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Yorkshire continues to thrive with a buoyant market and active transactional workload that has so far weathered the storm of the looming presence of Brexit. The market is attracting a steady stream of investment through property developments, substantial construction work and infrastructure projects, with further investment promised through the government’s proposed Northern Powerhouse initiative, which aims to boost economic growth in the North of England and encourage greater diversification across the region.

Leeds remains the legal stronghold of the county, playing home to several international firms and continuing to attract national firms: Gateley Plc, Freeths LLP and Shoosmiths LLP are all recent entrants in what is a saturated market. Conversely, the city and the region more generally is struggling with a dearth of junior lawyers due to the delayed impact of the financial crisis, with the lack of training contracts available at the time now creating a notable gap in the recruitment market.

Sheffield continues to be a hub for manufacturing work, York is a key city in the region for agricultural clients and Hull continues to reap the economic benefits from its move to become a national centre for renewable energy and the success of its hosting of the 2017 City of Culture. Harrogate, York and Bradford also remains key cities for SME clients and owner-managed businesses.

Addleshaw Goddard, DLA Piper UK LLP, Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP, Pinsent Masons LLP, Squire Patton Boggs and Walker Morris LLP (which is unique among the group in choosing to operate solely from Leeds) comprise the region's so-called 'big six'. Leeds-only firms Clarion and Shulmans LLP represent strong competition.

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