Firm Profile > Howes Percival LLP > Leicester, England

Howes Percival LLP
LE19 1DX

Commercial litigation: elsewhere in the East Midlands Tier 1

In 2018, Howes Percival LLP was appointed to the UK Government Crown Commercial Service full service panel for England and Wales, with its dispute resolution practice well-placed to benefit as a result. Elsewhere, the firm acts for other commercial clients, which range in size from small owner-managed businesses to listed companies. The team includes Satnam Chayra, whose expertise includes shareholder, director and partnership claims, as well as property litigation. Practice head Geraint Davies regularly handles complex, multijurisdictional disputes. The firm's recent work involved matters connected with industries such as food and drink, manufacturing, real estate and construction.

Key clients

HM Revenue and Customs

Welcome Break Group Ltd

Getronics Services UK Limited

MPAC Plc (formerly Molins Plc)

Renewi UK Services Limited

Nampak Plastics Europe Limited

Darby Properties Limited/Darby Group Limited

Intertek Group Plc

Grace Foods UK Limited

Blue Skies (UK) Limited

Commercial property: elsewhere in the East Midlands Tier 1

Howes Percival LLP's East Midlands practice is spearheaded in Northampton and Leicester by Lucy Lord and the 'ultra-commercial' Nicholas James respectively. It handles a varied workload, including investment fund acquisitions and disposals, residential and commercial development, property finance (including portfolio lending and refinancing), and landlord and tenant work. In addition to James, Stuart Burns is another key partner in Leicester. Alexandra Kirkwood and Erica Gradus are highly regarded associates in Northampton.


Howes Percival is excellent at covering all the aspects of work undertaken by an investment and development property company. Complex lettings, land transactions and acquisitions are handled with great skill and practicality

Nicholas James is ultra-commercial and Stuart Burns is superb at detail

Key clients

Mulberry Property Developments Limited

Mulberry Commercial Developments Limited

Handelsbanken plc

Santander UK plc

HSBC UK Bank plc

C Brewer & Sons Limited

Motorvogue (Northampton) Limited

Davidsons Developments Limited

Charles Street Buildings Group

Henderson UK Property Fund

Persimmon Homes Limited

Welcome Break Group Limited

In ‘n’ Out Centres Limited

Grenson Limited

Corporate and commercial: elsewhere in the East Midlands Tier 1

Howes Percival LLP's top-ranking corporate team in Leicester underwent significant expansion in January 2019, when the firm recruited Jahid Ali and Oliver Brookshaw from Spearing Waite LLP. Ali is experienced in assisting private equity houses and management teams with private equity transactions, while Brookshaw advises listed companies on flotations, secondary share issues and public takeovers. Brookshaw also has fund (including venture capital) formation expertise. Also joining from Spearing Waite LLP was banking partner Haydon Simmonds, who has leveraged finance experience. Elsewhere, the firm is particularly well-known for acting for growing family-owned and management-owned private companies. Daniel Banton heads up the practice in Leicester, while Gerald Couldrake is the main contact in Northampton.


Personable and direct

No legalese – they just advise what needs to be done and by when

Key clients

C Brewer & Sons Limited

Briggs (UK) Limited

Fen Technology Limited

HSBC UK Bank Plc

The Shareholders of Atana Limited

Garashield Limited

Stonbury Limited

Model Citizens Limited

Buckingham Plant Hire Limited

BPW Limited and group companies



Employment Tier 1

Howes Percival LLP’s core strengths lie in handling employment aspects of high-value corporate acquisitions, disposals and restructuring projects. Practice head Paula Bailey is an expert in TUPE projects and the negotiation of senior exits, while Graham Irons is particularly recommended for his Employment Tribunal advocacy. The team's sector expertise includes the automotive, food and drink, manufacturing and education industries. Gurdeep Boparai recently joined from Weightmans LLP.

Key clients

Children’s Investment Fund Foundation

All3Media Group

Bosch Siemens Home Appliances

Welcome Break Group Limited

Marston’s PLC

Terex Corporation

Getronics Services UK Limited


Nampak Plastics Europe Limited


Milton Keynes College

World Vision UK

University of Northampton’s Student Union

Hillarys Blinds Limited

RS Components Limitd / Electrocomponents plc

Health and safety Tier 1

Howes Percival LLP's ‘dedicated team of clever lawyers’ handles the full range of contentious and non-contentious work for clients from industries such as construction, manufacturing, healthcare and education. It is also particularly well-regarded in the minerals and extractives sector. Led by the ‘vastly experiencedAlan Millband, the practice also generates work from several health and safety service organisations, consultancies and consultants. Nick Benton, who is an expert on employment-related health and safety issues, recently joined from Freeths LLP,


Associate solicitor Andrew Swarbrick is a rising star. He is a shrewd and clever young lawyer, who has a knack for spotting the way through difficult cases‘.

Key clients

Poundstretcher Limited

Citation Professional Solutions

Hamilton Deed (Health and Safety Services)

Welcome Break Group

Intellectual property Tier 1

Howes Percival LLP's team is particularly knowledgeable about the food and drinks industry, but it also acts for clients in other sectors, such as fashion, software and media. Practice head Matthew Talbot handles a wide variety of trade mark, copyright, patent and design rights disputes, and has notable experience of European Food Protection matters. The team's non-contentious work includes assisting several high-profile clients with trade mark filings and general portfolio management.

Key clients

Business Software Alliance, Inc. (“BSA”)

Coventry University

Start-rite Shoes Limited

FibreFab Limited

Sequin Art Limited

Just Hype Limited

Shoe Zone Retail Limited

Charles Martell & Son Limited

APT Training & Consultancy Ltd

Robovision Limited

Memorial Walls Ltd

Imperial International Ltd

The National Forest Company

Autodesk Ltd

National Business Register

Internetwork Media Ltd

Samworth Brothers Ltd

Property litigation Tier 1

Howes Percival LLP's head of property litigation in Leicester is Satnam Chayra, who primarily handles landlord and tenant matters (such as dilapidations, lease renewals, rent recovery, contentious breaks and forfeiture), although she is also active in other general property litigation, including boundary disputes and negligence cases. Also based in Leicester is Geraint Davies, who has more than 25 years of property litigation experience. Director Jane Bloomer leads on property litigation matters in Northampton and, like Chayra, is also known as a landlord and tenant specialist, but she is also strong in residential and commercial insolvency related possession claims, as well as matters involving rights of way, restrictive covenants, easements and adverse possession, among others.


Thorough and detailed approach to cases. An ability to cut to the chase and to give clear and concise advice

Key clients

C Brewer & Sons Limited

Kettle Interiors UK Limited

O Donovan Waste Disposal Limited

Welcome Break Group Limited

Nampak Plastics Europe Limited

Renewi UK Services Limited

Rodericks Dental Limited

Education Tier 2

Howes Percival LLP has a cross-practice team, which provides support on corporate, property, construction, commercial and data protection issues. Primary, secondary and faith schools turn to the group for advice on single academy conversions and multi-academy trusts. The firm also generates work from colleges and universities.  Graham Irons (who co-heads the practice with Daniel Banton and Mark Davies) advises on restructuring and employment matters, as well as the management of parent companies.

Key clients

Milton Keynes College

Coventry University

De Montfort University

Learner’s Trust

Elston Hall Multi Academy Trust

Northwood Park Educational Trust

Learning Link Multi Academy Trust

Services 4 Schools Limited

Christ the King Catholic Collegiate

Perry Hall Multi Academy Trust

Lumen Christi Catholic Multi Academy Trust

Codsall Multi Academy Trust

St Bartholomew’s CE Multi Academy Trust

Family Tier 2

Howes Percival LLP is ‘capable of dealing with high-value and complex family law work’. Although financial cases (particularly those involving land and estate, tax, business and jurisdictional issues) are at the heart of the caseload, the team also undertakes a broad range of other family and child-related instructions. Examples include divorce and civil partnership dissolution, Children Act proceedings and cohabitation agreements. Amy Walpole and the ‘detailed, methodicalJustine Flack jointly co-head the practice, which counts high net-worth individuals, CEOs, medical consultants and other professionals as key clients.


They are Among only a handful of firms in the East Midlands capable of dealing with high value and complex family law work‘.

Justine Flack has a detailed, methodical approach which instills confidence in clients and gets results‘.

They work together well, clearly good communication between the team members.

Justine Flack understands the complications around divorce and approaches this difficult process with clear guidance and advice. She is entirely focused on good outcomes for her clients‘.

Insolvency and corporate recovery Tier 2

Howes Percival LLP's three-partner East Midlands team has a strong track record in government insolvency work, and retains a place on the Insolvency Service Panel; the scope of the firm's work includes public interest winding-up matters involving large-scale frauds and director disqualification proceedings, among other matters. In addition, the firm is also a supplier to the Government's Crown Commercial Service panel as part of a consortium, taking the lead on insolvency matters. Beyond government-related mandates, the team handles the gamut of contentious and non-contentious personal and corporate insolvency issues for insolvency practitioners, businesses (ranging in size from sole traders to listed companies) and business owners, as well as creditors. Leicester-based Carl Mifflin is the national head of the insolvency and restructuring practice. Deborah Nigh and Katie Summers are the lead partners in Northampton.


‘Howes Percival’s national coverage and depth of service gives them a market-leading offering.’

‘The partner led client care approach is easy to work with, with a single port of call for any query and referral.’

‘Carl Mifflin is one of the preeminent lawyers in the business recovery and Insolvency market, not only in the East Midlands but nationally.’

‘Carl Mifflin is the finest insolvency lawyer that I have worked with. His approach is robust, assured and commercial. He is my go-to lawyer.’

Key clients

Mazars LLP


RSM Restructuring Advisory LLP

Grant Thornton UK LLP

SC Advisory Services Limited t/a Smith Cooper

KL Business Solutions Limited t/a Kingsland Business Recovery

Elwell Watchorn & Saxton LLP

ReSolve Partners LLP

The Insolvency Service

Blakethwaite Limited t/a Blades Insolvency Services

BRI (UK) Limited t/a BRI Business Recovery and Insolvency

Alexander Lawson Jacobs

Begbies Traynor

David Rubin & Partners

Bretts Business Recovery Limited

IT and telecoms Tier 2

The ‘incredibly responsive’ practice at Howes Percival LLP is renowned for its delivering of ‘client-focused solutions’. On the contentious front, areas of particular experience include IT contract disputes, IP infringements and acting on threats to suspend the provision of vital services. Key strengths in the non-contentious sphere span software development, maintenance and licensing, app development and outsourcing agreements, as well as data protection and security issues. Matthew Talbot heads up the practice.


‘Both Matthew Talbot and Jenna Bruce offer excellent advice and are always willing to accommodate. It’s also a real pleasure to talk to them and engage with them’.


Key clients

Business Software Alliance, Inc. (“BSA”)

Global Reach Technology Limited

Getronics UK Limited

Retail Assist Limited

FibreFab Limited

University of Coventry

Rodericks Dental

Autodesk Inc.

Internetwork Media Limited

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
 Paula Bailey  photo Paula Bailey
 Daniel Banton  photo Daniel Banton
 Stuart Burns  photo Stuart Burns
 Geraint Davies  photo Geraint Davies
 Justine Flack  photo Justine Flack
 Nicholas James  photo Nicholas James
 Chris May  photo Chris May
 Carl Mifflin  photo Carl Mifflin
 Alan Millband  photo Alan Millband
 Alex Payton  photo Alex Payton
 Matthew Talbot  photo Matthew Talbot
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

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.