Three more partners join Bevan Brittan’s new Leeds office

09/12/2015

Bevan Brittan today announces that a further three partners have joined its new Leeds office.  This brings the total number of new partners to seven.

Joining the firm’s housing practice are Hugo Stephens and Richard Stirk.  They both join from DWF where they were partners.

Joining the firm’s property practice is Deborah Powell who joins from Simpson Millar where she was head of commercial property.  Deborah will be reuniting with other former colleagues who have already joined Bevan Brittan, including Lyndon Campbell who joined the firm from Simpson Millar as a Senior Associate when the Leeds office opened in September.

Partners already recruited to the new office are: Michael Boyd (health) – who was recently appointed head of the Leeds office - Julie Cowan-Clark (property), Judith Barnes (local government) and Frances Woodhead (local government).

Hugo and Richard will link up with Julie Cowan-Clark, with whom they worked at DWF.  Julie has more than 15 years’ property experience and in recent years has worked almost exclusively for housing associations dealing with complex site acquisitions, security work (including bond issues), issues related to commercial leases and stock transfers.

Commenting on the appointments, Duncan Weir, Managing Partner of Bevan Brittan, said:

I am very pleased to be able to announce these new appointments to our Leeds office.  They are proof of the strength and depth of the team that we are assembling.  We are building a joined-up team across key focus areas

Our Leeds office has got off to a great start with multiple new instructions from clients - and a high level of interest from lawyers seeking to join us.  2016 will be an exciting year for us as we fully embed the office and look to grow it further.”

Hugo Stephens said:

I am delighted to be joining Bevan Brittan and being part of the new Leeds office. I have known their reputation in the market for many years and have seen their excellent technical skills and dedicated focus on client service.  I am looking forward to joining an experienced housing team to deliver relevant legal advice across a number of key issues and challenges facing the sector.”

Richard Stirk said:

"It's exciting to be joining Bevan Brittan to head up their Social Housing team in Leeds. There are myriad changes afoot in the housing sector and many challenges ahead. The expertise within the social housing team at Bevan Brittan and the wider support from the rest of the firm on issues such as joint venture development, procurement, tax, partnering with third parties and a whole range of other issues means that we are well-placed to advise all our clients on the issues ahead.  While the sector is in a state of uncertainty, I'm positive Bevan Brittan can best serve the social housing sector and help them tackle the challenges ahead."

Deborah Powell commented:

The property market - due in large part to a range of different schemes and funding sources to access - has increased considerably over 2015.  With the legal experience which Bevan Brittan has working across the sector along with its considerable knowledge around the housing agenda and need for a range of different solutions to get developments moving, I'm very pleased to be joining the firm's new Leeds office along with the wider team in support."


Notes to editors:
Further information on the new joiners as follows:

Hugo Stephens has worked in the social housing sector for more than 25 years – with particular focus on funding for housing associations (public bonds, private placements, loans and derivative transactions); major projects (ALMOs, solar projects, joint ventures and public/private partnerships); group structures; and constitutional, corporate and governance work.

Richard Stirk focuses on acquisition and development work for housing associations and local authorities.  He advises on affordable housing aspects of section 106 agreements including negotiating variations with local authorities, as well as options, conditional contracts, stock transfers and the property aspects of finance and security work (including bond issues).

Deborah Powell has more than 20 years' commercial legal experience with expertise across all aspects of property and real estate including high value and complex acquisition work, sales and leasebacks, disposals and support for major corporate transactions.  Her wide range of clients includes housing associations, house builders, funders and other private sector housing concerns in the development and management of housing and mixed use schemes.  She was on the Board of Headrow Housing Group from 1998 to 2014. 

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