FFW real estate quartet in RPC switch

Reynolds Porter Chamberlain (RPC) has raided Field Fisher Waterhouse (FFW) for a four-lawyer team to ramp up its real estate group.

FFW partner Martin ­Barrett, who currently heads the projects, infrastructure, commercial and industrial group, will be joining RPC as its head of real estate to replace the retired David Haywood.

RPC managing partner Jonathan Watmough said that, in addition to Barrett, senior associate Sarah ­Cassidy will join as a ­partner, while Christine King and Alex Prew come over as assistants, bringing RPC’s real estate and ­projects team to seven ­partners and 17 lawyers.

“These appointments form a major plank in our long-term strategic growth plan,” said Watmough. “Real estate, as we see with the likes of Berwin Leighton Paisner, can be the key to bringing in work, so we want to see it accelerate past other areas in the commercial division.”

The FFW team’s move comes a month after the firm entered redundancy consultations with fee-earners and other staff in its London real estate department, with up to five lawyers understood to have already left (The Lawyer.com, 8 August).

Meanwhile, RPC hived off its seven-lawyer ­Tiverton office to insurance rival Kennedys?as?a?going ­concern in July this year.