Laura is a Partner in the real estate team and head of the faith based institutions team at Sintons. Her clients include many churches, charities, companies, trusts, property investors, institutional lenders and private individuals.
Laura is lead partner for a number of major client relationships in addition to faith based institutions and is experienced in managing teams handling substantial volumes of instructions.
Faith Based Institution Expertise:
Sintons are national panel solicitors for the Managing Trustees of the Methodist Church and Laura heads up the panel team as part of her wider role.
Laura is the Deputy Diocesan Registrar for the Church of England Diocese of Newcastle and the Diocese of Carlisle. She therefore acts for Bishops, Archdeacons, Diocese Boards and Committees, Churchwardens and PCCs and the corporate body of a Cathedral in Faith Based matters. She is one of a very small number of specialist lawyers across England working in this field. She works with the Diocesan Registrar, Jane Lowdon, a consultant solicitor at Sintons, and between them they provide a unique and valuable service to clients in this specialist area.
Sintons are panel solicitor for the United Reformed Church (Northern Province) Trust and also acts for the Presbyterian Church, the Greek Orthodox Church and the Newcastle Gurdwara – Laura therefore also heads up the team dealing with their work.
She is a member of the Ecclesiastical Law Society and the Ecclesiastical Law Association.
Her experience includes a wide range of faith based property transactions and associated matters:
- dealing with investment property (glebe)
- parochial property
- sale and purchases of Manses and Vicarage and Churchyard extensions
- occupational leases and licences
- boundary issues
- development of sites including options and overage
- consecration of land
- marriage preliminaries
- burial law and cremation
- faculty work for churches
- licences and collations
- church sharing agreements and other Ecumenical matters
- Telecommunications Mast Agreements
Laura is a surrogate for the Church of England Marriage Licences.
The depth and breadth of her experience in this sector makes her uniquely placed to advise Faith Based Institutions, particularly in Ecumenical matters.
Commercial Property Real Estate experience:
- acting for investors and owner occupiers and acquisition and disposal of commercial properties
- acting in the acquisition and disposal of commercial properties within Healthcare, Retail, Office, Industrial and Leisure Sectors
- acting in a wide range of property transactions for charitable organisations
- non-contentious landlord and tenant matters
- development of land including options and overage provisions
- portfolio management of leasehold properties and associated documentation
- extensive sector specific experience in Charities, Healthcare, Retail, Office, Industrial and Leisure
- many years’ experience in secured lending work for national lenders
Laura was recommended by the Legal 500 2019 and praised for being “knowledgeable, efficient and committed”.
The Legal 500 2018 described the Real Estate team as being “strong, diligent and attentive” and one of the biggest and most capable in the region.
The Chambers UK 2019 guide commented that the “work undertaken by the Real Estate team is always of a high standard and a very strong inner area of operation”.
Some recent comments in relation to Laura’s work from the Methodist Church Trustees include:
- ‘You have done a stunning job in just a few days’
- ‘I would like to express our sincere thanks for the service you and your team provided to us during the purchase of …………… We certainly couldn’t have achieved the ambitious completion date without this. I look forward to working with you in the near future’
- ‘The sale was not altogether straightforward and your help in guiding us through some stormy waters to a successful outcome was very much appreciated’
Key Practice Areas
- Faith Based Institutions
- Commercial Property Real Estate
- Property transactions for Charities and Businesses
- Non-contentious Landlord and Tenant
- Secured Lending