"Technically excellent" and "strikes the right balance when working with in-house counsel to establish a strong client rapport."
(The Legal 500, 2017)
Gillian is a highly experienced Real Estate lawyer, based at our Nottingham office. She specialises in investment property work (funding, acquisition, disposal and management), education property matters, complex landlord and tenant matters, estate management strategies and banking transactions.
Gillian also provides training both internally and externally on property matters, and she is mentioned in The Legal 500 2017.
- Acting for pension fund on the acquisition of a motor dealership by way of sale and leaseback. The acquisition needed to be completed in a tight timeframe as it was an off market deal and involved co-ordination of various practice sectors alongside negotiating the lease back documents. The acquisition needed to carefully balance the operation needs of the “tenant” motor dealer whilst protecting the investment which Gillian was able to do with her experience of leasehold negotiations. The acquisition was completed on time.
- Advising a local authority on the acquisition of a distribution depot for circa £22 million. The lease included a significant number of tenant friendly provisions. There were several issues linked to the lease being a renewal of a previous lease, which had not been properly considered at the time the lease had been put in place. For example, re-instatement of historic alterations. Gillian was able to provide guidance on the associated risks and investment concerns, so that the client was able to make a fully informed decision to proceed with the purchase.
- Advising a client on the leasehold aspects of the acquisition of a small industrial estate for future redevelopment for its own occupation. The estate is to be held as an investment short term and so needed to be reviewed and reported on as an investment (including analysis of service charge provisions). Gillian also had to consider and advise on the future redevelopment issues
Gillian has a wide range of experience acting for education sector clients ranging from schools and academies, through to FE colleges and Universities. She has advised education sector clients on property matters for more than 15 years.
- Acting for a local authority on a complex academy conversion involving several sites. The matter is particularly complex as the main site was constructed under a PFI project, is shared by more than one school, and not all of the schools are converting. It includes leisure facilities, community library and children’s centre. Gillian has worked collaboratively with the academy trust lawyer to create the property documents in a tight timeframe.
- Acting on preparation of standard template documents for a multi let innovation hub. The templates included short form lease, licence and virtual office documents and were designed to be able to be used by the client with minimum legal input.
“Gillian has acted on behalf on a number of complex and time-critical land deals – her level of expertise and practical approach were first-class – ensuring the deal went smoothly and to programme. In more than one case the client’s lawyers thanked the bank for the constructive input from the banks legal team into the leases and pre let documentation.”(Simon Whitaker, Svenska Handelsbanken)
“I commissioned Gillian to act on behalf of the Council in entering into major, high value lease agreement with a Central Government department aligned to a significant construction agreement. As a non-property professional, Freeths interpreted the level of advice and explanation that I needed, clearly and thoroughly explained all of the risks and opportunities around my broad instructions and most importantly, offered advice to questions I didn’t know to ask. Gillian maintained an active dialogue with me throughout the commission, discussing the options around each negotiation element and justifying every recommendation to the Council with the resulting lease fully safeguarding the Council’s interests. There is absolutely nothing about the quality or timeliness of the advice, the level of customer service and the professional attention given to the Council that I would not unreservedly commend to others.”(Andy Fisher, Head of Housing, Health & Community Services, Municipal Buildings)
“Strikes the right balance when working with in-house counsel to establish a strong client rapport.”(The Legal 500, 2017 )
“…a lateral thinker who finds solutions on her feet.”(The Legal 500, 2019)
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