We have welcomed two new property specialists to our Midlands teams; legal planning partner Anna Cartledge and legal planning legal director Julie Russell.
Operating from the Birmingham hub, Anna Cartledge has more than 15 years’ experience in legal planning, compulsory purchase and highways law, acting for a variety of public and private sector clients throughout her career including landowners, promoters, developers, local authorities, central government agencies, regional development agencies, and various NHS Trusts.
Anna has a particular interest in heritage issues and has advised a number of local authorities and private sector developers on various listed building consents. Anna is also highly experienced in negotiating planning obligations with complex cascade, review and clawback mechanisms, and she frequently advises on the best way to structure large scale sites so as to allow them to come forward on a phased basis.
Legal director Julie Russell join’s the firm’s Leicester hub with more than 14 years’ experience, working on all aspects of legal planning, development and infrastructure work. Julie has particular experience in dealing with Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects and negotiating complex S106 agreements and infrastructure and highways agreements as well as providing strategic planning advice to housebuilders, commercial developers, landowners and local planning authorities.
She also regularly deals with planning enforcement, public rights of ways issues, planning appeals, planning due diligence on site acquisitions and challenges to planning permissions.
Anna said: “I am very much looking forward to being part of such a highly regarded and market leading planning team, full of supportive people who want to work together to flourish and grow the business. There is a real energy and sense of dynamism across the firm as a whole.”
Alex Smith, managing director of the infrastructure and specialist markets business unit said: “We have a great reputation in real estate and work closely with our planning consultancy Marrons Planning to provide a holistic service to clients. From small listed buildings to large development projects, planning is a complex area law and it requires specialist knowledge, both Anna and Julie have great expertise and are well-placed to advise clients across the Midlands and nationally.”
Getting to know Anna Cartledge, Legal Planning Partner…
What attracted you to Shakespeare Martineau?
I was drawn to the culture and values of the firm, and the value that it places on empowering and recognising the efforts of everyone. Shakespeare Martineau has a very clear direction and a real “can-do” attitude and, since joining, I have been hugely impressed and enthused by the energy at all levels.
The planning team has a market leading reputation and I was very much drawn to joining a business that has both legal and town planning capability under one roof, which is a real USP in the planning sphere.
Tell us more about what you find exciting about your area of expertise.
As an area of law, planning is ever-evolving, fast-paced and diverse - no two days are the same! When we are faced with 'knotty issues' there are often shades of grey, rather than a definitive “yes or no” answer. The queries we face are often like exam questions, dealing with everything from strategic land allocations and heritage issues, to footpaths and common land queries.
Our role in navigating the planning world for our clients often becomes more of tactical and strategic advisor, with planning advice dovetailing other considerations and agreements.
For example., there can be frustration around the length of time it takes for a scheme to navigate its way through the planning system. While increased efficiencies within the system should be welcomed, this should be balanced against recognition of the importance of the planning system in terms of delivering meaningful and sustainable development, and in developing functional and attractive places to live and work. We need to empower new communities to be able to thrive.
What do you hope to achieve while working with us?
Having been a mentor for a number of years now, I firmly believe in the benefits mentoring can bring - both for those being mentored and those with mentees. I am hugely passionate about developing and nurturing future talent and want to work with those starting their careers at the firm, whether that's in the legal profession or not!
I am also keen to capitalise on all of the exciting opportunities coming forward in and around the Midlands – from the start on site of HS2 at Curzon Street, to proposed strategic infrastructure improvements on key highways networks and the delivery of meaningful housing numbers, there's certainly a lot of exciting things in the pipeline for the region!