Blacks Solicitors LLP > Leeds, England > Firm Profile

Blacks Solicitors LLP

Private client > Family: Leeds, West Yorkshire, North Yorkshire Tier 2

Ann Robinson leads the family team at Blacks Solicitors LLP in Leeds. The team has particular experience regarding complex financial remedy work, involving businesses, properties, pensions, and cases with cross-jurisdictional elements. It exclusively deals with privately funded family matters. Clients appreciate the firm’s cross-departmental offerings, with support available from the corporate and commercial, residential property, and wills and probate departments.

Practice head(s):

Other key lawyers:

Paul Lancaster; Josie Kirk; Andrew Foulds


‘Blacks has very talented lawyers, who are very quick to cross-refer other practitioners in other teams to help with issues. It is comforting to know that their team is so collaborative and that you are going to get a holistic solution to your issues, even when they don’t all sit neatly in one department. They are also friendly, knowledgeable people with lovely offices that are centrally located in Leeds.’

‘Andrew Foulds was strategic, compassionate and incredibly helpful, and working with him, we were able to achieve a resolution with our father that we couldn’t have imagined previously.’

‘The Blacks team are very human and understand the needs of clients. They regularly ensure that all available legal options are explained and reasonable adjustments to support are put in place to help clients though their case.’

‘Working with Josie Kirk from the Blacks family law team, I felt very informed and supported throughout my case. Josie outlined a clear plan for my case, including putting together a great legal team to support me winning my case in court.’

‘Josie is a great solicitor who respects and understands the situation of clients, while ensuring to provide clear legal advice with potential outcomes. Josie went above and beyond to support my case, by arranging conference calls to accommodate my late working shifts and reviewing all documentation in very aggressive timelines, prior to me needing to sign.’

‘Josie Kirk was extremely supportive, empathetic and handled everything with the upmost care and urgency. Throughout the course of my proceedings, I received the best advice in regard to what my options were and how best to deal with matters going forward.’

‘The firm has both in-depth experience and the resources to deal with the challenging workload that it undertakes. A number of people are familiar with each matter and are able to progress the processes in an efficient and effective manner.’

‘One thing that makes Paul Lancaster stand-out is that in dealing with family matters, the issues can become clouded with emotional and intransigent responses. Other lawyers can often make subjective comments not grounded in fact. Paul continually brings the cases back to the facts, he deals with the true facts of the case and removes the emotion.’

Work highlights

Corporate and commercial > Corporate and commercial: Leeds, West Yorkshire, North Yorkshire Tier 3

Keys areas of expertise for Blacks Solicitors LLP include acting on transactions in the healthcare sector, as well as in acting for insurance brokers. The team is co-headed by Nigel Hoyle, who has demonstrable experience in the food and drink manufacturing arena, and Phil Parkinson, who specialises in commercial and data protection matters. Saby Sambhi and senior associate Alex Hall act for SMEs and owner-managed businesses, while Pete Bott recently joined the firm and has expanded the practice’s capabilities in the music industry. Lewis Goodwin is another key contact in the group.

Practice head(s):

Other key lawyers:


‘We have used Blacks for the past 20 years, both personally and in business and have always had a professional, reliable service. When you need a solicitor, things tend to be very confusing for the average person but in my experience, Blacks have always explained things in a way that you can understand.’

‘Recently both Alex Hall and Hayley Blackburn were fantastic, among other members of the team at Blacks, when we used their services during the sale of our business in 2022. Making what was a very stressful process as simple as possible.’

‘I was very pleased with the professional approach Blacks’ took from the word go. They were very clear on pricing, and the team would get in touch promptly, with the information required.’

‘I couldn’t recommend Alex Hall enough. Alex gave a very personal service from day one. Nothing was too much trouble for Alex, from giving regular updates on the sale of my business to making sure I fully understood all the legal jargon.’

‘Blacks have been our go-to advisers for many years and have always satisfied our requirements promptly, professionally and with understanding and support.’

‘Practical, pragmatic and professional advice.’

‘The team is very stable which provides great continuity – the same partner has acted for us for over 20 years, supported by good people both in the corporate team and other departments, which creates a very personal high-quality service.’

‘Nigel Hoyle is most definitely our ‘trusted business adviser’ – we value his service levels and legal expertise of course, but equally the fact that he is always happy to give his advice on commercial matters as well as legal matters – and has a pragmatic, commercial approach to all the transactions and other matters Blacks act for us on.’

Key clients

Harrogate Spring Water

TPV Limited

Eville & Jones Limited

Cromwell Polythene Limited


Upper Canada

David Wood Baking

Catalyst IT Solutions

Great Rail Journeys

Fullers Foods

Big Change

Serenity Parks

School ICT

The Dalesman Group

Work highlights

  • Advised the shareholders of Technology Forge Holdings Limited on the sale of the company.
  • Advised the shareholders of ProAktive Holdings Limited on the sale of the company.
  • Advised Audience Collective Limited on the collation of contractual documentation for the Group companies, with elements of data protection flow to the EU and abroad.

Employment > Employment: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire Tier 3

Besides its broad capabilities across the full range of contentious and non-contentious employment matters, Blacks Solicitors LLP provides a niche offering in advising clients on actions against the police and the Ministry of Defence, and on behalf of GP surgeries, dentists, sports professionals, and recruitment businesses. Paul Kelly co-heads the team, handling matters involving redundancy, disciplinary matters, and grievance procedures, alongside co-head Tom Moyes, who specialises in the national minimum wage and work for agency workers. Chris Allen, who also works as part of the sports team, assists in senior departures and shareholder disputes.

Practice head(s):

Other key lawyers:


The team at Black’s always make you feel welcome and answer any queries, quickly making you feel at ease.’

David Ward is who I have worked with on a number of occasions. His knowledge of employment law is impeccable and he has always given me sound advice that has benefited the decisions I have then made. He knows when to move on a case and always explains the risks if any are involved. I have recommended David to family and friends who needed advice previously, as I fully trust his ability and expertise when dealing with employment law.’

Very easy to deal with. Open and timely communication.’

As soon as I met Partner David Ward, I knew I was in good hands. He immediately assessed my situation and quickly proposed his solution as to how we could ensure a successful outcome. Throughout the negotiations he kept me fully in the loop and instilled the utmost confidence that he would achieve our desired result.

I have instructed David Ward and his excellent team many times for my legal needs and all times Blacks Solicitors have not only been successful in terms of winning and settling my cases, but the level of care and compassion towards me and extra support to help me have been above and beyond.’

Down-to-earth and do not use legal jargon.’

The main difference to other law firms I have dealt with is Blacks ability to go the extra mile. They were there not only to offer legal advice, but also to support me mentally whilst going through a very challenging legal battle that lasted over five years.

David Ward was excellent in his advice and outstanding in his availability and general demeanour. He has stuck with me throughout the last five years and words alone really cannot sum up just how amazing he has been.’

Key clients

Really Useful Products Limited

EMS-FP&S Truck & Trailer Parts

Augean PLC

BigChange Limited

Southern Wind Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Timothy Lumb on a successful claim for whistleblowing against Greater Manchester Police before the Employment Tribunal and Employment Appeal Tribunal.
  • Advised Kandice Farrow on a successful employment tribunal claim for disability discrimination against a firm of solicitors.
  • Advising Eville & Jones Group on its acquisition of Vorenta Group.

Insurance > Professional negligence Tier 3

Real estate > Planning Tier 3

The team at Blacks Solicitors LLP is commended for offering a ‘fantastic understanding‘ of planning matters, particularly those that concern regeneration and development schemes. Clients instruct the team to advise on planning applications and impact assessments for a diverse range of industrial, residential and mixed-use development projects. Under the leadership of the ‘highly professional and effective’ James Cook, the practice is also instructed to handle an increasing number of energy and mining mandates. At the associate level, Katy McPhie is highly recommended for her expertise in development matters.

Practice head(s):

Other key lawyers:


‘The practice are always contactable and are able to discuss things clearly and in an understandable manner. They look for solutions rather than highlighting problems.’

‘James Cook and Katy McPhie are very focused and committed and understand the requirements of the client from many angles. With their past experience, they know how best to approach any issues with the Local Planning Authority through direct connections and a detailed understanding of the LPA processes.’

‘We have worked with Blacks on numerous projects and have found them to be knowledgeable, professional, responsive and personable.  The team has a fantastic understanding of the legalities involved in the planning system and are sensitive to the commercial pressures our clients face. They are also very effective – Blacks’ input has been crucial in us obtaining planning permission on a number of sites, and their ability to navigate through the legal complexities has been invaluable.’

‘We have primarily worked with James Cook and Katy McPhie. Both are extremely personable, knowledgeable and professional.’

‘James Cook is a very experienced and able solicitor whom I have used for my legal planning work for a long time.’

‘James Cook provides a highly professional and effective service in planning law.’

‘Black’s Planning team are always helpful to assist with any planning queries and provide a personable service. They work in a methodical way and provide easy to understand advice on a range of matters.’

‘James Cook and Katy McPhie understand the planning process and are able to provide advice on a range of matters. We have no hesitation in recommending them to clients as they always work in a timely and easy to understand manner.’

Key clients

Bridon International Limited

Fluorsid British Fluorspar Limited

Scarborough Group International

Thorpe Park Developments Limited

Wilton Developments Limited

YPP Group of Companies

Work highlights

  • Advised Scarborough Group Limited on an application for planning permission for approximately 549,000 square feet of employment development on 21.17 hectares of green belt land in Leeds.
  • Advised Water Lane Limited (part of Wilton Developments Limited) on a proposal for 45,755 square metres of employment development (storage & distribution and office space), a multi-use sports pitch, associated landscaping, and vehicular, pedestrian and cycle infrastructure in Leeds.
  • Advised Bridon International Ltd. on an application for planning permission for approximately 42,000 square metres of industrial and warehousing development in South Yorkshire, involving the preparation and negotiation of a section 106 agreement which included obligations relating to a new bus service, local employment, tree planting, biodiversity net gain and travel planning.

Real estate > Property litigation Tier 3

Blacks Solicitors LLP provides ‘expert advice and assistance’ on a wide array of property disputes and is particularly reputed for its work in the telecoms space, where the team regularly advises clients with large telecoms portfolios on lease renewal and development disputes as well as contentious infrastructure installations. Practice lead Luke Maidens is an expert on matters related to the Telecommunications Code 2017 and Electronic Communications Code 2019 and also extends the team’s offering to clients seeking advice on dilapidations and land valuation disputes. Aimee Hutchinson is a key contact for disputes in the holiday and home parks sector, and Paul Sagar bolsters the team’s telecoms expertise.

Practice head(s):

Other key lawyers:


‘The team are absolutely fantastic, I cannot praise them enough. They go above and beyond providing expert advice and assistance. Their knowledge on telecoms is second to none.’

‘Luke Maidens and Paul Sagar are always available when needed, and really do go above and beyond to assist clients. I recommend them whenever I can because I find them so amazing to work with. Their knowledge and experience is fantastic, and I trust them implicitly. Every client I have referred has been delighted with their work.’

‘I deal with Luke Maidens and Paul Sagar on a regular basis as a safe pair of hands for clients requiring litigation advice, and they are well-supported by their transactional team when required. Clear and to the point with their advice and find cost-effective solutions.’

‘Luke Maidens and Paul Sagar are experts in the niche field of telecoms and find practical affordable solutions for our clients and are recommended accordingly.’

‘The dynamic approach shown by both Luke Maidens and Paul Sagar in particular makes the team stand out. Both are very approachable and are quick to use their knowledge, skill set, and experience of both the law in general and the law pertaining to their area of expertise to come up with solid ideas on complex issues. Both are very personable and are happy to continually analyse and review new legislation and case law and to apply it to current issues.’

‘Blacks have a strong property litigation practice, providing quality and timely advice on a good range of disputes.’

Key clients

AP Wireless II (UK) Limited

Ashdown Park Homes

Astella Holdings Limited

Avison Young (UK) Limited

Commercial Estates Group

F1 Real Estate

Great British Confectionary Group Limited

Guy’s & St Thomas’ HNS Trust

Harrogate Spring Water Limited

Jemmtec Limited

Leeds University Union

London Borough of Sutton Council

S.Hille & Co (Holdings) Limited

Scout Association Trust Corporation

Seaside Leisure Parks Limited

Stockport District Borough Council

Stonebridge Homes Limited

Talk Direct (Leeds) Limited

The University of Surrey

The Wyedean Weaving Company Limited

West One Loan Limited

Westchurch Homes Limited

YMCA – London and Leeds

Work highlights

  • Acted for Jemmtec Limited, part of a wider US manufacturing conglomerate, in the defence of a circa £1.1m dilapidations claim in respect of one of its former manufacturing facilities.
  • Assisted Guy’s and St Thomas’ Foundation NHS Trust with the renewal of various telecoms leases in its portfolio.
  • Acted for significant developer client Commercial Estates Group on portfolio management issues, including the recovery of arrears of rent.

Private client > Personal tax, trusts and probate Tier 4

The wills and probate team at Blacks Solicitors LLP in Leeds is led by Nick Rhodes. It has particular expertise in advising vulnerable clients, taking a holistic approach to issues from estate planning to wealth preservation, with notable Court of Protection experience. Associate Annie Beaumont provides an ‘outstanding service’, and is experienced in supporting clients experiencing mental health challenges.

Practice head(s):

Other key lawyers:


‘Exceptional all-round approach. Consistently high service across all departments in my experience.’

‘Annie Beaumont provided outstanding service in respect of advice and delivery of work in relation to creating multiple wills and trusts. Very knowledgeable, approachable and patient throughout the process. Following completion, seamless referral to another department at Blacks for linked work.’

‘Nick Rhodes, is quick and responsive and very adaptable to suit client needs.’

‘A strong team that put the client at the heart of every project. Nick leads the team from the front and ensures that clients are looked after from the very start.’

‘Nick Rhodes has looked after a handful of my clients, and they have been delighted with the service.’

‘The individuals I work with provide an exceptional service to the client. They get to know the client so well and act as a trusted advisor. Commitment to support is excellent.’

‘Professional, knowledgeable, reasonable charging and deal with matters swiftly and efficiently.’

‘Well-resourced team that can deal with things in a very timely manner.’

Work highlights

Real estate > Commercial property: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire Tier 4

Blacks Solicitors LLP provides its roster of clients with ‘expert knowledge‘ on acquisitions, investments and corporate leasing matters as well as maintaining activities in the residential development and property finance spaces. The team works with a wide range of corporate occupiers, from family businesses to clients such as the Rugby Football League, and has, under the leadership of Nick Dyson, maintained particular expertise in advising clients in the holiday and home parks sector. Matthew Hutchinson, who advises on developments in the energy space, and Beth Laidler, who handles landlord and tenant matters, are also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Other key lawyers:


‘The team work tirelessly to get the job done without cutting any corners. They understand the needs of clients and work to the deadlines provided. They add value at each step of the process and make things easy and transparent. The team are really engaged, responsive, and proud of what they do and always want to do a good job. Additionally, the quality of the more junior members of the team is first class which, with the vast knowledge of the partners, has made this team stand out. Nothing has been too much trouble for the team, and we are very grateful to work which such a great group of people.’

‘I believe that the team’s expert knowledge, attention to detail and personable approach help them stand out from the rest. They are great communicators and really try to understand the key issues that need to be resolved. The ease of access to partners is also impressive.’

‘Nick Dyson (partner) and Jonathan Kay (senior associate) have always been particularly helpful in projects we have been jointly involved. They focus on delivering a seamless and well communicated level of service to clients, and this is very much valued.’

‘The team are professional, reliable and efficient. They are a friendly bunch who are approachable and knowledgeable, able to explain details to the layperson, which was very welcome to us.’

‘Nick Dyson is a forward-thinking and approachable contact, willing to support community projects and taking a personal interest in our social enterprises ethos and aims.’

‘This is a long-established Leeds firm that has a major presence in this area and offers multi-faceted legal services to a significant and loyal customer base who recognise the commitment and personal service they receive. In our opinion, they offer a high-quality, proactive service at very fair and competitive rates, with staff who take a dedicated attitude to customer satisfaction.’

‘The team at Blacks Solicitors are extremely helpful and always professional throughout any transaction. There is a real depth of quality within the team.’

‘Nick Dyson has a strong following in the holiday park sector. He is very easy to deal with. Matt Hutchinson is also very easy to deal with, easy to get hold of, and pragmatic. The team is known for providing sensible, practical advice and getting things done.’

Key clients

Aberford Road Limited

DJ School Leeds CIC

Heywood Homes

Rugby Football League Limited

Walker Humphrey Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised the Rugby Football League (RFL) on moving its head office from Leeds to Manchester, where it has taken a long term lease as part of the prestigious Etihad sports complex development.
  • Advised Heywood Homes (a residential property developer based in Kirklees) on its most recent acquisition, development, finance and refinance of a site in Netherthong, Holmfirth (near Huddersfield) for the development of 38 residential properties.
  • Advised DJ School Leeds on taking a lease of new premises and provided pro bono advice to the School to help it with its move.

Dispute resolution > Commercial litigation: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire Tier 5

Blacks Solicitors LLP handles the full range of commercial litigation for its clients, ranging from banking and financial disputes to charity proceedings and trustee disputes. Luke Patel leads the team, whose ‘advice and knowledge is absolutely first class,’ with particular experience in dealing with complex charity and director/shareholder disputes. ‘Cerebral litigator’ Darren Morganconsistently achieves excellent results’ for his clients.

Practice head(s):


‘What makes Blacks Solicitors unique are the people. The members of the Commercial Litigation department I have had the pleasure of working with have been on hand as and when needed; meeting tight deadlines and ensuring the client is fully appraised of any issues arising. As Counsel, I know that the team at Blacks Solicitors will pull together in times of pressure; and the client’s interests are at the forefront of everything they do.’

‘Luke Patel- His advice and knowledge is absolutely first class’

‘Darren Morgan is a cerebral litigator who consistently achieves excellent results.’

‘There are two stand-out individuals I feel it is necessary to mention. I have had the pleasure of working with both Andrew Morgan and Darren Morgan as part of the legal team on a recent trial. It has been clear throughout my time working with them that the client feels entirely at ease with each of them – they are trusted and have a way of ensuring the client is fully re-assured, whilst retaining an understanding of the issues at hand. From Counsel’s perspective, both individuals have retained a heavy involvement in the litigation and it has been rewarding to work with both individuals as part of a strong legal team.’

‘Luke Patel is highly experienced in a range of disputes, often property-related. Darren Morgan brings a very calm air to matters, such that clients have great confidence in his unruffled manner. Yat Wong is particularly experienced in professional negligence matters. Aimee Hutchinsn has a wide range of experience including in judicial review matters arising in a commercial context. Stand out associates Andrew Morgan is very much up and coming.’

‘The one I work with is Luke Patel. His advice and knowledge is absolutely first class’

‘A strong team with good knowledge and good inter-discipline co-operation within the firm. When main fee-earner was on paternity leave the matter was taken upstairs to head of department.’

‘Luke Patel is stand out. Very ‘savvy’. Sound judgment. On top of the issues. Deploys commercial outlook. Excellent client dealing skills.’

Key clients

Pavilion Physiotherapy Clinic Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Pavilion Physiotherapy Clinic Limited in relation to wrongful termination of contracts by Yorkshire County Cricket Club Limited following the allegations of institutional racism by a former player, Azeem Rafiq.

Blacks Solicitors is a 30 partner law firm with around 200 employees. The Firm provides a wide range of legal services to commercial and private clients across the UK, and continues to go from strength to strength.

Operating from its Head Office at City Point in Leeds, Blacks believes in delivering a first-class service to all of its clients, whilst providing expert advice at realistic rates.

To achieve this, Blacks takes time to get to know and understand its clients, building long-term relationships to deliver the best results possible.

Blacks regularly provides advice to owner-managed businesses and high net worth individuals on: Corporate & Commercial Law; Intellectual Property; Data Protection; Employment Law; Real Estate; Leasehold Enfranchisement; Planning Law; Residential and Buy to Let / Conveyancing; Commercial and Civil Dispute Resolution / Litigation; Private Wealth & Succession; and Family Law.

In addition, Blacks also acts for clients across a range of niche sectors including: Banking; Healthcare; Energy; Telecoms; Education; Leisure & Hospitality (including Holiday & Home Parks and Hotels); Sport; and Music Law.

Department Name Email Telephone
Managing Partner Chris Allen 0113 227 9228
Real Estate Nick Dyson 0113 227 9344
Planning & Highways James Cook 0113 322 1915
Corporate & Commercial Nigel Hoyle 0113 227 9225
Banking & Finance Richard Morton 0113 322 1933
Commercial/Civil Dispute Resolution Luke Patel 0113 227 9316
Real Estate Litigation Luke Maidens 0113 227 9298
Residential Property Ian Errington 0113 227 9358
Leasehold Enfranchisement & Management Services Anushka Nicholas 0113 227 9284
Professional Negligence Luke Patel 0113 227 9316
Insolvency Luke Patel 0113 227 9316
Employment Law Paul Kelly 0113 227 9249
Family Law Ann Robinson 0113 227 9291
Family Law Paul Lancaster 0113 227 9233
Private Wealth & Succession Nick Rhodes 0113 227 9247
Sports Law Chris Allen 0113 227 9228
Energy Matt Hutchinson 0113 227 9339
Telecoms Luke Maidens 0113 227 9298
Holiday & Home Parks Nick Dyson 0113 227 9344
Intellectual Property Pete Konieczko-Hansom 0113 227 9279
Photo Name Position Profile
Chris Allen photo Mr Chris Allen Managing Partner
Annie Beaumont photo Ms Annie Beaumont Senior Associate Solicitor
Pete Bott photo Mr Pete Bott Partner
Richard Buono photo Mr Richard Buono Partner
Nick Dyson photo Mr Nick Dyson Partner and Head of Real Estate
Ian Errington photo Mr Ian Errington Partner and Head of Residential Property
Lewis Goodwin photo Mr Lewis Goodwin Partner
Alex Hall photo Ms Alex Hall Senior Associate – Chartered Legal Executive
Charlotte Hart photo Ms Charlotte Hart Partner
Nigel Hoyle photo Mr Nigel Hoyle Partner and Head of Corporate Law
Matthew Hutchinson photo Mr Matthew Hutchinson Partner
Aimee Hutchinson photo Ms Aimee Hutchinson Partner
Marcus Kaye photo Mr Marcus Kaye Partner
Paul Kelly photo Mr Paul Kelly Partner and Head of Employment
Pete Konieczko-Hansom photo Mr Pete Konieczko-Hansom Senior Associate Solicitor and Head of Intellectual Property
Beth Laidler photo Ms Beth Laidler Partner
Paul Lancaster photo Mr Paul Lancaster Partner
Euan Lawrence photo Mr Euan Lawrence Partner
Luke Maidens photo Mr Luke Maidens Partner and Head of Real Estate Litigation
Katy McPhie photo Ms Katy McPhie Senior Associate Solicitor
Darren Morgan photo Mr Darren Morgan Partner
Richard Morton photo Mr Richard Morton Partner and Head of Banking & Finance
Tom Moyes photo Mr Tom Moyes Partner
Anushka Nicholas photo Ms Anushka Nicholas Partner
Luke Patel photo Mr Luke Patel Partner and Head of Commercial Dispute Resolution
Andrew Pedley photo Mr Andrew Pedley Partner
Nick Rhodes photo Mr Nick Rhodes Partner and Head of Private Wealth & Succession
Ann Robinson photo Ms Ann Robinson Partner and Head of Family Law
Paul Sagar photo Mr Paul Sagar Partner
Saby Sambhi photo Mr Saby Sambhi Partner
David Ward photo Mr David Ward Partner
Number of UK Partners : 30