Firm Profile > McCormicks > Harrogate, England

McCormicks
WHARFEDALE HOUSE
35-37 EAST PARADE
HARROGATE
HG1 5LQ
England

Sport Tier 1

McCormicks has impressive sport sector expertise and an enviable client roster spanning several sports including football, cricket and professional cycling; the group is particularly well-regarded for football-related work and is instructed by leading clubs and leagues in the UK and abroad. Senior partner Peter McCormick heads up the practice and has a reputation as one of the pre-eminent sports lawyers in the UK. Philip Edmondson and Heather Roberts are other names to note and handle a range of litigation and commercial property issues respectively, while senior associate Sara Morgan focuses on employment law matters.

Practice head(s):

Peter McCormick

Testimonials

Peter McCormick has unparalleled experience both as a litigator and as a football “insider”‘.

Peter McCormick has extremely astute judgment and strategic skills‘.

Key clients

The Premier League

The Premier League Charitable Fund

Leeds United FC

The Bostik League

Professional Game Match Officials Ltd

Frank Boddy (Shoot Proprietor)

Visit Harrogate

Harrogate Town AFC

Walsall FC

McLaren Formula One

Otley RUFC

Leeds Rhinos RLFC

Yorkshire County Cricket Club

Robert Jones (Long Mountain Shoot and other shoots)

Liam Botham (son of Sir Ian Botham)

Norwich City FC

Agriculture and estates Tier 2

McCormicks’ agriculture and rural affairs team has a well-established roster of clients in Yorkshire, advising on a number of substantial estates. The firm prides itself on its commercial approach, and aims to helps its clients create and manage new income flows by assisting in the diversification of their property. Peter McCormick heads the practice, which is active within the Agricultural Law Association and the Charity Law Association.

Practice head(s):

Peter McCormick

Other key lawyers:

Heather Roberts; Elaine Lightfoot

Testimonials

‘Peter McCormick is approachable and very efficient and always gets back to you.’

‘Elaine Lightfoot is a very efficient solicitor and deals with whatever you put her way easily and successfully.’

 

Key clients

The Estate of the late John Herbert Strutt

The Ripley Castle Shoot

Rudding Park – Simon Mackaness

Sir Thomas & Lady Ingilby of the Ripley Castle estate

Various charities – WMT, Duke of Edingburgh’s Award Chetynde School

Liam Botham

Royal Horticultural Society

Yorkshire Agricultural Society

Robert Jones – Long Mountain Shoot

Charities and not-for-profit Tier 2

McCormicks' charity and not-for-profit team offers the full range of services to clients, advising on matters relating to asset transfers, property issues, sponsorship agreements, procurement and commercial litigation. Practice head Peter McCormick continues to act as a trustee for many charities, including the Football Foundation, which which receives millions of pounds of funding from the Premier League, the Football Association and the Government to deliver community projects at grassroots level.

Practice head(s):

Peter McCormick

Other key lawyers:

Elaine Lightfoot

Testimonials

‘A friendly and approachable team who are very effective at providing a legal service for the layperson.’

‘Peter McCormick instills confidence – he is comfortable dealing with anything we ask him to respond to.’

Key clients

Harrogate International Festivals

John Strutt Centre for Parrot Conservation, John Strutt Memorial Foundation, John Strutt Conservation Foundation, John Strutt Charity

The Premier League Charitable Fund

War Memorials Trust

The Football Foundation

The Helen Feather Memorial Trust

The Harrogate Operatic Players

The Royal Horticultural Society

The Prince’s Trust

The Outward Bound Trust

Crime: general Tier 2

McCormicks represents clients locally and nationally across all areas of crime, with particular expertise in regulatory matters and road traffic cases. Peter Minnikin took over as practice head from Geoffrey Rogers in early 2019 and is experienced in serious drug offences, while Rogers focuses on fraud work.

Practice head(s):

Peter Minnikin

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

McCormicks has a very strong practice for dealing with serious crime, in particular financial fraud and heavy drug cases‘.

Peter Minnikin is a very industrious and well-organised solicitor‘.

EU and competition Tier 2

McCormicks leverages its sports expertise to advise high-profile clients in the sector on competition issues, most notably The Premier League. The team is led by Philip Edmondson, who handles both contentious and non-contentious matters. Senior partner Peter McCormick also takes a lead role on much of the firm's most significant work.

Practice head(s):

Philip Edmondson

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

Premier League

GMI Construction Holdings

GMI Construction Group

Analytix

Andrew Hindle, Serving Sport and Venue Hospitality

Contentious trusts and probate Tier 3

McCormicks’ private client offering encompasses wealth disputes, which are dealt with under the leadership of commercial litigation head Philip Edmondson. Yorkshire families, businesspeople and organisations turn to the firm for advice on the Inheritance Act, attempts to overturn wills on the grounds of capacity and duress and disputes between executors and trustees. The firm also advises on cases with cross jurisdictional elements, as well as handling more modest family cases for local clients which require rapid settlement at proportionate costs.

Practice head(s):

Peter McCormick

Other key lawyers:

Elaine Lightfoot

Key clients

Strutt Family Trusts

Crime: fraud Tier 3

Peter Minnikin heads up the criminal department at McCormicks after taking over the role from Geoffrey Rogers in 2019. Minnikin's practice covers money laundering and ponzi frauds, while Rogers focuses on complex commercial and white-collar fraud work.

Practice head(s):

Peter Minnikin

Other key lawyers:

Family: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire Tier 3

McCormicks fields specialists in finance, domestic abuse and children law matters, and prides itself on the early settlement of cases by its effective negotiators. Newly promoted partner and group head Stephen Hopwood is highly regarded in the region and associate Carol Hancock is an expert in children and domestic abuse cases.

Practice head(s):

Stephen Hopwood

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

The team at McCormicks has a wide range and depth of expertise in family law. It is both committed and thorough in the approach it takes to each and every case‘.

Carol Hancock has a particular strength and sensitivity in representing victims of domestic abuse, which is reinforced by the work she undertakes with domestic abuse agencies in the local area‘.

Commercial litigation: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire Tier 4

Harrogate-based firm McCormicks is recognised for its representation of sports sector clients, which includes participants and regulators. The team has experience handling a range of contentious matters including contractual claims, construction disputes, debt recovery issues, professional negligence matters and contentious probate work. Beyond the sports sector, the group is growing its digital sector expertise with several new client wins. Philip Edmondson leads the department alongside senior partner Peter McCormick.

Practice head(s):

Philip Edmondson; Peter McCormick

Testimonials

McCormicks provides excellent advice and the outcome is delivered by consummate professionals.

Key clients

The Premier League

Rudding Park Ltd

Leeds United Football Club

GMI Construction Group PLC

Oracle Finance Limited

DFS Furniture Company Limited

Solicitors Indemnity Fund Limited/Legal and Professional Insurance

The Isthmian League (Bostik League)

Lunchbox Theatrical Productions Limited

InTechnology PLC

The Estate of the late John Strutt and associated Trusts

IT and telecoms Tier 4

McCormicks attracts instructions from IT and telecoms sector companies and clients (largely in the sport, media and entertainment sectors) that are investing in technology. Jon Healey heads up the practice and has experience advising technology sector clients with IP exploitation work, software licensing agreements and other corporate and commercial matters.

Practice head(s):

Jon Healey

Key clients

Welcome to Harrogate Limited (T/A Visit Harrogate)

National Pharmacy Association

The Rookery Project Limited (trading as Azzuu)

Corrado’s Ltd

Eden Telecom Limited

InTechnology PLC

Gareth Harris Limited

(AQ) Limited

Love Layla Designs Limited

The Premier League

The Premier League Charitable Fund

InTechnology WiFi Limited

The Isthmian Football League Ltd (trading as the Bostik League)

Personal tax, trusts and probate Tier 4

McCormicks continues to advise trustees, settlors, beneficiaries, attorneys and deputies in relation to planning and administration of estates and court of protection matters. The firm has a longstanding relationship with the Premier League, for which it provides advice on trust structures intended to protect young and wealthy players. Peter McCormick and Elaine Lightfoot are the key lawyers in the practice.

Practice head(s):

Peter McCormick; Elaine Lightfoot

Key clients

The Estate of the late John Herbert Strutt

The Premier League

Property litigation Tier 4

McCormicks handles the full range of contentious real estate work with particular knowledge of commercial landlord and tenant work; the group also leverages the firm's strength in the sports arena to acts for clients in the sector on property disputes. Philip Edmondson leads the group and Heather Roberts specialises in retail work; Roberts' expertise also includes development-related issues, shooting rights work and lease mandates.

Practice head(s):

Philip Edmondson

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

The Premier League

John Strutt Conservation Foundation

Executors of John Herbert Strutt Deceased

Leeds United FC

John Strutt Centre for Parrot Conservation

John Strutt Memorial Foundation

GMI Holdings PLC

Commercial property: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire Tier 5

McCormicks covers both commercial and residential property work and acts for a range of clients including owner occupiers, organisations, private individuals, charities, developers and portfolio investors. The team is headed by Heather Roberts, who advises on the full range of commercial property deals, advising high street retailers and retail schemes acting for both tenants and landlords. She has also worked with major developers, public bodies and occupiers to design, fund and deliver regeneration schemes.

Practice head(s):

Heather Roberts

Key clients

Royal Horticultural Society

John Strutt Conservation Foundation

The Premier League

Leeds United FC

Yorkshire Bank

Yorkshire Agricultural Society

John Strutt Centre for Parrot Conservation

John Strutt Memorial Foundation

The John Strutt Charity

Rudding Park

Intellectual property Tier 5

Known particularly for its sport,  media and entertainment sectors expertise, the intellectual property practice at McCormicks assists clients with the protection and monetisation of their IP rights. The group also acts for several clients in the retail sector and is increasingly being instructed by start-ups. Corporate and commercial lawyer Jon Healey heads up the team, while name partner Peter McCormick is a key name to note, particularly for sports sector work.

Practice head(s):

Jon Healey

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

McCormicks is very thorough, can explain legal concepts in an accessible way, avoiding legal terminology, and provides answers within a short time frame.

 

Key clients

The Premier League

Premier League Charitable Fund

Harrogate International Festivals

The Rookery Project Ltd

Leeds United Football Club

T Plus Ltd (James Dawson)

DFS Furniture Group Limited

Visit Harrogate

AQ Limited

Julian Norton

The Isthmian League (Bostik League)

Corporate and commercial: Leeds, West Yorkshire, North Yorkshire Tier 6

McCormicks is frequently instructed by a range of high-net-worth individuals, local SMEs and large corporates, particularly in the sport, hospitality and leisure sectors. Jon Healey heads up the team and specialises in transactions with complex finance arrangements, while Peter McCormick has significant sports sector expertise.

Practice head(s):

Jon Healey

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

McCormicks‘ corproate team is very friendly and responsive.

Jon Healey turns things around very quickly and explains the issues in plain English.’

McCormicks‘ professional approach and subject knowledge gives clients reassurance that it knows what it is talking about.

Key clients

The Premier League

Premier League Charitable Fund

Rudding Park Limited

Paul Lamb Racing Limited (t/a Swift Carbon Pro Cycling)

(AQ) Limited

Harrogate Town AFC Limited

Harrogate International Festivals Ltd

InTechnology PLC

Torne Valley Limited

T Plus Ltd

Norwich City FC (Delia Smith and Michael Wynn Jones)

Professional discipline Tier 4

McCormicks is particularly well known for its disciplinary and regulatory work in the football world. The practice also regularly assists with SRA investigations and SDT defence work. Peter McCormick OBE is senior partner; Philip Edmondson is commercial litigation services head; Peter Minnikin acts in disciplinary matters involving medical practitioners, physiotherapists and the Yorkshire Agricultural Society; and senior associate Sara Morgan represents National Pharmacy Association members in professional discipline cases.

Practice head(s):

Philip Edmondson; Peter McCormick OBE; Sara Morgan

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

National Pharmacy Association

The Premier League

Professional Game Match Officials

Leeds United FC

Sport Resolutions (UK)

Yorkshire Agricultural Society

Solicitors Indemnity Fund

Liverpool FC

Sport Tier 4

McCormicks' sports team predominantly carry out full-service work for the Premier League, the Isthmian Football League and a number of well-known football and rugby clubs, handling high-profile disputes, sponsorship and contractual agreements and compliance with international regulatory standards. More broadly the team represents shoot proprietors and cycling clients, such as Paul Lamb Racing, advising on compliance and approval applications. Practice head Peter McCormick has longstanding connections with the Premier League, while corporate partner Jon Healey handles a high volume of forward financing work for clubs. Philip Edmondson manages the firm's litigation portfolio for sporting clients.

Practice head(s):

Peter McCormick; Jon Healey

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

The Premier League

The Premier League Charitable Fund

Leeds United FC

The Bostik League

Professional Game Match Officials

Frank Boddy

Visit Harrogate

Harrogate Town AFC

Walsall FC

McLaren Formula One

Otley RUFC

Leeds Rhinos RLFC

Yorkshire County Cricket Club

Robert Jones

Liam Botham

Norwich City FC

Mediators Tier 5

McCormicks' senior partner Peter McCormick OBE, who heads the sports and media and entertainment practice at the firm, is highly rated for his mediation work in relation to sport.

McCormicks is an award-winning practice in Harrogate with an impressive client list across the legal disciplines. The firm is regarded as one of the top regional practices, acting in high-profile national cases as well as those in its region.

The firm: McCormicks has grown organically and is admired for its continued ability to operate successfully in the corporate and commercial field, while at the same time maintaining its strong commitment to its private client practice. The firm’s traditional core values of integrity, technical excellence and hard work are combined with its reputation for vibrancy and dynamism, and a team that is committed to providing clients with an unrivalled quality of service and innovation.

Types of work undertaken: The firm’s major areas of work are corporate/commercial (including commercial property), commercial dispute resolution, competition, corporate recovery, corporate crime and risk, and private client (including family/matrimonial and charities).

The corporate/commercial department has a client list that includes owner-managed businesses, partnerships, pIcs and private businesses, banks, insurance companies, and personalities from the world of sport and entertainment. High-profile clients in the region include Rudding Park and Harrogate International Festivals. The complete range of commercial work is handled, including corporate, commercial property, franchising, intellectual property, liquor licensing and employment. The firm has established a burgeoning reputation in IT and e-commerce, advising a number of internet and new media businesses. Leisure is also an important sector. Peter McCormick has been chairman of Visit Harrogate, responsible for all business and leisure tourism in the region.

The practice has an outstanding reputation in sports and media/entertainment law, and senior partner Peter McCormick is regarded as one of the leading sports lawyers in the country, having advised on a number of high-profile matters involving football, rugby, horse racing, cricket, motor racing and athletics. He is Chairman of the Legal Advisory Group of the Premier League. He has been acting chairman of the Premier League 2014-15. He is Chairman of the Football Board of the Premier League, Vice Chairman of the F.A., a member of the Football Regulatory Authority, Professional Game Board and chairman of the F.A. International Committee and F.A. Group Remuneration Committee. Other clients include Leeds United FC, Yorkshire County Cricket Club, Professional Game Match Officials Ltd and a variety of other leading organisations, clubs and individuals.

The firm has a strong reputation for regulatory and disciplinary work in sport and the professions. Mr McCormick acts for the Premier League and as a chairman of tribunals and arbitrations. He is also a chairman of Sports Resolutions (UK).

McCormicks’ commercial dispute resolution practice covers the full range of work in this area, including personal litigation, defamation, property litigation, contract disputes, construction, intellectual property, debt recovery for national institutions and contentious trusts and probate. The firm is very strong in alternative dispute resolution and mediation.

The firm has developed nationally recognised expertise in competition law, having represented a construction company in the largest investigation ever launched by the OFT and which became the largest appeal case in the history of the Competition Appeal Tribunal. McCormicks’ work on behalf of the appellant resulted in the case becoming the first successful appeal on all issues, including liability, in a case in which penalties had been imposed under the Competition Act 1998.

McCormicks has a legendary reputation in criminal law, covering all aspects of this practice area, with a focus on serious fraud, major crime and defence of tax investigations. Under the leadership of partner Geoffrey Rogers, the team has acted in a number of major tax cases and VAT tribunals. The firm was one of the first in the country to be appointed to the Specialist Fraud Panel and the Very High Costs Cases (VHCC) Panel. Another specialism is defending road traffic cases of all types.

Private client work includes residential conveyancing and a full service on wills, trusts and settlements. Inheritance and tax planning are other strengths. The firm is a leader in charity law and acts for over 20 charities, including the Outward Bound Trust, The Premier League Charitable Fund and the Yorkshire Young Achievers Foundation.

All aspects of family work are covered, including childcare, divorce and separation, and the firm was among the first to be accredited under the Law Society’s Family Law Scheme. Mr Rogers is a member of the Family Panel and the firm is a member of Resolution.

Department Name Email Telephone
Senior Partner Peter McCormick OBE p.mccormick@mccormicks-solicitors.com 01423 530630
Corporate and Commercial James Towler j.towler@mccormicks-solicitors.com 01423 530630
General Crime Brian Nuttney b.nuttney@mccormicks-solicitors.com 01423 530630
Corporate Crime, Fraud and Risk Peter Minnikin p.minnikin@mccormicks-solicitors.com 01423 530630
Dispute Resolution (including Commercial, Mediation and Personal) Philip Edmondson p.edmondson@mccormicks-solicitors.com 01423 530630
Employment Sara Morgan s.morgan@mccormicks-solicitors.com 01423 530630
Commercial Property Heather Roberts h.roberts@mccormicks-solicitors.com 01423 530630
Private Client Elaine Lightfoot e.lightfoot@mccormicks-solicitors.com 01423 530630
Family and Matrimonial Stephen Hopwood s.hopwood@mccormicks-solicitors.com 01423 530630
Family and Matrimonial Carol Hancock c.hancock@mccormicks-solicitors.com 01423 530630
Corporate and Commercial Emily Steed e.steed@mccormicks-solicitors.com 01423 530630
Dispute Resolution William Bates w.bates@mccormicks-solicitors.com 01423 530630
Photo Name Position Profile
 Will Bates  photo Will Bates
 Philip Edmondson  photo Philip Edmondson
 Carol Hancock  photo Carol Hancock
 Stephen Hopwood  photo Stephen Hopwood
 Elaine Lightfoot  photo Elaine Lightfoot
 Peter D G McCormick OBE  photo Peter D G McCormick OBE
 Peter Minnikin  photo Peter Minnikin
 Sara Morgan  photo Sara Morgan
 Brian Nuttney  photo Brian Nuttney
 Heather Roberts  photo Heather Roberts
 Emily Steed  photo Emily Steed
 James Towler  photo James Towler
Number of UK partners : 7
Number of other UK fee-earners : 11