Shoosmiths expands construction practice with Manchester partner hire

March, 2022 - Milton Keynes, England

Shoosmiths has added new expertise to its construction practice with a partner hire in Manchester.

Ian Hardman, real estate partner at ShoosmithsThe leading law firm has recruited Ian Hardman who is a specialist non-contentious lawyer with over 20 years’ experience advising on construction and engineering matters.

Ian arrives at Shoosmiths from Weightmans where he was a partner and head of its Manchester construction team, working on key projects including a £250m distribution centre in the North West.

As the latest in a series of senior hires, Ian’s arrival sees Shoosmiths’ construction practice grow to over 25 staff, comprising eight partners and 17 lawyers. Ian joins the firm’s Manchester office and working alongside current head of construction in Manchester, John Cleaveley, is set to support both existing and new clients in the real estate, construction and engineering sectors.

Shoosmiths’ construction practice recently advised on Vita Group’s £135m development at St John’s in Manchester, which will deliver hundreds of new student accommodation units at the former Granada Studios under Vita’s Student brand. Other clients include Ask Real Estate, Derwent Holdings, Lendlease Construction, Robertson Construction and the National Trust.

Patrick Garner, partner and head of Shoosmiths' construction practice, said: 

“Ian’s arrival bolsters the construction practice and legal services we can provide - bringing valuable experience advising on large-scale regeneration projects, and energy and infrastructure schemes. He is also adept at growing a practice and will play a pivotal role in expanding our client base. With Ian joining and other hires, we have now increased the size of our Manchester team by 50 per cent in response to new client wins and an increase in instructions. 

“We’ve built a multi-disciplinary construction team that is able to deliver strategic and operational advice at all stages of a project’s life cycle. We are focused on adding to our legal repertoire, while helping clients navigate the increasingly complex construction landscape.”

Ian has experience working for both public and private organisations, spanning contractors, developers and funders. He has qualifications in construction law, arbitration and public procurement and is able to advise on all aspects of a construction project. 

Ian Hardman, real estate partner at Shoosmiths, said:

“Shoosmiths is working on some of the UK’s most significant building projects. The firm’s construction team is commercially-minded and ambitious. However, what makes it truly stand out, is its ability to help clients de-risk and deliver transformational construction and engineering schemes, spanning infrastructure, commercial and residential property, and urban regeneration.

“It’s an exciting time to join Shoosmiths. Patrick, John and the wider construction team have laid strong foundations for growth and I’m looking forward to contributing to the practice’s long-term success.”