The Legal 500 Highlights: Boyes Turner – ‘Oustanding with speedy resolutions’

    Corporate & commercial

    Boyes Turner‘s practice has a ‘broad range of commercial law experience and business acumen‘, providing a ‘solution-orientated approach with speedy resolutions‘, with ‘great value for money‘.

    Particular industry specialisms of importance for the team are technology, fintech, automotive and healthcare, with clients of note including Auto Trader, Panasonic, MortgageGym and Wayfair. ‘Outstanding commercial attorney‘ Mark Blunden heads the team, while Robert Rice leads the corporate group. Highlights included Rice handling the acquisition of assets of PACE Financial Group for US-based client Flywire; Kate Eavis (‘smart, practical, experienced and good at delivering work on time‘) advising Circor International on the acquisition of a target group in a project worth around $855 million; and Rice assisting Spain-headquartered company Accelya with its £8m acquisition of Anari.

    Commercial lawyer Bill Gornall-King is ‘able to bring complex business issues into a practical and straightforward and effective approach’ and assisted Accelya with numerous commercial transactions. Sarah Williamson is noted for her experience in the digital, publishing, communications and advertising sectors, acting as in-house counsel to Auto Trader and the Guardian. Associate Helen Dobson and commercial solicitor Amir Kousari joined the team from Osborne Clarke‘s Reading office and an in-house role respectively.

    Commercial litigation

    The ‘excellent, very responsive‘ team at Boyes Turner is ‘good value for money and timely in its responses’. ‘Reassuring litigator’ Jonathan Grigg heads the practice and is noted for his ‘expertise and calm attitude’. The focus of Grigg’s expertise is acting for large corporates, particularly in the technology sector and in international disputes, and he is also highly regarded for pensions’ disputes.

    Grigg is acting for Viavi Solutions in a dispute with trustees questioning the validity and enforceability of pension scheme documentation and is assisting the Showmen’s Guild of Great Britain with an investigation by the Competition and Markets Authority into alleged anti-competitive practices. Senior associate and debt recovery practice head Ally Tow notably defended Auto Trader against a claim brought by a former customer for damages for alleged wrongful termination of an advertising contract.

    ‘Tenacious, pragmatic’ senior associate Stephen Baker is defending Zimmer Group and Zimmer Biomet against a number of product liability claims relating to metal-on-metal hip devices.

    ‘Insightful, realistic and unflappable’ senior associate Rowan Turrall heads the construction team. Kelly Services, Colt Group and Advantedge Commercial Finance are also clients.


    The insolvency team of Boyes Turner in Reading is ‘one of the strongest in the region‘, with ‘great strength in depth, swift turnaround times and no-nonsense advice‘. The team handles both contentious and non-contentious matters, especially asset tracing and recovery cases, administrations and business sales, as well as LPA receiverships. ‘Rising star‘ senior associate Oliver Fitzpatrick represented Quantuma as liquidator of several companies within the Arena Group against multi-million-pound claims concerning directors’ breach of duty, misfeasance and antecedence, while ‘very experienced and pragmatic litigator‘ Phil Smith acted in a £6m shareholder dispute for Wilkins Kennedy as the liquidator of Emerald Meats and Emerald Properties.

    Further recommended is ‘tenacious litigator‘ Chris Branson (‘the go-to man on personal insolvency‘). Grant Thornton, Begbies Traynor, Antony Batty & Company and CVR Global were advised by the team, which also gained KPMG as a new client in 2017.


    Boyes Turner is ‘always prompt, available, pragmatic, flexible in approach and possessing a deep understanding of issues’. The team handles a wide range of work, including tribunal litigation, TUPE transfers and matters arising out of corporate transactions, for clients including LEO Pharma, Tesla and Reading Borough Council.

    Practice head Barry Stanton handles a range of high-value and complex discrimination and whistleblowing cases, particularly in the technology and professional services sectors. Stanton and director Laurence Anstis defended a digital marketing entity against claims by three former employees with a total value of several million pounds.

    Helen Goss, who leads the leisure and hospitality sector team, has been advising Portico Corporate Reception Management in relation to its dress code and policy, with the policy on high heels provoking a debate in the national media. ‘Real legal innovator‘ Michael Farrier represented an international electric car manufacturer in litigation commenced against its new employee by a former employer relating to post-termination restrictions, which had an important impact on the client’s research and development plans.

    Senior associates Andrew Whiteaker, Darren Smith and Emma O’Connor are all highly regarded.

    Commercial property

    The ‘professional, hard-working team’ at Boyes Turner ‘goes that extra step to meet client needs’, providing a ‘10 out of 10 service on all counts’.

    Commercial practice head Nick Carter handles commercial property transactions for clients operating in many sectors, including media, telecoms, life sciences and retail. Carter recently led a team advising Verifone on the relocation of its headquarters.

    The development group is led by William Nassau-Lake (‘excellent knowledge and understanding’) and Derek Ching (‘exceptional; he can deal with the most complex contractual issue and offer advice that is clear and easy to understand for the professional and the layman’), with clients of note including Fruition Properties, Spitfire Bespoke Homes and Antler Homes.

    ‘Highly recommended’ Mark Appleton holds a niche specialism in advising offshore trust companies on UK property transactions and was recently instructed by Curatus Trust Company (Mauritius) in connection with the sale of a substantial waterside site in London for around £60m to an overseas developer. At senior associate level, Rachel Duncan is noted for her experience in secured lending transactions and acting for foreign businesses setting up in the UK, while Bob Daniel and Sarah Webb are other names of note.