About James

As Managing Partner at PDT, Head of the Real Estate department and music enthusiast (you will be hard pushed to name some music he has not listened to), James’s curiosity and fascination with what is important to people has shaped his determination to build a positive working environment at PDT that supports, encourages and inspires all he works with.


James has acted for and acts for numerous regional and national house builders and housing associations and has grown PDT into a leading provider of services to the pharmacy sector.


When he’s not acting on property acquisitions and disposals, planning and infrastructure agreements and heading up the healthcare team he will be found playing for his local football club, hanging out at record shops or simply swimming off the beautiful Brighton coastline.


His passion for helping businesses succeed and grow, and his experience in the industry means James is specifically attuned to the unique challenges regional and national house builders, housing associations, retail pharmacies and other healthcare businesses face.

Recent Work Highlights

  • Advising a leading housing association for over 20 years on management of its portfolio of in excess of 2250 units
  • Advising Horsham Football Club on the relocation and development of its football facility
  • Advising Sunley Estates on a housing development in Burgess Hill from land acquisition to planning agreement to development and ultimate disposal
  • Advising on over 45 pharmacy disposals and acquisitions in 2019
  • Advising a housing association on stock transfer of over 150 units
  • Advising a restaurant operator on prestigious London restaurant development in Tower Bridge.
  • Advising a group of landowners on promotion and disposal agreement for over 1000 units


Chambers UK:  Top UK Legal Professional 2022


James is ranked as a Top UK Legal Professional in the prestigious Chambers UK listings for his Real Estate practice.

"James Clewlow is an excellent communicator and sees things from all perspectives for all involved to enable clear decision-making." "He is very thorough, and very good at problem solving and creative thinking. He has strong communication skills that contribute to effective negotiations."

Chambers UK 2022



The Legal 500: Recommended Lawyer 2022


James is recognised in The Legal 500, 2022 rankings as a Recommended Lawyer for his Commercial Real Estate practice and praised for his 'experience, understanding of process and pragmatism'. James is also recognised as a Recommended Lawyer within the Public Sector for his Pharmacy and Healthcare.


"Unlike other firms where the managing partner is reserved for the ‘larger clients’, James takes a keen interest in supporting the relationship we have. He is proactive about working in partnership with our firm and regularly attends our servicer meetings, providing advice and expert knowledge which certainly benefits our relationship and continued growth."

The Legal 500, Commercial Real Estate 2021


"PDT Solicitors is particularly notable for its work in the pharmacy sector, advising clients on the set-up and expansion of pharmacy businesses, as well as disposals, and sales for sole practitioners who retire. The firm also advises opticians and social care clients on corporate matters. Practice head James Clewlow has a strong track record advising clients throughout the life cycle of their businesses."

"He is clearly well experienced and competent in his area of expertise. He is a people person rather than a voice at the end of a telephone. He is able to persuade, cajole, and encourage other parties to work to complete a transaction in a timely manner."

The Legal 500, Public Sector, 2021


Contact James



COVID-19 Legal Hub


Housing Associations

Pharmacy and Healthcare

Property Litigation

Real Estate

Sector Experience

Real Estate development
Pharmacy and healthcare
Housing Associations
Secured lending

"James Clewlow is a very able practice head. PDT's Real Estate team are excellent in all respects, James is easy to work with and provides vital advice and support"

The Legal 500, 2021. Recommended Lawyer

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