Firm Profile > Howes Percival LLP > Milton Keynes, England

Howes Percival LLP

Media and entertainment Tier 2

With particular experience in reputation and privacy management, as well as IP, Howes Percival LLP's media team acts for both private clients and media-sector companies. The team primarily acts on contentious matters, including High Court and injunctive relief proceedings, with a particular focus on trade marks, copyright and passing-off on the IP side. James Howarth is the key figure within the firm's Milton Keynes office, and has substantial experience handling work for publishing sector clients. In non-contentious IP work, associate Jenna Bruce is a name to note given her in-house experience in the media industry.


Howes Percival is a well-rounded practice with expertise in this field’

James Howarth and his assistant Victoria Howe are a formidable team.’


Key clients

Time Out

Quarto Group plc

Lion Hudson

Goldstein Music Publishing

Sounds Like Publishing Limited

DOLCE Music Limited

Commercial property: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx Tier 3

Howes Percival LLP’s commercial property team in Milton Keynes is headed by Lisa Mantle, who has strong expertise in property finance. The practice offer a full range of real estate-related services to clients, including residential and commercial developments, commercial and strategic land acquisitions and disposals and investment fund acquisitions and disposals. Mark Davies specialises in the formation of joint venture vehicles and multi-party landowner and investor agreements, with a focus on the education sector.

Key clients

Milton Keynes College

Corporate and commercial: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx Tier 3

The Milton Keynes' corporate and commercial team at Howes Percival LLP has a strong reputation for its work with owner-managed and family-owned companies and larger multinational corporate businesses, which are advised on acquisitions, disposals, restructuring, banking and general commercial matters. The practice's sector focus includes the automotive, real estate finance, supply chain and not-for-profit areas. The 'business focusedEdward Lee heads the practice.


Well-led team, clear objectives aligned with our requirements, working towards a common goal‘.

Professional, pragmatic, responsive‘.

Commercially minded on all service lines‘.

Edward Lee has an outstanding mind‘.

Edward Lee is very business focused, but more importantly he is very creative in looking for solutions‘.

Key clients

BGF (Business Growth Fund)

Mazars Financial Planning

Welcome Break Group Limited


Administrate Limited

Milton Keynes College

Employment: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx Tier 3

Howes Percival LLP’s employment team in Milton Keynes is led by Simon deMaid who is particularly experienced in disability discrimination claims and senior executive terminations. The practice is well known for its work in the higher education, automotive and healthcare sectors, assisting a number of prestigious clients in the Milton Keynes area with the employment issues arising from acquisitions, disposals and restructuring projects. Associate Hannah Pryce is another name to note.

Key clients

Bosch Siemens Home Appliances

PJ Care Limited

Milton Keynes College

Dachser Limited

Welcome Break Group Limited

Marston’s PLC

Terex Corporation

Getronics Services UK Limited


Nampak Plastics Europe Limited


World Vision UK

University of Northampton’s Student Union

Hillarys Blinds Limited

Digital Post Solution Limited

AlphaCure Limited

Barton Petroleum Limited

HRG UK Limited

RS Components Limited/Electrocomponents plc

Intellectual property Tier 3

Howes Percival LLP's south east practice focuses primarily on contentious work, with disputes specialist James Howarth heading up the regional team. The team is particularly experienced in the publishing and technology sectors, with an emphasis on technology manufacturers. Other key areas for the firm include software copyright and online issues as well as licensing.

Key clients

Time Out Group plc

ATSI  Limited

Quarto Group Plc

AFL Hyperscale (subsidiary of Nikkei listed Fujikura)

Security Alliance Limited

Goldstein Music Publishing

Business Software Alliance

The firm: Howes Percival is a regional commercial law firm operating across the heartland of England. Howes Percival has expertise and resources usually associated with much larger national and City firms and provides top-quality legal services to businesses, the government and individuals. The firm prides itself on the agile, energetic and commercial approach of its lawyers.

Howes Percival values excellent client relationships and invests time and resources in understanding its clients’ businesses, the sectors they operate in and their requirements. The firm’s offices and teams then work closely together with its clients to provide them with a seamless, high-quality service. The location of the firm’s office network helps it provide services to clients across the country.

Types of work undertaken: The firm was recently appointed to the Government’s Crown Commercial Services General Legal Services Panel for England and Wales.

The firm provides services to a range of clients including, Marston’s Mercedes-Benz, Persimmon Homes, the University of Cambridge, Greene King and All3Media. However, it also has a large client base of owner-managed businesses and individuals. It has particular expertise in the automotive, development and construction, education, food and drink, and leisure and tourism sectors.

Corporate and commercial: Howes Percival is a market leader in corporate work and has particular expertise in corporate finance, mergers and acquisitions, disposals, MBOs and MBIs, and private equity transactions. All aspects of banking law are dealt with and insolvency is a particular specialism. In the commercial arena the firm is also recommended for outsourcing agreements, joint ventures, manufacturing and supply agreements, IT work and intellectual property agreements.

Commercial property: Howes Percival has a highly skilled and extremely well-regarded commercial property team providing specialist advice on all aspects of the sale and purchase of residential and commercial development land and built out sites, option and clawback arrangements, commercial leases and property portfolio management, banking and finance, planning, environmental issues, mines and minerals, construction and property tax.

Dispute resolution, insolvency, intellectual property, property litigation and regulatory/environmental: the firm has an extremely experienced dispute resolution team which deals with disputes inside and outside the UK. It also has highly regarded construction, intellectual property/IT, insolvency, property litigation and regulatory/environmental teams.

Employment: an award-winning team providing the full range of contentious and non-contentious work for clients across the country, carrying out high quality work for a range of clients, from household names to owner managed businesses, and gaining new instructions based on reputation alone. Members of the team provide solution-focused commercial employment advice, taking a robust approach to litigation (having gained a number of costs awards in favour of clients) and are particularly experienced in handling high-value litigation disputes.

Family: the team has national and international reach, providing high-level advice upon divorce and relationship breakdown as well as wealth preservation to high-net-worth individuals including company directors, entrepreneurs and celebrities. The team provides expertise in cases involving family businesses, farming businesses, landed estates and trusts. The practice deals with children and private law matters and has two qualified collaborative lawyers.

Private client: a highly respected team providing advanced estate planning including preparation of wills, formation of trusts and bespoke tax solutions for landowners, directors and high-net-worth individuals with extensive experience advising farms and estates, administering trusts and advising charities. The team includes three Fellows of the Agricultural Law Association and is a retained adviser on Camelot’s legal panel. Team memberships include ACTAPS and STEP.

Offices: Cambridge, Leicester, Manchester, Milton Keynes, Northampton, Norwich

Department Name Email Telephone
Banking Daniel Banton
Banking Haydon Simmonds
Banking Ian Ilersic
Banking Tessa Haskey
Charities Tom Lawrence
Charities Richard Lovett
Commercial contracts Gerald Couldrake
Commercial property Tessa Haskey
Commercial property Jonathan Greenhalgh
Commercial property Lucy Lord
Commercial property Nicholas James
Corporate finance Gerald Couldrake
Corporate finance Robert Colman
Corporate finance Daniel Banton
Corporate finance Edward Lee
Education Graham Irons
Education Daniel Banton
Employment Paula Bailey
Employment Graham Irons
Employment Simon DeMaid
Employment Matthew Potter
Family Amy Walpole
Family Justine Flack
Farms and estates Catherine Scott
Farms and estates Stuart Maggs
Farms and estates Jonathan Wortley
Fraud recovery Geraint Davies
Government recovery Morris Peacock
Health and safety Alan Millband
Insolvency Carl Mifflin
Insolvency Katie Summers
Insolvency Deborah Nigh
Insolvency Michael Green
Intellectual property Matthew Talbot
Intellectual property James Howarth
IT and telecoms Matthew Talbot
Litigation and dispute resolution Geraint Davies
Litigation and dispute resolution Satnam Chayra
Litigation and dispute resolution Michael Green
Planning and environment Paul Wootton
Planning and environment Chris May
Planning and environment Alan Millband
Commercial Property Mark Davies
Corporate Jahid Ali
Commercial Property Steven Beach
Corporate Oliver Brookshaw
Commercial Property Stuart Burns
Commercial Property Christopher Cubitt
Commercial Property Nicola Curle
Estates Katherine Danks
Commercial Property Michaela Henson
Commercial Property Tracey Hughes
Planning Paul Hunt
Property Litigation Jamie Kidd
Tax Stuart Maggs
Private Client Stuart Maggs
Commercial Property Lisa Mantle
Property Litigation Simon Murphy
Commercial Property Jo Nicholls
Insolvency Deborah Nigh
Insolvency William Shirley
Intellectual Property Hannah Steggles
Insolvency Katie Summers
Healthcare Oliver Pritchard
Corporate Oliver Pritchard
Photo Name Position Profile
Mr James Howarth  photo Mr James Howarth
 Edward Lee  photo Edward Lee
 Lisa Mantle  photo Lisa Mantle
 Simon deMaid  photo Simon deMaid
Number of UK partners : 43
Number of other UK fee-earners : 109
Abacus Worldwide
Number of UK Partners : 43
Number of UK Fee Earners : 109

Howes Percival is committed to ensuring equality and diversity in everything we do. This commitment is set out in our Equality & Diversity Policy which is available upon request.

We are also a signatory to the Law Society’s Diversity and Inclusion Charter which requires us to take steps to take action to help ensure equality and diversity and carry out an annual assessment of our performance.

As part of the action we take to ensure equality and diversity we carry out an annual survey of our people and a summary of the latest survey can be found downloaded here:

Please contact Graham Irons, our Equality & Diversity Partner, for any further information:

CLIENT: Angela Robson, Deputy Vice Chancellor
COMPANY/FIRM: Norwich University of the Arts
TESTIMONIAL: The Howes Percival team are always extremely helpful and quick to respond. They are very approachable and always able to provide clear, practical advice that is tailored to our needs. We would have absolutely no hesitation in recommending Howes Percival to other organisations.

CLIENT: Michelle Williams
COMPANY/FIRM: Knowsley Housing Trust
TESTIMONIAL: “Howes Percival’s leisure and tourism sector specialists have looked after our portfolio of restaurants, bars and hotel for nearly 15 years, providing efficient, effective and valuable advice on property transactions, licensing, planning and litigation matters. We would have no hesitation in recommending them as leading legal specialists in the sector.”

CLIENT: Joseph Murphy
COMPANY/FIRM: Charles Street Buildings
TESTIMONIAL: “The service we have received from Howes Percival on this matter has been excellent. The team have always been on hand to address queries promptly and to the point and their drive and focus has really helped progress matters.”

CLIENT: Nick Heffer, Human Resources Director
COMPANY/FIRM: Hughes Electrical Limited
TESTIMONIAL: “Howes Percival and Hughes Electrical have over many years built strong relationships between their specialist lawyers and our Board and Management Team, for the benefit all involved. We pride ourselves on being more than an electrical retailer; at heart we’re a local company with a national reach, and we see these same qualities in Howes Percival. Their team respond quickly, with practical and commercial advice, across our business, which allows us to respond rapidly to the ever changing needs of our loyal customers.”

CLIENT: Neal Judd, Group Finance Director
TESTIMONIAL: “The Howes Percival team were proactive throughout the deal and provided professional and commercial advice to ensure that we achieved our objectives to a tight and fixed deadline and without any complications.”

CLIENT: David Brady (Finance Director)
COMPANY/FIRM: Randall Parker Food Group Limited
TESTIMONIAL: “We have used Howes Percival since we purchased the Weddel Swift business over 20 years ago. Since then we have expanded and reorganised the business, including making several acquisitions. Each time we have turned for legal help to Howes Percival. Their pragmatic and responsive service has been invaluable, together with their knowledge of our sector.”

CLIENT: Alison Shaw (Head of HR Shared Services)
COMPANY/FIRM: Marston’s Plc
TESTIMONIAL: “We really enjoy working with the team at Howes Percival. A consistently efficient and friendly service and we always appreciate their sound advice, support and guidance.”

CLIENT: Nick Newton, Commercial Director
COMPANY/FIRM: Gravity Media Group
TESTIMONIAL: “As part of Gravity Media Group’s ambition to continue to diversify our business into new areas, we would like to thank Howes Percival for their advice and support during our recent multi-million pound deal to acquire the sports production company Input Media with its cutting-edge technology and production facilities. This is GMG’s first acquisition following the recent investment from Towerbrook Capital Partners and we are now well placed to continue to acquire further businesses that will help to broaden our global offering. Howes Percival’s corporate partner Daniel Banton (and his team) worked tirelessly on the deal, providing commercial and pragmatic advice from start to finish.”

CLIENT: Robert Wilkinson, Founding Shareholder
TESTIMONIAL: “Howes Percival were my obvious choice as my lawyers to handle this significant transaction. They’ve acted for me for the last 30 years and as usual, I trusted them to execute and deliver a complex deal to a tight timescale, to cut through the detail and keep focused on the big picture. Once again, we have achieved a superb result for the shareholders and the business and its employees. Howes Percival is an integral part of my team, and we will continue to work together as I concentrate on building my residential property development business, Mulberry Property Developments Limited, into a significant house builder in the Midlands.”

CLIENT: Eric Collins, Managing Director
COMPANY/FIRM: Nampak Plastics Europe Limited
TESTIMONIAL: “Howes Percival is a very competent and adaptable legal firm. They are resourced to enable swift involvement and resolution to legal challenges that we encounter, particularly in the fields of commercial and employment law. They have very capable and respected employment law experts who have guided us through some difficult challenges over many years and whose opinion is trusted.”

CLIENT: Leanne Bonner-Cooke, Managing Director
COMPANY/FIRM: Evolve Consultants
TESTIMONIAL: “Our Howes Percival lawyer provides us with intellectual property and trademarking legal advice. She has a real business head and quickly identifies the issues that really matter. Her views are always balanced and impartial and I can honestly say she brings true clarity to a topic. She speaks in plain English, in easy to understand terms, which is very important because the law is something that most people find complex. She offers the right intellectual property and trademarking advice and, importantly, at the right time.”

CLIENT: Robert Wilkinson, Founding Shareholder
COMPANY/FIRM: Paragon Automotive Limited (in its £105 million sale to British Car Auctions)
TESTIMONIAL: “Howes Percival was my obvious choice as my lawyers to handle this significant transaction. They’ve acted for me for the last 30 years and as usual, I trusted them to execute and deliver a complex deal to a tight timescale, to cut through the detail and keep focused on the big picture. Once again, we have achieved a superb result for the shareholders and the business and its employees. Howes Percival is an integral part of my team.”

CLIENT: Wilson Barrett, founder
COMPANY/FIRM: Panther Warehousing
TESTIMONIAL: “From starting Panther from a bedroom in my house in 1989, I’ve been on a real journey with the business, through both good and bad times, and it is with mixed emotions that I hand over the reins. However, I’m confident that with the new investment from LDC and under the continued leadership of Colin McCarthy, Panther will continue to prosper and further strengthen its position as the market leading home delivery company. I’d like to thank the team at Howes Percival who provided round-the-clock, commercially focused support and helped make the process easier for us.”

The Lex 100 Verdict

Recruits at Howes Percival were impressed by the firm's 'reputation, location and scale of work', and appreciative of 'the exposure given to trainees from day one'. Many felt that 'client contact' was higher at Howes Percival than at other similar-sized firms. Others were delighted with the 'responsibility you are given from the start' such as 'the ability to run files and take on large transactions'. The approachability and 'supportiveness of all staff' was unanimously praised by respondents, earning Howes Percival its status as a Lex 100 Winner in this category. The firm has also earned Lex 100 Winner medals for inclusiveness, client contact, living up to expectations and quality of work, which is reflected in reports of 'good supervision', an 'interesting and varied workload' and 'friendly and helpful colleagues'. On the other hand, the 'limited social events' and 'moving between offices during training' were frustrations felt by a majority of trainees. 'Preparing the first draft of a transfer for a multi-million pound estate' and 'going to Silverstone for the British racing drivers club annual general meeting that I helped organise', were among best moments. On the flip side, 'commuting', 'changing seats', and 'not feeling able to manage the volume of work' were regarded as worst moments. But, overall, Howes Percival is highly attractive to applicants for its 'people', 'breadth of practice areas', and 'rate of growth'. If you want to work for an inclusive, approachable firm with high-quality clients, then consider applying to Howes Percival.