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Simon Blackburn


Simon advises UK and overseas buyers on all aspects of transacting and managing farms, estates and country houses and has been practising in the sector since qualification in 2009.

Simon regularly advises on the sale of land for development, in addition to helping clients to deal with manorial rights and rural rights of way, (public and private); he also has a strong background in dealing with issues arising under the Agricultural Holdings Act 1986 and unregistered land.



One of Simon’s specialisms is acting as an independent conveyancing solicitor in matrimonial proceedings for both residential and rural property where the parties cannot agree to instruct either of the firms representing the parties, with Chambers UK 2019 noting: “He has a very creative way of thinking and approaching matters… he’s got a huge eye for detail”.

Professional Memberships:

  • Agricultural Law Association
  • Country Land and Business Association

Qualified 2009, joined Payne Hicks Beach 2018, partner 2018.

Simon is ranked by Chambers UK 2024 in Band 2 under Agriculture & Rural Affairs. Commentators say that Simon “has incredible empathy for clients and is always aware of their needs as well as being an excellent technical lawyer,” is “an absolute delight to work with and intellectually brilliant” and “extremely knowledgeable and efficient in all of our dealings.”

Ranked as a Leading Individual in The Legal 500 UK 2024 for Agriculture and Estates. One commentator says “Simon Blackburn is as good a private client and agricultural lawyer and trusted adviser as one could hope to meet” and another comments, “Simon Blackburn lives and breathes agricultural law but is also very commercially aware and constructive in his approach with the other side – he must be the best agricultural lawyer of his generation.” He is also described as being “readily available to speak to and provides excellent advice, showing an in depth knowledge of his subject,” is ” very personable and down to earth” and “diligent, quick, responsive and communicates well.”

Chambers UK 2023 ranked Simon under Agricultural & Rural Affairs with Simon recognised for “extensive experience of handling the acquisition, management and sale of farms and estates, as well as matters involving rural rights of way, manorial rights and development matters.”  Commentators say he is “dedicated and considerate,” and “hard-working and perceptive.”

In The Legal 500 UK 2023 Simon featured as a Leading Individual under Private Client: Agriculture and Estates. One commentator says “Simon Blackburn has been a detail-driven and supportive lawyer who has allowed us to get effective results” and another adds “one of the best landed estates lawyer of his generation: very experienced, very commercial and very personable.” A third comments “where Simon’s approach really stands out is in the care and effort that he takes to build relationships both with the other professionals involved and in this case with the counterparty to a divorce who sought to frustrate the legal process in train. Suffice it to say that his good bedside manner and diplomacy prevented on several occasions a difficult situation from escalating.”

Ranked as a “Top Recommended Landed Estates Lawyer” in Spear’s 500 2023.