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Mills & Reeve LLP

Work 0344 880 2666
122891 CAMBRIDGE 4

Gary Attle

Work 01223 222394
Mills & Reeve LLP

Work Department

Regulatory, public law and commercial disputes group.


Head of education and governance. Gary leads the firm’s national practice in the higher education sector, which advises on all areas where universities need legal advice, ranging from spin outs to student accommodation developments to international joint ventures. His own specialist area relates to governance and student issues. Gary’s recent work involves advising universities on allegations of research misconduct, the student-university legal relationship, the regulatory framework for higher education, defamation and freedom of speech. Many of his matters have an international element to them.


Trained Mills & Reeve; developed specialist practice in the law relating to higher education, advising on several test cases and policy matters; partner 1999. Director, Higher Education Academy. Publications: Education Case Reports; consultant editor to Farrington and Palfreyman‚Äôs ‚ÄėLaw of Higher Education‚Äô (2006).


Education Law Association.


Westbourne High School, Ipswich; Lincoln College, Oxford University (1989 Jurisprudence First Class; finals prize for contract law). Harvard Business School (leading professional firms program).


Cycling, tennis, family, reading, the arts and sciences.

East Anglia: Dispute resolution

Commercial litigation: Cambridge

Within: Commercial litigation: Cambridge

Mills & Reeve LLP 'offers an excellent service to clients in commercial litigation matters, which are handled robustly on clients' behalf and the issues are always well thought through', says one barrister who notes that 'the calibre of the lawyers is high and they are always a pleasure to be instructed by'. Jamie Wheatley leads the practice and has 'a strong intellect coupled with sound commercial judgement, and he appears popular with clients and a real pleasure to work with'. The firm's other stars include Gary Attle who focuses on public law and clients note his 'exceptional experience and wisdom' adding that he is 'a delight to work with'; associate Lino Di Lorenzo , who handles corporate recovery and general commercial litigation, is 'incredibly capable, definitely one to watch for the future; his analysis is impressive and he provides clear, intelligible and practical advice'; 'capable litigator' and principal associate Douglas McDonald ; and principal associate Alison Garrett , who is known for 'strong commercial guidance during settlement negotiations'. Di Lorenzo helped Wheatley and principal associate Helen Prandy pursue a $7.6m breach of contract and misrepresentation claim for client 1st Class Legal Limited in Chicago, US. Another highlight saw Duncan Astill handle a £3m dispute for NHS Corby Clinical Commissioning Group. Consultant and head of the North America desk Graeme Menzies  is also recommended. Monika Sobiecki moved to Dentons.

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East Anglia: Public sector


Within: Education

Mills & Reeve LLP¬†is ‚Äėsuperb-plus‚Äė, according to one client who remarks that¬†‚Äėresponse times are usually same-day from initial inquiry to telephone discussion in depth, all staff are very courteous, knowledgeable, and business-like, and the firm represents very good value for money‚Äė. The firm's national multi-disciplinary education group is led from Cambridge by¬†'good all-rounder'¬†and higher education (HE) law specialist¬†Gary Attle, who has shown ‚Äėflawless performance over a decade and is the expert in HE-related legal matters', according to one client.¬†National head of projects and construction Raith Pickup¬†specialises in student accommodation. Property partner¬†Caroline Dean¬†handles development projects for landowners including charities and education sector clients. Principal associate¬†Jonathan Greenwood¬†is recommended for corporate and commercial advice, real estate partner¬†Andrew Wood¬†for student accommodation transactions,¬†Nicola Brown¬†for employment law, and¬†Sarah Seed¬†for banking work. Seed handled a ¬£300m listed bond issue for the University of Southampton. Associate Alison Williams¬†in the firm's regulatory, public law and commercial disputes group is 'very good on legal detail'.

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London: Public sector

Administrative and public law

Within: Administrative and public law

With an established track record in the healthcare and education sectors, Mills & Reeve LLP represents clinical commissioning groups and educational establishments in an array of work. It acted for a NHS Clinical Commissioning Group ("CCG") that was challenged on a funding matter. The team managed to have the client removed as a co-defendant but remain an interested party. It is also advising NHS Corby CCG on a number of matters relating to the Corby Urgent Care Centre involving two judicial reviews regarding a procurement matter and the potential closure of the centre. Richard Sykes in Birmingham is the team head and other key practitioners are  Gary Attle  in Cambridge and  Molly Sanghera in Birmingham.

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Education: individuals

Within: Leading individuals

Gary Attle - Mills & Reeve LLP

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Education: institutions

Within: Leading individuals

Gary Attle - Mills & Reeve LLP

Within: Education: institutions

Mills & Reeve LLP is highlighted for its 'quick response times and very good sector knowledge that is then backed up by specialist lawyers'. A substantial multi-disciplinary team undertakes diverse domestic and international work. Gary Attle, the team leader, has expertise in higher education legislation, governance and data protection. He advised Queen Mary University of London on a freedom of information matter relating to a large-scale clinical trial. The team also advised a number of universities on student disciplinary matters involving issues of potential criminal misconduct, sexual harassment and hate crimes. In other work, it assisted the University of Cambridge in setting up its Cambridge India Research Foundation. Other key members of the group include Richard Sykes, who specialises in contentious matters and is advising an education client regarding a student with a criminal conviction; Christian Bull, who assists universities and colleges with property-related matters; and financing expert Sarah Seed, who is noted as 'an industry expert for re-financing and raising corporate bonds'.

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Education: schools

Within: Leading individuals

Gary Attle - Mills & Reeve LLP

Within: Education: schools

At Mills & Reeve LLP, a substantial multi-disciplinary team handles diverse domestic and international work. Practice head Stuart Pemble advises the Academies Enterprise Trust on all aspects of its operations, ranging from safeguarding to commercial contracts, and Gary Attle, the education sector head, has expertise in higher education legislation, governance and data protection. Other key members of the group include Richard Sykes; Christian Bull, who advises on real estate matters; and Nick Abbott, who has a focus on employment cases.

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