Herbies’ Taylor quits for DLA real estate top job

High-profile Herbert Smith consultant David Taylor is leaving to head up DLA’s real estate practice.

Taylor takes the role from current group real estate head Philip Rooney, who is returning to full-time fee-earning after six years in the role.

Taylor stunned the City in 2000 when he quit as head of property at Berwin Leighton (now BLP) to take up a position at Herbert Smith.

In the past he has advised British Land, BG Group and Akeler. He was also the BLP client relationship partner for Prudential, a client that BLP has since lost to Lovells after Taylor quit.

The move is a coup for DLA, which boasts a large but low-profile real estate department, with around 220 lawyers and a £44m turnover. DLA partner and head of transactions Andrew Darwin said he hoped Taylor would raise the London profile and grow the practice.

Although no final date has been cited, Taylor’s departure is believed to be amicable.

Herbert Smith real estate head James Barnes said: “He’s been offered a role that will play to his strategic management strength.”