Merger prospects for Birmingham sets rejected

LOVELL White Durrant's move to new headquarters at Atlantic House, High Holborn in London declared official last week will leave the firm with plenty of room for expansion.

Andrew Walker, senior partner at the City firm, said that the management had budgeted for an increase in staff numbers of 4 per cent a year.

With 1,300 members of staff already, this means the practice is looking to take on about 50 new employees a year.

Lovells has entered a pre-letting agreement with landlord Prudential for the entire building on a 25-year full repairing and insuring lease. It is aiming to move in as soon as redevelopment of the building is completed in the summer of 2001.

The building will provide 260,000 sq ft of accommodation. With back-up space at its current premises at 65 Holborn Viaduct, Lovells will have a total of 320,000 sq ft with which to accommodate its current 1,300 staff.

Walker remained tight-lipped about how much the firm would be paying under the lease.

But he did say that the firm had done a very competitive deal and that the rent was significantly less than other deals announced recently.