Social housing

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The Legal 500

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Social Housing

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Social housing

The legal directories

Notable firm in the social housing sector with strength in development and acquisition matters. Regularly acts for housing association clients. Frequently advises on regeneration projects, development schemes and employment matters.

Strengths: One client says: ‘The firm is very efficient and breaks down the legal language into layperson's terms.’

Another source adds: ‘The lawyers are very good, responding quickly and dealing with issues straight away.’

Notable practitioners

Catherine Bradshaw: ‘Catherine Bradshaw always provides a good service with excellent professional advice. The work is done on time and to a high standard. She is easily contactable and happy to answer any questions.’

Andrew Casstles focuses his social housing practice on development transactions, acting for housing association clients. ‘He offers a really great service and always responds promptly.’

Linda Storey: ‘Linda Storey is an industry expert, she is always available and she will ensure a quality service is provided.’

Chambers UK – 2022 edition

The social housing team at Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP draws on both its national network of offices and unique regional expertise in home ownership, securitisation, and portfolio management to advise registered providers and local authorities on high-value financings and transactions. Practice head Linda Storey chiefly handles acquisitions, disposals, planning agreements and leasing matters, while Reading-based Eugene Wojciechowski – who is well versed in unlawful discrimination claims – helms the firm’s social housing employment offering. Charlotte D’Avola is the lead for housing securitisation and portfolio work, specialising in major facility agreements and asset management matters. Laura McCann and Graham Phillips act for housing providers in the sale and purchase of affordable housing units.

The Legal 500 - 2022 edition

Strong team acting for a broad range of social housing providers on matters including acquisitions, sales, procurement and housing management litigation. Continues to advise on shared ownership units sales for housing associations. Also skilled in advising on joint venture agreements and development issues.

Strengths: One source comments: 'They are very approachable, efficient and knowledgeable.'

'They are a solid firm. They know what they are doing and are very well respected for their shared ownership team.'

Notable practitioners
Linda Storey is head of the firm's social housing team. She is recognised for representing registered providers on a range of transactional matters and planning agreements. 'She is approachable, knowledgeable and reassuring in her approach.'

Gemma Bell is a popular choice of representative for housing associations, offering strong governance experience and expert handling of corporate transactions. 'She is really collaborative in her approach and looks to get the best for her clients.'

Catherine Bradshaw focuses her practice on transactional and development matters for registered providers. She advises on acquisitions, development agreements and leasing matters. 'We have received great service from her - she is always quick to reply and deals with any issue promptly. She represents us professionally and defends our position.'

Andrew Casstles focuses his social housing practice on development transactions, acting for housing association clients. 'He is a very knowledgeable lawyer with excellent attention to detail and a calm demeanour, even during challenging negotiations.'

Chambers UK - 2021 edition

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP provides a ‘very good all-round experience’ to housing associations across the UK, which encompasses advice on developments, acquisitions and litigation. 

Linda Storey leads the social housing team and has over 20 years' experience advising housing providers on acquisitions, disposals, associated planning agreements, home ownership transactions and lease extensions.

Andrew Casstles heads up the London team. Another name to note is Mark Sellers, who advises on acquisitions by outright purchase, conditional agreements, option agreements and golden brick agreements. Ben Robinson is a specialist in contentious housing issues. 

Linda Storey gives sound advice and is proactive in finding solutions. Andrew Casstles provides clear and easily interpreted advice.

Peter Massey brings a strong commercial focus, and draws on his experience across both the private and housing association sectors to highlight potential different options that can help to unblock an impasse.

Charlotte D’Avola stands out as being willing to help on many different fronts – she has an encyclopaedic knowledge that has come in useful several times.

The Legal 500 - 2021 edition

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP has successfully grown its social housing practice, with clients drawn to its broad range of services. Linda Storey heads the team, which acts for more than 50 housing associations. It also generates work from local authorities, local housing companies, private developers and consultants. In 2018, Andrew Casstles led the advice to Richmond Housing Partnership Limited on a £3.1m land acquisition, which included assistance with the planning-related aspects of the transactions. In addition, Casstles and Storey acted for Metropolitan Thames Valley on the forward-funding acquisition and development of 58 affordable residential units. Other services span areas such as housing management, securitisation, construction and joint ventures. Peter Massey and Ben Robinson are also active practitioners in this space. Tim Johnson joined the team.

Employment expert Eugene Wojciechowski is a recommended partner.

Associate Charlotte D’Avola is another notable individual.

The Legal 500 - 2020 edition

Penningtons Manches LLP is instructed by a host of national housing associations in relation to property transactions, litigation, landlord and tenant issues and development joint venture agreements. Headed by Linda Storey, the team has been involved in several affordable housing and shared-ownership developments. In one example, Andrew Casstles advised Southern Housing Group on the acquisition of two development sites and a leaseback transaction, while Storey handled the sharedownership leases and unit sales at the site. Similarly, Peter Massey assisted Sovereign Housing Association with a joint venture agreement with Kier Construction to develop a 280- unit mixed-tenure residential scheme. Senior associate Charlotte D’Avola leads a team that provides ongoing advice to Family Mosaic Housing in relation to charging, release and substitution work. David Masters is instructed by housing associations in connection with Landlord and Tenant Act 1985 obligations. Mark Sellers, who advises registered providers on site acquisitions and development agreements, joined the team.

The Legal 500 - 2019 edition

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Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP is a limited liability partnership registered in England and Wales with registered number OC311575 and is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP