Sir John Ritblat will join investment bank in January but will remain as honorary president of firm he has headed up for 35 years

Sir John Ritblat has announced he will join US investment bank Lehman Brothers when he steps down as chairman of British Land in the New Year.

Sir John has been at the helm of Britain’s second biggest property company for 35 years will leave in January but will remain honorary president.

It is understood that Lehman Brothers, which has around £3.7bn of European property in its portfolio, will appoint Sir John as chairman of its new European Real Estate Private Equity Advisory Council.

His new role will include providing strategic advice on European transactions by Lehman Brothers’ real estate opportunity funds.