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BTO Solicitors LLP

ONE EDINBURGH QUAY, 133 FOUNTAINBRIDGE, EDINBURGH, EH3 9QG, SCOTLAND
Tel:
Work 0131 222 2939
Fax:
Fax 0131 222 2949
DX:
ED77 EDINBURGH
Email:
Web:
www.bto.co.uk
Edinburgh, Glasgow

Scotland: Corporate and commercial

Corporate and commercial: Edinburgh and Glasgow
Corporate and commercial: Edinburgh and Glasgow - ranked: tier 4

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP's team undertakes a wide variety of corporate transactions, including acquisitions and disposals, joint ventures and company restructurings. In addition, it advises on investment agreements, shareholder agreements and corporate governance issues, among other matters. The firm has a diverse client following, which includes sole traders and Scottish SMEs, as well as UK and international businesses. In the construction sector, Scott Wyper and senior solicitor Emma Barclay acted for Lifting Gear Hire Limited in its £1.7m acquisition of a competitor's business and assets in 2017. The firm generates work from clients across many other industries, including energy, food and drink, and travel and leisure. Wyper and practice head Jeremy Glen are two of the six partners in the team, with the other names being Andrew Sleigh, Alastair Dunn, Gary Booth and Patrice Fabien.

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Scotland: Crime, fraud and licensing

Crime: fraud
Crime: fraud - ranked: tier 2

BTO Solicitors LLP

Clare Bone leads BTO Solicitors LLP’s Glasgow-based team, which also includes Alasdair Gillies and Vikki Watt. The team is instructed by senior executives of major financial institutions, accountancy and asset management firms, and has wide-ranging experience dealing with the fraud aspects of banking-related cases. The group is currently representing a senior director on the board of a major banking institution in connection with a Crown Office investigation into alleged criminality arising from a Rights Issue. It also acts for the Managing Director of a regional Chartered Accountancy firm in a prosecution for a fraudulent scheme to obtain Scottish Government funding. Other major ongoing cases involve high value embezzlement at a public institution and investigations into suspected cartel activity in the construction industry.

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Crime: general
Crime: general - ranked: tier 2

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP  has built on its substantial health and safety practice and expanded into general criminal representations, underpinned by an experienced team of criminal lawyers. The practice is led by Clare Bone , whose clients include a significant number of high profile professionals and those facing historic abuse allegations. Alasdair Gillies  continues to act for the membership of the Prison Officers Association Scotland, handling criminal cases arising in both on and off duty circumstances. Vikki Watt  is currently acting for two companies suspected of breaching the Corporate Homicide and Corporate Manslaughter Act. Associate David Cairns has a wealth of experience defending clients with charges relating to terrorism, firearms and financial crime; he successfully defended a client in extradition proceedings.

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Licensing
Licensing - ranked: tier 2

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP¬†‚Äôs practice is led by Nicolas McBride, who stands out for ‚Äėalways providing excellent service and solid, reliable advice and guidance‚Äô. The firm‚Äôs clients include a number of major hotel brands, and it undertakes all liquor and houses in multiple occupation (HMO) licensing for Shearings. It also advises a range of pubs, clubs and restaurant, as well as handling contentious licensing applications. A highlight on the transactional side, the team advised Jewel Trustees on licensing transfers related to the sale of two major Scottish hotels. It also advised Gourmet Burger Kitchen on an application for road consent and pavement license for outdoor drinking areas during the Edinburgh Festival, in addition to performing a detailed assessment of the possible implications of a drinks promotion. Jane Steel and Graeme Kelly are also key contacts.

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Scotland: Dispute resolution

Commercial litigation
Commercial litigation - ranked: tier 2

BTO Solicitors LLP

Dispute resolution is a major area of focus at BTO Solicitors LLP, whose high quality team fields 20 solicitor advocates. Robin Macpherson assisted Aikengall Community Wind Company Limited as the pursuer with settling a dispute with Storey Construction and AL Daines that had arisen over the construction of a 16 turbine wind farm. Jones QC and Jilly Petrie are representing AIG Insurance and the M74 Interlink Joint Venture in a high-profile land contamination claim brought by Esso. Dorothy Hatfield and others are representing Dooneen Limited t/a McGinness Associates in a potentially groundbreaking UK Supreme Court test case, which concerns the entitlement to PPI awards where there has been an intervening insolvency of the claimant. Paul Motion  acted for Trump International Golf Links Scotland in cases concerning derogatory material published on Facebook, as well as US and UK news outlets, and also worked with Laura Irvine to represent the same client in a data protection matter. David Young is particularly active in property litigation, including cases involving property damage and commercial leasing. Angus Crawford's wide-ranging expertise includes cases related to oil and gas, environment, construction and contractual disputes. Grant Hunter leads the team with Jones QC. Bill Speirs, Mark Morton and Sandra Cassells are other key figures. Tony Jones QC joined Brodies LLP.

Next generation lawyers

David Young - BTO Solicitors LLP

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Debt recovery
Debt recovery - ranked: tier 3

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP undertakes a sizeable volume of secured and unsecured recoveries work for banks and credit insurance companies, as well as Scottish, UK and international businesses. In addition to banking and financial services, the team (which is led by Grant Hunter) is particularly active in retail, property management and social housing. Other sector strengths include food and drink, and ports and marine. Dorothy Hatfield and others are acting for a PPI claim recoveries company and its client (which had succeeded in a PPI claim) in a UK Supreme Court case which concerns the entitlement to PPI awards where there has been an intervening insolvency by a claimant. Quarriers, Cigna Global Health and American Express Services Europe Limited are other notable clients. Hunter's team also includes David Young and consultant Robin Macpherson, who is an accredited insolvency specialist. Kirsteen Maclean has more than 10 years of debt recovery experience. Tony Jones QC joined Brodies LLP.

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Scotland: Finance

Insolvency and corporate recovery
Insolvency and corporate recovery - ranked: tier 4

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP's outstanding reputation in dispute resolution makes it a particularly strong choice for insolvency litigation, which includes cases involving allegations of misfeasance by company directors, personal liability and disqualification proceedings. Robin Macpherson and James Reekie acted for the liquidator of Denmore Investments in an appeal at the Sheriff Appeal Court, which related to the liquidator seeking to reduce a guarantee granted by the liquidated company on the basis that it constituted a gratuitous alienation under section 242 of the Insolvency Act 1986. On the non-contentious side, Alastair Dunn is experienced in insolvency-related corporate restructurings, while Andrew Sleigh (an accredited specialist in insolvency) has expertise in M&A transactions. Kirsteen Maclean, who acts for insolvency practitioners in personal and corporate insolvencies, holds the Certificate of Proficiency in Insolvency (Scotland) qualification from the Insolvency Practitioners' Association. Grant Hunter is another name to note. Dorothy Hatfield and Dunn jointly head up the practice.

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Scotland: Human resources

Employment
Employment - ranked: tier 3

BTO Solicitors LLP

Noted for its ‚Äėexcellent knowledge‚Äô, BTO Solicitors LLP¬†provides employers and employees with ‚Äėpragmatic and commercially sensible advice‚Äô. The group handles all employment matters for the Scottish Prison Officers Association membership and is currently engaged in several matters at tribunal, including sexual orientation and disability discrimination, unfair dismissal cases, and a holiday pay claim, which is in appeal at the Employment Appeal Tribunal. It is also on the panel for the City of Edinburgh Council, which it is defending in several high profile tribunal claims. The practice is led by Caroline Carr¬†who, alongside Laura Salmond,¬†is noted for ‚Äėimpressive employment expertise‚Äô. Carr has noted experience in advising medical professionals on employment and disciplinary issues. David Hoey is also recommended, and leads on a number of contentious matters, in addition handling corporate employment matters.

Next generation lawyers

Laura Salmond - BTO Solicitors LLP

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Health and safety
Health and safety - ranked: tier 1

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP‚Äôs ‚Äėeffective‚Äô team ‚Äėconsistently raises the bar to stay ahead of the other Health and Safety specialists‚Äô. The team is jointly led by¬†Clare Bone¬† and Vikki Watt, who are rated as ‚Äėpractical, experienced and exceptional lawyers‚Äô. Watt acted for a former director of the Jim Clark Rally in the first joint fatal accident inquiry in Scotland, in a case concerning numerous spectator deaths at two separate rally events, resulting in a favourable determination for the client. Bone represented Tarff Valley following the death of a customer, who fell from height at one of its stores, which resulted in only a technical charge for the client and a trial acquittal for the store manager involved.

Leading individuals

Clare Bone - BTO Solicitors LLP

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Scotland: Insurance

Medical negligence: defender
Medical negligence: defender - ranked: tier 1

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP’s outstanding practice defends doctors, dentists and nurses against clinical negligence claims before the Court of Session, Sheriff Courts, as well as in fatal accident inquiries and public inquiries. The firm regularly acts for the Medical Protection Society (MPS), the Medical and Dental Defence Union of Scotland (MDDUS) and the Medical Defence Union (MDU) as the principal external advisor. It is also instructed by a number of insurance companies in clinical negligence claims against insured risk. Douglas Jessiman leads the team, which includes Laura Donald and Caroline Carr. Jessiman is adept at handling complex causation cases in front of the Court of Session, and is representing a GP in relation to a claim for damages raised by a former patient who was prescribed medication, and subsequently involved in a fatal car accident. Donald defended a dentist in a claim raised by a patient concerning the administration of a dental procedure that led to bleeding issues, despite the dentist’s knowledge that the patient was on prohibitive medication; after negotiation, the parties agreed a substantially reduced settlement. Duncan Mawby joined Brodies LLP in September 2017.

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Personal injury: defender
Personal injury: defender - ranked: tier 1

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP‚Äôs ‚Äėjustifiably well-regarded team‚Äô is noted for its ability to handle complex and high-value personal injury claims for insurers and insured corporates with ‚Äėpeerless flexibility and good communication‚Äô. It has ‚Äėgood expertise within the catastrophic injury arena‚Äô, in addition to a well-established anti-fraud department. The ‚Äėhighly experienced and extremely professional‚Äô Carly Forrest¬†stands out for being ‚Äėtenacious in defence of client interests, while recognising when a pragmatic approach is required‚Äô. Forrest was instructed by a major insurance company to represent its insured, with respect to a criminal prosecution and concurrent civil claims arising from the death of a child in a swimming pool; the insured party was prosecuted and pleaded guilty to certain health and safety breaches, whilst the civil claims were negotiated out of court, leading to a significantly reduced settlement. Catherine Currie¬†possesses ‚Äėa firm grip on the big picture‚Äô, and handles a mixture of RTA, employers‚Äô, public and product liability cases. The ‚Äėtechnically excellent‚Äô¬†Garry Ferguson¬†specialises in complex high-value and fatal injury claims. Stephen Bryceland¬†leads the practice.

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Professional negligence
Professional negligence - ranked: tier 1

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP’s defender-focused professional negligence practice advises a mixture of professional indemnity and D&O insurers, covering advocates, accountants, architects, engineers, surveyors and other insured or regulated professionals. Alan Eadie leads the team and, alongside Ashley Mawby , frequently acts as an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) mediator. Eadie continues to defend a law firm against a $210m action in connection with breach of contract, negligence and breach of fiduciary duty allegations concerning a private equity investment in the claimant’s oil service company; a case which is now at the Commercial Court. He also defended a consulting engineering company against a £3.6m multi-party liability claim by the employer in a faulty construction project, which was subsequently dismissed due to a time-bar. Tony Jones QC left the firm for Brodies LLP in June 2018.

Leading individuals

Alan Eadie - BTO Solicitors LLP

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Scotland: Private client

Charities and not-for-profit
Charities and not-for-profit - ranked: tier 3

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP advises a broad range of clients on their transition to charitable status, as well as on governance and day-today- charitable operations, reorganisation applications to the OSCR, and regulatory matters. Karen Brodie and practice head Patrice Fabien supported Southside Housing Association with its application for Big Lottery funding for a new community hub project, and on several other governance and procurement matters. Jeremy Glen assisted the Peter Vardy Foundation with the incorporation and registration of a new SCIO. David Hoey handled the University of Strathclyde Students’ Association’s transformation into an incorporated company structure. Associate Marion Davis is recommended for her expertise in charity structures, governance and regulatory issues.

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Family
Family - ranked: tier 3

BTO Solicitors LLP

The ‚Äėstrong‚Äô family team at BTO Solicitors LLP handles family disputes, surrogacy, children‚Äôs referrals, international adoptions and high-value settlements. The group also has expertise family matters involving data protection, revenge porn, reputation management, harassment and domestic abuse. The group is led by the ‚Äėempathetic‚Äô¬†Lesley Gordon,¬†who provides clients with ‚Äėdirect and strategic advice‚Äô on the range of financial issues arising from the formation and breakdown of relationships, particularly involving high-net-worth individuals. She is also an experienced family arbitrator and mediator. ‚ÄėCollaborative‚Äô associate Marjory Blair¬†focuses on issues involving children, and is particularly noted for handling cases involving child protection and domestic abuse. Associate Denise Laverty¬†is also recommended for English and Scottish jurisdictional issues.

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Personal tax, trusts and executries
Personal tax, trusts and executries - ranked: tier 4

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP¬†is rated for its¬†‚Äėexcellent‚Äô¬†client service and for providing advice that is¬†‚Äėalways appropriate and easily understood‚Äô. The group handles a variety of matters, including inheritance, capital gains and income tax planning, business succession planning, the establishment and administration of trusts, financial assessments for care home fees, wills, and high-value estate administration. Roddy Harrison¬†is noted for his expertise in relation to small business tax and succession planning, and also specialises in executry administration, particularly focusing on high-value inheritance tax paying estates and complex estate distributions. The ‚Äėfriendly and empathetic‚Äô Ross Brown¬†handles a number of cross-border estate administration matters, in addition to mandates involving adults with incapacity.

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Scotland: Projects, energy and natural resources

Energy (excluding oil and gas)
Energy (excluding oil and gas) - ranked: tier 4

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP has a strong track record in community-driven renewable energy projects, and with advising landowners on the diversification of landed estates in wind and hydro developments. David Gibson is acting for Luss Estates Company as the landowner in the construction of an innovative new community hydro scheme. In addition, Scott Wyper, team head Nicolas McBride, Emma Barclay and Marieclaire Reid are advising Triodos Bank on the refinancing of an operational single turbine community wind farm. They also recently assisted the same client with financing the development of a three turbine wind farm, which is being developed as a joint venture between housing association Fyne Homes and Community Energy Scotland. Other specialisms of the team include projects involving solar, energy from waste and biomass. Jeremy Glen is recommended for his project finance expertise, and also his knowledge of the commercial and contractual aspects of renewable energy deals. Alan Borthwick is another key figure.

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Scotland: Public sector

Education
Education - ranked: tier 3

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP¬†handles the spectrum of education sector work, but it excels in employment, cyber security and data protection matters (for which it is noted as ‚Äėoutstanding‚Äô), where it is instructed by a variety of major Scottish educational establishments. Team head David Hoey¬†has an ‚Äėin-depth‚Äô knowledge of the Equality Act, and is experienced in representing institutions before the Sheriff Court and specialist tribunals. He advised the University of Strathclyde Students‚Äô Association (USSA) on the employment aspects of an asset transfer, which included TUPE and employment processes. Associate Marion Davis¬†is assisting the USSA with various aspects of its move to an incorporated company structure. Data protection and cyber security expert¬†Laura Irvine¬†advised a Scottish college on data protection concerns, including the Named Persons Legislation, complex subject access requests, consent forms and some GDPR compliance issues. She is currently advising the Glasgow Academy on the implementation of GDPR throughout the school, and the legal basis for processing fair notice provisions, contracts, fundraising and data retention.

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Scotland: Real estate

Commercial property: Edinburgh and Glasgow
Commercial property: Edinburgh and Glasgow - ranked: tier 3

BTO Solicitors LLP

Commercial property: leisure and hospitality - ranked: tier 1

BTO Solicitors LLP

Commercial property: retail - ranked: tier 2

BTO Solicitors LLP

The experience of BTO Solicitors LLP's team has made it a go-to for commercial developers, housebuilders, retailers, charities, large estates and UK/overseas investors, among other clients. The group, which is jointly led by chairman Alan Borthwick and David Gibson, advises on the full spectrum of real estate matters, with support from practitioners active in areas such as banking and finance, construction and private client/tax. In 2017, Graeme Kelly, Peter Graham and others acted for Wirefox Management in the circa £16m acquisition of Silvan House in Edinburgh, and in its £43m acquisition of the multi-let office Capella Building in Glasgow. Showcasing the firm's work in development matters, Gibson is advising independent whisky company Isle of Arran Distillers on the development of a new distillery and warehouse. Another notable individual Scott Buchan assisted Calmont Group with negotiating a development agreement with Maven Capital over the refurbishment and conversion of Douglas House in Bothwell Street (Glasgow) to an Accor-branded hotel. Jane Steel acts for retail sector brand names, such as Superdry, Adidas and Maplin. Senior associate Jennifer Whitelaw is another notable individual.

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Construction
Construction - ranked: tier 4

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP handles a mix of contentious construction matters, which includes cases involving complex insurance/liability/quantum issues, contractual disputes and conflicts over final accounts and extensions of time, challenges to certification and construction defects. Jilly Petrie has particular expertise in this area. In addition, practice head Sandra Cassels specialises in construction and engineering dispute resolution. Elsewhere, the group advises on the non-contentious aspects of projects at all stages from inception to completion. It acts for a broad base of clients, including contractors, sub-contractors, local authorities, developers and funders. In 2017, Cassels and associate Caroline Earnshaw acted for Tigh Grian Limited in the delivery of 48 sustainable, energy-efficient and affordable homes to Link and Paragon Housing Associations. A notable growth area for the firm has been in mandates from hotel and leisure sector developers, with the team negotiating building contracts, professional appointment agreements, development agreements and facility agreements. Consultant Ann O’Connell, and associates Julie Scott-Gilroy and Claire Mills, are also recommended.

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Property litigation
Property litigation - ranked: tier 3

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP, which fields six solicitor advocates, undertakes a comprehensive range of property disputes for insurance companies, property developers, property managers, registered social landlords and housebuilders, among others. David Young was the lead adviser to ELB Securities Limited (the owner of commercial premises on Buchanan Street in Glasgow) on a case which is the leading authority on the status of property disclaimed by the Crown during a time when a company has been struck off the register of companies. Bill Speirs, Jilly Petrie and others are acting for a large insurance company in a claim by William Grant & Sons, which arose from the collapse of the roofs of its warehouses as a result of heavy snowfalls in 2009 and 2010. Grant Hunter and Graeme Kelly are advising Pendragon Plc on a compensation claim at the Lands Tribunal, which relates to a CPO by Glasgow City Council to build a link road though the client's commercial premises in the east end of Glasgow. Mark Morton leads the team, which also includes consultant Robin Macpherson and Angus Crawford. Associates Mark McCluskie, Michael Collins and Jamie Reekie are also recommended. Tony Jones QC departed for Brodies LLP.

Next generation lawyers

David Young - BTO Solicitors LLP

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Social housing
Social housing - ranked: tier 2

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP has been engaged in the social housing sector for four decades, and its team has a first-rate reputation in strategically significant mandates. Karen Brodie, and associates Marieclaire Reid and Lesley Gray, have been advising Clyde Valley Housing Association Limited on the acquisition of a number of development sites as part of its ambitious development programme. The team has also acted for Southside Housing Association in various matters; Brodie is assisting the client with a community hub project, which will receive Big Lottery funding and will be taken forward with another local community organisation. Team head Patrice Fabien recently advised the same client on governance issues, including updates to its Code of Conduct for Governing Body Members, and on a response to a complaint by a bidder over the client's approach to a procurement exercise. Grant Hunter oversees the firm's RSL litigation work and is experienced in disputes arising from tenancy breaches, stock transfers and development projects. Caroline Carr and Marion Davis are accredited by the Law Society of Scotland as specialists in employment law and charities law respectively, while consultant Ann O’Connell is an accredited construction law specialist. David Young is knowledgeable about debt recovery, tenancy litigation, factoring and ASBOs. Sandra Cassels and Paul Motion are also recommended.

Leading individuals

Patrice Fabien - BTO Solicitors LLP

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Scotland: TMT (technology, media and telecoms)

Intellectual property
Intellectual property - ranked: tier 4

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP’s full-service team handles the range of IP matters, including licensing agreements, but is most noted for its IP litigation practice, where it is often instructed on trade mark and copyright infringement, database infringement, restrictive covenant breaches, domain disputes, website IP disputes and content take-downs. Practice head, Paul Motion successfully represented Milton Hotels in a dispute in which a competitor had used an trade mark infringing internet domain name; a matter that was resolved after a complaint was raised under the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) disputes procedure.

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Media and entertainment
Media and entertainment - ranked: tier 3

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP has a strong profile for reputation management matters, with particular expertise in securing the removal of adverse comment in traditional and social media. Practice head Paul Motion was successful in defending Trump International Golf Club Scotland in court proceedings for damages under the Data Protection Act 1998 relating to material published on social media and in the press. He also successfully represented Mohammad Sarwar at the Court of Session in a challenge to allegations made against the client by a former business associate, that were published in the Scottish media. Tony Jones QC joined Brodies LLP in June 2018.

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Sport
Sport - ranked: tier 2

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP‚Äôs team specialises in football, golf and boxing, but it also acts for clients in a variety of sports on corporate governance issues and disputes. It is also often instructed to negotiate commercial terms with both men‚Äôs and women‚Äôs international sports teams on behalf of the Scottish Football Association. The practice is headed by the ‚Äėvery strong‚Äô Andrew Sleigh, who is noted for providing ‚Äėcommercial advice‚Äô, particularly set against the political landscape of football. Gary Booth¬†is another key contact, with significant corporate governance and contractual expertise in the context of sport. Other clients include Hampden Park and Royal Troon Golf Club.

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