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Dentons takes fifth Irwin Mitchell partner in boost for banking practice

Dentons has strengthened its London banking and finance practice with the hire of Irwin Mitchell partner Simon Tweedle, its fifth hire from the firm in the past fortnight.

On Friday (19 August), Dentons confirmed it had appointed four partners from Irwin Mitchell, with real estate head Rob Thompson, real estate partners Lewis Myers and Rupert Dowdell and head of corporate real estate Jayne Schnider all moving.

Dentons confirmed its most recent City hire to Legal Business, with Tweedle becoming the fourth former SJ Berwin partner to leave Irwin Mitchell for Dentons, after Thompson, Myers and Dowdell.

The group arrived from SJ Berwin as part of a 20-strong team move to Irwin Mitchell in 2010, while former colleagues Jo Footitt and Louise Cartwright also recently departed for Osborne Clarke in hires announced in June.

The Legal 500 cites Tweedle as a leading individual in property finance, and his previous work includes advising Raven Russia on a $180m property loan and acting for Mercer Real Estate in its £64m acquisition of Mitre House in the City.

With 18 years’ legal experience, Tweedle returns to Dentons having trained at legacy Dentons Wilde Sapte. He moved to Sidley Austin in 2003, before serving in-house as legal counsel at real estate finance service Capmark, ahead of a move to SJ Berwin in 2008.

UK top 25 firm Irwin Mitchell has seen a number of departures this year, with the real estate practice particularly impacted in this summer’s moves. Head of employment Chris Tutton also left for boutique Constantine Law in August after his resignation in March, while litigation partner Daniel Brumpton moved to Manchester-based Berg in July.

The firm said in a statement: ‘We will continue to progress our strategy and invest in profitable areas of Business Legal Services (BLS) and the wider group – including in our real estate teams across the UK, the rest of BLS and the wider Group. Irwin Mitchell (IM) has diversified significantly in recent years, notably with the rapid expansion of BLS and the development of IM Private Wealth. That diversity is a key differentiator in the market, gives us greater stability and flexibility in a changing market and is a core contributor to our ongoing financial strength.’

In November last year, the firm announced a merger with south-east based Thomas Eggar to create what was billed as a £250m firm.