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Irwin Mitchell Plans Further Real Estate Growth In Manchester

Latest DLA Appointments To Be Followed By Further Recruitment


Law firm, Irwin Mitchell, has revealed that it is planning further recruitment over the next 12 months as part of its plans to build the strongest real estate legal team in the North West.

The latest announcement from the firm based at Bauhaus on Quay Street follows the recent appointment of a 14-strong team from DLA Piper, which included Partners Anita Weightman, Roy Beckett, Patrick Duffy and Tony Weightman.

The four Partners joined Irwin Mitchell at the start of February 2013 and they have since been joined by a team of ten others including DLA Legal Directors, Claire Quinn and Vanessa Rickard, Associates Paul Barnard, Chris Perrin, Emma Poole and Solicitor Matthew Dunn.

The team, which merged with the existing real estate department at Irwin Mitchell including Partner Andy Bell and Associate Patrick Sheehan, expects to recruit another five members of staff over the next year, taking total headcount to 24.

Anita Weightman, Partner and Head of Real Estate at Irwin Mitchell in Manchester, said: “We now have one of the largest real estate teams in the North West but we are very much focussed on growing the team further and firmly establishing the department as the strongest in the region.”

Anita believes that one the key reasons is the firm’s commitment and focus on real estate at a time when competitor firms are looking to move away and reduce the size of their teams.

She added: “Investing in growing its real estate team is core to Irwin Mitchell’s overall growth strategy. This is providing us with a key differentiator and certainly enabling the firm to continue providing the level of service and expertise that clients want. Here in Manchester, we are excited about the growth opportunities that are presenting themselves and we look forward to building on our strong platform of clients that we already have.

“Despite tough market conditions, I am confident and remain upbeat about the future. All clients want a high quality service, but they are concerned to ensure that they get real value from their professional advisers particularly in these times of austerity. We now have one of the largest teams in the region and believe that Irwin Mitchell is uniquely placed to meet these client demands. “

Current real estate clients in the Manchester office include Vue Entertainment & Apollo Cinemas, Goals Soccer Centres, National Tyres, Telereal Trillium, Canal & River Trust the General Medical Council and Manchester City Council.

Discussing future recruitment for the team, Paul Firth, Partner and national Head of Real Estate at Irwin Mitchell said: 

“Appointing the team from DLA Piper into our Manchester office represented a significant milestone for our Manchester office, but it is just the beginning of what we are looking to achieve. Despite the challenging market, we believe that we have a fantastic opportunity to grow the team and put ourselves firmly on the map as a leading provider of real estate legal services.

“This move was a clear signal of our intention to build a leading full service commercial practice across the North West region and we look forward to making future investments in high quality individuals and teams.”

In recent months, Irwin Mitchell in Manchester has bolstered its corporate offering with the appointment of Partner Jon Close and banking and finance specialist, Dean Gormley. Since June 2012, the firm nationally has added 13 Partners to its business legal services team.

Two years ago, Irwin Mitchell added to its existing real estate offering with the appointment of Jon Vivian, along with a team of three other real estate Partners and 16 members of staff from SJ Berwin. Since then the firm has recruited high profile real estate lawyer, Paul Firth, whilst also continuing to boost its London office with the appointment of property litigation consultant, Sue Wilson, corporate real estate Partner, Jayne Schnider, tax Partner Alex Barnes and planning specialist, Holly Trotman.

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