Commercial property: Birmingham in West Midlands
Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP, which acts for a diverse client base of international, national and regional developers and investors, provides comprehensive advice on all real estate-related matters, from residential development, commercial development and infrastructure projects to leasing, financing and corporate real estate. The team features strong lawyers such as Iftkhar Ahmed, global real estate sector head Gurjit Atwal and residential development specialist Philip Medford, while Mark Chester has particular expertise in data centres.
‘Unquestionably a fantastic commercial property firm.’
‘A very fine firm.’
Mitchells and Butlers
HSBC Bank plc
- Acted for developer Nikal on the development and £100m forward sale of more than 600 apartments at Exchange Square to LaSalle Investment Management.
- Acted on Blackstone’s £545m sale of the iconic Adelphi building in Covent Garden to Pontegadea.
- Acting for Anglian Water on its appointment of U+I as its master developer partner for the delivery of a new residential-led quarter in Cambridge.
- Advised US data centre operator CyrusOne on the acquisition of the share capital of Zenium Data Centres, owner of four operational data centres.
- Advised Lloyds Development Capital on the sale of live events venue operator National Exhibition Centre Group to Blackstone.
Gowling WLG handles agenda-setting transactions across real estate asset classes in sectors including energy, infrastructure, retail commercial and residential. The firm regularly acts for a diverse client roster including developers, property companies, investors, corporates and local authorities. Residential development expert Richard Bate heads the national real estate practice, while the 'fantastic' John Burns handles work for private equity investors and industrial developers. The highly regarded Matthew Walker was promoted to partner in May 2018.
Other key lawyers:
‘Very knowledgeable and responsive – can provide a commercial analysis of risks and issues.’
‘One of the top real estate practices in Birmingham.’
‘Jon Burns is a fantastic lawyer.’
‘Responsive, professional and friendly team players.’
‘Excellent knowledge of my business and what I am trying to achieve, which makes my life easier.’
‘Richard Bate is the best property solicitor operating in my field in my opinion. He just gets it, and is commercial.’
M&G Real Estate
A& J Mucklow
HSBC Bank Pension Fund
Northern Ireland Local Government Officers Superannuation Committee
Jaguar Land Rover
The Hut Group
Blackstone Real Estate Partners
The Office Group
Nuveen Real Estate
LaSalle Investment management
- Advised Blackstone Property Partners and Telereal Trillium on the £1.46bn acquisition of Network Rail’s commercial real estate portfolio.
- Advising the London Borough of Barnet on the £4bn Brent Cross Cricklewood Scheme, which will provide 7,500 new homes, infrastructure and commercial space.
- Advised the Hut Group on the development of an office and studio space over two sites at Manchester’s Airport City.
- Advised M&G Real Estate on the £94.3m acquisition of a UK logistics portfolio from Mountpark Logistics EU.
- Advised Meggitt on the acquisition and procuring the development of its proposed new supersite in the West Midlands.
Highly regarded in the residential development space, Gateley Plc advises major national and regional housebuilders on land acquisitions, large-scale developments and the sale of plots under the leadership of 'superb lawyer' Callum Nuttall. Other areas of expertise include acting for landowners, investors, occupiers and lenders on commercial development, property finance, real estate investment and property portfolio management.
Callum Nuttall; Rebecca Sherwin
Other key lawyers:
Tim Ledger; Pamela Scott; Ray Simpson; James Madill
‘Helpful, always on hand to advise and speak our language.’
‘A very strong reputation in residential development’
‘An excellent residential practice.’
‘Great strength in depth across the team.’
‘Callum Nuttall is extremely knowledgeable, commercial and able to provide sensible practical solutions to difficult legal problems.’
‘Callum Nuttall has a wealth of experience, is calm, unflappable and always willing to answer ad hoc questions if guidance is needed as well as dealing with the most complex matters.’
‘Callum Nuttall is the best property lawyer.’
‘Pamela Scott has depth of knowledge and arguably provides the best legal advice in the market.’
HSBC UK Bank plc
Lloyds Bank plc
Santander UK plc
Taylor Wimpey plc
CITIC Chinese State Investment Company
Galliford Try plc
- Acted Stoford on the pre-let and forward funding disposal of the largest JLR retail vehicle distribution facility in Stone, Staffordshire.
- Acting for a consortium including Taylor Wimpey and Bovis on the Langley Sustainable Urban Extension, a housing development encompassing 6,000 new homes, four schools and a new local centre.
- Advised Urban Exposure on the £40.2m facility for the development of a prominent Birmingham residential and retail scheme.
- Represented a subsidiary of CITIC on the acquisition and financing of a multi-let mixed use investment portfolio.
- Acting for Bloor Homes on the delivery of over 4,000 new homes, a district centre, two schools and parks in North West Cheltenham.
Pinsent Masons LLP has a strong track record of residential development work for investors, developers and public bodies. The practice also stands out for its experience in the healthcare and public sectors, as well as for advising insolvency practitioners on real estate-related matters. Tom Johnson heads the team and handles a wide range of commercial and residential development work, while the 'very good' Tom Eastwood focuses on healthcare transactions and Carl Scott handles insolvency work.
‘Very strong technical ability with a commercial approach.’
‘The team has strength in depth and is capable of handling very complex commercial property and corporate transactions across the real estate sector. Their non-confrontational approach is refreshing and has been of great help in completing a variety of deals often involving multiple legal firms acting for third parties.’
‘Lisa Middleton and Tom Johnson are the best commercial property lawyers I have worked with in many years. One of their greatest attributes is their response time and accessibility at all times of the day.’
‘Lisa Middleton is always responsive and not only has a very strong technical ability but brings a commercial approach to her advice.’
Arena Central Developments LLP
Elevation Capital Partners
Extracare Charitable Trust
Orders of St John Care Trust
Henry Boot Developments Limited
Birmingham City Council
Lovell Partnerships Limited
Places for People Group
Crawley Borough Council
Ebbsfleet Development Corporation
St Mungo Community Housing Association
- Advising Homes England on a national land disposal strategy for residential development.
- Advising Crawley Borough Council on its innovative town hall redevelopment scheme.
- Acting for Exemplar Health Care on a six care home portfolio sale and leaseback and the acquisition of 10 further sites.
- Advising the administrators of the House of Fraser Group on post-administration real estate strategy.
- Advising Uniper UK Ironbridge on the disposal for development of its iconic 350-acre Ironbridge Power Station site in Shropshire.
Shoosmiths LLP's Birmingham real estate practice handles a range of heavyweight development matters across several asset classes, including residential, office, industrial and leisure. The team, which is led by Birmingham office head Jason Jackson , assists clients with real estate investment deals, leasing and property finance.
Other key lawyers:
James Needham; Catherine Hood
‘The team is always available to help, very knowledgeable and proactive, and is always on top of matters.’
‘Catherine Hood is always available, helpful and very knowledgeable.’
‘Beth McArdle is approachable, easy to deal with and gets things done.’
‘A high quality service at a sensible price and with good attention to client care.’
‘A quality proposition for any property investment business of developer of note.’
‘Catherine Hood is excellent. Diligent, quick and most importantly, commercial. a real asset to the firm.
IM Properties plc
Nurton Developments Limited
Kier Living Limited
Stoford Developments plc
XPO Supply Chain UK Limited
London + Regional Properties Limited
Hallam Land Management Limited
Opus Land Limited/Manse Opus LLP
Lightwood Land Limited
London & Quadrant Housing Trust
BCA Marketplace plc (including British Car Auctions and We Buy Any Car)
PSA Group (including Peugeot, Citroen and Vauxhall)
Pearson Strategic Limited
Henkel UK Properties
Manor Oak Homes Limited
Maximus Group Limited
TFG (Phase Eight, Whistles & Hobbs)
Euro Garages Limited
Ziran Land Limited
Hotel la Tour Limited
- Advising Nurton Developments on the £95m sale of 2 Colmore Square and Cannon House in Birmingham.
- Advising developer Manse Opus on the new manufacturing facilities for Meggitt.
- Advising Hallam Land Management on the development of a new 5,000-home urban extension with an overall developed value of close to £1bn.
- Advising Stoford Properties on a public private development to create a new Enfield HQ for a major occupier.
- Assisting IM Properties with the £90m sale of 55 Colmore Row after advising on the acquisition, redevelopment and letting programme for the building.
At DLA Piper UK LLP, the 'excellent' Monique Sutherland handles development, regeneration and infrastructure matters spanning a wide range of sectors including energy, manufacturing and retail. The team also regularly assists corporate occupiers with leasing and relocations and advises investors on large-scale portfolio transactions and restructuring, as well as handling land purchase and commercial deals for developers.
Other key lawyers:
Roger Collier; Fiona Thomson
‘An efficient team which finds solutions to problems and explain options well.’
‘Roger Collier has vast experience and drives the team to achieve results. He makes the process of buying or selling very smooth and efficient. Deadlines are always agreed and achieved, no matter how challenging.’
Busy Bees Holdings Limited
Oval Real Estate Limited
The Land Restoration Trust
Revelan Group Limited
Dignity Funerals Limited
Travelodge Hotels Limited
High Speed Two (HS2) Limited
Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council
Aggregate Industries UK Limited
Willis Towers Watson
- Advised GVA on its refurbishment and relocation within Three Brindley Place.
- Represented Busy Bees Holdings on several business acquisitions to increase children’s nursery places to over 1,300.
- Advised The Land Restoration Trust on an acquisition of 24 hectares of sustainable alternative green space in Guildford, the allocated space requirement to enable the development of just under 500 new homes.
- Represented UPS in connection with a lease relating to the development of a new cargo hub facility at East Midlands Airport, with a value of over £100m.
- Advising Oval Real Estate on the asset management of its expanding portfolio, including the putting in place of more than 200 leases.
Fieldfisher LLP handles transactions including land purchase and site sales in relation to residential development, and is also frequently involved in leasing matters and investment work in the logistics sector. Sue Simpson leads the development and regeneration team, and Mark Lee focuses on commercial property investment and occupier work. Former partner Jonathan Wright left to join to Emms Gilmore Liberson in January 2019.
Other key lawyers:
Alldos (UK) Limited
Avery Healthcare Group Limited
Atlas Land Limited
I.M. Properties Plc
Countryside Properties Limited
CALA Homes Limited
Santander UK Plc
Liberty Property Trust (UK) Limited
Fridge Spares Wholesale Limited
Lloyds Banking Group
Robert Bosch Limited
Skanska UK Plc
Bloor Homes Limited
- Advised Exeter Property Group on the acquisition and letting of five major logistics sites with a value of over £75m.
- Acting for Cedar Invest on the acquisition funding and development of the Derby Royal Infirmary Hospital.
- Advising Robert Bosch on the lease of premises for a facility for developing driverless cars.
- Advised Akzo Nobel on obtaining planning permission for a further 800 homes on the Stafford Site, and negotiating the sale of the scheme.
Led by 'commercial and considered' Birmingham office head Nick Green, Squire Patton Boggs handles a range of transactions, leasing and development work in the residential, healthcare, hospitality and manufacturing sectors. In January 2019, the practice was strengthened by the arrival of residential development specialist Kevin Nagle as a consultant from Shakespeare Martineau LLP.
Other key lawyers:
Victoria Camfield; Neil Taylor
‘Commercial, competent and trustworthy – delivers to schedule.’
Signet Group Limited
Birmingham City Council
One Stop Stores
Cancer Research UK
London EV Company
St Francis Group
University College Birmingham
- Represented Dalata Hotels in its £91m acquisition of a 212-bedroom hotel under development in Aldgate, London.
- Represented St Francis Group on a £5m speculative forward funded development.
- Represented Smiths Wood in the development of a new primary health centre funded by Lloyds Bank.
- Represented Signet on the re-gear of two jewellery store leases at the Trafford Centre in Manchester.
- Acted for Orbit Group on the a £120m acquisition of a strategic residential development site in Daventry.
With a particularly strong roster of work in the public sector, Trowers & Hamlins LLP advises local authorities, public funds and other public bodies such as Homes England on regeneration, social housing and development work. The team is led by Amanda Hanmore. Digby Morgan assists social housing clients with all aspects of real estate work, while strategic land specialist Simon Robinson was promoted to the partnership in 2018.
‘Brilliant at social housing.’
Admin Authority for West Midlands Pension Fund
Countryside Properties (UK) Limited
Greater Manchester Pension Fund
Hinton Design & Build
Wolverhampton City Council
- Acting for the Inox Group in connection with its acquisition of two strategic sites outside Truro, including obtaining planning consent.
- Acting for Tameside Council as administering authority for the Great Manchester Pension Fund in connection with its investment in Circle Square PRS scheme in the heart of Manchester.
- Assisted Homes England with the acquisition of a multi-occupied industrial estate for the purpose of residential development.
- Advised Tamworth Borough Council on a town centre property regeneration scheme aiming at creating a new urban village.
Browne Jacobson LLP is instructed by both private and public sector clients such as councils, housebuilders, investment companies, corporates and banks on acquisitions, commercial and residential development, funding and leasing. Brian Hession joined from Shoosmiths LLP in April 2018, while Lisa McGinn left to take up an in-house role at Countrywide Project Management.
Other key lawyers:
Thomas Howard; Zo Hoida; Brian Hession
‘An efficient, value for money service with a wide range of professional expertise.’
‘Brian Hession provides good, clear advice and is very good at simplifying technical issues to ensure clear understanding.’
‘Their expertise in land acquisition and development is second to none.’
‘Associate Jon Boren is exceptional. He always goes the extra yard to get the most complex deals over the line with great partner back-up.’
Stewart Milne Homes
London Borough of Croydon
Clydesdale & Yorkshire Banking Group
- Acted for Croydon Council on its acquisition of the Colonnades Retail and Leisure Park.
- Advised Investec Bank on the funding for the acquisition of land for the development of a new warehouse facility for Pet Family.
- Acted for the Investin and Elevate Property Group on the acquisition of a development site in Ashford, Kent with planning permission for commercial units, residential units and a hotel.
- Assisted Atlantic Leaf on the acquisition and financing of an industrial unit in Worksop.
- Advised Shropshire Council on the acquisition of three linked shopping centres in Shrewsbury by acquiring the Jersey Property Unit Trusts which held the assets.
Emms Gilmore Liberson recently strengthened its practice with the hire of property development and renewable energy expert Jonathan Wright from Fieldfisher LLP. The highly regarded Beth Margetson, who often advises commercial developers of industrial, residential and mixed-use schemes, was promoted to partner in April 2019. Other areas of expertise include leasing and acquisitions.
Power Initiatives Ltd
Deeley Group Limited
Matthew Austin Limited
The Police & Crime Commissioner for West Midlands
- Advising Stoford Developments on the creation of a new hangar at East Midlands Airport for Rolls-Royce.
- Acted on the purchase of a plot of land near an existing service station, negotiating two pre-let agreements with KFC and Costa, and signing up a contractor to build the two units once planning permission had been obtained.
- Advised new client Power Initiatives on the acquisition of an option for a 20-year lease of land in Stockport.
- Acted for Gooch Estate on the sale of two plots for the development of 504 dwellings and ground floor commercial space.
- Advised on the relocation of Nectere’s headquarters and the sale of its previous building.
Irwin Mitchell focuses on commercial and residential development, acting for national housebuilders and Midlands-based commercial developers. Practice head Ben Acheson has particular expertise in greenfield, brownfield and town centre development schemes. Another area of expertise is the funding of transactions and developments on the lenders side, as well as transactional work in the healthcare, industrial and retail sectors, among others.
HSBC Bank plc
Henry Davidson Developments Limited
Godwin Developments Limited
Persimmon Homes Limited
Owl Homes Limited
Housing Growth Partnership
Acordis Beheer BV
Acetate Products Limited
Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors
HP3 Developments Limited
Sivana Investments Limited
Arthur Webb Engineers Limited
National Westminster Bank plc
- Advised Persimmon Homes on the £50m conditional acquisition of part of the former Rover factory site in Longbridge from St Modwen Properties.
- Acted for Henry Davidson Development on the acquisition of a development site in Northampton from Keepmoat Homes.
- Acted for HSBC on the refinancing of the Mardan portfolio.
- Acting for Acetate Products on the sale for development of its former power station in Spondon.
- Acted for Owl Homes on its flagship development in Walsall.
Shakespeare Martineau LLP , which provides 'consistently reliable advice and service', is mainly active in residential and commercial development, and is also particularly strong in Islamic real estate finance. Andrew Mellor focuses on commercial development, acting for developers, landlords, tenants, investors and public sector organisations, while Debbie Irwin specialises in advising housebuilders. Partner departures during 2018 included former real estate group chair Kevin Nagle, who join Squire Patton Boggs as a consultant.
Debbie Irwin; Mohammed Saqub
Other key lawyers:
Andrew Mellor; James Gooch
‘Charles Bayne-Jardine is our lawyer of choice for acquisition work. He uses the breadth of his experience to provide advice that is consistently right, and is a ‘one stop shop’ for all our legal needs. In contractual disputes he has proved invaluable to us.’
Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank
Al Rayan PLC
Gatehouse Bank PLC
Orbit Homes (2020) Limited
Trebor Developments LLP
United Trust Bank Limited
- Advised developer Leicester Lettings on a PRS regeneration scheme in Leicester, involving development funding and land sale.
- Acting for Trebor Developments on a joint venture framework with a US based investor and developer for the acquisition and funding of industrial and logistic projects.
- Acting for Jessup Construction on the acquisition and mixed use redevelopment of a former bus depot site in Wolverhampton.
- Acting for Opus Land on the acquisition and speculative development of an industrial warehouse funded by Aberdeen Standard.
- Acting for Al Rayan, United Trust Bank, Gatehouse Bank and Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank on nearly £500m worth of retail Islamic mortgages.
Capsticks LLP leverages its healthcare sector strengths to attract a range of work for NHS trusts, GP practices and treatment providers, including land sales, acquisitions, developments, and PPP and PFIs. Another increasing mainstay of the practice is public sector work. Practice head Henry Matveieff was promoted to partner in May 2018.
Birmingham Women’s and Children’s Hospital NHS Trust
Department of Health
Midlands Partnership NHS FoundationTrust
Methodist Church of Great Britain
Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
Thanet Clinical Commissioning Group
Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council
Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust
Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust
NHS Property Services Limited
Hertfordshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust
Arden and GEM Commissioning Support Unit
- Acting for Genesis Care on the development of seven new radiotherapy cancer treatment centres in the UK.
- Acting for Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust in relation to the property arrangements associated with its successful contract tender to provide early years health and welling being services in Birmingham.
- Acting for Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council on a £45m urban regeneration scheme in south Hatfield.
- Represented Nursing Midwifery Council on the leasehold acquisition of new flagship office HQ premises.
- Acted for Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust Health on the Midland Metropolitan Hospital Pf2 Project, including advising on delay issues and the later termination of the project agreement following Carillion’s liquidation.
Clarke Willmott LLP stands out for its retail development work, with Lidl being the practice's key client. The team is also involved in commercial property finance and refinance matters, and advises corporate occupiers on transactions, leasing and development. Key members of the team include Jonathan Morton, Iain Harrison and Fiona Rendell, who was promoted to partner in Mai 2018.
Jonathan Morton; Iain Harrison; Fiona Rendell
‘Direct personal contact and highly responsive.’
‘No-nonsense advice and prompt responses.’
‘Good quality advice with a down-to-earth attitude.’
‘Lawyers who give straight answers to questions, have a strong commercial view to tackle problems and get the job done in a set time frame.’
‘Fiona Rendell has great attention to detail – her knowledge is extensive and she delivers a high quality service within our timescales.’
Thomas Dudley Group Limited
Pegasus Life Limited
All-Electric Garages plc
Police and Crime Commissioner for West Midlands
Rediweld Holdings Limited
Crawshaw Group plc
Uplift Property Limited
Tanners Wines Limited
Smart Ideas Limited
David Wilson Homes North West
Beechdean Homes Limited
All of Us Development Limited
Lloyds Bank Plc
- Acting for Lidl UK on the purchase of a long leasehold ground floor retail unit in a mixed-use development.
- Advised B Price Self Administered Pension Scheme & B Price on the acquisition, conversion and disposal of a complex of agricultural buildings.
- Advising the Thomas Dudley Group on a development agreement for a lease and leaseback.
Melanie Williams, who is also the head of DWF 's hospitality group, leads the real estate team alongside retail sector specialist Toby Askin. The practice advises developers, landlords and private equity investors on property development, investment, portfolio management as well as funding and property tax-driven transactions.
Melanie Williams; Toby Askin
With expertise in the logistics, retail, energy and public sector, the real estate team at Freeths LLP acts for local authorities, landowners and developers on real estate matters relating to residential and commercial development, as well as transactions and leasing. Lucy Jackson was promoted to director in September 2018.
Mitchell Ball; Richard Beverley; Lucy Jackson
‘Lucy Jackson is very calm and collected, she gives sound advice in a clear manner.’
‘Mitchell Ball is a very good lawyer – he is thorough, professional and very knowledgeable. On top of that he is very easy to work with, responsive to queries and provides reassurance that the client is in safe hands.’
‘The best practice I have used for commercial property development work – never anything other than very engaging and professional.’
Paul Smith Limited
Gant UK Limited
Y International (UK) Limited
Santander UK plc
Lloyds Bank plc
Measure Corporation Limited
Central Bedfordshire Council
Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council
Leicester City Council
Cherwell District Council
The National Exhibition Centre
Telford and Wrekin Council
Tandridge District Council
- Acted for Cherwell District Council in relation to the acquisition of Castle Quay shopping centre.
- Acting for the Daventry District Council in relation to the redevelopment of the Daventry town centre.
- Acted for Y International (UK) in relation to a large-scale site acquisition and development loan.
- Acted for Moorfields Advisory in respect of the sale of a complicated brownfield site.
- Advising for Walsall Council on the new lettings at Saddlers shopping centre in Walsall.
Mills & Reeve LLP has particular strength in the education sector. Under the leadership of Christian Bull, the team advises universities, further education colleges and academies on development schemes and real estate transactions. Co-lead Michael Whatley focuses on advising corporate occupiers and clients in the healthcare sector on transactions and leasing.
Christian Bull; Michael Whatley
Other key lawyers:
University of Bradford
University of Worcester
Iron Mountain plc
Senior Group plc
University of Salford
University of Warwick
University of Birmingham
Nottingham Trent University
Birmingham City University
- Advised Birmingham City University on the acquisition of four plots of land in Eastside for £250m.
- Acted for Iron Mountain on the purchase of a storage and logistics facility in Corby.
- Advising the NEC Group on an agreement for lease that will see the client become the principal operating partner of the Bradford Odeon.
- Acted for the University of Birmingham on its purchase of the freehold to the Medical School and the Birmingham Research Park from Birmingham City Council.
Sydney Mitchell LLP assists Midlands-based private individuals, lenders, property developers and corporate occupiers with acquisitions, leasing, secured lending and development matters. Energy and leisure are among the practice's sector expertise. Richard Cox joined as a consultant from Shakespeare Martineau LLP in November 2018.
Div Singh; Fahmida Ismail
Other key lawyers:
‘The team is always engaging and looking for solutions in an easy-to-understand way.’
‘The quality and scope of the work covered is excellent.’
VWV focuses on advising developers and investors, charity and education sector clients and private individuals on real estate transactions and commercial and residential development. Experienced property finance specialist Andrew Tubbs joined from Shoosmiths LLP in February 2018.
Clive Read; Andrew Tubbs
Birmingham Properties Group
Birmingham Law Society
Wing Yip PLC
University of Northampton
University of the Arts London
Barnet and Southgate College
National Westminister Bank
King Edward’s School Foundation
- Acting for BPG in its acquisition of share capital to acquire and develop a former office block for residential use.
- Advised the University of Northampton on securing new retail operators for its new campus.
- Advised the Birmingham Law Society on bringing back a redundant former library into a new commercial use.
- Acting for regional developer Inox Group in the taking of options for the provision of housing.
- Acted for Anarchy 45 on the agreement to convert redundant retail space into a boutique fitness studio.