Town Legal plans for the future with partner promotion alongside industry expert retirement

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6 March 2024

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Written By : Clare Fielding

Planning law firm, Town Legal, has promoted Paul Arnett to partner, set to take effect from 1 April.  Paul specialises in all aspects of planning, infrastructure, and compulsory purchase law delivering high-profile projects across a variety of different sectors for clients such as Royal Mail, IM Properties and CIT.  Before Town Legal, he worked for the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government and the Department for Transport advising on the revised NPPF, the Letwin Review and the CPO reforms in the Housing and Planning Act 2016 and Neighbourhood Planning Act 2017.

Paul joins the partnership of 12 at a time when the firm is saying goodbye to founding partner, Patrick Robinson, as he retires on 31 March.  Patrick has worked in real estate and planning law for over 45 years and spent 38 of those years at Herbert Smith Freehills before founding Town Legal with others in 2016.  He has worked on many high-profile projects over that time including: Broadgate, The Supreme Court, 22 Bishopsgate, The Tate Modern and Royal Brompton Hospital.  He also served as a trustee of the Architecture Foundation for eight years.

Sir Stuart Lipton of Lipton Rogers Developments said: “Patrick has had a special place in town planning.  His focus has been on a wide range of subjects but predominantly where they are of substance.  He’s always had an approach of being cautious and thorough with an ability to produce legal opinions of the highest order. 

His subsequent record at winning cases has given him the unusual position of being recognised by clients, government, and local authorities as a man of the highest integrity and the most expert knowledge. Patrick’s humanity and generosity to his clients and colleagues will be hugely missed as well as his concern for benefits to the publics needs of town planning and their social context.

The industry wishes Patrick much success in his retirement, and we all look forward to continuing our work with Town Legal, a firm full of engaging and knowledgeable town planning specialists.”

Clare Fielding, Managing Partner at Town Legal, added: “We’re incredibly grateful for Patrick’s service to our partnership over the past 8 years.  As a founding partner and our first Managing Partner, he was instrumental in the setup of the firm, its establishment as a leading planning law practice and the development of some of our key client relationships.  We wish him well in his retirement and hope to keep in touch as he enjoys some well-earned time off.”

In addition, she commented: “We are delighted to promote Paul to partner.  As a firm we place a lot of emphasis on organic growth and its importance for long-term succession and deep client relationships.  This is our third partner promotion in as many years with Spencer Tewis-Allen joining the partnership in 2022 and Victoria McKeegan last year and shows our dedication to the next generation of lawyers at our firm.  We congratulate Paul on this very much deserved promotion and look forward to developing our partnership further over the coming years.”


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