Social housing in Yorkshire And The Humber

Bevan Brittan LLP

Bevan Brittan LLP is well-versed in property and development projects, including land acquisitions and plot sales, as well as finance matters and disputes concerning anti-social behaviour and disrepair claims. Based in Leeds, the team’s client roster includes local authorities and numerous housing associations, such as Together Housing Association, Karbon Homes and Yorkshire Housing. The team, which is also recognised as a key contact for regional registered providers, is led by Richard Stirk, who acts for housing associations in developments and acquisitions, while also handling securitisation work. Julie Cowan-Clark advises on the purchase of land for residential developments, and housing management specialist John Cox is another key member of the practice.

Practice head(s):

Richard Stirk

Other key lawyers:

Julie Cowan-Clark; John Cox

Testimonials

‘Bevan Brittan’s social housing team have in-depth knowledge of the sector, with its opportunities and challenges.’

‘John Cox is a fantastic litigator and has extensive knowledge in housing law. He is a trusted lawyer and you know he has your back. His wealth of experience and dedication makes law look easy even in difficult cases.’

‘Richard Stirk is an expert in housing association land and plot purchases and ensures grant position and future funding capacity is maximised through implementation (or variation) of S106 agreements.’

‘Bevan Brittan are always willing to go the extra mile and to ensure deadlines are met.’

‘The standout individual here is John Cox. John is like an encyclopaedia of legal knowledge and can answer every question given to him with great detail.’

‘We have found Bevan Brittan a pleasure to work with over the past few years. They deal with matters in a timely manner and provide an efficient service.’

‘It is a great team. They are responsive and always looking for solutions. You can trust that the work will be of the highest quality and attention to getting the right outcome for their client. The team is personable, no nonsense and really hardworking.’

Key clients

Karbon Homes Limited

Together Housing Association Limited

Yorkshire Housing Limited

Unity Housing Association Limited

Connect Housing Association Limited

Your Housing Limited

Arches Housing Limited

Broadacres Housing Association Limited

Habinteg Housing Association Limited

Leeds and Yorkshire Housing Association Limited

Work highlights

  • Advising Together Housing Association Limited, Together Commercial Limited and Countryside Properties (UK) Limited in relation to the regeneration of land held by Together Housing Association Limited and Blackburn with Darwen Council, to deliver 400 houses over three years.
  • Acted for Unity Housing Association Limited in relation to refinancing a £15m revolving credit facility, as well as security work on a £7.5m loan.
  • Advising Catalyst and Peabody on its proposed merger, dealing with all aspects of the due diligence process.

Devonshires Solicitors LLP

The cross-departmental team at Devonshires Solicitors LLP is praised for its ‘gold-plated reputation in the social housing sector’ and acts for a range of registered providers, such as The Riverside Group, as well as numerous housing associations. Gary Grigor, who is noted for his expertise in financing arrangements and private bond issues, jointly heads the Leeds practice alongside Chris Drabble, who handles all aspects of security-related transactions. Elad Yasdi advises on development site acquisitions, property stock transfers and rationalisation projects, while Kirsty Thompson and Richard Anderson are also key contacts in the group.

Practice head(s):

Gary Grigor; Chris Drabble; Elad Yasdi; Kirsty Thompson; Richard Anderson

Testimonials

‘The Devonshires team have a solid, gold plated reputation in the social housing sector. I have worked with them over a period of 30 years and always found the team professional, diligent, accurate, and thorough in the work and advice they give.’

‘Kirsty Thompson is always available to resolve issues, by coming up with practical solutions.’

‘Most recently I have worked closely with Elad Yasdi and his team. Elad always makes time for his clients. He listens, shares his thinking and offers solutions and problem-solving ideas.’

‘The level of experience and knowledge this practice holds is well respected within the construction and social housing sectors.’

‘Gary Grigor is the standout partner for me. His industry knowledge and insight is second to none and gives robust advice with a friendly demeanour. He takes the time to know our entire loan portfolio so that when negotiating something new, he knows immediately whether it is a good fit and can highlight any variations from the ‘norm’ so that our time as the client can be spent focused on the points we need to understand and commercially negotiate.’

‘The social housing team at Devonshires in Leeds are just fantastic, both in the banking space and on the property securitisation side.’

‘Chris Drabble heads up a first-class securitisation team. He leads his team by example demonstrating the qualities of being approachable, helpful and understanding whilst at all times maintaining a high level of professionalism. He takes time to understand the purpose and desired outcome of the transaction and drives a strong team to ensure both are met.’

‘The team have extensive knowledge of the housing sector and deal with potential issues in a very proactive and innovative manner. From the top down, all members of the team are approachable and friendly and they work hard to build strong relationships with all areas of our team.’

Key clients

MetLife and Barings

The Riverside Group Ltd

Onward Homes Limited

Beyond Housing Limited

L&Q

Peabody

Hyde Housing Association

The Guinness Partnership

Work highlights

  • Advised MetLife and Barings on a structured £195m private placement note issuance with an affiliate of Triple Point Social Housing REIT.
  • Advised The Riverside Group Limited (TRGL) and One Housing Group (OHG) on the financing arrangements emanating out of their formal partnership by way of OHG (and its subsidiaries) becoming subsidiaries of TRGL.
  • Acted for Peabody in connection with the regeneration of the West Thamesmead site, for the provision of residential housing and commercial space from its current industrial.

Pinsent Masons LLP

Pinsent Masons LLP counts governmental housing agency Homes England - as well as regional and London borough councils, such as Westminster City Council, London Borough of Lambeth and London Borough of Southwark - among its key list of clients. The national practice advises on the structuring of joint ventures for housing delivery, in addition to housing regeneration projects; team leader Anne Bowden has considerable experience in the latter. Nick McDonald is a key contact for site assembly and vacant possession matters.

Practice head(s):

Anne Bowden

Other key lawyers:

Nick McDonald

Key clients

Homes England

London Borough of Wandsworth

London Borough of Lambeth

London Borough of Haringey

Engie

Places for People Housing Association

Bristol City Council

Lovell Partnerships

Countryside Properties

Westminster City Council

London Borough of Hackney

London Borough of Brent

London Borough of Ealing

Work highlights

  • Advising the London Borough of Wandsworth Council on two Council estate regeneration projects, delivering 3500 homes.
  • Advising the London Borough of Haringey on its High Road West housing regeneration scheme which will deliver 2500 new home (including 850 affordable homes) in a scheme valued at up to £1bn.
  • Advising the Leeds City Council on its major East Leeds Orbital Route, which will enable 5,000 new homes to be delivered including significant affordable housing in the East Leeds Extension.

Walker Morris LLP

Noted for its longstanding relationship with Homes England, Walker Morris LLP advises registered providers, local authorities and housing associations on a range of matters, from housing management and regulatory compliance to residential landlord and tenant issues and litigation. Other key clients include First Choice Homes Oldham and Engie Regeneration Limited. The team is jointly led by Karl Anders and Chris Woodthorpe. Anders is noted for his experience in advising on housing management and regulatory issues, while Woodthorpe handles residential and mix-used development work, as well landlord and tenant matters.

Practice head(s):

Chris Woodthorpe; Karl Anders

Key clients

First Choice Homes Oldham

Engie Regeneration Limited

Work highlights

    Schofield Sweeney

    The Bradford-based team at Schofield Sweeney counts funding and governance matters, acquisitions, development and regeneration projects in its workload. Andrew Hurst leads the practice and is noted for his experience in preparing management agreements between registered social landlords and housing associations. Manjit Virdee acts for lenders in property acquisitions and advises social housing borrowers in facility and security negotiations. Long-serving partner Simon Petchey retired in March 2021.

    Practice head(s):

    Andrew Hurst

    Other key lawyers:

    Manjit Virdee

    Key clients

    QSH Group LLP

    Horton Housing Association

    Chartford Housing Limited

    Wakefield District Housing

    Work highlights

    • Advised Chartford Housing Ltd on acquisition of a development site in North Yorkshire.
    • Advised Chartford Housing Ltd on the purchase of a newly constructed apartment block with ancillary outbuildings.