Firm Profile > Hewitsons > Cambridge , East Anglia
42 NEWMARKET ROAD
Hewitsons > The Legal 500 Rankings
Agriculture and estates Tier 1
One client recommends Hewitsons for its 'breath of knowledge and ability to provide the right person with the correct skill set for the task in hand'. The firm has a large cross-office team led from Cambridge by the 'extremely trustworthy' Denise Wilkinson , who handles complex property and family issues in the rural sector, whether for smaller farmers, landed estates or major institutions. Legal director James Frankland and consultant Charles Hewitson also have excellent reputations for handling agricultural property transactions.
Hewitsons is 'a very well-established private client firm, and a leading regional firm, particularly for the resolution of trusts and probate disputes'. Practice head Lucinda Brown is a full member of ACTAPS and solicitor Kate Harris is an associate member. They frequently handle high-value cases involving the validity of wills, breach of trust claims, Inheritance Act claims, rectification of wills and trust documents, contentious Court of Protection matters and financial abuse of vulnerable adults. The firm's strong private client, charity and agriculture practices are also brought to bear on contentious matters for high-net-worth individuals.
Environment & planning Tier 1
Hewitsons in Cambridge handles large-scale development projects, including residential and mixed-use urban expansions, and acts for Homes England in substantial regeneration projects. The firm regularly undertakes work in connection with judicial reviews and other legal challenges in the High Court and in the Court of Appeal, and it undertakes its own advocacy at public inquiries, hearings and in Magistrates Courts. Leading light Deborah Sharples is the key partner and has a large client base of landowners, farmers, investment owners and landed estates across the UK. Associate Gemma Dudley has more than 15 years' experience in planning and compulsory purchase matters.
Hewitsons has a highly experienced practice for estate planning, complex wills and powers of attorney, trust administration and reorganisation, the administration of high-value estates, and advice on foreign assets. The firm's strong rural practice sees it handle the affairs of many clients in the farming industry, as well as large landed estates. Practice head Daniel Curtis and key partners Bernadette O’Reilly and Elizabeth Davies are all leading lights in the market, and associate Kelly Wardell is a rising star. The firm's clients include a number of estates with a net worth in excess of £100m.
Property litigation Tier 1
Hewitsons in Cambridge has 'a very strong regional team providing London quality work without having to pay for the overheads of a City firm'. One client notes that practice head Natalie Minott 'has City grade experience and skills'. The firm handles both commercial and residential property disputes, including matters for high-net-worth individuals, corporates and rural landowners. In 2018, the firm saw a growing caseload disputes arising from leasehold enfranchisement, collective enfranchisement and the right of first refusal, and in work for corporate clients relating to the Landlord and Tenant 1954 Act. Kate Church and Kate Harris are noted as Rising Stars.
Charities and not-for-profit Tier 2
The charities and education practice at Hewitsons is led from Northampton but calls upon the agriculture, property and planning teams in Cambridge to act for a host of regional and national charities. Rural property and agricultural law expert Denise Wilkinson plays a key role in the practice, as does real estate and finance partner James Simpson. The firm counts several education institutions such as the University of Cambridge and numerous national charities among its clients.
Hewitsons has a diverse commercial litigation practice in which the key lawyers have developed expertise in specialist areas of law. Lead partner Simon Biggin has been at the firm for nearly 30 years and is highly regarded for contract, product liability and software development disputes, as well as warranty claims, shareholder disputes and judicial review cases. Rising star associate Stewart Morrison has a particular focus on public procurement disputes, EU regulatory matters and public law work. IP specialist Mark Elmslie and real estate litigation partner Natalie Minott also act in general contract disputes.
Construction Tier 2
Hewitsons has a highly experienced construction group that works across its London, Milton Keynes and Cambridge offices. In Cambridge, managing partner Colin Jones is the standout practitioner who frequently handles complex and high-value matters for developers, contractors, design and construction professionals, construction product manufacturers, funders and occupiers. He is supported by solicitor Sardeep Gill who handles both contentious and non-contentious matters. The firm has a long-standing reputation for work on UK-wide construction projects, and its recent work includes projects for Oxbridge colleges and Homes England.
Hewitsons has a long-established reputation for M&A, corporate finance, private equity, investment and capital markets transactions. It has a broad client base with particular expertise in the technology, charities and education, healthcare, sport and energy sectors. Practice heads James Lawrence and Andrew Priest and key partner Bill Thatcher in Cambridge have a particular focus on the technology sector, in which they frequently handle acquisitions, venture capital investments, MBOs and MBIs. Newly promoted partner Laurence Evans has a strong practice in partnerships and LLPs, particularly for the firm's agricultural client base.
Education Tier 2
Hewitsons has a diverse range of clients that includes schools and FE and HE colleges. Head of the charities and education practice Chris Knight now works predominantly from the Northampton office but spends time in Cambridge to advise the firm's university, school and college clients. The firm's services include charity law and governance, data protection advice, dispute resolution, employment, environmental law, pupil issues and M&A. James Simpson and Susanne Hinde frequently work on property matters for clients in the education sector, while Andrew Priest handles commercial matters.
Employment Tier 2
The employment practice at Hewitsons, which is led from the firm's Northampton office, has a strong presence in Cambridge through experienced partners Valerie Lambert and Elizabeth Swinburn. The team increased its capacity in 2018 with the internal transfer of solicitor James Makin from its commercial practice group, in order to handle a growing workload of High Court litigation, business reorganisation, Employment Tribunals, TUPE transfers, disciplinary matters and support for M&A transactions. The practice increasingly handles cases with cross-border elements.
Intellectual property Tier 2
Hewitsons acts for clients ranging from small businesses to multinational corporations, including well-known brands and Cambridge colleges, in IP licensing, development contracts and contentious matters. Clients praise 'the breadth of IP knowledge from accessible partners at keen rates'. Practice head Andrew Priest handles IT, outsourcing, technology transfer and general commercial contracts, while key partner Mark Elmslie's work for national and international clients includes research and development arrangements and technology licensing contracts.
IT and telecoms Tier 2
The IT practice at Hewitsons acts for suppliers to and purchasers of IT services across a broad range of IT businesses, advises on on EU Framework Programme contracts in IT fields, handles data protection compliance issues and data security breaches for IT and technology companies, and deals with matters of software development, licensing, distribution and support. It also has niche expertise in IT and business process outsourcing. Practice head Andrew Priest handles IT outsourcings and technology licensing deals in the public and private sector, and consultant Bill Thatcher has nearly 30 years' experience in IP and IT transactions.
Pensions Tier 2
Head of pensions Christopher Nuttall at Hewitsons works mainly from Northampton but regularly attends the Cambridge office to advise the firm's key clients. The firm acts for employers and trustees of private sector occupational pension schemes throughout the UK and across a wide range of business sectors. It has significant experience in public sector pensions, particularly involving the local government, healthcare and education sectors.
Banking and finance Tier 3
The finance practice at Hewitsons is led from Northampton by Neil Harpham but the firm's Cambridge office has corporate, agricultural and real estate partners who handle high-value financings for their clients. James Lawrence handles corporate and acquisition finance, Deborah Sharples handles agricultural finance, James Simpson focuses on real estate finance, and Tim Middleton advises on residential property finance. Much of the firm's work centres on secured lending and bank funding in the education and charity sectors.
Hewitsons > Firm Profile
Hewitsons is a leading law firm that treats each of its clients on an individual basis, advising businesses, individuals and institutions. Hewitsons operates UK-wide, delivering a broad range of high-quality specialist legal services through its groups of solicitors and via its international network, LawExchange International.
The firm: Hewitsons operates out of locations in Cambridge, London, Milton Keynes and Northampton, from which its teams provide a well-tailored and co-ordinated service to clients. The expertise and professional approach of the firm’s personnel are equal to the quality expected from national practices but with the added advantages that the firm’s strategic locations bring in terms of cost-effectiveness and pertinent local knowledge.
The international dimension of Hewitsons’ service is strengthened through LawExchange International, the association of pre-eminent legal practices, which Hewitsons founded in 1994. Member firms throughout Europe, North and South America, Asia/Pacific and the Middle East provide their clients with informed legal knowledge within each respective national jurisdiction, and excellent service with global reach through the deeply integrated LawExchange network.
Hewitsons has the size and depth of resources, combined with commercially-minded and innovative approaches to client service, to ensure delivery of a high quality service that meets its clients’ legal requirements comprehensively and consistently adds value.
Types of work undertaken: Hewitsons provides a broad spectrum of services for the business community, public sector bodies, private clients and educational and charitable entities, encompassing all aspects of corporate, commercial, property and employment law, from non-contentious negotiations and advice through to dispute resolution and litigation. The firm offers in addition a higher number of specialist services (for example pensions, sport and technology law) than most firms of comparable size.
Hewitsons has multidisciplinary sector-focused groups to target its services, and to meet its clients’ current and future needs. These include dedicated groups focused on agricultural food and rural clients, banking and finance, development, technology and clean-tech, charities, educational institutions, high-net-worth clients, owner managed businesses, real estate portfolio management and sport.
Hewitsons’ corporate and commercial teams are market leaders with extensive expertise in all areas, including M&A, buyouts, start-ups, equity and debt investments, IPO’s, share schemes and corporate reorganisations. The firm is highly regarded for its expertise in the technology field, particularly for intellectual property and ICT law issues, and has a dedicated employment law group and dispute resolution lawyers specialising in commercial and intellectual property matters.
The firm’s property services group has exceptional knowledge of and experience in property and development work, including commercial sales and leasing, options, capital funding, joint venture and consortium agreements and associated construction, public procurement, planning and environmental issues, both contentious and non-contentious. Clients include owners and occupiers, promoters, developers, end-users, investors and portfolio managers.
Hewitsons’ substantial and highly respected private wealth unit provides specialised advice on tax planning, charity and agricultural law, trusts and probate to individuals and trustees whose wealth derives from family companies, listed market and other financial investments, commercial and agricultural property and landed estates.
|Private Wealth||Clare Colacicchiemail@example.com||01604 463317|
|Construction||Colin Jonesfirstname.lastname@example.org||01223 532731|
|Agriculture||Denise Wilkinsonemail@example.com||01223 532743|
|Banking and finance||Neil Harphamfirstname.lastname@example.org||01604 463301|
|Charities||Chris Knightemail@example.com||01604 463103|
|Corporate||James Lawrencefirstname.lastname@example.org||01223 532716|
|Commercial||Bill Thatcheremail@example.com||01223 532709|
|Construction||Tim Richardsfirstname.lastname@example.org||01908 247011|
|Dispute resolution||Dominic Hopkinsemail@example.com||01604 233233|
|Education||Chris Knightfirstname.lastname@example.org||01604 463103|
|Employment||Nicholas Hallemail@example.com||01604 463375|
|Information Technology||Andrew Priestfirstname.lastname@example.org||01223 532746|
|Intellectual property||Mark Elmslieemail@example.com||01223 532720|
|Pensions||Christopher Nuttallfirstname.lastname@example.org||01604 463134|
|Private wealth||Daniel Curtisemail@example.com||01223 461155|
|Public sector||Tim Richardsfirstname.lastname@example.org||01908 247011|
|Real Estate Development||Claire Howard-Amosemail@example.com||01604 463323|
|Residential property||Tim Middletonfirstname.lastname@example.org||01223 461155|
|Sport||Ben Moorheademail@example.com||020 7400 6578|
|Bradley Armorgie||View Profile|
|Rebecca Austin||View Profile|
|Sarah Aylward||View Profile|
|Sarah Baron||View Profile|
|Simon Biggin||View Profile|
|Sue Birnage||View Profile|
|Emma Bowman||View Profile|
|Lucinda Brown||View Profile|
|Charlotte Bull||View Profile|
|Kate Church||View Profile|
|Daniel Curtis||View Profile|
|Elizabeth Davies||View Profile|
|Gemma Dudley||View Profile|
|Mark Elmslie||View Profile|
|Laurence Evans||View Profile|
|James Frankland||View Profile|
|Sardeep Gill||View Profile|
|Tobias Gleed-Owen||View Profile|
|Katherine Hague||View Profile|
|Elizabeth Herbert||View Profile|
|Charles Hewitson||View Profile|
|Susanne Hinde||View Profile|
|Alexandra Howard||View Profile|
|Sarah Humble||View Profile|
|Colin Jones||View Profile|
|Barbara Judkins||View Profile|
|Valerie Lambert||View Profile|
|James Lawrence||View Profile|
|James Makin||View Profile|
|Clare Martin||View Profile|
|Tim Middleton||View Profile|
|Stewart Morrison||View Profile|
|Bernadette O’Reilly||View Profile|
|Andrew Priest||View Profile|
|Ceri Riddell||View Profile|
|Paul Ross||View Profile|
|Michael Russell||View Profile|
|Graeme Sampson||View Profile|
|James Simpson||View Profile|
|Fiona Smith||View Profile|
|Elizabeth Swinburn||View Profile|
|Alan Taylor||View Profile|
|Joe Taylor||View Profile|
|Bill Thatcher||View Profile|
|Clare Waller||View Profile|
|Kelly Wardell||View Profile|
|Denise Wilkinson||View Profile|
Staff FiguresNumber of UK partners : 45 Number of other UK fee-earners : 95
LanguagesEnglish (fluent) French German Italian
MembershipsSociety of Trust & Estate Practitioners (STEP)
Top Tier Firm Rankings
- Agriculture and estates
- Contentious trusts and probate
- Environment & planning
- Personal tax, trusts and probate: Cambridge
- Property litigation