The Coronavirus pandemic impacted and, in some cases, derailed deals in the retail and offices sectors. However, even though we are in a recessionary climate, there are signs things are improving – the residential sector has been boosted by the Government’s SDLT holiday and there are some great projects across the region – South Bank in Leeds, Castle Gateway in York and Fruit Market in Hull to name just a few. Challenges lie ahead for the office and retail sectors, where the pandemic seems to have “brought forward” some longer-term issues. I suspect we will see a re-imagining of the way we use office space and high streets over the coming months and years.
I acted for Leeds City Council in connection with the Victoria Gate development which, as a Leeds lad, was a fantastic development to be involved in. It transformed a previously neglected area of the city centre, brought jobs and puts Leeds on the map as a first class as a shopping and leisure destination. The Council were instrumental in bringing forward and promoting the scheme which took many years and Hammerson did a great job developing the centre.
The development lawyer in me would say Temple Works in the South Bank area in Leeds. The whole South Bank development will transform that part of Leeds and Temple Works is such a unique and interesting building – a little piece of “ancient” Egypt here in Yorkshire.
We could always do more to improve access to the industry for school leavers and graduates, particularly bearing in mind university costs. Certainly, things are getting better – in part thanks to apprenticeship schemes, including the solicitor apprenticeship programme which is a great alternative entry into law.
My dad – he’s worked in property development my whole life with his own company and has always set the example of working hard, being honest and resilient. It’s probably no coincidence that I ended up in the property sector! Work wise, I will always hold former colleagues Paula Dillon and Mark Owen in high esteem and I’ve learnt so much from them in my career.
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Please note this information is provided by way of example and may not be complete and is certainly not intended to constitute legal advice. You should take bespoke advice for your circumstances.