18 June 2021

The Crown Estate announces legal team moves

After 5 years as The Crown Estate’s General Counsel & Company Secretary, Rob Booth is to take up a new leadership role in The Crown Estate’s marine business, as Head of Assets.

This transition, which will take effect from 21st June, comes at a time of significant growth for the marine economy, including renewable energy generation in support of the UK’s commitments to Net Zero.  The move also aligns with The Crown Estate’s commitment to promoting development of its people, including through non-linear routes.

Since joining The Crown Estate in 2012, Rob has held a number of positions in the legal team, including as advisor on energy and infrastructure.  Previously, Rob worked at city law firm Herbert Smith Freehills, where he specialised in commercial property and infrastructure projects.  More recently, Rob has also played a central role in the Bionic Lawyer Project, working to support innovation, technology and equality in the legal profession.

Nicholas Cheffings, former Global Chair of Hogan Lovells, acted for many years as a senior strategic legal advisor to the business, as part of The Crown Estate’s structured panel system.  He brings with him extensive experience, at a global level, and will join The Crown Estate on an interim basis, while the business recruits for the permanent Group Head of Legal & Company Secretary.

Rob Booth, Head of Marine Assets at The Crown Estate, commented: “The Crown Estate is a unique and diverse organisation, and after 5 happy years leading our legal team, I’m absolutely delighted to have the opportunity to continue my professional development here.

This is an incredibly exciting time for our marine business, as it plays its part in helping to unlock the potential of our seabed, for the benefit of the nation, and I’m very much looking forward to taking on this next challenge”

Nicholas Cheffings, interim Group Head of Legal commented: “Having been client relationship lead for The Crown Estate for a number of years, I have developed a strong affection for, and affinity with, both the business and its people.  It was not a difficult decision for me to accept the invitation to support them through this transition and enable Rob Booth to take up his exciting new role.”

The move comes as The Crown Estate concludes a review of its purpose and strategy, to respond to the longer-term trends impacting the business and ensure it can continue to deliver sustainable commercial success in the long term. This includes a number of additional changes to The Crown Estate’s senior team, including Oli Smith, formerly Head of The Crown Estate’s St James’s portfolio, who will now take on a role as Executive Director of Operations.  Judith Everett will take on a new role as Executive Director of Purpose, Sustainability and Stakeholder.

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