The Legal 500

Twitter Logo Youtube Circle Icon LinkedIn Icon

Clarke Willmott LLP

Work 0345 209 1000
Fax 0345 209 2003

South East: Corporate and commercial

Corporate and commercial: Hampshire
Corporate and commercial: Hampshire - ranked: tier 3

Clarke Willmott LLP

According to one client, the team at Clarke Willmott LLP's 'commercial approach and acumen on a transaction was second to none'. The group handles all aspects of M&A and general commercial work, including acquisitions, business and share sales, MBOs and fundraisings. It has a focus on the finance and technology sectors and counts banks and alternative lenders among its clients. The team acted for the selling shareholders of Ambant on the disposal of the company to Davies Group, a transaction that required FCA approval. Practice head Kelvin Balmont  is 'approachable and an expert in the field' and has a 'commercial approach' to his handling of acquisitions and MBO work. Chidem Aliss and Richard Swain are other key team members.

[back to top]

Corporate tax
Corporate tax - ranked: tier 1

Clarke Willmott LLP

Clarke Willmott LLP fields an 'excellent' corporate tax practice that has wide-ranging expertise covering share incentive schemes, property-related tax structuring issues, issues arising from historic tax liabilities (including settling tax liabilities through the use of the LDF and other disclosure facilities), and corporate tax issues arising from acquisitions and disposals. Niall Murphy heads the practice and brings more than 30 years' experience across a range of tax matters, including international tax planning and tax litigation. Recent transactional highlights include advising Addnobe Group on the tax aspects of the client's acquisition of Intrinsys Limited, which involved assisting with tax warranties and covenants. On the real estate front, Murphy advised Sheet Anchor Investments on the SDLT and direct tax implications of its acquisition and financing of a freehold interest in a shopping centre in Derby.

[back to top]

South East: Dispute resolution

Commercial litigation: Hampshire
Commercial litigation: Hampshire - ranked: tier 2

Clarke Willmott LLP

The team at Clarke Willmott LLP 'has high legal and industry knowledge enabling effective and efficient solving of all issues' and 'really understands the principle of managing the cost of a dispute relative to likely outcome'. It handles a range of commercial and private client disputes including breaches of contract, shareholder, director and partnership disputes, negligence cases and contested probate and trust matters. Owen Williams, who heads the team, has 'a rigorous attention to detail, an iron will and an extraordinary depth of character'. He is a solicitor advocate and handles commercial disputes in the IT field, as well as private client cases. Recently promoted partner Greg Hughes is 'particularly commercially minded and understands what the optimum outcome is for any dispute'. Associate Claire Dennison is another key member of the team.

[back to top]

South East: Human resources

Employment: Hampshire
Employment: Hampshire - ranked: tier 2

Clarke Willmott LLP

The team at Clarke Willmott LLP provides 'an overall excellent service' and handles the full spectrum of employment and employee relations work, from restructurings and TUPE regulations to tribunal work including advocacy. Practice head Marc Long, who has advocacy experience, is a key name for strike action and pay change issues. In recent work, the team advised on the TUPE transfer of around 100 staff and assisted an employer on its obligations in a misconduct case where the employee was suffering from HIV. Kevin Jones and associate Nicole Adams are other core members of the team.

[back to top]

South East: Real estate

Commercial property: Hampshire
Commercial property: Hampshire - ranked: tier 2

Clarke Willmott LLP

The sizeable team at Clarke Willmott LLP, which is led by Peter Swinburn, was bolstered by the arrival of Jin Takhar, who joined from Paris Smith LLP and  Joseph Campbell, who joined from Coffin Mew LLP. The group handles the full spectrum of real estate matters, including acquisitions and acquisition finance, disposals, property portfolio management, landlord and tenant issues, and planning. It is acting for Fat Face on the management of the client's portfolio, which includes acquisitions, disposals and lease matters. The team also assisted Snowfall Services, a BVI corporation, with the time-pressured acquisition of Caswell Science Park for £13m. Other clients include Lloyds Bank, HSBC Bank, Regis Plc and London & Cambridge Properties. Andrew Cooper is also noted.

[back to top]

Planning - ranked: tier 2

Clarke Willmott LLP

Clarke Willmott LLP has a strong track record advising commercial developers, housebuilders, social housing providers, local planning authorities and food retailers on planning issues arising from development projects, including drafting and negotiating s106 agreements, acting in judicial reviews and handling planning and highways agreements. On the housebuilder front, practice head Neil Baker (who splits his time between the Southampton and Bristol offices) acted for Persimmon on a s106 agreement for a 520-dwelling extension to a new neighbourhood in Andover, and acted for New Forest District Council an a planning agreement for a new residential development of 70 units at Fordingbridge, which involved requirements for part of the land to be used as public open space and strategic alternative natural greenspace. Also recommended are Karen Howe, who is noted for her expertise in highways and public rights of way issues, and Anne Jones, whose sector expertise covers housing, retail, hotel and leisure, minerals and waste.

[back to top]

Social housing
Social housing - ranked: tier 3

Clarke Willmott LLP

Clarke Willmott LLP fields a social housing team that is noted for its 'good depth of knowledge and expertise'. The practice provides a holistic service to social landlords, covering property acquisitions and disposals and housing management disputes. Tim Miles  acted for Isle of Wight Council on the acquisition of 12 units for use as assisted housing for long-term disabilities, which was complicated by the fact that the land being developed was owned by the council and was being developed as a joint venture with a national housing developer. In another key mandate, Sarah Orchard acted for United Communities in obtaining a possession order of a social rented property on the grounds that the tenant attempted to start a fire within his kitchen. Other key figures in the Southampton team include Lisa Guelfi and Anne Jones.

[back to top]

South East: TMT

Intellectual property
Intellectual property - ranked: tier 3

Clarke Willmott LLP

Clarke Willmott LLP¬†gives a ‚Äėvery good, responsive service‚Äô; ‚Äėtheir advice is always well thought out and in strong detail and they provide a London service at regional prices and represent very good value for money‚Äô.¬†Daniel Berry¬†(‚Äėleaves no stone unturned; a strong strategic thinker‚Äô) became the head of the firm‚Äôs South IP team in March 2017 and is noted for his significant experience in managing trade mark and design portfolios, with key clients including Organix, Onecom and Medicom Healthcare. Berry has continued to assist the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants on its trade mark and domain name portfolios. Berry has also been managing Mozzo Coffee‚Äôs trade mark portfolio and disputes, notably concluding a settlement agreement with Nestl√© in October 2017 for the use of Mozzo‚Äôs brand in several EU member states.

Leading individuals

Daniel Berry - Clarke Willmott LLP

[back to top]

Further information on Clarke Willmott LLP

Please choose from this list to view details of what we say about Clarke Willmott LLP in other jurisdictions.


Offices in London

North West

Offices in Manchester

South East

Offices in Southampton

South West

Offices in Bristol and Taunton


Offices in Cardiff

West Midlands

Offices in Birmingham

Legal Developments in the UK

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to