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Burges Salmon LLP

Living Wage
ONE GLASS WHARF, BRISTOL, BS2 0ZX, ENGLAND
Tel:
Work 0117 939 2000
Fax:
Fax 0117 902 4400
DX:
7829 BRISTOL
Email:
Web:
www.burges-salmon.com
Bristol, London

Sian Edmunds

Tel:
Work 0117 902 7187
Email:
Burges Salmon LLP

Work Department

Dispute resolution.

Position

Sian is a leading food, agriculture and agri-business specialist. She heads our Food and Drink team and is an experienced member of the firm's Food & Farming, Land & Estates and Contentious Trusts teams. Sian provides specialist advice to agri-businesses and all areas of the food supply chain. Her clients include primary producers, agricultural land owners and tenants, trustees, agri-businesses, as well as food and drink manufacturers and processors, food business operatives, distributors and retailers. Typical issues Sian deals with include agricultural land and tenancy issues, partnership disputes, contentious trust matters, supply agreements and contractual disputes, food regulation and labelling, food contamination, product liability and product recall. Burges Salmon is the sole provider of legal services for The Crown Estate's Rural and Windsor Portfolios and Sian heads this relationship.

Career

Trained Osborne Clarke; qualified 2000; Bevan Brittan 2005; Burges Salmon 2010 to date.

Member

British Institute of Agricultural Consultants (BIAC); RABDF; Agricultural Law Association (ALA); Food and Drink Federation; Food Law Group.

Education

Attended University of Birmingham (1997 LLB (Hons); 1998 PGDip).


London: Corporate and commercial

Partnership

Within: Partnership

Burges Salmon LLP is noted for its 'pre-eminence in agricultural partnership matters' and for its expertise in partnership disputes. The 'strategic' and 'unflappable' Sian Edmunds has significant experience in agricultural disputes, as does Kevin Kennedy. On the corporate side, highlights for Chris Godfrey included advising the University of Oxford and Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation on its complex joint venture with the Mayo Clinic that used a transatlantic partnership structure.

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London: Human resources

Health and safety

Within: Health and safety

Burges Salmon LLP 'stands out for its transport expertise' and is 'easily one of the best for health and safety mandates in the rail sector'; London and South Eastern Railway and FirstGroup are clients. The group is also highly regarded for its construction expertise with recent highlights including acting for a large construction company in a HSE investigation following a road bridge collapse. Ann Metherall heads up the department and is 'an excellent lawyer and safe pair of hands with unmatched experience'; other key individuals include transport team head Chris Jackson, who is a risk specialist; food and agri-business expert Sian Edmunds, and 'extremely able' senior associate Matt Kyle, who 'is shrewd, conscientious and thinks deeply about his cases'.

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London: Private client

Agriculture and estates

Within: Agriculture and estates

Burges Salmon LLP  ‘has a long tradition of working in this area', and acts for a wide range of clients, from institutions to private individuals. Tom Hewitt leads the food and farming team and Alastair Morrison is particularly skilled on the transactional side. Hewitt has ‘many years of experience of dealing with complex sales and purchases in a very efficient way’. Jim Aveline  advises a number of farms and landed estates on tax, estates and succession issues. Sian Edmunds acts for various agribusinesses and Kevin Kennedy has a particular focus on agricultural tenancy advice, real property disputes, trust-related disputes as well as contract and tort claims. Emma Folkes leads on a diverse range of transactions involving rural land for institutional investors, registered charities and high-net-worth individuals. The ‘very impressive’ group acts for major clients such as the National Trust, the Crown Estate, the John Lewis Partnership as well as the Defence Infrastructure Organisation.

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South West: Human resources

Health and safety

Within: Health and safety

Market leaders in the South West’, Burges Salmon LLP advise clients on operational safety, governance, risk management, regulatory matters, safety authority investigations and prosecutions. It also advises commercial landlords and public sector clients on safety issues. Recent work includes acting for a construction company in relation to a Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation into a road bridge collapse, and representing a utility company in relation to a death of a member of the public who fell from a disused water tower. Food safety is a niche area for the practice; Sian Edmunds provides advice around issues including contamination, product liability and product recall. Ann Metherall heads the team and is ‘extremely competent in the field’. Chris Jackson advises on all aspects of safety compliance. Matt Kyle and Charlotte Whitaker are also recommended. Clients include The Crown Estate, London and South Eastern Railway, FirstGroup and John Lewis Partners.

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South West: Private client

Agriculture and estates

Within: Leading individuals

Sian Edmunds - Burges Salmon LLP

Within: Agriculture and estates

Burges Salmon LLP is ‘excellent, with extensive and wide-ranging experience in this area'. Recent highlights include two major transactions in the national land market - sales from The Crown Estate at Dunster (comprising some 9,900 acres) and Gopsall.  Sian Edmunds is a ‘first-rate lawyer and litigator’, who is ‘very client focused, hugely experienced and tenacious’. Edmunds specialises in food regulation, but also handles farming and agribusiness contractual disputes, partnership disputes and agricultural tenancy issues; she acts for John Lewis Partnership/Waitrose, The Crown Estate, Gea Farm Technologies, Ornua Foods and Humphreys Feed. Kevin Kennedy has a national reputation for agricultural and private client advice and litigation, with a particular focus on tenancy advice, real property disputes, trust-related disputes and contract and tort claims; his clients include The Crown Estate, The National Trust, and Peel Group. Jim Aveline is a ‘brilliant private client and trust specialist’, and recently advised on a £30m succession plan for a 3,000-cow Dorset dairy farm. The ‘enormously bright’ associate Maddie Dunn is ‘one to watch’. New clients include Worcestershire County Council and the Environment Agency. Tom Hewitt heads up the food and farming as well as estates teams. With her ‘wealth of experience and technical knowledge’, Emma Folkes was made partner in May 2017; she specialises in non-contentious rural property, advising The Crown Estate's Rural Portfolio (for which the firm is sole legal advisor), the National Trust, and The Woodland Trust.

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Contentious trusts and probate

Within: Contentious trusts and probate

The ‘excellent’ Burges Salmon LLP has ‘a longstanding and deserved reputation in property, contentious probate, trusts and associated work’Kevin Kennedy and Justin Briggs head up the practice, which often works across jurisdictions and on trusts or estates worth well over £100m. Kennedy is ‘excellent in agricultural and property cases and in trust and contentious probate work’, and Briggs specialises in offshore trust litigation, advising representative beneficiaries and on applications to rectify trust documentation. Sian Edmunds deals with contentious trusts matters, often relating to her contentious agricultural practice. Senior associate Katherine King  specialises in trusts disputes relating to both commercial and private wealth trusts. Associate Caroline Emslie provides ‘excellent trial preparation and client care’.

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Legal Developments by:
Burges Salmon LLP

  • Restoring environmental damage: putting a price on ecosystem services

    On 7 August 2009 a 40-inch pipeline ruptured, spilling 5,400 cubic metres of crude oil into the soil and groundwater of La Crau nature reserve in southern France, a habitat protected under French and European law. The operator had to excavate and replace 60,000 tons of soil, install 70 wells to pump and treat groundwater and 25 pumps to skim oil from surface water, at a cost in the region of €50m. However, this was just the primary remediation (that is, restoring the site to the state it would have been if the damage had not occurred). The operator was also required to compensate for the damage to the habitats and the loss of the ecosystem services that would otherwise have been provided by La Crau nature reserve. Measures included purchasing land outside of the nature reserve and contributing to its management for a period of 30 years (over €1m), monitoring the water table for 20 years (over €500,000), monitoring fauna over three years (€150,000) and rehabilitation in accordance with best available ecological techniques (nearly €2m). Overall, the compensatory restoration (to compensate for the amount of time that the ecosystem was impacted) and complimentary restoration (to compensate for elements of the ecosystem that had been permanently lost) came to more than €6.5m. 

    - Burges Salmon LLP

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