Plymouth law firm bolsters real estate offering with new appointments

Transatlantic law firm Womble Bond Dickinson (WBD) has strengthened its real estate team in Plymouth with two new appointments.

Christopher Stephens joins as Managing Associate from law firm Nash & Co LLP where he was Partner. He has experience of advising clients on complex real estate matters including strategic land assembly and development projects for mixed retail and volume housebuilders, landowners and private investors in enabling the delivery of residential housing development in the South West.

Chris predominantly advises on site acquisitions by way of negotiated option agreements and conditional contracts, promotion agreements, section 106 and sectional agreements and subsequently in dealing with estate set-up, disposal and charging/refinancing arrangements. Chris has direct experience of the sector through his involvement in a number of family owned housebuilder businesses, providing further insight into construction and development processes.

Jason Hobday also joins the real estate team as an Associate. Previously a Partner at Trowers & Hamlins, Jason specialises in residential housing developments for clients, advising developers and housing associations on a range of matters including on site acquisitions and disposals, option agreements, development agreements, conditional contracts, golden brick agreements, design and build agreements, and estate set up and disposals. Jason also has extensive experience in advising investors, Real Estate Investment Trusts, social landlords and large private sector residential property portfolio holders, on non-contentious residential issues as well as leasehold and portfolio management.

Samantha Orluta, Legal Director at WBD, commented: "Following a series of new instructions from some of our major real estate clients, we're delighted to welcome Chris and Jason to our growing team. They both bring a wealth of expertise and strong understanding of the local market, having advised on complex and high profile projects and will play an important role in strengthening our real estate offering here in Plymouth and across the UK."

Craig Moore, Partner and Head of WBD's Plymouth office, added: "Our Plymouth office continues to grow from to strength, providing clients with a unique offering of national and international experience on their doorstep. As we continue to grow our Plymouth offering with more new recruits joining us soon, we are always keen to hear from bright, enthusiastic and dynamic lawyers who want to be part of a large team that has the strength to deliver for clients and give colleagues the work-life balance they need."

Ranking in the UK's top 20 law firms, WBD provides legal expertise in eleven key sectors from across eight offices in the UK and 18 offices in the US. The firm's housing and real estate client portfolio in the UK includes Homes England, Akelius, Taylor Wimpey, RentPlus, Grainger and Places for People.

Last year WBD won Employer of the Year at the Business Leader awards and was also named as a top graduate employer, ranking 161 in the 2017 Guardian UK 300 list. Over 60 law firms were ranked and WBD featured amongst the top 20. WBD is the largest law firm in Plymouth where it employs more than 180 staff.