Sintons LLP > Newcastle upon Tyne, England > Firm Profile

Sintons LLP

Crime, fraud and licensing > Licensing Tier 1

Under the leadership of 'very experienced and effective' practice head Sarah Smith, the Sintons LLP team deals with all levels and areas of licensing law, from general administration to new applications, significant variations of licences, and appeals. The group regularly leverages its strong reputation for working in collaboration with licensing authorities and responsible bodies to achieve successful outcomes for clients with applications in cumulative impact policy and stress areas. The team also frequently drafts responses to Government and Local Authority Consultation documents on behalf of trade associations.

Practice head(s):

Sarah Smith


‘Sarah Smith is one of the best licensing solicitors in the country – an exceptionally competent individual.’

‘Strengths are their experience in the detail of the Gambling Act 2015 and previously to that the Gambling Act 1968. They have good working relationships with local authority licensing officers.’

‘Sarah Smith is very experienced and effective.’

Key clients

Danieli Holdings Limited

Ladhar Group

Malhotra Group

Apartment Group

Fenwick Limited

Newcastle United Football Club Ltd

Sandman Hotel Group (UK) Ltd

Northumberland Estates Ltd

Copenhagen 1801 Ltd

Sayturk Ltd

Hibou Blanc Ltd

Market Shaker Ltd

HRC Newcastle Ltd

Cog and Wheel Ltd

Basement Cocktails Ltd

Signature North East Ltd

The Liquor and Restaurant Group Ltd

Cobalt Two Ltd

SDD Industries Ltd

Tokyo Industries (Ultimate) Ltd

Highbridge Leisure Ltd

Union Property Developments (Assembly Rooms) Ltd

Treat View Ltd

Adam Goldstone

Work highlights

  • Obtained a premises licence on behalf of Tokyo Industries to allow part of the iconic Tyne Bridge in Newcastle to be used as an event space.
  • Advised Apartment 1 on a high profile, aggressively pursued, review application brought by Northumbria Police.
  • Applied for a premises licence, on behalf of Signature North East, for a bistro within an estate agent’s office located in a heavily residential area.

Dispute resolution > Commercial litigation: Newcastle Tier 1

According to one client, Sintons LLP houses ‘an excellent team with very good collaborative working and communication’. The practice acts for both companies and individuals and handles the gamut of professional negligence, contractual, trusts and estate disputes. In addition, Angus Ashman has been leading on several of the firm’s most significant property-related cases, which is also an area of focus for Graeme Ritzema. The practice has been undergoing significant changes; the ‘splendidHilary Waters joined from a professional services company in September 2020 and took over leadership of the practice from Ashman; this arrival bolstered the firm’s offering in indirect tax litigation. A month later, defamation specialist David Summerhayes departed to embark on an in-house career. Associate Aimee Hubbard is also recommended for her ‘outstanding performance’.

Practice head(s):

Hilary Waters

Other key lawyers:


‘An excellent team with very good collaborative working and communication.’

‘Worked closely with Aimee Hubbard. Outstanding performance in dealing with the issues, framing litigation risks and clear explanations around possible outcomes. Excellent response time.’

‘The disputes and corporate teams at Sintons are, in my experience, staffed with well-qualified, exceptionally capable lawyers who deliver focused advice from a “real world” position which only comes from experience. They are focused on providing the best client advice.’

‘Hilary Waters. I honestly believe that our agreement would not have been possible without the approach and the work which Hilary has executed. She has a very analytical mind.’

‘This is a Northern firm with a very good reputation in general work, which is now branching out into tax work. I know Hilary Waters very well – she is splendid. Good client skills. She is very knowledgeable across the subject of indirect tax, in general, and VAT in particular.’

‘I found the team to be caring, thoughtful and focused on the task in hand.’

‘The individuals are clearly well trained. Christina Falzon is very sharp and on the ball. I would highly recommend her. We dealt with Cristina who handled our copyright infringement case conscientiously and with the necessary attention to detail such that we were able to achieve an acceptable settlement under the circumstances.’

‘Aimee Hubbard is thorough, knowledgeable and astute, giving us a comprehensive roadmap for our case. At every step, she has managed our expectations extremely well, with timely and clear communication, a full view of the merits of our claim and pragmatic advice at the junctions where we needed to make decisions. She has also proved to be a strong negotiator, and we have been very reassured and confident that she has been able to achieve the best possible outcome for our settlement.’

Key clients

Quanta Services Group Limited

Zynk Software Limited

Matrix Health Services UK Limited

Work highlights

  • Acting for a local authority landowner in a right of way dispute with the local authority.
  • Assisting a large property company with a family ownership dispute.
  • Advising an energy company on warranty and misrepresentation claims following a management buyout.

Public sector > Health Tier 1

Key areas of strength for the healthcare team at Sintons LLP include handling procurement issues and mergers. Additionally, the firm has increasingly been focusing on assisting with collaborations between all the main NHS bodies in the region, particularly in relation to digitisation projects. Practice head Amanda Maskery is noted for her experience working with GP clients, and advises numerous practices on their primary care network contracts and employment arrangements. Victoria Armstrong is the name to note for transactional and property work. The group also enjoys a national reputation for its work in the dental sector. 

Practice head(s):

Amanda Maskery

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

Medway NHSFT

Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHSFT

The Academic Health Science Network for North East and North Cumbria

Gateshead Health NHSFT/QE Facilities Limited

CBC Health Limited

Tynehealth Limited

Teams Medical Practice

The Village Green Surgery

The Gables Medical Group

Central Durham GP Providers Limited

Work highlights

  • Assisting Medway NHSFT with a range of issues including commercial contracts, claims handling, information governance and data protection matters.
  • Advised a GP partnership in Central London on the lease of part of a multi-occupancy health centre from Community Health Partnerships (CHP).
  • Providing ongoing general employment advice to the Academic Health Science Network for the North East and North Cumbria.

Corporate and commercial > Corporate and commercial: Newcastle Tier 2

Sintons LLP maintains a focus on M&A transactions, buyouts, private equity deals and corporate restructuring. The practice is at the forefront of healthcare sector work, while also being widely recognised for its strength in the energy, oil and gas, and leisure industries. Karen Simms heads up the department. Other key figures in the team include Adrian Dye, recently appointed managing partner Christopher Welch and Matt Collen, all of whom are ably assisted by senior associate Emma Pern.

Practice head(s):

Karen Simms


‘Friendly, very efficient speed of service, availability for discussions and advice. Emma Pern and Danielle Dale provide very good services.’

‘Every single team member and every brief Sintons undertake is of the highest quality. They are a unique practice which delivers above and beyond my expectations.’

‘Each individual partner I work with makes me feel like we are one team. The used language is “we” and “us”, never “I” or “you”. The confidence they give me to run my business is a rare value to find and one that I could not be without. Chris Welch has made both myself and my business the success it is today.’

‘We have used Sintons twice for what were two complex family business splits which as well business matters, but also had the very emotional element being close family members. We found them to be very professional and extremely proficient understanding the family interaction. This was the first time we had used Sintons and this was on a recommendation by an outside contact. We are very grateful for the recommendation as it proved to be exactly the right firm for the types of deals we were undertaking. Technology was first-class as was even admin support from secretaries.’

‘Graeme Ritzema and Chris Welch are both very personable and extremely efficient always being available. Chris knew exactly how to handle the family ethics which was very welcome and he always kept a cool professional head. It was apparent Chris worked over weekends when required to keep the deal moving which was really appreciated. We were happy with the final outcome of the split. We would have no hesitation in recommending the firm and the partners, particularly Chris Welch.’

‘Chris Welch has been excellent throughout my dealings with him in relation to a business matter. My experience was such that I have also recommended him to my other contacts.’

‘Chris has a great way of explaining complexities and making them easier to understand. He is patient and very approachable and has a knack of getting straight to the crux of the matter and seeing the issues. He was enormously helpful, giving not just legal advice but practical and common-sense advice.’

‘Emma Pern is simply brilliant.’

Key clients

MODS Management Limited

UTS Group Limited

The Auckland Project

Gainford Group

Ladhar Group

Malhotra Group PLC

Ascot Care Ltd

Advanced Electric Machines Group Ltd

John N Dunn Group Limited

Gisela Graham Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised shareholders on the disposal of 40% of the issued share capital of Mods Management Limited to a Japanese public limited company.
  • Advised Ladhar Group on the purchase of the entire issued share capital of Sir John Fitzgerald (Holdings) Limited.
  • Acted for Advanced Electric Machines Group on an investment made by the North East Innovation Fund Limited Partnership, Saker Capital and angel investors.

Employment Tier 2

At Sintons LLP, experienced practitioner Keith Land heads up a team which is equally comfortable handling work in and out of the Employment Tribunal on behalf of clients from both the public and private sectors. Key areas of strength for the group include reorganisations, strategic advice, TUPE and discrimination claims. The firm continues to expand its client base, focusing particularly on its sectors of expertise, which include healthcare, education, charities, renewables and construction. The practice is also noted for its strong offering at associate level, which includes Angela CarverAilsa Hobson, Fiona Campbell and Catherine Hope.

Practice head(s):

Keith Land


‘Sintons provide an invaluable employment service to my business. With over 200 members of staff in a highly regulated industry, I could not achieve the results I do without their input. Sintons are able to look at each situation and plan accordingly.’

‘Keith Land is, quite frankly, the reason I am able to sleep every night. He is the epitome of kindness, professionalism and intellect within his field.’

‘Angela Carver took the time to understand the company ethos, as well as the business requirements and tailored her advice to ensure what we did was both legally correct but also underpinned our company ethos. Approachable, and very active in offering help and support above and beyond the legal requirements. Friendly, genuine and has the time for everyone – Angela really took the time to build the trust, which meant she was the first port of call for all our managers during difficult times. When away on holiday, she ensured we had a contact point who was well briefed and understood the situation and company approach fully.’

‘Always had good practical prompt advice and service’

‘Catherine Hope was easy to deal with and provided good advice provided.’

‘Strong down to earth approach.’

‘Catherine Hope was exceptional. Relentless in pursuing our goals and super responsive.’


Key clients

Space Architecture (Europe) Limited

ADM Pressings Limited

GCH Corporation Limited

The Auckland Project

Eagles Community Foundation

The Academic Health Science Network for the North East and North Cumbria Limited

Eric Wright FM Limited

Eric Wright Water Limited

Motel One (UK) Limited

Warmseal (Newcastle) Limited

Work highlights

  • Defended ADM Pressings against a claim for automatic unfair dismissal under the public interest disclosure (whistleblowing) regime and discrimination, running to ten days before the Newcastle Employment Tribunal and involving over eleven witnesses.
  • Assisted the Auckland Project with an internal restructure to ensure long term charitable sustainability of the client and in response to restrictions imposed as a result of Covid-19.
  • Advised Motel One (UK) Limited on all aspects of its response to the pandemic, including furlough arrangements, two mass redundancy situations and changes to terms and conditions of employment.

Finance > Banking and finance Tier 2

Sintons LLP has been very active on issues relating to the Covid-19 pandemic, particularly in the context of coronavirus business interruption loan schemes and emergency overdraft facilities. Clients recommended the team for its work on refinancing mandates, which is among its areas of strengths, particularly in the real estate sector where it acts in conjunction with the firm’s property team. Practice head Jane Meikle is particularly experienced in real estate finance work for both lenders and borrowers.

Practice head(s):

Jane Meikle

Other key lawyers:

Mark Dobbin


‘Sintons is a firm that just gets on with it. They have acted for our residential property development company since formation in 2018, dealing with shareholder agreements, building contracts, company formation and related stuff along with the initial bank loan facility.’

‘The refinancing exercise was carried out during lockdown – but it was nevertheless quite seamless. Jane Meikle’s persistence helped drive the transaction to a successful conclusion.’

‘Very engaging and hands-on in terms of supporting us (as lenders) proactively with advice and guidance’

‘Jane Meikle, Matt Collen and Mark Dobbin – all three are exceptional – extremely approachable with a high level of engagement. Very proactive with advice and guidance.’

‘Sintons team has a wide scope of expertise. They offer our business a one-stop shop with a flexible approach. Jane Meikile and Mark Dobbin stand out – they have advised and managed several property and banking transactions for our group.’

Key clients

Creative Support Limited

Cussins (North East) Limited

Malhotra Care Homes Limited

Solar Capture Technologies Limited

Project Knight Limited

Birchdove Homes Limited

Work highlights

  • Assisted Creative Support with the negotiation of a term and revolving facility agreement.
  • Advised housebuilder Cussins (North East) on a £9.5m revolving credit facility.
  • Assisted Solar Capture Technologies with the negotiation of a funding agreement and a grant from The Newcastle upon Tyne, North Tyneside and Northumberland Combined Authority.

Insurance > Personal injury and clinical negligence: claimant Tier 2

An exclusive focus on personal injury work, especially the most complex and life changing cases, differentiates the team at Sintons LLP. Brain and spinal cord injuries, polytrauma and amputations cases form the cornerstone of the practice. Phil Davison and Mark Quigley oversee the practice, which is lauded by one client for its 'excellent understanding of how to put the medical and therapeutic side of the case together and structure it towards a settlement'. The firm also fields a number of specialised sub-groups, with Andrew McGowan heading up the neurotrauma work, while Paul Woodford leads the industrial disease practice.

Practice head(s):

Mark Quigley; Phil Davison; Andrew McGowan

Other key lawyers:


‘The team headed by Mark Quigley is extremely impressive in depth and breadth and are vastly experienced in high value PI claims. They have a wealth of knowledge as to complex medical conditions and their preparation is faultless.’

‘Really hardworking, efficient and first rate. They go the extra mile and nothing is too much trouble. The client comes first.’

‘Phil Davison is a standout partner. He is vastly experienced as well as being approachable. He has handled some really complex and demanding cases. He is never fazed.’

‘Sintons LLP are consistent in their client centred approach, always putting the client first and ensuring that collaboration with those professionals working with them are part of the process in a transparent and inclusive way. They are receptive to new ideas and work closely with partnerships in their local community to provide a best practice service, with the ability to consider and utilise new and innovative strategies.’

‘Andrew McGowan is a standout individual in this team. He is extremely knowledgeable and professional but also friendly and reassuring. He is more than happy to spend time discussing a medico-legal report so that it is the best that it can be for his client yet does not bring pressure to the discussion in an attempt to influence the outcome of the report.’

‘Utter commitment and complete focus on the clients’ best interests. They also have an excellent understanding of how to put the medical and therapeutic side of the case together and structure it towards a settlement.’

‘There is a vast array of experience across the team, even in the more basic of cases. They have a very good serious/catastrophic injury team. Their work is always well prepared and sensible, and they appear to seek counsel’s assistance at the correct time and in the correct cases.’

‘The empathy and communication skills with the client, relatives and members of the MDT really are excellent and stand out for me. Always professional and courteous.’

Work highlights

  • Acting on a claim for personal injuries and losses following an accident at work, in which the claimant sustained life changing injuries when a large piece of metal fell onto his leg from a robotic arm.
  • Representing a 22 year old claimant who sustained traumatic amputations of parts of his left fourth and fifth fingers in an accident at work.
  • Acting on a claim concerning an accident at work in which liability was initially firmly denied, but a 70/30 split on liability in the claimant’s favour was agreed on following commencement of court proceedings.

Private client > Agriculture and estates Tier 2

Estate and agricultural tenancy work is the key focus of practice head Tom Wills at Sintons LLP. Recently, the team has advised on the acquisition and disposal of large farming ventures, agricultural holdings and significant development projects, as well as assisting with the the registration of portfolios of mines and minerals. The group has also been instructed by a number of coal and wind farm sites in the North East; Paul Liddle is the key contact for developers and landowners in the energy, waste and renewables sectors.

Practice head(s):

Tom Wills

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

John Robert Jackson – Jackson Family

Cairns Family

Darlington Football Club

Lintz Hall Farm Limited

Morpeth Football Club

HJ Banks & Company Limited

Suez Recycling and Recovery UK Ltd

Lord Ravensworth / Ravensworth Estate

Storey Family

Crossman Estate

Work highlights

  • Advised the Jackson family on the sale of a large parcel of land which was sold for £2-5m, including estimated overage.
  • Advised the Cairns family on a large sale of agricultural land to the NHS.
  • Advising Darlington Football Club on their proposed stadium move.

Private client > Contentious trusts and probate Tier 2

Clients commend the team at Sintons LLP for its ability to 'cover every field with the best people for the job in hand'; this is achieved through close co-operation with the firm’s dispute resolution, wills and probate, corporate, Court of Protection and agricultural departments. Key areas of work for the group include will administration and trust disputes, proprietary estoppel claims and Court of Protection cases. It is also comfortable handling more unusual cases such as domicile disputes and will rectification applications. The team is led by 'star' senior associate Emma Saunders, who works with seasoned practitioner Angus Ashman and 'conscientious, diligent and dedicated solicitor' Emelie Vardon.

Practice head(s):

Emma Saunders

Other key lawyers:


‘They give you the confidence to know that they will deliver what is required. They cover every field with the best people for the job in hand.’

‘Emma Saunders is a star and produces partner level work. Good knowledge and reputation in the field and excellent judgment.’

‘Emma Saunders did a wonderful job during what was a very distressing time for me and my family. She was totally professional, transparent and extremely helpful throughout. I was particularly impressed with her enthusiasm, honesty and compassion towards our case. Our case was speedily resolved with upmost professionalism allowing it to be extremely cost effective. Emma Saunders is not only a top solicitor but such a lovely person.’

‘They acted in an extremely professional manner without losing the personal elements in being understanding, helpful and caring. The company should be very proud of what they have achieved. Without a moment of doubt or hesitation I would recommend Sintons.’

‘Emma Saunders is one of those lawyers who will “sweat blood” for her clients: absolutely committed to plumbing the depths to ensure that the clients’ needs and aspirations are met and that every possible angle has been covered; very technical, excellent knowledge of trusts law, very pleasant to deal with and able to use this to good effect in building a rapport with opponents where appropriate, but equally knows where to draw a line and dig her heels in. Emma has been ably assisted by Emelie Vardon, who is showing great promise, especially with client handling skills.’

‘The team were extremely empathetic, knowledgeable and professional in every step of the process. All options were clearly explained including pros and cons and cost implications. I never felt pressurised in making decisions. The case was handled during lockdown but I never felt restrictions hampered me in getting the right level of advice, support or guidance. I never felt the process was clunky and all lawyers who dealt with my case were fully appraised of dealings and I never felt was repeating myself.’

‘Most of my dealings are handled by Emelie Vardon. I found her to be a conscientious, diligent and dedicated solicitor. She’s very decisive, clear, her advice is appropriate and prompt. Emelie Vardon is assisted by the watchful eye of Emma Saunders, who is an experienced, knowledgeable, firm and decisive individual. Emma Saunders and Emelie Vardon are pleasure to work with, and make a wonderful team that yields results. I have no problems recommending Sintons, Emma Saunders and Emelie Vardon to anyone requiring their services.’

‘Emma Saunders has been guiding me through contentious wills and a dispute re power of attorney issues. I have found her excellent. She is warm and friendly as well as competent and reliable. I think her capacity for empathy makes her very suitable in this role.’

Work highlights

  • Acted for beneficiaries on their defence of a claim for a constructive trust over property in the estate, and on an additional claim under the Inheritance Act 1975 brought by the cohabiting partner of the deceased.
  • Representing a beneficiary of an agricultural estate in a dispute concerning the construction of a clause in a will, the boundary of land in the estate and the liabilities of an associated will trust.
  • Acting for the beneficiaries of an estate in their claim for a grant of probate in solemn form and defence of a proprietary estoppel claim over estate assets.

Private client > Personal tax, trusts and probate Tier 2

Under the leadership of Paul Nickalls, the team at Sintons LLP continues to develop its expertise in dealing with cross-border estates, in order to better handle the increasing number of instructions it has latterly been receiving from clients with assets located across the world. Another area of growth for the firm is Court of Protection work; the practice recently consolidated its expertise in such matters by welcoming specialist Sophie Moore from London-based firm Anthony Gold Solicitors LLP. Senior associate Paul Collingwood is also noted.

Practice head(s):

Paul Nickalls

Other key lawyers:


‘Sintons have provided impeccable, practical support to my family across a range of personal matters, often in difficult circumstances. They provide clear advice around the most complex areas.’

‘The Court of Protection team are quick, efficient and knowledgeable. They are extremely professional and able. Their client care is of a high level.’

‘The Sintons team are specialists in their field and this makes a big difference when dealing with important matters. They are responsive and attentive to client needs.’

‘Paul Nickalls and Paul Collingwood offer an excellent combination of skills, experience and client handling skills.’

‘I worked with Sintons managing a very complex case and they were really mindful of the individual’s circumstances, being empathetic and supportive. They have worked efficiently and communicated appropriately with the professionals involved, it was easy to involve them in a multi-disciplinary team. Overall it felt like a very personal service.’

‘I have always felt Sintons extends a personal touch in their dealings with me. I never felt like I was with a conveyor belt operation. The fee structure was carefully explained and bills were provided to me throughout the course of the action, rather than receiving one large bill at the end.’

‘An incredibly efficient team. Staff who are incredibly person-centred in their approach.’

‘Paul Nickalls has provided tremendous support to the whole family – he is approachable and happy to provide clear and pragmatic advice to us all.’

Real estate > Commercial property: Newcastle Tier 2

Sintons LLP benefits from its client relationships and panel appointments in the healthcare sector, where it acts for NHS trusts and specialist care providers on site acquisitions and disposals as well as development projects. An additional strength of the team lies in the field of real estate finance; David Ferguson specialises in this space. Rural property work is also a bedrock of the practice, particularly in relation to high-value transactions involving agricultural assets and land; Tom Wills regularly takes the lead on rural land mandates. Practice head Mark Dobbin and Paul Liddle are highly experienced in development projects and portfolio management work for large investors.

Practice head(s):

Mark Dobbin

Other key lawyers:

David Ferguson; Tom Wills; Paul Liddle; Alok Loomba; Louise Kelly; Catherine Davies; Chris Jackson


‘The team that I have the pleasure of dealing with is first-class. The strengths of the team are its very high-level and detailed knowledge of property transactions. This is inclusive of excellent liaison with other legal teams when buying property, understanding of region specific issues such as Tyneside leases and, more importantly, the ability to explain this quickly and accurately to legal teams in other parts of the UK. The team have also been exceptional in renewing leases at a low cost and to both parties’ satisfaction. This has allowed us as a business to purchase excellent value properties safe in the knowledge that we can get leases extended and force appreciate the property along with its refurbishment.’

‘Tom Wills is an outstanding practitioner. He brings outstanding knowledge, a pragmatic and well-reasoned approach and gets excellent outcomes for us on a regular basis.’

‘Excellent lawyers; dedicated, creative, problem solvers. 100% reliable.’

Key clients

Northumberland Estates Developments Limited / Tynemouth Developments Limited

Sansec Developments Ltd

Cambridge Education Group

Jackson Family

Carins Family

Atom Bank Plc

Ladhar Group

Rosen Group BV

The Banks Group

Cussins (North East) Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised The Ladhar Group on the entirety of a deal in which the client acquired a share acquisition of a prominent chain of leisure venues of Sir John Fitzgerald.
  • Acted for Cambridge Education Group Limited, a new significant education sector client, on a complex long rack rental lease of its new head office premises in Cambridge.
  • Acted for Northumberland Estates on development site projects at various locations, including plot sales.

Real estate > Property litigation Tier 2

Sintons LLP is a suitable destination for local and national companies, public sector organisations and high-net-worth individuals. Its recent workload testifies to its notable strength in both residential and commercial property disputes, spanning matters ranging from lease renewals, forfeiture and dilapidation claims, to contentious contractual and possession issues. Angus Ashman leads the department and is regularly assisted by associate Aimee Hubbard. Graeme Ritzema is a key contact for hospital trusts and primary care providers.

Practice head(s):

Angus Ashman

Other key lawyers:


‘Aimee Hubbard was well prepared, focused and sensitive to what was needed to resolve the dispute efficiently and effectively.’

‘Angus Ashman is cerebral.’

‘We have worked with Aimee Hubbard over the past 12 months on a breach of contract dispute. She is thorough, knowledgeable and astute, giving us a very comprehensive roadmap for our case. At every step, she has managed our expectations extremely well, with timely and clear communication, a full view of the merits of our claim and pragmatic advice at the junctions where we needed to make decisions. She has also proved to be a strong negotiator, and we have been very reassured and confident that she has been able to achieve the best possible outcome for our settlement.’

‘Listened, and understanding of the situation.’

‘Aimee Hubbard and Cristina Falzon are both dedicated, hardworking and committed.’

Key clients

Metnor Group

Cussins (North East) Limited

The Trustees for Methodist Church Purposes

The Newcastle upon Tyne NHS Foundation Trust

JGW Patterson Foundation

The Church Commissioners for England

Newcastle upon Tyne YMCA

Hadrian Estates

JG Windows

API Limited

Tolent Group

Work highlights

  • Advised a company on a dispute with a local authority landowner in Tyne and Wear.
  • Advised a client on a professional negligence claim against a firm of solicitors which had acted on the grant of a commercial lease to the client.
  • Advised a client on a dispute regarding the basis of occupation of a Christian group.

TMT (technology, media and telecoms) > IT and telecoms Tier 2

The client base at Sintons LLP largely comprises businesses for whom technology is critical to their operations. The team is known for providing 'highly knowledgeable' commercial advice to such companies, and for assisting with investments and significant M&A deals in the technology sector. The firm is able to leverage its significant expertise in healthcare matters to offer a particularly valued health-tech service, with senior associate Chloe Dinsdale standing out in this area. Other recommended practitioners include Karen Simms, who has extensive experience advising on transactions and contracts, and senior associate Pippa Aitken.

Practice head(s):

Karen Simms

Other key lawyers:


‘The team provides simple access to highly knowledgeable legal help.’

‘Chloe Dinsdale has been a standout help for us. Always provides a quick response and finds the most pragmatic and sensible solutions without exposing us. Very easy to work with and understands our complex challenges.’


Key clients

Shoptimised Limited

Sub 10 Limited

Kani Payments Limited

Video Enhanced Observation Ltd

MODS Management Limited

Venator Materials Plc

Sapphire Technologies Limited

The Academic Health Science Network for North East and North Cumbria

CareIQ Limited

Advanced Electric Machines Group Ltd

Work highlights

  • Assisted Medway NHSFT with the procurement of a new electronic patient records system.
  • Advised shareholders on the disposal of 40% of the issued share capital of MODS MAdvanagement to a Japanese PLC.
  • Advising innovative health tech start-up, CareIQ, on the launch of its platform.

Dispute resolution > Debt recovery Tier 3

Sintons LLP acts for clients on a wide range of contentious issues, including winding up petitions, overdue invoice and rent payment recovery claims, among others. The 'responsive, concise and knowledgeable' Allison Thompson heads up the debt recovery department. Angus Ashman is also a key member in the team.

Practice head(s):

Allison Thompson

Other key lawyers:


‘Allison Thompson was responsive, concise and knowledgeable. I was impressed with her professional conduct and pragmatic approach.’

Private client > Family Tier 3

Although Sintons LLP handles the full range of family law work (except for public law matters), team members typically have particular areas of focus; consultant Elizabeth Gallagher specialises in complex financial remedy cases, while practice head Louise Masters is known nationally for providing advice on the impact of serious injury which is affecting children or other family members. Both of these practitioners are singled out as 'very talented' by one client.

Practice head(s):

Louise Masters

Other key lawyers:


‘The members of the team that I have dealt with have all been attentive and sympathetic, while remaining realistic and very helpful.’

‘Louise Masters has been a life-saver for me. My case had been dragging with some time-wasting from the other side and I was beginning to get very worried and very down about the process. Louise took over my case and immediately took charge. She listened to my concerns and within one meeting had seen the issues that were holding things up. She reassured me, took me through the processes that were needed to speed things up and filled me with confidence so that I knew the matter was going to get resolved. I came off the first call with her knowing that I was in safe hands. She has always been available if I have questions and has always responded promptly. Through the whole process Louise has been there to back me up and give me the advice that I need. I would have no hesitation in recommending her to anyone who needs help with a family matter. I was very low with stress caused by my situation and Louise’s caring but pragmatic approach helped me immensely. I will always be grateful to her for her caring professionalism.’

‘Reliable, very professional, good team work.’

‘I worked with Louise Masters for over eleven and a half months Good listener, her skills were fantastic and she was always on the ball – I would recommend Louise for her professional work.’

‘Very well established. Very strong reputation. ’

‘I have worked both with Louise Masters and with Elizabeth Gallagher. Both are very talented family lawyers. As they are both collaboratively trained and actively practise in this area they deal with matters in a very pragmatic and sensible way.’

‘All round very strong team.’

‘I feel confident that Louise Masters is able to offer expert advice particularly in relation to matrimonial finances. She is a skilled advocate and negotiator, offering clients not only legal expertise but also support in what can be very difficult situations. She is quick to respond to correspondence and pro-active on cases.’

Real estate > Construction Tier 3

Sintons LLP has experience of handling both non-contentious and contentious work, but has carved out a particularly strong reputation for its work on high-value construction and engineering contracts in sectors such as education, care homes, residential development and food production. The team’s varied client portfolio consists of main contractors, sub-contractors, employers and developers. Alex Rayner leads the department and ‘is able to offer excellent practical advice’; clients also show appreciation for his knowledge gained in his previous career as a quantity surveyor.

Practice head(s):

Alex Rayner

Other key lawyers:

Jay Balmer


‘Alex Rayner who leads the team at Sintons is able to offer excellent practical advice. He communicates well with managers in our business without use of legal jargon and has become our go-to expert on all construction matters. Alex makes the legal process needed for large projects easy to manage.’

‘As a part of the multi-disciplinary legal support delivery, Sintons have managed to deliver a traditionally high level of response and client care whilst blending this with modern and very responsive options in terms of what is available and how that is delivered.’

‘Alex Rayner and Jay Balmer have been our main points of contact in terms of matters that have needed attention and assistance. The levels and speed of response have been impressive, as well as the invaluable guidance through the nuances of dispute, contract, and resolution processes to comply with legislation. Alex has made us feel confident and comfortable throughout.’

‘Sintons offer a friendly, ‘pick up the phone’ type of approach which is different from a lot of other law firms we have used. Alex Rayner leads the construction team; with his previous QS background, Alex brings a pragmatic, working knowledge of construction contracts and consultant appointments beyond merely the legal drafting of contracts.’

‘Alex Rayner is a very hands-on lead partner and has the added quality of having a commercial background in construction, which is unique compared to his peers.’

‘The firm has multi-disciplinary depth and strength and is able to provide local clients with a broad range of commercial law services comparable to that of a larger City law firm.’

‘Alex has excellent knowledge and skills in relation to construction law and is able to support and deliver his advice in a very responsive and client friendly manner, and to identify what is important to us commercially and practically. We have always found Alex to be very approachable and professional in our dealings with him.’

Key clients

Greggs Plc

Jerram Falkus Construction Ltd

Tolent Construction Ltd

Tolent Living Ltd

Thompsons of Prudhoe Ltd

The Auckland Project

Pilgrim’s Friend Society

StanLil Contractors Ltd

Meldrum Construction Services Ltd

Hodgson Sayers Ltd

HRC Newcastle Ltd

Sansec Developments Ltd

Bernard Interiors Ltd

Itab Interiors Ltd

Work highlights

  • Acted for Jerram Falkus Construction on negotiating the building contract for the design and development of a complex multi-million pound school and residential development in Acton, London.
  • Advising Dalton Homes (North East) Ltd on negotiating the building contract for design and construction of an 80-bed care home in Crowthorne, Berkshire.
  • Advising a large charity on the construction contracts for its major regeneration project in Bishop Auckland, County Durham.

TMT (technology, media and telecoms) > Intellectual property Tier 3

The group at Sintons LLP is noted for its work on the protection, development and commercialisation of new and emerging technologies through new business start-ups and spin outs, particularly in relation to the medical sector. On matters of this kind, the team is able to leverage the support of the firm's well-regarded healthcare group. Karen Simms, who leads the corporate and commercial department, and senior associate Pippa Aitken are the key contacts for non-contentious work. On the litigious side, Graeme Ritzema is the name to note.

Practice head(s):

Pippa Aitken; Karen Simms; Graeme Ritzema


‘We have found Sintons to be an extremely helpful and responsive firm. They have acted swiftly on our behalf and we feel they have given us sound and valuable advice.’

‘We would mention Karen Simms at Sintons in particular. Karen is extremely friendly, helpful and rigorous. She has responded to our enquiries speedily and effectively and introduced additional expertise from as necessary.’

Key clients

The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

The Medway NHS Foundation Trust

Zynk Software Limited

The Auckland Project


Sirius Technologies Limited

South Durham Leisure Limited

Shoptimised Limited

Video Enhanced Observation Limited

Kani Payments Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Sirius Technologies on an exclusive licensing arrangement with a licensee in the USA to sell the client’s novel technology for application on glass, trim and painted surfaces on motor vehicles.
  • Advised Video Enhanced Observation on its contracts with clients as well as assisting with its brand protection, which has resulted in a WIPO application, designating the US and EU.
  • Acted for Zynk Software in trade mark opposition proceedings within the UK IPO.

Sintons LLP has a history stretching back over 125 years. Throughout this period, the firm has operated from single office premises located in Newcastle. Whilst the firm is immensely proud of its North East roots, it has never allowed geography to limit its ambitions.  Indeed, many of the firm’s clients are based outside the region which is testament to both its reputation and the quality of the service it provides.

The firm’s vision is to consistently set the standard for legal excellence and, in doing so, to be the law firm of choice for businesses, organisations and individuals. This is reflected in its values of teamwork, professionalism and delivering an exceptional service. Sintons final value, its people, is the most important of all as without the dedication and commitment of everyone within the firm it will fail to realise its vision.  The firm’s aim is to actively encourage and promote an attitude among everyone that the way to achieve excellence is by taking real pride in what it does and how it does it.

The firm differentiate itself through the range of services it can offer, from property transactions and all aspects of commercial advice, for both the public and private sector, corporate work, private client matters, and personal injury litigation. Given this breadth of service offering there is no such thing as a typical Sintons client, but what brings the greatest sense of achievement is being able to advise a senior officer holder in a business on any aspect of their corporate or commercial matters whilst also being able to assist with their personal affairs.

Managing Partner Christopher 226 7831
Law Society
Law Society Personal Injury Accreditation
Spinal Injuries Association (SIA)
Society of Trust & Estate Practitioners (STEP)
The Law Society’s Conveyancing Quality Scheme (CQS)
ELA (Employment Lawyers Association)