Agriculture and estates in Yorkshire And The Humber

Wrigleys Solicitors LLP

Jonathan Attey heads the agriculture and rural property team at Wrigleys Solicitors LLP. The team’s workload consists predominantly of advising on the buying and selling of farms, estates and sporting properties. Emma Ridge is a key contact for many well-established property clients. More specifically, the team advises on complex matters of diversification; from development sales, to renewable energy, minerals, office developments and wider investment property. The practice also advises on the cases relating to the Environmental Bill and the Agricultural Act. Key team members include ‘expert in his field’ Angus Hunter Smart and more recent recruit Will Foley.

Practice head(s):

Jonathan Attey

Other key lawyers:

Emma Ridge; Angus Hunter Smart; Will Foley; Matthew Featherstone


‘My family works with Jonathan Attey on the agriculture and estate side and with Angus Hunter Smart on the trust, tax and family side. Both maintain the Wrigleys ethos of providing a very personal approach to their work, with meticulous thought given to the many problems that arise. In challenging times, very few comparable firms still exist and my own family depends on these two partners in particular. We are immensely lucky to be able to draw on their advice.’

‘Very personable. high quality advice on matters of family law, capital taxation, put in simple terms with clear advice.’

‘Very customer-focused with specialist knowledge across a broad range of areas. Wrigleys have a unique way of making you feel like a valued client without being over the top. A pleasure to deal with rather than a chore!’

‘Matthew Featherstone at Wrigleys made my situation understandable, even though the issues were wide ranging, from tax, agricultural law and domestic conveyancing. Wrigley’s demonstrated that they had a handle on key aspects of the transactions.’

‘I have a had the pleasure of working closely with Will Foley since he joined the firm on a number of property related transactions. He has efficiently dealt with all matters and overcoming complexities along the way. Attention to detail has been exceptional and when needed alternative solutions were carefully considered and suggested to overcome the complexities.’

‘The strength and availability of their partners is exceptional and they deliver work to a high standard, efficiently. If there is ever a difficult scenario where a solution is needed, Wrigleys would be top of my list.’

‘Really like the fact that the firm has both tax and trust specialists and property experts too (i.e. transactional)- it’s ideal for a diversified rural estate and allows for great collaborative thinking and approaches.’

‘Angus Hunter Smart and Jonathan Attey are both experts in their field – giving timely, succinct and much valued advice on often complex areas. I would recommend them very highly.’

Work highlights

    Andrew Jackson Solicitors LLP

    Helen Mellors heads the agriculture and landed estates offering at Andrew Jackson Solicitors LLP. Mellors specialises in acting for landed estates and landowners, whilst partner Christopher Harrison ‘s remit includes purchases and disposals of agricultural tenancies, restructurings, recoveries and insolvencies. Increasingly, the team’s matters feature significant environmental elements, particularly in relation to solar power and wind-energy. ‘Accomplished and approachable associates’ Samuel Peake and Hannah Farmer are noteworthy team members. The firm’s cross-departmental abilities allows its clients a well-rounded service.

    Practice head(s):

    Helen Mellors

    Other key lawyers:

    Hannah Farmer; Samuel Peake; Harry Mills; Christopher Harrison


    ‘Helen Mellors is very approachable, pragmatic and good to work with.’

    ‘They always take a pragmatic view and support our transactions based on broad and deep knowledge of the agricultural space’

    ‘We are delighted to work with Hannah Farmer, based on her ability to look at the big picture and advise us on how legal facets of the deal impact us and our client.’

    ‘Good understanding of agriculture and estate workings, with a team that can cover all related matters across a wide spectrum and who will liaise with us as agents.’

    ‘Hannah Farmer is engaging in work undertaken, as well as Harry Mills.’

    ‘Excellent regional practice with a great enthusiasm, delivering high-quality service to clients at all levels. The team can draw on great depth within the wider practice to service clients.’

    ‘Samuel Peake and Hannah Farmer are accomplished and approachable associates, supporting partners Helen Mellors and Christopher Harrison, who provide standout and best in class service.’

    ‘The individuals take time to understand the needs of their clients and to ensure that work and solutions are bespoke to that client. Very approachable. Always available to take calls and answer queries. Explain requirements in a clear and concise manner. In particular, I have worked closely with Samuel Peake at the firm and he has demonstrated all the qualities which I have mentioned.’

    Work highlights

      Crombie Wilkinson Solicitors LLP

      The team at Crombie Wilkinson Solicitors LLP is now led by senior associate Amy Clarkson following the recent departure of Clair Douglas. The firm is one of two North East practices on the National Farmers’ Union panel, and its workload predominantly involves acting for landed estates and private trusts, landowners, and individual farmers on complex, high-value contentious and non-contentious matters. In particular, the Malton office specialises in advising on diversification projects, agricultural tenancies, tax planning and succession matters.

      Practice head(s):

      Amy Clarkson


      ‘Proactive team with quick responses to emerging matters.’

      ‘Attention-to-detail and timely follow up.’

      ‘A well-known and long standing legal firm operating in North Yorkshire. A multi-disciplined firm with a strong agricultural and estates team. Active in the agricultural community and strong advocates of the sector.’

      ‘The individuals I work with and very well versed in modern practices and changes to relevant legal policy. They are approachable and easy to deal with, offering advice where needed and keeping a focus on client outcomes.’

      Key clients

      National Farmers’ Union (NFU)

      Work highlights

      • Providing succession planning advice for a large farming partnership; transferring land and properties between family members within the partnership, involving complex potential tax implications.
      • Advising on the reorganisation of land and assets held within a life interest Trust in preparation for redevelopment, and the addition of an innovative renewables scheme to the portfolio.
      • Advising a large local authority on their redevelopment programme of sites within their existing land stock.

      Harrowells Solicitors

      Harrowells Solicitors’ agricultural team is led by Stephen Proctor. Its workload includes land transactional work, with specialist niches in areas such as renewables. The team also advises on wider agricultural matters, in relation to corporate and commercial, employment, family, private tax, trusts and probate and contentious probate.

      Practice head(s):

      Stephen Proctor

      Other key lawyers:

      Jenni Bartram


      ‘Response to my questions was virtually immediate. The team was always happy to talk on the phone and I never had to wait. The person who I dealt with knew her stuff and also could see problems which might arise and tackled them head on. To sum up: never too busy to help.’

      ‘My whole experience of dealing with Harrowells Solicitors at Clifton Moor, York, is nothing short of excellent. I am very pleased with the overall service provided.’

      ‘Stephen Proctor is exceptionally good. As a businessman, you encounter difficult circumstances occasionally, and require a good person on your side, and Stephen has been quite brilliant for me. He is astute, knowledgeable, helpful, experienced, and an excellent man to have in my corner.’

      ‘Jenni Bartram has so much experience in agriculture and the law; always very particular when dealing with all my business matters’

      ‘Good old solid advice from people you can talk to.’

      ‘Very friendly and helpful and do what they say they will.’

      ‘Jenni Bartram assisted me in my first adventure into agriculture and has been by my side for many years. Extreme knowledge and great advice.’

      ‘Harrowells are very experienced and knowledgeable. They operate very professionally and act quickly to get things done.’

      ‘Stephen Proctor has a vast experience, which is why we have used him for many years now to manage all our conveyancing needs. I can’t recommend him highly enough.’

      Work highlights

        Mills & Reeve LLP

        The Leeds-based team at Mills & Reeve LLP is led by Andrea Newman. The team deals with a range of complex matters relating to rural land, many of which are high value. The practice's workload includes advising on the sale of farms and the acquisition of estates. It acts for pension funds, landed estates and national farming businesses. The wider firm has collaborative abilities which allow its clients to receive a well-rounded service.

        Practice head(s):

        Andrea Newman (Leeds); Michael Aubrey (national)

        Other key lawyers:

        Nichola Ross


        ‘In-depth agricultural and rural knowledge.’

        ‘Nichola Ross is very capable, with attention to detail.’


        Key clients

        Coutts & Company

        Farmcare Trading Limited

        Northumbrian Water Limited

        The Countryside Restoration Trust

        Albanwise Limited

        G’s Group Holdings

        Work highlights

        • Acting for Coutts & Company carrying out substantial due diligence in relation to over fifty individual properties, which served as collateral for a loan.
        • Acting for the Countryside Restoration Trust on its acquisitions of land nationally.
        • Advising G’s Groups Holdings Limited on various matters.

        Rollits LLP

        The team at Rollits LLP is led by Neil Franklin. Its workload has a particular focus on agricultural property work; namely advising on estate planning landed estates and trusteeships, sale of land and option grants. Its matters are often of high-value, and the team boasts experience working for a broad range of family businesses.

        Practice head(s):

        Neil Franklin


        ‘Headed by the calm, considerate and commercially alert Neil Franklin. The team are affable and always available when you need then – they always return calls.’

        ‘Very good personable service and a can do attitude. Prepared to commit to achieving within timescales and well respected.’

        ‘Neil Franklin is a strong solicitor; pragmatic and good to deal with.’

        ‘Good understanding of agriculture and estate workings, with a team that can cover all related matters across a wide spectrum of linked work. They are willing to engage with other professionals.’

        ‘Neil Franklin is approachable and proactive in dealing with legal matters and shows excellent engagement.’

        Work highlights


          The agricultural team at McCormicks is led by Peter McCormick, who is a longstanding member of the Country Landowners and Rural Business Association. The team acts for a number of substantial agricultural estates, namely assisting landowning clients in the refinancing or diversification of their estates, including developing buildings for office and residential developments.

          Practice head(s):

          Peter McCormick


          ‘Their billing is very clear. A very prompt and quick service.’


          Key clients

          The estate of the late John Herbert Strutt

          The Ripley Castle shoot

          Rudding Park

          Sir Thomas & Lady Ingilby of the Ripley Castle estate


          Duke of Edinburgh’s Award

          Cheywynde School

          Liam Botham

          Royal Horticultural Society

          Yorkshire Agricultural Society

          Work highlights

          • Advising on matters of the complex estate of the late John Herbert Strutt and its associated trusts and charities with regards, in particular, the potential future development and/or sale of various properties held within the residuary estate.
          • Assisting and advising on all relevant aspect of the Ripley Shoot along with several others, including Hob Green, Cayton Gill, the Nidd Estate, Mountgarret Shoot, which together form the second largest portfolio of shoots in the UK.
          • Advising on the Rudding Park Estate, including advising on the re-financing of the entire estate, which involved advising on a related dispute relating to the granting of an entertainment licence to a neighbouring property.


          Dispute resolution head Matthew Hill leads the team at Raworths. The practice’s workload includes high-value cases, including disputes concerning breaches of contract, international transportation of goods and agricultural tenancy succession. The wider firm specialises in areas including family, employment and commercial law, and the team offers agricultural services in relation to all of these areas.

          Practice head(s):

          Matthew Hill

          Other key lawyers:

          Adam Colville-Robins


          ‘An excellent firm; very friendly, helpful and responsive to clients, and very well organised.’

          ‘Matthew Hill and Adam Colville-Robins are great.’

          ‘From my crude and chaotic notes and one Zoom call alone, Matthew Hill of Raworths grasped not only the complexities of the longstanding situation, but came back to me with a well-researched strategy to achieve our desired result. I found their proactive approach and their ability to keep me constantly involved to be a unique and refreshing experience.’

          ‘Matthew Hill has been clear-thinking, astute, prompt and pro-active throughout. He has led the team well and kept everyone focused on our goal. I am delighted that my estate matters are now in a very safe pair of hands. It is a great relief to me.’

          Work highlights

          • Acting for Mr Christopher Watson (a longstanding agribusiness client) in a complex contractual dispute regarding an agreement for the supply of high value milking parlour equipment.
          • Acting for H. & F.N. Smith (Ellis Laithe) Limited in a claim against City of Wakefield Metropolitan Council in respect of a dispute concerning a right of way over a railway bridge.