Public sector in South East

Blake Morgan LLP

Blake Morgan LLP's public sector practice spans three key areas: local government, health and education. The local government team is led by Penny Rinta-Suksi whose specialism is in local authority leisure projects. Under the leadership of Matthew Smith, the team's experience in the education sector includes high-profile and high-value transactional work, litigation and specialist education tribunal work; an area in which senior associate Vicky Schollar has extensive experience, with emphasis on disability discrimination claims. The firm also has a strong health department led by Bruce Potter which has managed health transactions for key client NHSE England throughout the pandemic.

Practice head(s):

Penny Rinta-Suksi; Matthew Smith; Bruce Potter

Other key lawyers:

Vicky Schollar


‘Penny Rinta-Suksi has excellent subject knowledge in leisure management contracts. Very practical and down to earth. Understands the commercial impact of contractual drafting decisions. Good fun to work with. ’

‘The team we work with at Blake Morgan act as an extension of our team rather than a separate legal firm. They take time to understand our mission, vision and objectives and therefore give legal advice which is relevant and collaborative, making red lines very clear rather than leaving it for us to interpret the law.’

‘Bruce Potter – always makes himself available for urgent issues and ensures he has an overview of our joint work. His knowledge and practical approach to dealing with difficult issues are invaluable.’

‘Blake Morgan provide an excellent level of customer service. Their webinars have been useful during the past year to provide key insight into emerging areas of risk. ’

‘Blake Morgan has always understood the needs of the local authority and responded accordingly. They provide clear advice and are willing to engage with all levels of the council. ’

Key clients

Reading Borough Council

Amber Valley Borough Council

Wokingham Borough Council

Basingstoke and Deane Council

Hart District Council

Lewisham Borough Council

RB of Kingston on Thames

Chiltern District Council

North Norfolk District Council

Fenland District Council

Oxfordshire County Council

London Borough of Merton

Test Valley Borough Council

Cherwell District Council

Dover District Council

New College, Oxford

Balliol College, Oxford

Magdalen College, Oxford

Oxford Foundation for Theoretical Neuroscience and Artificial Intelligence

Universities and Colleges Information Systems Association

University of Portsmouth

Portsmouth Grammar School

Portsmouth Diocesan Trust

University of Reading

NHS England and NHS Wales (Separate)

InHealth Limited

Medical Imaging Partnerships Limited

West Berkshire District Council

Gregg School Trust

Work highlights

  • Supporting Reading Borough Council on a complex leisure design, build operate and maintain project to radically improve its mixture of new and existing wet and dry leisure facilities spread across multiple sites and most recently on its preparatory D&B work and the agreement with its current operator, affected by Covid-19.
  • Advised University of Reading on proceedings spanning over six years, involving the dismissal for “good cause” of a university professor in accordance with the University’s statute (since repealed).
  • Supporting NHS England on the negotiation of a complex commercial agreement with Grail relating to the Galleri blood test which can detect early-stage cancers, to be piloted by the NHS from mid-2021, our support involved negotiating an initial heads of terms together with a full agreement dealing with all aspects of the parties’ relationships including future clinical trials.


Brachers' multidisciplinary practice has a longstanding reputation working with public sector clients in the South East, including NHS Trusts and local authorities. Based in Maidstone and Canterbury, Catherine Daw, Antonio Fletcher  and Ash Jilani lead the team. Daw and Fletcher are experienced employment lawyers, with the former leading the firm's healthcare sector group and the latter acting for educational establishments. Jilani has extensive experience in commercial property and specialises in primary care issues. John Sheath is a preeminent figure in the field of healthcare and provides specialist advice in clinical negligence matters, inquests and corporate manslaughter cases, amongst many others.

Practice head(s):

Catherine Daw; Antonio Fletcher; Ash Jilani

Other key lawyers:

John Sheath; Ben Gallafant


‘Reliable. Knowledgeable. Ensures the right specialist deals with each job, not assuming that it will always go to the same person’

‘Clear advice. Understands the context in which we are working and our competing challenges.’

‘Ben Gallafant is excellent at knowing what was needed and what was specifically required to gain the answer and result we needed.’

Key clients

Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust

Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

Ashford Borough Council

Dover District Council

Five Acre Wood School

Plumpton College

Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust

East Kent Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust



Benenden Hospital

KIMS Hospital

Bethesda Medical Practice

Medway Practices Alliance

Phoenix Medical Practice

Greensand Health Centre

Work highlights

  • Advised Dover District Council on a housing development of approximately 1300 homes and financial contributions of approximately £5.8m towards matters such as primary and secondary education, sustainable transport, open space provision, and youth, health and community services.
  • Representing an NHS Trust and eight other senior individuals in respect of a complex employment tribunal claim for whistleblowing and disability discrimination.
  • Acted for Ashford Borough Council in its purchase of the New Quarter – an £18.5m investment comprising the East and West Wings adjacent to the Panorama building in the heart of Ashford.

Cripps Pemberton Greenish

Cripps Pemberton Greenish provides multidisciplinary advice to a broad public sector client base, including central government bodies, local authorities and utility companies. James Lee heads the construction practice, specialising in non-contentious transactional work and acting as the lead on key projects such as Slough Borough Council's regeneration scheme. Miles Paffard is a commercial landlord and tenant specialist who works on high-value and complex claims, securing substantial savings for government in dilapidations, conditional lease break and rent review matters.

Practice head(s):

James Lee; Miles Paffard

Key clients

Ashford Borough Council

Crawley Borough Council

Canterbury Christ Church University

Home Office

Runnymede Borough Council

Sevenoaks District Council

Slough Borough Council

South East Water

Town and Country Housing

University of Kent

URC Thames North Trust

Work highlights

  • Advising Slough Borough Council in relation to their £1bn urban regeneration called Slough Urban Renewal, providing construction and property litigation advice for the creation of a new library, school, football stadium, housing and infrastructure, with its development partner Morgan Sindall.
  • Acting for Sevenoaks DC in relation to the preparation and negotiations of a s106 Agreement to support an application for a £30m mixed-use redevelopment scheme comprising three commercial units and 104 residential homes.
  • Reviewed and negotiated all South East Water’s construction documents, professional appointments and building contracts under their five-year contractor framework agreements and provided dispute resolution advice.

Birkett Long LLP

Birkett Long LLP's health and social care department handle a range of legal work for GP practices, care homes, dentists and pharmacists. Colchester senior associate Tim Field heads the team and has expertise in the needs of charities and not-for-profits. He works alongside Tracey Dickens, who provides multidisciplinary advice including corporate support and M&A to a variety of healthcare clients.

Practice head(s):

Tim Field

Other key lawyers:

Tracey Dickens

Key clients

Healthcare Homes Limited

Healthcare Homes Group Limited

Healthcare Homes (2020) Limited

Manorcourt Care (Norfolk) Limited

Runwood Homes Limited

St Helena Hospice

Work highlights

  • Advised Healthcare Homes on the acquisition of the operating business of six care homes from Four Seasons Health Care Group including agreements to operate the homes between exchange and completion.
  • Advising Healthcare Homes on the acquisition of two care homes operating as separate independent businesses owned by one seller.

Blandy & Blandy LLP

Blandy & Blandy LLP has a strong track record of advising public sector clients, including those in education and local government. Charities and education head and firm chairman Nick Burrows has extensive experience advising charities and schools in the areas of formation, constitutional matters and governance - he is described as 'understanding the charities sector as well as anyone'.

Practice head(s):

Nick Burrows


‘In my experience, I have found the firm to be internally well-connected so that knowledge from other areas of specialism is drawn in and applied where necessary. Blandy & Blandy manage all areas of our legal support and have been unfailingly helpful, quick to respond, quick to understand our particular needs and link to other specialisms where necessary and cost-effective to do so.’

‘I have worked with three partners and a number of associates, I have found them all to be helpful and knowledgeable, but also personable and clear communicators. They all manage to make you feel that you are an important client and to deliver a high quality of service even though we are in fact no doubt a relatively small client compared to others. ’

‘Blandy & Blandy have a similar history and values to the college and therefore understand what makes us different to other independent schools. This gives us confidence that they will always provide us with appropriate guidance.’

‘We have total confidence in Nick Burrows who understands the charities sector as well as anyone.’

‘They will give good pragmatic advice. They will take a view not just quote the law’

Key clients

University of Oxford

University of Reading

Reading Borough Council

St Joseph’s College

The Abbey School

The Oratory Schools Association

Pangbourne College

DAC Beachcroft LLP

DAC Beachcroft LLP offers the full range of legal services for public sector clients, including notable expertise in clinical negligence and medical malpractice matters for the NHS and private sector clients working in health and social care. Belinda Dix specialises in healthcare law, primarily advising on regulatory and governance matters, including issues arising under the Mental Capacity Act and patient confidentiality. Matthew McGrath has extensive experience in defendant clinical negligence matters and heads the clinical risk team alongside Heather Durston-Hillyer in Winchester.

Practice head(s):

Matthew McGrath

Other key lawyers:

Belinda Dix; Heather Durston-Hillyer


The Winchester team provides a great service with minimal fuss.’

‘Heather Durston-Hillyer is a very calm operator, with sound judgement.’

‘The DACB team has a lot of depth and can solve any issue we take to them. They have introduced an advice line for us for preliminary case discussions which has been valuable.’

‘While the team is large and diverse, each team member brings with them their own personal qualities which allows the client to valued and listened to. They have a very good understanding of client needs, NHS processes/systems and able to work with individuals and teams to generate the best evidence by allowing teams to share their knowledge but can as as a support and guide to ensure the best quality of evidence is provided by the organisation.’

‘Excellent availability, good communicators and inclusive in their approach.’

‘DACB are efficient and proactive in their handling of clinical negligence claims so I know that my claims are in safe hands. They keep me updated with key developments.’

Key clients

NHS Resolution

Medical Defence Union

Oxford University Hospitals NHS FT

University Hospitals Southampton NHS FT

Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust

United Hospitals Dorset NHS Foundation Trust (formerly Bournemouth and Poole Trusts

Isle of Wight NHS Trust

Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust

South Central Ambulance NHS Foundation Trust

Solent NHS Trust

Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust

Dorset Healthcare University NHS Foundation Trust

Panel Appointments



Crown Commercial Solutions

NHS Commercial Solutions

RSA Complex Loss

WR Berkley Themis

MS Amlin Casualty (inc Med-mal)

Work highlights

  • Advised the University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust on the first generation outsourcing of its decontamination services to IHSS Limited.
  • Advised University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust (UHS) on the negotiation and completion of a Development Agreement between UHS and Prime in respect of the Park & Ride facility, encompassing complex planning and construction advice.
  • Advising NHS England on its defence of a high profile judicial review, namely R(Gardner) v SoS Health and Social Care, NHS England and Public Health England which is seeking to challenge the NHS and Government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic and the impact it had on care home residents.

Martin Searle Solicitors

Martin Searle Solicitors provides specialist community care law advice to claimants, including professional deputies, individuals and their families in bringing challenges against decisions made by health and social services. Cate Searle heads the practice and has extensive experience representing clients in complex health and welfare Court of Protection litigation. Associate Paula Jones assists Searle and leads the team in the area of mental capacity law. Clare English is also recommended as a 'first-class lawyer' and has particular expertise in resolving complex care funding disputes.

Practice head(s):

Cate Searle

Other key lawyers:

Paula Jones; Clare English


‘Martin Searle Solicitors offer a unique Community Care Law service. The team offers excellent advice in what is a complex area of law.’

‘We see Martin Searle as the go-to firm when it comes to the need for high-level technical and practical advice on elderly client matters, particularly involving deputyship, attorneyship and funding matters.’

‘Cate Searle is marvelous. She is an excellent lawyer, highly skilled and a brilliant communicator. She is a delight to work with and I thoroughly recommend her. She has put together a really good team, and clearly cares about her clients and colleagues.’

‘Paula Jones is incredibly helpful, user friendly and without question an expert in her field.’

‘The firm has developed a niche expertise in the area of NHS funding disputes and have been able to help us through the complex process involved in challenging a funding decision. Their advice throughout has been prompt, thorough and always in plain English. They have first-class technical knowledge of the issues involved, a grasp of the detail, and an ability to relay this to us as clients in a way that can be clearly and easily understood. ’

‘Clare English is an excellent communicator who carefully listens to us as her clients and takes onboard our particular concerns and requirements. She has taken us through the maze that is the public funding process for disabled clients and has been able to assist with the wide range of issues that have arisen. A first-class lawyer. ’

Key clients

Anthony Gold

Blanchards Bailey

Mayo Wynne Baxter

JMW Solicitors

Work highlights

  • Securing one-to-one care funding for a man with complex and challenging needs during the pandemic.
  • Safeguarding a vulnerable man from financial abuse and coercion by his former partner and ensuring his ability to have continued contact with his family.
  • Securing an appropriate and suitable care home placement for a woman with dementia during the pandemic.

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

The team at Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP has extensive experience advising a broad range of education and public sector clients, including several Russell Group universities and independent schools. The team advises on specialist issues for public sector clients, such as governance and safeguarding, while also offering general legal advice on a broad range of matters, drawing on the wider firm's capabilities. Oxford-based education co-head Daff Richardson has significant employment law expertise which allows her to provide advice on developing areas of employment law and to handle sensitive individual and collective employee relations in the education sector.

Practice head(s):

Daff Richardson

Key clients

St Mary’s University Twickenham

City & Guilds

Magdalen College, Oxford

The Haberdashers’ Aske’s School for Boys and Haberdashers’ Aske’s School for Girls

Wellington College

St David’s School

The Oratory Schools Association

Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital

Merton College, Oxford

Oxford University Press

King’s College, London

Work highlights

  • Reviewed disciplinary and grievance procedures and provided bespoke training to senior management to Magdalen College, Oxford.
  • Acting in complex litigation including coordination of multiple consolidated claims for a group of Oxford Colleges.
  • Acting as Haberdashers’ Aske’s School for Boys and School for Girls go-to employment advisors, including advice in relation to Covid-security and furlough leave.

Boyes Turner

The  education team at Boyes Turner is headed up by Laxmi Patel in Reading. She founded the department in 2014 and has a notable focus on special educational needs (SEN). The team is known for providing 'a compassionate yet commercial offering' and 'an exceptional service in appealing education, health and care plans'. The team also includes associate Rachael Allison, SEN specialist Rachel Baxter and solicitor Lydia Dunford; together, they regularly work together on a range of sensitive and complex cases.

Practice head(s):

Laxmi Patel

Other key lawyers:

Rachael Allison; Lydia Dunford; Rachel Baxter


‘Laxmi Patel has a calm and measured approach. She communicates well with parents and instils confidence in others.’

‘Rachel Allison was a godsend to our family. I can imagine that many disabled children are now getting an education they deserve because of Rachel.’

‘Laxmi Patel and her team didn’t let us down. Laxmi was so important in helping our family. She was a rock in a stormy sea.’

‘Caring and attentive with an unbiased approach to guide their clients to make the best informed decision that they can for their child.’

‘Laxmi Patel and the team offer an exceptional service in appealing Education Health and Care Plans. The team provide a compassionate yet commercial offering and provide Deputies with the clarity and understanding of what is needed both in respect of why any appeal is in the client’s best interest, but also a clear explanation of the likely costs and benefits.’

‘Boyes Turner’s team is made up of passionate professionals who are empathetic, highly skilled and knowledgeable with regard to Education and SEN Law. The solicitors are extremely experienced in their field and work efficiently and effectively to support their clients through what often is a highly emotional and difficult time.’

‘Rachael Allison is an extremely competent solicitor who is knowledgeable and incisive. She has a particularly strength in communication and liaising with expert witnesses.’

‘Lydia Dunford is extremely thorough and thoughtful in her approach.’


EMW Law LLP primarily advises clients in two areas of the public sector; education and planning. A large proportion of the firm's education work is dedicated to acting for local authorities in defending appeals to the Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Tribunal, an area in which associate Laura Thompson has specialist expertise. Marco Mauro leads the firm's planning work and has extensive experience in all areas of planning law, acting for housing associations, developers and landowners. Former practice head Jordan Glackin left the firm in February 2021 to join Shakespeare Martineau LLP.

Practice head(s):

Marco Mauro

Other key lawyers:

Laura Thompson


‘Laura Thompson in the education team is fantastic. She has deep specialist knowledge of education law and her advice is always measured, practical and well-considered. Our schools all find Laura wonderful to work with – she feels like part of our team.’

Key clients

Hertfordshire County Council

Worcestershire County Council

Grand Union Housing Group

Work highlights

  • Represented Hertfordshire County Council before the Upper Tribunal in a special educational needs matter which determined how specialist bases should be named in a child or young person’s Education, Health and Care Plan.
  • Settled a disability discrimination claim brought against an independent school.
  • Providing planning advice and due diligence to Grand Union Housing Group in respect of the Group’s acquisition of a number of affordable housing sites.

Field Seymour Parkes LLP

Field Seymour Parkes LLP's education group covers the full breadth of legal issues affecting the public sector and educational bodies. The team, led by Katie Burley, advises on health and safety, M&A and employment law in addition to school incorporation, establishment of academies, SEN and disability in the educational area. Louise Smyth is also recommended for her employment expertise.

Practice head(s):

Katie Burley

Other key lawyers:

Louise Smyth

Key clients

Berkshire College of Agriculture

University of Reading

University College of Estate Management

Berkshire Youth

Streatley Parish Council

Wokingham Borough Council

Work highlights

  • Advised an Oxfordshire independent school in undertaking a number of urgent measures to deal with the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic to ensure the school’s financial viability.
  • Advising Wokingham Borough Council on the purchase of investment property and town centre regeneration property work.
  • Advised Berkshire Youth in the purchase of a share in a freehold property from West Berkshire Council for the complete refurbishment and subsequent lease to Berkshire Youth for use as a Youth Club.

Moore Barlow

Moore Barlow's specialist community care team supports individuals and their representatives to help them access health and social care services from the NHS and Local Authority. Tim Adams now leads the team, taking over from Tim Springs, who is now a consultant at the firm. Associate Mea North specialises in health and social care provision with particular expertise in NHS Continuing Healthcare assessments and appeals. Nicholas Endean is also recommended, regularly assisting clients to secure suitable care and support packages.

Practice head(s):

Tim Adams

Other key lawyers:

Mea North; Nicholas Endean


‘Diligent, collaborative, client-focused, approachable – they have a wide range of knowledge and skills.’

‘Professional and focused on getting the best outcomes for our client. They show high levels of empathy. Approachable – no matter what the issue is. Thorough – in all that they do. Great communication – verbal and written.’

‘Over many years I have had dealings with many employees of Moore Barlow, in relation to family matters, Power of Attorney, and Continuing Healthcare. In business with the purchasing of properties. Everyone I have dealt with, have as I would expect been very friendly, helpful and professional in all aspects of the process from start to finish.’

‘Nicholas Endean is extremely knowledgeable, with proven experience in previous cases. He was thorough, well prepared, supportive and – during a virtual assessment meeting held during lockdown – was well able to guide me and to ensure the points of our case were brought to the discussion. ’

PDT Solicitors

The healthcare team at PDT Solicitors are in 'a class of their own' with a 'good and clear understanding of pharmacy business'. Led by James Clewlow, the team has increased its presence in dental sales and acquisitions in addition to its existing expertise in pharmacists and care homes. Holly Goacher was promoted to partner in May 2020 and has experience advising on a range of transactions.

Practice head(s):

James Clewlow

Other key lawyers:

Holly Goacher; Oliver Parsons


‘The team at PDT are very professional and quick at all queries and responses I needed. Having experienced other firms for my pharmacies, there is no comparison. PDT are in a class of their own.’

‘Good and clear understanding of pharmacy business and legal and property matters ’

‘Personalised service, good understanding of their clients wider thinking and goals.’

‘They don’t hide behind emails, but instead are always happy to talk and be engaging. Constantly looking for solutions rather than hiding behind problems. Particularly Holly Goacher and James Clewlow.’

‘Having dealt with James Clewlow and Oliver Parsons on numerous occasions, I have nothing but the highest praise for their personal touch and knowledge of the healthcare market.’

Key clients

Santokh Kandola and Balwinder Kandola

Suffolk Pharma Group

Sima Consultancy Ltd (Mitul Patel)

Ramiz Bahnam

Daniel Gilbert


Pearl Chemist Limited

Medimpo Limited

Vijay Mithani

Dilipkumar Desai and Kalpana Dilipkumar Desai

St Catherines Dental Grantham Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted for Suffolk Pharma Group on the disposal and acquisition of 10 pharmacy businesses as part of a disposal by a major high street pharmacy operator for a combined value in excess of £3m.
  • Advising SimaConsultancy Ltd (Mitul Patel) in the acquisition of 50% of the shareholding in a pharmacy company operating from five locations.
  • Advising Pearl Chemist Limited in the acquisition of issued share capital in Haria Limited. The transaction involved a complex cash extraction mechanism and settlement of intergroup company loans on completion.

Carter Bond Solicitors

Carter Bond Solicitors is a boutique commercial law firm acting for private and public sector healthcare clients, with a particular focus on primary care organisations including the NHS and CQC. Practice head Reena Popat  is described as 'a class act above her peers' and has extensive experience in healthcare transactional work, primarily pharmacy and dental acquisitions, refinance and disposals. Popat is supported by Hammad Naveed, who advises on pharmacy, dental and nursery transactions.

Practice head(s):

Reena Popat

Other key lawyers:

Hammad Naveed


‘The team are experts in healthcare law. They are well known within the industry for advising pharmacists and dentists on practice acquisitions and disposals and regulatory matters.’

‘Carter Bond Solicitors is very strong in providing legal services in M&A space particularly the healthcare sector where a lot of regulatory approvals are needed to transfer the business as in case of acquisitions.’

‘The team at Carter Bond has a dynamic blend of youth, experience & savvy the team draw on each others strengths and insight to deliver the best possible outcome for their clients. With Carter you may be represented by one individual but in reality you have a suite of experts at your disposal.’

‘Their willingness at ALL times to keep you informed with the clock not running whatever time of day or day of the week. This combined with their huge expansive knowledge, their willingness to listen and the humanity they show and with which they treat their clients.’

‘Carter Bond has fantastic solicitors. As a team we have dealt with them for a number of years and they never fail to disappoint our clients. I would definitely say they are very unique in a sense that they are very quick to reply to inquires and emails, and are always willing to go the extra mile for help.’

‘Reena Popat’s work ethic is truly exemplary and she always puts her clients needs first. Reena is a class act above her peers and when others give up as the task become more of a challenge, Reena perseveres and forges a away forward. Her resolve is seen throughout the way the Carter Bond team deliver positive outcomes on a daily basis.’

‘Hammad Naveed dealt with our purchase of a business and commercial property with utmost professionalism and efficiency. He was available out of hours keeping us updated with the progress of the transactions. We were staggered of his knowledge of Limited Company ownership transfer and for us the purchase was like walking into a sweet shop and buying sweets with minimum stress.’

‘Reena Popat and Hammad Naveed are extremely driven and both display excellent attention to detail. Reena worked tirelessly to ensure all deadlines were met, and communicated seamlessly with third parties to ensure that everyone was up-to-date.’

Key clients

Dr Wendy Mathias

Hyat Pharma Limited

Sanjivani Limited

Manugor Limited

Better Care Clinic

W9 Dental Health

Shareholders of Sadera Company Ltd

Mayors Healthcare Limited

The Toothclub

Tinky’s Day Nursery

Work highlights

  • Advised the founder of Obsidian Healthcare Group on the multi-million-pound share sale of the corporate healthcare group to a UK plc with multinational operations.
  • Advised Manugor Limited on three pharmacy business sales.
  • Advised Hyat Pharma Ltd on a swift acquisition of a pharmacy business during Covid-19.

Howes Percival LLP

Howes Percival LLP offers multidisciplinary advice to clients in the education and healthcare sectors. Operating from three locations, the practice is co-led by employment law specialist Graham Irons in Northampton; Oliver Pritchard in Norwich, the key contact for healthcare matters; and Daniel Banton in Leicester - he leads the firm's academy sector work, including advice on multi-academy mergers and post-merge reorganisations.

Practice head(s):

Oliver Pritchard; Graham Irons; Daniel Banton

Key clients

Anchor Hanover Group

P J Care Limited

Anchor Carehomes Limited

Learners Trust

Milton Keynes College

Polyco Healthline Group Limited

Work highlights

  • Advising Milton Keynes College in relation to their successful application for Government funding of £18m for the creation of a new Institute of Technology.
  • Acted for Polyco Healthline Group Limited in a number of shareholder, funding and reorganisational matters.


Tunbridge Wells firm Knights advises on a range of public law issues, including judicial reviews; advising individuals involved in investigations; and complaints made against local councillors and election petitions. Simon Bell and Matthew Knight jointly lead the practice which covers the full range of public and administrative law litigation, as well as planning work.

Practice head(s):

Simon Bell; Matthew Knight

Other key lawyers:

Jonathan Mansar


‘They maintain good client relationships and are very responsive ’

‘This practice genuinely cares at a macro level which gives a feeling of complete confidence and security. You feel like you are “in there”, not on the outside simply being looked after.’

‘Simon Bell in particular stands out because he makes you feel like you are his most important client. He does this by seeming to be available 24/7 and is happy to assist with all requirements.’

‘The team has a wide range of expertise and seem to have exceptional understanding of the public sector. They have assisted us on a very tricky case; they have been flexible in their approach and have accommodated us so we can establish a mutually beneficial relationship.’

‘Jonathan Mansar and Simon Bell both are very quick to respond and produce high-quality work seamlessly. They provide and ensure that as a public body we get value for money. ’

Key clients

Tunbridge Wells Alliance

Independent Network

Wexham Court Parish Council

Save Capel

Work highlights

  • Acting for local councillors being investigated for breaches of their Council’s Code of Conduct as well as acting for specific groups of independent councillors in actions taken against decisions made by their councils.
  • Providing legal support to Tunbridge Wells Alliance, a group of local councillors.
  • Advising on, and drafting, comments provided by Stansted Parish Council in its role as a statutory consultee in respect of a planning application.

Rix & Kay Solicitors LLP

Rix & Kay Solicitors LLP's healthcare team offers the full range of corporate services to public sector healthcare organisations. Stewart Gregory leads the healthcare team in Brighton; he has over 20 years of experience advising NHS clients on all aspects of their real estate, in particular developing and managing primary care estates. The team also has experience of M&A transactions, employment matters and dispute resolution.

Practice head(s):

Stewart Gregory


‘Stewart Gregory provides extremely prompt and constructive replies both to queries and work that needs action.’

‘Very responsive and happy to help with their contacts. Flexible payment arrangements.’


Key clients

Trentside Medical Group

NHS Nottingham & Nottinghamshire CCG

St Luke’s Surgery

National Autistic Society

Mayfield & Five Ashes Parish Council

Embankment Primary Care

Work highlights

  • Advising Trentside Medical Group on the development of a new medical centre through an agreement for lease with a third-party developer.
  • Acting for NHS Nottingham & Nottinghamshire Clinical Commissioning Group on a variety of property matters, including advising on a wide range of matters including a break of a lease of a substantial HQ.
  • Acted for St Luke’s Surgery in the potential disposal of the practice to another provider of primary care services.

Tees Law

The team at Tees Law is well regarded for its work in the education sector, in particular working with special educational needs and disability matters. Senior associate Polly Kerr - who divides her time between Royston and Bishop’s Stortford - leads a team which advises parents, teachers, students, schools, local authorities and educational organisations on a range of contentious and non-contentious matters.

Practice head(s):

Polly Kerr


‘The practice has specialist expertise in the area of education. This is particularly important to schools where understanding of the context within which the organisation operates is imperative.’

‘My public law/sector work with Tees focuses on education law, particularly relating to SEN, exclusions, discrimination and public law. They offer a great deal of expertise in these areas. ’

Polly Kerr has exceptional knowledge and understanding of the area she works in. She demonstrates extremely good working relationships with the families and professionals she works with. Her dedication and commitment is exceptional. ’

‘Polly Kerr has very good instinctive judgment, knows the law in this area well, and works tirelessly for her clients. ’

Key clients

Bishop’s Stortford College

Work highlights

  • Acting for a client following their son’s permanent exclusion from two schools, both of which subsequently withdrew the permanent exclusions and neither of which were reviewed by Governor’s Disciplinary Committees. The matter involved advising on both judicial review, Governor’s Disciplinary Committees review and a disability discrimination claim.
  • Advising clients in a successful Section I Appeal on behalf of their child who has a diagnosis of ASD and is pre-verbal, where the Local Authority tried to send the child to a closer school, rather than one that met their needs best.
  • Representing client parents in successfully bringing an appeal against the Local Authority for the content of their child’s Education, Health and Care Plan.