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Bevan Brittan advises Peabody on corporate acquisition of owner of 44-acre site in Dagenham as part of plans for 3,100-home scheme

A multi-disciplinary team at Bevan Brittan has advised social landlord Peabody on the acquisition of Dagenham Dock, the owner of the site of the former Ford Stamping Works in Dagenham.

Peabody will now work closely with Barking and Dagenham Council, BeFirst and the Greater London Authority to deliver a placemaking-led masterplan for more than 3,100 new homes, of which over 1,550 will be affordable housing, in addition to new spaces for learning, leisure, play and work.

In addition to advising on the acquisition of Dagenham Dock Limited, Bevan Brittan advised Peabody on facilitating documentation with third parties to develop out the site and a grant agreement with the GLA. The latter will provide a £80m grant linked to delivery of 1,550 affordable homes into the 44-acre site under the Affordable Housing Programme.

Wendy Wilks, a partner and head of the London Housing Team at Bevan Brittan, said: “This important and exciting acquisition shows the ambition of our client to take significant steps to enable it to continue to develop housing for Londoners and will put Peabody on the map in this area and enable it to make a substantial leap forward with its strategic development plans.”

She added: “It shows the confidence and development capability Peabody has in the market to take this step at the moment, and that reflects our experience of the property market where, despite the obvious challenges we have seen during the pandemic, Registered Providers and developers still having confidence to engage in the Property Market as the need for housing remains strong.”

Peter Cross, Project Director – North & East Regions/Development & Sales for the Peabody Trust, said: “The acquisition of Dagenham Dock Ltd (owner of the former Stamping Plant) has broken new ground for Peabody in terms of acquisition scale and complexity, with multiple interconnected matters requiring consideration.

“Bevan Brittan’s capability to bring multiple areas of expertise including Property (Wendy Wilks and Fiona McDonald) and Corporate (Andrew Spicer and Chris Harper) under a single ‘team approach’ has been vital to getting a holistic view of the transaction and giving clear coordinated advice to Peabody’s Executive and Board.”

Wilks led the Bevan Brittan team with support from fellow partners Chris Harper, head of the corporate team; Kathryn Lawrence, head of the planning team; and David Owens, a specialist Governance and advisory lawyer.

Senior Associates Fiona McDonald, a specialist in housing and development, and corporate lawyer Andrew Spicer were also part of the multi-disciplinary team.

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