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John is head of the Social Housing Group at Ward Hadaway and is Executive Partner for the firm's Leeds office.

The Social Housing Group offers a comprehensive range of legal services to the Social Housing sector and acts on behalf of Registered Providers of Social Housing throughout the North and nationally.

John has specialised in Housing Law since 1987, and has for the past 15 years acted for Housing Associations, local authorities and property owners in relation to housing management matters including litigation throughout the North of England and the Midlands.


John has considerable experience of all aspects of residential property litigation, from possession actions and injunction proceedings, to disrepair claims, advice on leasehold/service charge matters and shared ownership disputes.

He has a particular expertise in terms of action taken by Registered Providers in relation to anti-social behaviour, often with Equality Act and Human Rights Act issues.

The housing management unit of the Social Housing Group assists at all stages of a case – from initial advice right through to representation at trial.

John and his team provide training on Housing Law to housing management staff both in-house and externally.

John is a former member of the Law Society’s Housing Law Committee as representative of solicitors advising Housing Associations, and was involved with the drafting of the Housing Disrepair Protocol.

He has been appointed by the Lord Chancellor as a Judge of the First Tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) determining a wide range of residential property disputes, including service charges, rent levels and refusals of the right to buy.

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What our clients say

  • "We have found the team to be extremely responsive and reliable in all aspects of work. They are very approachable and helpful, whilst providing a friendly, polite and flexible service to our organisation. I would recommend them very highly."

    Semira Abubakar
  • "What we look for from our legal advisors is a thorough understanding of the sector in which we operate, underpinned with sound legal knowledge and an ability to come up with timely, proactive solutions that really work 'on the ground'. This is exactly what John Murray and his team at Ward Hadaway provide. Their friendly yet professional approach, combined with responsive and focused advice continues to prove a great help to Yorkshire Housing in all our activities."

    Adam Greenwood, Anti-Social Behaviour Manager, Yorkshire Housing
  • "We have an excellent relationship with John Murray and his team and have always found them committed to our needs as the client. Their knowledge, along with their willingness to provide quick advice when its needed, is invaluable to our work and our ability to make quick decisions.”

    Ilyas Lunat, Income Services Manager, Connect Housing
  • "John Murray has provided legal advice and strategies for complex major works consultations, arrears cases and lease interpretation. He has also provided bespoke leasehold training which was well received. He is approachable and always responds very quickly to queries. John has in depth knowledge of leasehold, especially within the context of the social housing sector and fully understand the issues we face, his support has been invaluable during a difficult and demanding year."

Independent verdict

  • Clients praise "Exceptional understanding of the sector" and his "superb approach to client relationship management."

    Chambers & Partners
  • "John Murray acts for a range of social landlords on housing management matters including antisocial behaviour and possession orders. Clients frequently instruct him on their most sensitive and complex cases, often involving difficult or vulnerable tenants."

    Chambers & Partners
  • "John Murray heads the firm's social housing team. He has many years of experience in acting for registered providers on a range of contentious mandates."

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