge Wells and London, the team at Cripps Pemberton Greenish advises on the full range of matters related to agriculture and estates, including family succession and wealth planning, property leases, grazing arrangements and major property disputes. Practice leader Sally Firby specialises in the sale and purchase of high-value residential farms and estates, working with 'excellent' associate Kit Mordaunt, who has considerable experience regarding complex matters relating to landed estates. Kate Arnold leads the private wealth team and is an expert in structuring property ownership, while Paul Fairbairn deals primarily with lad tax matters.

Practice head(s):

Sally Firby

Other key lawyers:

Kate Arnold; Paul Fairbairn; Kit Mordaunt

Testimonials

‘Kit Mordaunt was excellent at all times. I cannot speak too highly of his service and help.’

‘Cripps remain one of the strongest, if not the strongest rural legal teams in the South. ’

‘Sally Firby is the optimum professional, being very approachable and communicative with a firm grasp and knowledge of her subject and client case to ensure great results in very quick time.’

Key clients

Chapel Down

Wayfarer Wines LLP

Evremond Estates Ltd

Rauceby Farms

Mably Dairies Ltd

Work highlights

  • Advised on the administration of a £20m estate, successfully claiming agricultural and business property reliefs.
  • Advised on the succession and tax planning on a £10m development within a £100m estate.
  • Acted for Mably Dairies Limited and the lender in the purchase of a large West Country working dairy farm.

Freeths LLP

The agricultural team at Freeths LLP advises clients including private and commercial investors on the full range of relevant matters, such as agricultural tax, property, disputes and corporate issues. Notably, its expertise extends to acting for charities and trusts regarding nature reserves and environmental law. Practice head Iain Davis has expertise in the development of greenfield land, while partner Samantha Leigh focuses on complex purchases and property sales. Sarah Duffy and Balvinder Jaj have a track record of work on acquisitions, disposals, and land development, while managing associate Laura Czapski specialises in transactional work for landed estates.

Practice head(s):

Iain Davis

Other key lawyers:

Samatha Leigh; Sarah Duffy; Balvinder Jaj; Laura Czapski

Testimonials

‘Very knowledgeable – they worked very well with us to provide the fullest advice on aspects of farming/estate structure/inheritance planning. Great to work with and couldn’t recommend highly enough.’

‘Iain Davis has worked with our family for many years on matters of farming and property. Over the years he has provided advice on many occasions and has been instrumental in the estate’s structure. The estate has recently been sold and Iain handled all matters throughout the process. He was completely unflappable throughout and every enquiry and problem that came along was handled with great efficiency and sensitivity to our family. He would always ensure that we understood everything fully along the way and he really was an incredibly large part of a successful sale. His advice has been invaluable – his is an opinion that you really want to listen to.’

‘I worked with Tom Walker and his team on a highly technical and complicated corporate and trust restructuring process. The experience that Tom and his team brought to the table allowed this to happen efficiently, extremely professionally and with the end goal achieved in a timely fashion. Advice throughout was exemplary, clear, concise and well balanced. Communications from him and team were superb across the board.’

‘I would thoroughly recommend Tom Walker who provided excellent advice and professional wisdom throughout an exceptionally stressful and complicated two years. Both him and his team were truely dedicated throughout the process. I would further like to recommend Balvinder Jaj, who went above and beyond numerous times throughout the process and without whom we might never have completed on time. He has an innate ability to get on with people and remain calm.’

‘Wide ranging, cost effective and efficient advice to the rural property sector.’

Key clients

Bluesquare Home Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted in the conditional sale by a landed estate of 845 acres of greenfield land for development as a new strategic extension to a major conurbation for £189m.
  • Acted in the sale of a Grade 1 listed country house in over 850 acres with 10 acres of formal gardens and 5 cottages.
  • Acted for purchaser of two lots out of three in an off-market farm sale for over £4.5m, subject to Agricultural Holdings Act tenancy.

Irwin Mitchell

The rural business and estates team at Irwin Mitchell provides a full national coverage to its commercial and private clients, drawing on its network of offices across the UK. Within the South East, where it has bases in Southampton, Chichester, Reading, Newbury and Gatwick, it covers areas such as tax planning for trusts and high-net-worth individuals, strategic property advice, asset structuring, and proprietary estoppel cases for farming families. National rural business and estates head James Pavey - 'an excellent client-focused solicitor' - splits his time between the firm's London and Gatwick offices, handling all areas of property and estates law. Andrew Parry advises primarily on post-death tax and succession planning and trusts for owners of landed estates.

Practice head(s):

James Pavey

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Parry; Charlotte West

Testimonials

‘James Pavey is an excellent client-focused solicitor with a superb attention to detail. Very hard-working and an excellent way with words.’

Moore Barlow

With the merger of Moore Blatch and Barlow Robbins, Moore Barlow now has one of the largest teams dedicated to providing full service advice on agriculture and estates matters across the South East. It is particularly strong in advising on matters related to real estate, land development, and long-term asset management. Rural services team co-leader Sarah Jordan deals with such areas as high-value property transactions, while her co-head Philip Whitcomb specialises in asset protection, heritage law, and agricultural succession planning. Managing partner Edward Whittington and senior associate Charlotte Brackley support the team on a wide range of matters, including major land transactions.

Practice head(s):

Sarah Jordan; Philip Whitcomb

Other key lawyers:

Edward Whittington; Charlotte Brackley

Testimonials

‘Whilst a large and multi-sector practice, the team maintain a high level of personal client care. They are highly responsive, have a good understanding of our business and are empathetic to our objectives, providing advice to meet these.’

‘A very strong partner-level team underpinned by a high level of professionalism and competence. They are acknowledged as sector leaders and we have every confidence in them both representing our business and providing solutions which meet our wide ranging objectives.’

‘The people are Moore Barlow are excellent, professional, experienced  knowledgeable, friendly and easy to deal with.’

‘Experts in the field – I use them for all rural property matters and have recommended them to many clients. They are the only rural team that I know that will actually go and visit the property they are dealing with so that they can walk the boundaries.’

‘What makes them different is the human touch. Rather than looking at things through simply the lens of the legal implications, they also look at it in terms of the impact that it will have on the lives of the people it effects. At their best, they are good at building relationships and using a greater understanding of your broader context to give the right advice.’

‘Sarah Jordan and Ed Whittington understand our world, provide us with a view of what others are doing, and new ways of looking at what we are doing.’

Tees Law

The 'extremely knowledgeable' team at Tees Law continues to support clients across the South East on all relevant agriculture and estates matters, working with farming families, high-net-worth estate owners, and major corporate landowners on complicated energy projects, strategic land transactions and major commercial and agricultural litigation. Commercial practice leader David Miller splits his time between the firm's six regional offices, working primarily on complicated energy projects, development land sales, and strategic land transactions. Letty Glaister is a 'superb' head of the private client side of the practice and advises on matters such as succession planing, while Caroline Metcalf is an 'excellent' resource for clients.

Practice head(s):

David Miller; Letty Glaister

Other key lawyers:

James Daynes; Caroline Metcalf

Testimonials

‘Tees Law have been approachable at all times – they are prompt and efficient with quick responses when required. Nothing has been too much trouble and attention to detail is excellent.’

‘Caroline Metcalf – is exceptionally professional, client friendly and approachable, always giving calm and measured advice, and understandable explanations of legal terminology. Caroline is totally dedicated to her work and her clients, her attention to detail is exacting, and her skillful strategy places her at the forefront of her field.’

‘The agricultural team at Tees Law are extremely knowledgeable and are my go-to firm for legal issues within the farming industry. My experience of working with Tees Law puts them head and shoulders above their peers. They consistently deliver work of the highest standard and without unnecessary delay.’

‘Letty Glaister is superb and can immediately relate to client’s issues and address their concerns in the most reassuring way. This allows Letty to build good relationships with her clients and it a pleasure to work alongside her on various projects.’

‘I have used this practice twice, both times with a successful result. They are very friendly and keep you informed of the progress of your case.’

‘Caroline Metcalf was the partner dealing with my cases. She was excellent in steering me in the right direction when I was unsure. I found her to be very friendly with a sense of humour that I found relaxing, taking the stress out of the situation for me.’

Key clients

Lightsource BP

Work highlights

  • Advised Lightsource BP on the completion of a £35m cap ex 50MW solar site in the Nottinghamshire.
  • Advised clients on new wills for their £45m estate comprising farming partnerships and a family company, as well as various assets held in their sole/joint names.
  • Advised on the grant of a new 20 year-sublease of a newly constructed 12-hectare glasshouse for the purposes of growing fruit and vegetables to be sold to national supermarkets.

Birkett Long LLP

Birkett Long LLP is highly regarded for its agriculture and estates practice in the Essex and Suffolk regions, which covers a broad range of work, from trust and estate creation and administration, succession and tax planning, to grazing licenses and easements. Practice leader Caroline Dowding is an expert advising farming families on areas such as partnership agreements, trusts, and succession planning. The team includes commercial real estate specialist David Rayner, who also leads the firm's environment and energy group. Associate Emma Coke is another 'key member' of the practice and specialises in agricultural law, particularly estate management regarding complex farm and equestrian sales and acquisitions.

Practice head(s):

Caroline Dowding

Other key lawyers:

David Rayner; Emma Coke

Testimonials

‘Birkett Long have the deserved reputation of being one of the leading firms in the region within the agricultural and estates sphere, built up over many years. I have worked with them for over thirty years and have appreciated the depth of their technical knowledge.’

‘The department is run by Caroline Dowding, who combines technical knowledge with a pragmatic approach to finding solutions. She is particularly adept at grasping the family dynamics when executing partnership agreements, which can be so important. She is a very safe pair of hands and a pleasure to work with.’

Emma Coke is a key member of the team with vast experience. She comes from a farming background which must help in empathising with her clients. I have been impressed by her knowledge in the arcane and hazardous field of overage clauses.

‘A strength and depth in specialist areas and expertise to deal effectively with questions raised.’

‘Individuals are good at dealing with matters in a timely fashion.’

‘A professional, yet personal approach, to various subject matters has made dealing with them easy and pressure-free. When there was an initial issue, it was resolved swiftly and effectively.’

‘Caroline Dowding is able to communicate about difficult and sensitive matters extremely professionally and effectively, in a very time-efficient manner. Emma Coke is very efficient and quick to respond and action. Both are extremely approachable and personable.’

‘Standards are maintained at the highest level. Continuity is essential in any professional relationship, and this has been demonstrated admirably.’

Birketts LLP

The specialist agriculture team at Birketts LLP provides expert advice to private families, landowners, and farmers on the full range of agriculture and property matters, including renewable energy, succession planning, and taxation. Practice head Jack Royall, who operates out of Norwich, is highly regarded for his advice on the purchase and sale of farms and estates. Senior associate Annabelle Rout is a key contact. Associate Katie Gibson-Green and Simon Green joined from Birkett Long LLP in August and December 2020 respectively.

Practice head(s):

Jack Royall

Other key lawyers:

Annabelle Rout; Leo McMahon; Katie Gibson-Green; Simon Green

Testimonials

‘The team at Birketts have performed to the utmost of their capabilities with swift resolution of many issues, identifying potential problems and dealing with specific issues well in advance of other firms. They are down to earth and are realistic. Attention to detail and cost effectiveness was key. ’

‘Second to none in terms of of knowledge and efficiency. ’

‘One can rest assured that when a job is given to Birketts they will get it done. Handholding is not required.’

‘The team members were all very approachable and knew how the work was progressing. They gave good accurate assessments of how the work was likely to develop. The final cost was slightly under the initial estimate, which was very pleasing.’

‘The Birketts agricultural team are a pleasure to work with. They are friendly and welcoming and take time to explain things in a clear and precise manner in an understanding way. They are very approachable and very easy to communicate with. ’

‘I have worked with the team members for a number of years. They take time to understand complex issues and situations and work with me to provide superb results and service to our mutual clients.’

‘Annabelle Rout was recommended to us – her communication is good; she provides concise advice.’

Blake Morgan LLP

The Southampton team at Blake Morgan LLP advises both local and international clients on all matters related to agriculture and estates, including agricultural finance, estate planning, and land diversification into renewable energy sectors. Team leader Oliver Sowton acts for landed estates on commercial development and renewable energy-related matters. Senior associate Caroline Lindon-Morris deals with agricultural tenancies, as well as the purchase and sale of farms and agri-businesses. 'Top quality' legal director James Realff joined the team in September 2020.

Practice head(s):

Oliver Sowton

Other key lawyers:

Caroline Lindon-Morris; James Realff

Testimonials

‘Blake Morgan were an early adopter of technology in reaction to Covid and this has led to brilliant communication, that has helped deal flow. The quality and availability of partners really cannot be faulted.’

‘James Realff is top quality. He has a practical approach which really helps get deals done.’

Brachers

Based in Maidstone, Brachers has supported local farming families in the South East for more than 125 years, regularly handling complex disputes over agricultural land and landed estates. Notably, 2020 saw the opening of an office in Canterbury to better serve East Kent clients. Department head Sarah Webster is an expert property solicitor,  with experience in the sale and purchase of farm and agricultural land, as well as advising on property-related waste, recycling, and energy matters. Partner Christopher Eriksson-Lee is 'technically excellent' and specialises in areas such as the reorganisation of agricultural businesses, while partner Deborah Cain is a trusted litigator. Mary Rimmer was promoted to the partnership in May 2020.

Practice head(s):

Sarah Webster

Other key lawyers:

Christopher Eriksson-Lee; Deborah Cain; Mary Rimmer

Testimonials

‘The Brachers team are long established. They have a clear understanding of the sector and tailor advice accordingly. They do so clearly and without jargon, so the clients understand – that is a massive strength compared to other lawyers. They are very strong technically.’

‘Christopher Eriksson-Lee is technically excellent and explains things extremely well. He has great communication skills.’

Key clients

East Malling Trust

Kent County Agricultural Society

Alan Firmin Limited

Kent Farmers Benevolent Society

Plumpton College

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP has a highly regarded landed estates and heritage property team spread across London, Cheltenham and Guildford. The team in Guildford is led by hugely experienced office head Duncan Elson, who specialises in dispute resolution, with a focus on contentious trusts and estates matters. The office has seen a notable increase in landed estates work in recent years, providing a multi-disciplinary service to prestigious clients, working in tandem with their tax, trusts, private wealth and property colleagues across the wider firm.

Practice head(s):

Duncan Elson

Work highlights

  • Acting for the beneficiary to a well-known landed estate on disputes with his family, wider estate management and complex tax planning.
  • Acting for the beneficiary to a Jersey trust which ultimately owned a significant landholding in Wales, and the complex partitioning of this landholding between beneficiaries.
  • Acting for the son of a wealthy landowner in a high value estoppel and breach of trust dispute, involving complex tracing issues and tax planning following settlement.

Furley Page Solicitors

Furley Page Solicitors has a well-established team in the East Kent area, advising local landowning families and farmers on the full range of agriculture-related matters, including land promotion agreements the and refinancing of rural estates. Head of department Ethan Desai is 'exceptional' and 'dedicated to his clients'. His clients includes charities, landed estates, and investors and has significant experience in land development and renewable energy matters. Associate Darren Philpot is particularly experienced in the purchase and sale of farms, as well as matters involving rights of way, development, and overage agreements.

Practice head(s):

Ethan Desai

Other key lawyers:

Darren Philpot

Testimonials

‘Ethan Desai was recommended to me to help push a property sale through in a hurry. It was a complicated sale, and yet Ethan still managed to complete the sale with in 10 days. He is so dedicated to his clients.’

‘The whole team has a wealth of knowledge and in addition to clearly representing their clients’ best interests, are able to explain situations in a way that make them easy for anyone to understand. ’

‘Ethan Desai has always gone above and beyond to ensure that matters proceed at a speed suitable for his client. He has an ability to push other lawyers into action where many of his peers would allow a timeframe to slide.’

‘Furley Page is embedded in the Canterbury community, with an in depth understanding of the social, economic and legal needs of that community. During lockdown they have remained easy to contact – it has been very much business as usual. ’

‘Ethan Desai has juggled correspondence from multiple angles and always been available, responding to emails within minutes of them being sent. Complicated land registry issues have been attended to in detail. I wouldn’t hesitate in using him again.’

‘The team at Furley Page all work well together, even while most have been working from home.’

‘Ethan Desai is exceptional: his knowledge, commitment and efficiency are second to none.’

‘Furley Page deal with matters promptly and efficiently. They have remained easy to contact during the coronavirus pandemic.’

Key clients

Blackbird Farming

Edward Vinson Ltd

Wakeley Brothers (Rainham, Kent) Limited

St Nicholas Court Farms Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised an agricultural tenant and their funder on the purchase of the freehold of the farm from the landlord (over 400 acres of land, farm buildings, commercial buildings and a dwelling).
  • Advised an existing client in relation to a land promotion agreement for part of its land, under which the promoter will seek the inclusion of the site in the local development plan and seek planning permission for residential development
  • Acted in the sale of a whole farm in five lots. The farm comprised of approximately 100 acres of land, a farmhouse and former farmyard with planning permission to convert barns to residential use.

Knights

The team at Knights is known for its wide range of expertise in agriculture and estates matters. Practice leader Matthew Knight is 'as sharp as they come' and is a highly regarded litigator. He works alongside Simon Bell, who is an expert in public and planning law. The team covers substantial agricultural refinancing matters, and has defended farmers against allegations of VAT fraud, but its bread and butter work is in property disputes, professional negligence, and environmental matters.

Practice head(s):

Matthew Knight

Other key lawyers:

Simon Bell

Testimonials

‘The team is small but dynamic. I have been impressed by the various members of the team who have different and complimentary skills.’

‘Matthew Knight was extremely knowledgeable in the area of my problem. He has a great deal of experience in the countryside setting. He warned me of every danger that could happen so I was able to take the appropriate action to prevent any problems that may have occurred. With this information I was kept safe. This was probably the best advice I have ever received in my life.’

‘Simon Bell was outstanding in his field. He anticipated the moves of the judicial system like a complex game of chess. Many changes and deviations were made by the defence but never once was his guard let down, and he came away from court with the best possible outcome for us.’

‘Matthew Knight has a relaxed, easygoing nature, but is as sharp as they come and misses nothing.’

Key clients

Paul Rackham Ltd.

FGS Agri Ltd

Chevening Shoot Syndicate

Trevor Heathcote LLP

National Gamekeepers Organisation

Game Farmers Association

Doug Wanstall & Sons

Work highlights

  • Acted for Paul Rackham Ltd, a company being prosecuted for environmental offences, following a long running investigation undertaken by the EA.
  • Acting for a farmer accused of being involved in a multi-million-pound VAT fraud.
  • Acted for Trevor Heathcote LPP, a company in respect of a prospective claim for breach of contract and negligence resulting in substantial damage and loss to a solar energy company.

Rix & Kay Solicitors LLP

Primarily focused on the sale and development of farming land in the South East, the team at Rix & Kay Solicitors LLP also provides expert advice regarding planning and environmental law, farm business structuring, and succession planning for farming families. Managing parter Richard Cripps has extensive experience in commercial property. He leads the wider team on major land transactions.

Practice head(s):

Richard Cripps

Testimonials

‘The team is made up of specialists across various fields who have an understanding of the particular needs of agricultural clients’ needs and wants – they work together in a blended way to provide solutions.’

‘Richard Cripps is a good communicator, technically skilled, and comes from a farming family and lives in the Garden of England. He is likeable, knowledgeable, and works quickly to find pragmatic solutions.’

‘Rix & Kay were hands on and efficient throughout the process and provided solid advice at realistic prices.’

‘Richard Cripps at Rix & Kay was always at the end of the phone when required and answered any questions and picked up any issues well in advance of there being a problem throughout the sale process. Good advice and strong links with Richard have helped sales progress throughout the last 12 months.’

Thompson Smith and Puxon

Located in Colchester, the agriculture team at Thompson Smith and Puxon is regarded for its estate and succession planning for farming and estate-owning clients in the South East, as well as its expertise in commercial and agricultural acquisitions and disposals. Practice leader Stephen Firmin has an 'encyclopaedic knowledge of land law' and focuses on property portfolios and strategic land planning, while Kerry Addison specialises in development and planning for farmers and landowners. Wills and estates team leader Fiona Ashworth is a 'force of nature'; she deals primarily with succession planning and administration of estates.

Practice head(s):

Stephen Firmin

Other key lawyers:

Kerry Addison; Fiona Ashworth

Testimonials

‘In my recent experience in working with the TSP team I have found them to be very engaged, response, willing to take a commercial approach to difficult situations and worked well with the rest of the clients professional team to get the deal done.’

‘Stephen Firmin is extremely thorough, knowledgeable and approachable. A really good team player.’

‘In my view, the agriculture and estates practice of TSP has become one of the leading firms in this area in the region. They have a very well resourced team, based in their purpose built head office in Colchester. The team have a close and empathetic relationship with their clients. The practice has top quality partners backed by an excellent group of solicitors and support staff.’

‘Stephen Firmin has an encyclopaedic knowledge of land law with a phenomenal attention to detail. He has the ability to break down complex issues and explain them in layman’s language. The consequence is to deliver pragmatic and practical solutions to client problems.’

‘Fiona Ashworth is a force of nature. One cannot be in her presence for long without appreciating her passion and commitment. Many profess to have these qualities but they are self evident with Fiona. I have seen her energy at first hand on cases. Fiona has the great advantage of being married to a farmer and being a farmer’s daughter. It enables her to empathise with her farming clients and understand their issues and concerns, as well as dealing sensitively with family dynamics.’

‘All the staff at TSP are so polite and helpful, smart and pleasant. They do not speak down to you and they have the patience to explain things, maybe even twice. They are always ready to collaborate with other departments to seek the best information for their clients. They convey confidence to you and have positive attitudes. You leave TSP feeling good and confident that you have received the best advice available.’

Warners Solicitors

Warners Solicitors advises clients on a range of non-contentious and contentious matters. Steve Colville and Michael McNally are the key contacts.

Practice head(s):

Steve Colville

Other key lawyers:

Michael McNally

Adams & Remers

Located in Lewes, the 'well-established' agriculture and estates team at Adams & Remers is dedicated to advising clients with major estates and farms across the South East of England on complex and high-value matters, including land and property disputes, property management, and land option agreements. Practice head Katherine Haslam advises on development, planning and investment matters, while 'highly respected' senior partner and head of the property team Robin Illingworth is an expert in providing advice to clients in the viticulture sector. Additionally, James Turner has a record of work on strategic land arrangements.

Practice head(s):

Katherine Haslam

Other key lawyers:

Robin Illingworth; James Turner

Testimonials

‘A well-established, knowledgeable and approachable team. A real grasp of the detail and ensuring clients interests are well served.’

‘I have found that Katherine Haslam and James Turner are both excellent lawyers, and I would have no hesitation in recommending their services.’

‘Adams & Remers are a multi-disciplined legal firm with longstanding Sussex roots.’

‘Katherine Haslam and James Turner are able to offer extensive experience in a wide range of agricultural and commercial elements and with a can-do attitude to getting the job done.’

‘A diverse range of skill sets, and an ability to match the right individual to clients with specific needs.’

‘Robin Illingworth is highly respected and knowledgeable, particularly in rural and agricultural matters.’

‘Katherine Haslam is a very good commercial solicitor with a no-nonsense approach to transactions.

Field Seymour Parkes LLP

Field Seymour Parkes LLP advises farming partnerships, trusts, and landed estates on matters such as renewable energy projects, succession planning, and the sale and acquisition of property in the South East. Practice leader Hazel Eccles focuses on acquisitions and tenancies, while James Burgess advises on rural development and agricultural property-related matters.

Practice head(s):

Hazel Eccles

Other key lawyers:

James Burgess

Testimonials

‘A diverse team with the knowledge to manage themselves and others to deliver sensible solutions. ’

‘Very helpful advice dealing with a variety of different problems. Will provide advice on minor matters in a cost-effective manner. The employment advice is particularly good.’

Spratt Endicott

The Banbury-based agriculture and estates team at Spratt Endicott advises charities, rural business, and high-net-worth individuals in possession of country estates on matters such as succession planning, contentious probate, and the structuring and restructuring of farming companies. The team is highly experienced in property litigation. Practice leader Jennie Loynes has overseen the restructuring of the team over the past two years, while also advising on the sale of land to HS2. Managing director Andrew Woods deals primarily in commercial property.

Practice head(s):

Jennie Loynes

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Woods

Testimonials

‘A friendly, efficient team that is easy to work with and keep clients well informed. ’

‘Good practical thinking and a good grasp of the clients’ objectives.’

‘Jennie Loynes has been a pleasure to work with.’

‘The team are approachable and cover a broad spectrum of work, with good cross-working, which makes them a very useful firm to work with.’

‘Individuals are easy to talk to and approachable, meaning you can have constructive meetings and get jobs done with sound, practical advice being given.’

Work highlights

  • Advised an Oxford College on the granting of agricultural tenancy and grazing agreements on some of their land near Banbury.
  • Advised on the sale of a c.£7m farm in the Oxfordshire countryside, including occupation agreements to allow the seller to remain on the property after completion.
  • Advised a local farming family on the restructuring of the farming business, as well as prepared agricultural tenancy agreements and applied for first registration of land.

Thomson Snell & Passmore

The agriculture and estates team at Thomson Snell & Passmore is highly experienced in acting for landowners, estates, and developers regarding the sale and purchase of land, sporting rights, renewables, and agricultural tenancies, amongst other areas. Consultant Sue Lister heads the agriculture & rural affairs practice, which handles the full range of relevant matters, including diversification projects and managing large estate portfolios.

Practice head(s):

Sue Lister

Testimonials

‘Adapted well to remote working and tasks were seamlessly passed between the most appropriate individuals. Work was completed without the need to travel and the outcome was the best we could of expected. ’

‘Very grounded individuals who are good communicators, knowledgeable in their field and easy to get hold of, despite the limits imposed by the pandemic.’

‘The Thomson Snell & Passmore team offer the highest quality service to a diverse client base from hands-on farmers to landed estates. This approachable team know how to get the best out of working with fellow professionals in allied professions.’

‘They have a dedicated agricultural team who are responsive and proactive when dealing with issues. They keep you informed of progress and work with you in progressing transactions. The staff within the agricultural division and amiable and approachable. ’

‘Sue Lister is always on hand to deal with matters. The advice given is considered. Sue tries to find solutions around problems and looks to move matters forward.’

‘Specific expertise in agricultural land and rural property sales. Personable, communicative and organised.’

Thrings LLP

With offices in Bath and Romsey, the agriculture practice at Thrings LLP advises on matters such as strategic landowning, renewables, and farming issues. It has particular experience advising on issues such as carbon capture, agriculture lending work, and acting for landed estates on estate tax planning and discrete matters. Practice leader Mark Charter is an expert in the sale and purchase of property, as well as secured lending. Senior associate Jonathan Thompson joined from Hunters Law LLP in January 2021.

Practice head(s):

Mark Charter

Other key lawyers:

Jonathan Thompson

Key clients

National Farmers Union (NFU)

Country Land and Business Associate (CLA)

The Badminton Estate

Denhay Farms Ltd

Countryside Education Trust

EU Plants Ltd

Wiltshire and Berkshire Canal Trust

DJ Houghton Catching Services Ltd

Koppert

Work highlights

  • Won a £10m proprietary estoppel claim/farm partnership dispute in the Court of Appeal.
  • Won a £9m proprietary estoppel claim in the High Court.
  • Acted for client in a proprietary estoppel claim appeal to the Supreme Court.