We win top intellectual property award

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Our IP team was last night awarded IPEC Firm of the Year at the 17th annual Managing IP awards. The awards were held at the Royal Lancaster Hotel, London.

One of eight firms shortlisted in the hotly contested Intellectual Property Enterprise Court (“IPEC”) firm of the year category, the win is another milestone in the team’s ambition to be recognised as one of the top IP teams in the marketplace.

The IPEC is a specialist IP court within the High Court, which aims to provide a procedure for intellectual property litigation which is speedier and less costly than is the case in the rest of the High Court. The IP team is well placed and highly experienced in representing clients in this forum, having issued proceedings in a substantial number of cases in the last couple of years, including success at trial in the Claydon Yield O Meter v Mzuri patent dispute in 2021, and the Marflow v Cassellie patent dispute in 2019. This award recognises the team’s successes and experience.

Managing IP awards showcase the best providers and suppliers of IP services across the globe and recognise the firms, individuals and companies behind the most innovative and challenging IP work of the past year, as well as those driving the international IP market.

Commenting on the win, national head of IP Nick Briggs said, “We are absolutely delighted to have won this competitive category at these prestigious industry awards, especially amongst such high calibre competition. It is a great honour and testament to the hard work and standard of work the team has been undertaking over the past 12 months and beyond. Every member of the team has played a part in this fabulous award which moves us closer to our goal of being one of the leading national IP teams. Finally, and above all else, we look for success for our clients who trust us with their work, and to whom we extend our thanks”.

The team has recently expanded its regional footprint with the further development of our Sheffield office and the firm’s move into Bristol provides an opportunity to extend westwards our strong reputation in the Midlands market.

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Nick helps UK and international clients enforce and protect their Intellectual Property rights, and defends those accused of infringing IPRs.

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Lawyers trade office for canal as part of litter pick

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Tyres, carpets and suitcases were among the items collected by Shakespeare Martineau’s lawyers as part of a litter pick along the Birmingham & Fazeley Canal towpath.

An entire barge was filled with rubbish by the law firm’s Birmingham-based corporate team, who gave up their time on Tuesday (31 May) to take part in the volunteering day, which was organised by the Canal and River Trust.

The team started at Cambrian Wharf, which was developed in 1769, before making their way down the canal on a barge – collecting kids’ shoes, clothes, bricks, a step ladder, duvets, cans, bottles and umbrellas along the way.

Jody Webb, corporate partner at Shakespeare Martineau, said: “Canals provide vital access to green and blue spaces, which improve wellbeing and enhance communities. However, too often, litter is dropped along the towpath.

“The damage rubbish causes to our environment, aquatic ecosystems and wildlife is well-documented. We were really surprised at the amount of rubbish we collected over the course of the day, but it shows how much can be done when people give up their time.

“We are proud to have supported the Canal and River Trust in helping to keep our city clean and tidy for use by the local community, as well as in readiness for the Commonwealth Games this summer, and we are looking forward to helping out more over the next 12 months.

Tara Sexton, volunteer leader at the Canal and River Trust, added: “The work all volunteer groups undertake is essential to the management and maintenance of the heritage assets and environmental concerns prevalent throughout the region. As a wellbeing charity, it is vital we can provide accessible and safe spaces for everyone who visits the canals in Birmingham.

As part of its responsible business strategy, Shakespeare Martineau is aiming to deliver 10,000 volunteering hours in 2022.

People from the firm – including partners Jody Webb, Michael Stace and Peter Mayhew; solicitor Gweni Rees-Evans; consultant Tim Newman; litigation legal assistant Jakub Mikulecky; and paralegal Mia Georgiou – contributed towards this by taking part in the litter pick.

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Jody leads on substantial transactions including acquisitions, disposals, management buy outs and private equity investments with a particular focus on the UK mid-market with values of circa £5m – £100m across a variety of sectors.

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Shakespeare Martineau recognised as top large employer nationally

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Full-service law firm Shakespeare Martineau – as part of legal and professional services group Ampa – has been named one of the top 100 best large companies to work for in the UK by Best Companies.

  • Ranked 61 in top 100 best large companies

  • Ranked 12 in top 25 law firm

  • Ranked 25 in top 75 East Midlands companies

  • Ranked 25 in top 75 West Midlands companies

  • Ranked 33 in top 50 large London companies

BCA2022_company_2star

The Best Companies lists are the highest regarded league tables for great places to work – recognising business’ commitment to employee engagement and positive culture. Rankings are produced based on an independent and anonymous survey of people within the business.

Ampa brands were also awarded Best Companies’ second-highest standard two star accreditation – representing ‘outstanding’ levels of and commitment to workplace engagement.

Last year was Ampa’s first time being involved in the awards – ranking 58 in the top 100 Midlands companies and 42 in the top 75 large London companies.

It is truly fantastic to have achieved recognition as a top large employer nationally, as well as in law, the East Midlands, West Midlands and London, which is testament to our positive, passionate and authentic culture.

Ben Buckton, chief marketing and people officer at Ampa

Last year, we featured on three lists and it is incredible to have retained and, in some cases, significantly improved our places on these league tables while also ranking so high nationally too.

“We are also delighted to have received such high levels of engagement from our people and a two star ‘outstanding’ accreditation. Our people are our greatest assets, greatest advocates and what we are all about. They drive our business forward and by investing in them, their ambitions, development, and wellbeing, we are able to provide the best service and outcomes for our clients.

“The insights we’ve gained from the B-Heard survey, alongside our own regular internal Pulse feedback, helps us keep our commitment to continuous improvement as we strive to be one of the most empowering and inclusive workplaces in the UK.

Ampa, which has pending B Corporation status, is proactively looking for like-minded businesses to join the group. All Ampa brands are recruiting lateral hires and teams.

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Ben is part of our Main and Exec Boards, and as Chief Marketing & People Officer (CMPO), he is responsible for our people, customer, commercial and marketing strategy.

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We support new Muslim youth mentoring scheme

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Midlands law firm Shakespeare Martineau is supporting British Muslim charity Mercy Mission UK in launching a new mentoring scheme.

100 local businesses across Birmingham will take action to help young people from across the region, improving their life chances through confidence and resilience building.

The scheme will offer mentoring and work experience placements to Muslim youth across the city directly tackling the long term inequities they face as people of faith.Initially centred in Birmingham, those first 100 businesses will take part in the scheme championed by Shakespeare Martineau in partnership with Mercy Mission’s ‘Faith in Our Cities’ initiative.

Speaking at the recent launch event, Azim Kidwai, CEO of Mercy Mission UK, urged business leaders to find out more about the youth empowerment programme and shift the dial domestically for a generation of young people, marginalised through lack of cultural understanding and fit for purpose employment opportunities.

Mohammed Saqub, partner at Shakespeare Martineau and head of Islamic finance, said: “It’s estimated that 17% of UK prisoners are Muslim, despite Muslims making up just over four per cent of the UK population.

A core challenge is that there is an issue with young people heading for a life of crime, as they see little alternative in their future or simply not fulfilling their true potential. Increased mentoring – especially from people who speak and look just like them and share the same cultural heritage – could make all the difference in the path a person chooses to follow.

When I was at school in the centre of Birmingham, I was influenced by a lawyer who came into our school to talk about what he did. Without him, I’m not sure whether I would have chosen this path – his mentoring opened-up possible options for a career and I am passionate about doing the same for others.

Spearheading the scheme is local civil society leader Jehangir Malik OBE, from Mercy Mission UK. He said: “We are really excited about launching this new scheme and are very optimistic by the initial response we’ve had from diverse local businesses in Birmingham.

The project is co-created by young people and local businesses as part of an intergenerational approach to strengthening British Muslim civil society. We recognise the untapped potential of British Muslim youth and the positive role they can play in shaping and enriching our society.

To this end, we are focussing on creating a multi-faceted developmental approach that ensures that Muslim youth in Britain can fulfil their true potential by launching the Muslim Youth Connected Youth Futures Programme in Birmingham.

For more information about the Muslim Youth Connected Futures Programme, please visit Mercy Mission or get in touch with Jehangir Malik.

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Mohammed is a real estate finance and islamic finance specialist with considerable experience in dealing with a range of high-value and complex property investment, finance and development transactions.

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3 tonnes of surplus leeks rescued from Lincolnshire farm to help tackle food poverty

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Dozens of volunteers have hand-pulled, topped and tailed around 3,000kg of surplus leeks at a Lincolnshire farm – helping to reduce waste, combat food poverty and support the agricultural sector.

Organised by members of Lions Club International, a global volunteer service organisation, the initiative – supported by law firm Shakespeare Martineau – was the first of the year in conjunction with The Gleaning Network, which encourages people across the country to pick surplus crops to shrink farm-level food waste.

After being picked on Saturday, 23 April in Coningsby, the leeks were placed in crates and distributed to frontline charities and local groups – such as school breakfast clubs, older people’s lunch clubs, homeless shelters, food banks and community cafes – via FareShare’s regional centres.

Dr Chris Hibbert, a member of Lions Club International and holding the role of national hunger officer, formed the Lions Gleaning Hub two years ago. Since then, more than 38 tonnes of food from eight counties – including Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire – have been rescued.

Chris said: “Last year, we were inundated with pumpkins as they are getting more popular and we had opportunities with around a dozen farms. While we managed to help most of them, the waste was still staggering. All those who volunteer for us have been shocked by the quality and quantity of food available on the farms we have managed to engage with and the variety of reasons for this surplus.

While food banks, community fridges and soup kitchens are well-supported, awareness of food waste generally is still not widely appreciated. We are hoping to develop more opportunities with farms across the country, as well as encourage more volunteers to get involved. Another area we are keen to develop is around education of growing, preparing and cooking food as there is an over-reliance on takeaways and pre-prepared food.

It is important for people to realise that the food we are picking is fresh, nutritious and delicious. It isn’t waste – it is surplus and our aim is to stop it from becoming waste.

As part of its responsible business strategy, Shakespeare Martineau – which has a presence in Lincolnshire – is aiming to deliver 10,000 volunteering hours in 2022. People from the firm contributed towards this by pulling, preparing and saving the surplus leeks in Lincolnshire.

Jennie Wheildon, legal director who specialises in agricultural property law at Shakespeare Martineau, said: “It is estimated that £1.2 billion’s worth of food is wasted each year, which can be attributed to cosmetic standards, order cancellations, forecast changes, unpredictable weather, and harvesting capacity.

Gleaning reduces food waste on farms and increases the supply of fresh food to those in need. “As agricultural law specialists advising farming businesses, it is particularly great to have an opportunity to volunteer on a farm by helping to harvest the surplus supply.

We are delighted to have supported the Lions Gleaning Hub with its first pick of the year and are looking forward to helping out with more gleaning over the next 12 months.

To find out more about Lions Club International’s gleaning project or to get involved, please contact Chris Hibbert or visit the Lions District 105CE website to view the club’s gleaning ‘Seasonal’ newsletters, as well as videos of gleans and the Lions Feeding the 5000 events – the next of which is planned for 5 November in Lincoln.

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Jennie has enjoyed putting her wellington boots on and working within the agricultural sector since she was a trainee solicitor. Jennie has significant experience assisting farming clients with the wide variety of their property matters.

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We announce 25 promotions

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Full service law firm Shakespeare Martineau has announced 25 promotions, including four additions to the group level membership.
Equity membership and role of partner

Effective 1 May 2022, Nicola Holton, Peter Mayhew, Sneha Nainwal and Verity Kirby will be joining the equity membership and taking the role of partner within Shakespeare Martineau.

Insolvency expert Nicola Holton has more than 10 years’ restructuring and insolvency experience having worked with a wide variety of clients ranging from insolvency practitioners and litigation funders to corporates and their directors.

Peter Mayhew, who works as part of the corporate team, has extensive experience in fund structuring, tax advantaged schemes, private equity investment, disposals and restructuring.

Heading up Shakespeare Martineau’s India desk, dual-qualified partner Sneha Nainwal has extensive experience in acting for clients, both businesses and private individuals, in complex litigation before Indian and English Courts, as well as international arbitration and mediation.

Part of the private client team, Verity Kirby specialises in estate administration, inheritance tax and capital gains tax planning, trusts, wills and succession.

Salaried partner

Taking the role of salaried partner within the Shakespeare Martineau brand is commercial property expert Mark Jones and litigation and dispute resolution specialists Ben Humphreys and Gareth Hegarty.

Legal director

Stepping into the role of legal director at Shakespeare Martineau is education specialist Anieka Sheppard, commercial development expert Ben Darlow, conveyancing expert Claire Langford, experienced IP advisor Daniel Goodall, residential development specialist Holly Lockley and corporate lawyer Jennie Davis.

Associate

Within the Shakespeare Martineau brand there have been 12 promotions to associate level, including construction specialist Adam Watson, IP expert Daniel Kelly, litigation and restructuring lawyer Dannielle Long, real estate finance expert Dominique Appleby-Freeth and property dispute specialist Habib Khan.

Also promoted to associate is Hannah Awcock, who specialises in commercial property and development, corporate lawyer Jade Price, residential development expert Joe Davies, private client advisor Kuldeep Chauhan, corporate lawyer Matthew Shephard, residential conveyancer Raza Ali and estate planning expert Victoria Taylor.

Sarah Walker-Smith, CEO of Shakespeare Martineau, said: “It's our people who make our business – and it’s our clients who benefit from our investments in them, so rewarding high performance is part of our culture.

It’s great that all of our people are eligible for the membership and that we are able to recognise significant business contribution in this way. We are also pleased to see an increase in female representation within the membership, which is a key priority for the group as part of our responsible business ambitions. We’re so thrilled to have such a bumper promotions round this year and congratulations to all.

Shakespeare Martineau is proactively recruiting lateral hires and teams.

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Ben is part of our Main and Exec Boards, and as Chief Marketing & People Officer (CMPO), he is responsible for our people, customer, commercial and marketing strategy.

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We appoint a Birmingham specialist corporate finance partner

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As part of its ambitious growth strategy, leading law firm Shakespeare Martineau has appointed corporate partner Michael Stace.

With more than 25 years’ qualified experience, Michael joins Shakespeare Martineau from Browne Jacobson, where he was head of the firm’s Birmingham office.

Specialising in corporate finance, Michael advises public and private companies, individuals, and institutions on domestic and international M&A, private equity investments, restructurings, joint ventures, and partnership matters.

Michael, who will be based at Shakespeare Martineau’s Birmingham hub, said: “I am thrilled to have joined such a forward-thinking and ambitious firm at such an exciting time. I have been impressed by the energy and enthusiasm of those within the business, and I am looking forward to helping the Birmingham corporate team build upon and cement its presence and reputation in the local market.

Michael qualified in 1995 while at Cole & Cole – which, subsequently, became Morgan Cole and then Blake Morgan – and became a partner in 2004. He was head of corporate at the firm for four years, as well as an executive board member for three years, before joining Browne Jacobson in 2017.

Recently, Michael has acted for the founders and management in connection with the Westbridge-backed management buyout of Smart Capital Technology, as well as for NorthEdge on its acquisition of the global marketing services and consultancy firm ICP.

He said: “I really enjoy helping key decision-makers deliver on their business strategies and balancing risk and commercial objectives. I am excited to begin working with the Birmingham corporate team to strengthen its community ties and expand the firm’s client base in the West Midlands.

Michael’s appointment is the latest in a string of new partner hires – including corporate partner Jody Webb in Birmingham – as part of Shakespeare Martineau’s growth strategy, broadening its footprint both north and south.

His appointment is not the end of the firm’s corporate team expansion as it continues to talk with various lateral hires and teams.

Victoria Tester, partner and managing director of life and business at Shakespeare Martineau, said: “There is a lot of opportunity in the corporate market across the whole of the Midlands and beyond. With a wealth of experience and a strong local reputation, Michael’s appointment consolidates our commitment to providing clients with top quality consultancy from the very best legal minds that Birmingham has to offer.

Duncan James, partner and head of corporate at Shakespeare Martineau, added: “We are delighted to welcome Michael to the team, which is part of our continuing commitment to having a strong corporate presence across all our major hubs. We are continuing to look at further corporate recruits across our hubs as we continue to look to significant growth.

Shakespeare Martineau is proactively seeking talented people to join the firm on its growth journey, including mergers, team recruitment and lateral hires nationally.

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Duncan works with fast growing family businesses and entrepreneurs to ensure they are successful and to help them achieve their goals through acquisitions, funding lines and exit and succession planning.

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Expert partner joins to head up law firm’s national charity team

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Leading full service law firm Shakespeare Martineau has welcomed specialist partner Catherine Rustomji to head up its national charity team.

For more than 20 years, Catherine has been exclusively advising charities, social enterprises and not for profit organisations – specialising in charity law and governance, not for profit legal structures, trustee training and board development.

Catherine has joined Shakespeare Martineau after five years as a partner and charities practice head at Browne Jacobson. Prior to this, she worked at DWF, Hempsons, Dickinson Dees and Stone King, and was a charity trustee for Yorkshire Cancer Research.

Over the years, she has supported national, regional and local charities, not for profit organisations, community groups, schools, colleges, churches, welfare and professional associations – operating across the health, education, arts, public and private sectors.

Catherine said: “Shakespeare Martineau is a focused firm, which has a clear strategy for its people and itself, so I am delighted to be working at the core of a strong team to offer a complete service to our charities and not for profit clients.

As well as broad expertise in charity law, Shakespeare Martineau’s full-service team is able to support organisations with legacies, employment law, funding and corporate advice, intellectual property considerations, and real estate advice. The team also has particular and unique expertise advising charities on contentious probate issues.

Catherine, who will be primarily based at home and working with clients and teams nationally, said: “Operating in the charity and not for profit sector has never been more challenging or more stimulating, with social, economic and political upheavals, scarce resources, and mounting needs and expectations.

Having specialised in charity law for more than 20 years, this area of law continues to develop and evolve, meaning it is constantly challenging to keep up to date with latest developments. I particularly enjoy working with different boards of trustees – often at times of stress or pressure – and seeing them thrive.

Catherine’s appointment is the latest in a string of new partner hires as part of the firm’s growth strategy, broadening its footprint both north and south.

Andrew Wilkinson, partner at Shakespeare Martineau, said: “We are delighted to welcome Catherine to the firm. Her experience, knowledge and expertise will be a real asset as we look to grow our charities and not for profit offering, and Catherine will be at the forefront of leading this.

Shakespeare Martineau is proactively seeking talented people to join the firm on its growth journey, including mergers, team recruitment and lateral hires nationally.

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We build on our Scots law offering with dual-qualified appointment

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Leading full service law firm Shakespeare Martineau has built on its Scots law offering with the appointment of a new dual-qualified legal director.

With almost 10 years’ experience working in Scotland, Nicky Grant has joined the firm’s commercial real estate team and will be based in Edinburgh.

He has a breadth of experience across all areas of commercial property, including acquisition and disposals, commercial leasing, commercial developments, managing investment properties, acting on utilities and energy projects, corporate assist work, acting on behalf of healthcare providers, and real estate finance.

Prior to his new role, Nicky spent seven years at Edinburgh-based Dickson Minto after completing his property-focused traineeship at Raeburn Christie Clark & Wallace in Aberdeen. He obtained dual qualification in 2018.

Nicky said: “I am thrilled to have joined Shakespeare Martineau at such an exciting time and key stage in the firm’s expansion as it further establishes a presence in the Scottish market. The firm is extremely ambitious and forward-thinking both in terms of growth and the way it invests in its people.

Commercial real estate law has always been my passion, largely due to the challenges that fast-paced, high-volume transactional work presents. I am looking forward to working with and growing the team in Scotland and creating new, long-lasting relationships with clients north of the border.

Nicky’s appointment comes after Shakespeare Martineau announced it is set to take on its first ever Scottish trainees. The law firm is looking to recruit two trainees into the commercial sector within its Scottish practice – one to start later this year and another in 2024.

Amal Kaur, partner at Shakespeare Martineau (Glasgow) LLP, said: “As businesses increasingly expand their operations across the UK, we are frequently asked to advise our clients on Scottish and cross-border transactions. We continue to provide tailored Scots law services to our clients and are investing internally in quality training to expand our resources.

I am really excited to welcome Nicky to the firm as a new senior appointment. He has a wealth of commercial experience and will be a great asset to our growing team. Based in Edinburgh, Nicky has a network of connections in Scotland to grow our practice even further and his dual-qualification means we can seamlessly transact in both jurisdiction for our clients – saving them valuable time and money.

This is a very exciting time for Shakespeare Martineau in Scotland. I am also pleased to congratulate our real estate associate Aller Dawlat on dual qualifying into Scots law. He will be a great asset in supporting our volume utilities team, with his existing wealth of experience in the sector.

Shakespeare Martineau is proactively seeking talented people to join the firm on its growth journey, including mergers, team recruitment and lateral hires nationally.

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Amal is our dual-qualified Partner having many years of combined experience North and South of the border.
She has worked both within core real estate and the renewable energy sector.

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We have boosted our growth ambitions with a double hire

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We have strengthened our growth ambitions with the appointment of two business development business partners.

With more than 24 years’ combined experience in the professional services sector, Lois Pryor and Perri Blakey will be focusing on developing relationships and delivering exceptional client service, supporting Shakespeare Martineau’s legal teams in delivering growth and creating business value through strategic marketing and business development initiatives.

While Lois will be looking after the firm’s residential development, commercial property and development, building communities, build to rent, and logistics legal teams, Perri will be supporting the firm’s corporate department, as well as its East Midlands and South Yorkshire office hubs in Nottingham, Leicester, Lincoln and Sheffield.

Lois and Perri will primarily be based at the firm’s Birmingham and Nottingham hubs respectively, but will work with teams nationally across multiple services, markets and cities.

Lois – who joins the team after spending more than two years at international law firm Gowling WLG looking after the real estate, government and healthcare sectors – said: “I am delighted to have joined Shakespeare Martineau and extremely excited to be part of its vision.

“Shakespeare Martineau’s innovative approach to running a law firm really captured my interest, as well as its reputation for encouraging employees to be themselves. The firm has ambitious growth targets and I am looking forward to having an impact on its upwards trajectory and, in particular, the infrastructure and specialist markets team.

Perri – who was previously at national law firm Browne Jacobson, supporting its SME and entrepreneur target market – added: “Shakespeare Martineau is progressive, ambitious and has strong ethical values, and a real focus on the development and success of its people.

“I’m excited to be working with the firm’s corporate team and working with the partners to identify new opportunities in the market. The firm has a fantastic reputation in the East Midlands through its Nottingham and Leicester hubs, and has recently expanded into Sheffield and Lincoln, both present fantastic new opportunities for growth as we build our presence and credentials in these cities.

Lois and Perri’s appointments are the latest in a series of new roles across business development and marketing teams and for part of Shakespeare Martineau’s ambitious growth strategy, broadening its footprint both north and south. The firm is proactively seeking talented people to join it on its growth journey, including mergers, team recruitment and lateral hires nationally.

Head of business development Audrey Holden said: “Our positive culture and ambitious growth targets are proving to be a beacon for talent and we are thrilled to welcome both Lois and Perri to Shakespeare Martineau. Their knowledge and experience will be a real asset to us as we look to grow our corporate and infrastructure and specialist markets teams and cement our reputation in the East Midlands and South Yorkshire regions.

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Joseph supports the delivery of organic growth for the West Midlands region through identifying key segments for growth, leading cross-sell and referral initiatives and .driving sales & development culture. He is also responsible for key account management and sales & growth enablement.

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Birmingham law firm’s family team bolstered with specialist partner appointment

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Leading full service law firm Shakespeare Martineau has welcomed new partner Aasha Choudhary to its family team in Birmingham.

Aasha specialises in high-value, complex financial matters, often with significant international elements, including assets abroad, jurisdiction disputes and third-party interveners. She also has a deep knowledge of wealth protection work, children matters, pre- and post-nups, and separation and cohabitation agreements.

With more than 13 years’ qualified experience, Aasha has joined Shakespeare Martineau after eight years at Mills & Reeve, where she worked her way up from associate to principal associate. Prior to this, she spent three years as a solicitor at George Green LLP and almost four years at Challinors.

Over the years, she has supported clients with significant wealth, including a high-profile pre-nuptial agreement covering assets worth £1.45 billion.

Aasha said: “I am thrilled to have joined Shakespeare Martineau at such an exciting time. I was drawn to the firm’s culture, nurturing environment and strong values, which focus on empowerment and unity – supporting each person to play to their strengths and allowing them to reach their full potential.

“The family team is well-established and well-respected, and the firm is on the crest of a wave – I am looking forward to being part of its growth journey and I am pleased to be bringing my experience to Shakespeare Martineau, helping to achieve the best possible outcomes for my clients.

Aasha will primarily be based at the firm’s Birmingham office hub but will be working with clients nationally.

She said: “I am excited to be working alongside the upcoming talent we have here at Shakespeare Martineau. My training and the support I received at the start of my career has made me the lawyer I am today, so I am always wanting to give back and share my knowledge with the next generation. I love watching trainees flourish.

“Family law has always been my passion. It is a distress purchase, so the satisfaction of seeing someone who starts the process following a relationship breakdown – typically in fragile place – become the person they are at the end of the journey is extremely rewarding.

Aasha’s appointment is the latest in a string of new partner hires as part of the firm’s growth strategy, broadening its footprint both north and south.

Victoria Tester, partner and life and business managing director at Shakespeare Martineau, said: “We are delighted to welcome Aasha to the firm. She has excellent experience advising on high-value and complex cases following relationship breakdowns, often involving multiple parties, businesses, trusts and foreign assets. Her knowledge will be a real asset to our already strong family team as we look to cement our reputation in the West Midlands.

Shakespeare Martineau – which was recognised as Family Law Firm of the Year in the Midlands and Wales in the LexisNexis Family Law Awards 2020 – is proactively seeking talented people to join the firm on its growth journey, including mergers, team recruitment and lateral hires nationally.

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Victoria sits on our Main Board and is responsible for our Life & Business, business unit.

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We support Birmingham Enterprise Community to help entrepreneurs from underrepresented backgrounds

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Leading law firm Shakespeare Martineau is partnering with Birmingham-based social enterprise Birmingham Enterprise Community (BEC) to provide more opportunities to support individuals from underrepresented communities to start their own businesses.

The initiative will invite individuals from backgrounds usually underrepresented in entrepreneurship who are seeking to start their own business to apply to receive fully funded support delivered by BEC. In total, 12 individuals will then be selected to receive a fully-funded place on BEC’s 6 week Startup Sprint Programme, commencing in April, which will help them to gain the skills and knowledge they need to start their own businesses and begin to build the connections they need to enable their own professional development. The programme includes workshops, expert mentoring, access to events and more.

The initiative will prioritise applications from backgrounds including (but not limited to) female founders, founders from ethnic minority backgrounds, refugee founders, founders from the LGBTQ+ community and founders with disabilities. However, anyone is welcome to apply.

During 2020 & 2021, a number of reports were released highlighting disparity when it comes to key elements of entrepreneurship amongst various demographics such as access to funding and access to networks. The Startup Sprint Programme which Shakespeare Martineau have supported is part of an ongoing series of activities by BEC to support and encourage founders from diverse backgrounds to both start and grow their own businesses by helping them to tackle some of the barriers and challenges that they face as founders.

Applications for the programme are open until 18th March and can be submitted by completing the following application here.

The programme itself will commence on the 4th April 2022.

We’ve been working hard to create more opportunities to ensure everyone is given a seat around the entrepreneurial table. Anyone that has an idea should be given the opportunity to explore that further and we are excited to be working with Shakespeare Martineau to create new opportunities for founders from all backgrounds to thrive.” - Daniel Evans, Chief Executive, Birmingham Enterprise Community.

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At Shakespeare Martineau our purpose is to unlock potential and we’re thrilled to be supporting a programme that will enhance productivity, innovation and diversity in the business community. If we want to speed up economic recovery it’s our responsibility as experienced business leaders to pay it forward with mentoring and support for start-up enterprises, not least those who potentially face additional barriers to getting a foot on the business ladder, which is already tough enough as it is. I’m really looking forward to following the entrepreneurs in their business journey through the programme.- Jennie Davis, Corporate Associate, Shakespeare Martineau

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Jennie is a key member of our corporate team, providing advice to both private and public companies.

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Looking after yourself at Christmas

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12 Days of Christmas - Day 1: A partridge in a pear tree

For many of us, Christmas is a time for family celebrations – to relax, unwind, and spend our days enjoying the festivities along with a mince pie and a glass of something delicious.

But for others, Christmas is not the joyous time of year that marketing campaigns would have you believe.

Perhaps you’re going through a divorce, been recently widowed, have strained family relations or are spending the holidays alone. Or perhaps you don’t celebrate Christmas due to your religion

There are many different ways to spend your time during the festive period that don’t necessarily fit the traditional mould.

Let’s take a look at some alternative ways to spend Christmas:

Volunteer

Not everyone is having a great time at Christmas for all sorts of reasons.

That’s why volunteering can be so rewarding over the Christmas period. Not only is it beneficial for the person you’re helping, but is also a valuable use of your time and can help your wellbeing, too.

Here are a few different things you can do:

  • Deliver food parcels
  • Help at a soup kitchen
  • Organise donations at a shelter

For an extensive list of volunteering opportunities in your area, visit Do IT | Connecting people to do good things

Take yourself somewhere memorable

Christmas doesn’t have to mean staying in.  Draw up a list of quirky places you’ve never visited before. Most places indoors are closed, but there are many fascinating places of interest, like this art sculpture in the Northwest.

Join an online party or event

If you can’t leave the house for any reason, you can join a virtual party instead. There are plenty to choose from – just do a quick search online.

If you’re feeling in the mood for some Christmas-themed entertainment, you can join a virtual Panto online to take you back to your youth. Or why not try a virtual Carol service? There are plenty to choose from this year.

Become a house-sitter

Just like Kate Winslet and Cameron Diaz in The Holiday, you can use the festive break to house sit for someone else. It doesn’t cost a penny, and you can go and stay somewhere else.

You can either just house sit or pet sit, so you’ll be looking after a cute kitten or some adorable friendly dogs. Or perhaps, just a couple of monsteras or cheese plants.

For house sitting opportunities, visit House Sitting | TrustedHousesitters.com.

Plan your perfect day

Although the media tells us that Christmas is a time for family and connection, in truth it can be whatever you want it to be. Instead, why not make the most of this time?

Plan out your perfect day to the hour– what you will eat, what you will watch, how you will take care of yourself. Remember to add in time for pampering and self care too. Gather together some of the funniest comedy shows you have, arm yourself with some delicious food and drink, and get cosy on the sofa.

Reframe the narrative

Just because it might seem like everyone around you is spending time with other people, it doesn’t mean they are necessarily having a great time – it could be the opposite.

Think about how you can view the day in a different way instead – as an opportunity to relax or to eat food you enjoy. The day is completely yours so why not become the partridge in your very own pear tree!

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A highly respected and experienced lawyer, Katherine leads the divorce and family team in Leicester.

Katherine has achieved her exceptional track record through a calm, level-headed approach to securing the best possible outcomes for her clients, including cases involving children, business interests, trusts and inherited wealth.

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Nottingham Trio to perform at Hot Property 2021

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Hot Property 2021

Three people from Shakespeare Martineau and Marrons Planning’s Nottingham office hub will take to the stage to perform at this year’s Hot Property fundraising night. 

As well as the firm and planning consultancy being proud sponsors of the event, Jenny Keen, planning director at Marrons Planning, and Emma Houghton and Jemma Page, both from Shakespeare Martineau’s external communications team, will be performing in front of hundreds of property and construction professionals from across the East Midlands. 

The annual one-of-a-kind event, which will take place at PRYZM nightclub on Thursday, 2 December, has raised more than £295,000 for various local and national children’s charities since its inception in 2004. 

This year, funds will be donated to Billy’s House, which offers free accommodation for families to stay close to their child when they’re having cancer treatment. 

Jenny said: “Nottingham Hot Property is a vital event as year on year, it raises a massive amount of much-needed money to support local causes. 

“We’re delighted to be able to support Billy’s House through our sponsorship; the home can accommodate up to six families at any one time, allowing them to stay close to their loved ones while they’re fighting for their lives. 

“We’re also looking forward to taking to the stage. While the set list is top secret, we can let you know that we will be part of a band and joined onstage by peers from Tetra Tech Consulting and Engineering and the Waterman Group.” 

Last year’s Hot Property was cancelled due to Covid-19 restrictions, making this year the 16th time the event has taken place. More details and tickets will be released soon. 

For further information, please visit www.nottinghamhotproperty.com. 

Why Shakespeare Martineau?

On paper we’re a full-service law firm, providing legal services to businesses, organisations, government departments, families and people throughout life and in business. But we offer so much more than that.

Expertise, commerciality and relationships are at the very heart of what we do

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Agricultural Law Team Expands to Meet Growing Demand

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Leading full service law firm Shakespeare Martineau has enlarged the size of its agricultural law team to meet growing demand for its specialist legal services.

Over the course of the past year, partner Amy Cowdell, legal director Jennie Wheildon and solicitor Kimberley Brookes have joined the team – bringing with them more than 30 years’ combined experience in agricultural law.

Head of agriculture Peter Snodgrass, who advises his farming clients on a wide variety of matters from partnerships to agricultural tenancies, said: “The legal requirements of the agricultural sector can be complex and we recognise the importance of having access to an expert team of lawyers who understand and have experience of the multitude of challenges that can affect a farming business.

“Farmers and land managers deal with ever growing and more diverse businesses. These issues require specialist legal support and advice they can rely on. We understand farming and the pressures our clients have to contend with, so we’re thrilled that Amy, Jennie and Kim bring their experience and new strength and breadth to Shakespeare Martineau’s offering to farmers and landowners.

As a full service law firm, the agricultural team is able to draw on wider expertise from other Shakespeare Martineau departments, including inheritance tax and wills partners Hannah Tait and  Suzanne Leggott; development land legal director Fiona Martin; planning partner Gary Stephens; farm disputes associate Nicola Lediard; and partner Peter Dilks, who specialises in renewable energy installations, such as solar farms.

Other specialists include partners Justine Ball, who advises landowners on the termination and renewal of telecommunications leases; inheritance and trusts disputes partner Jonathan Stork; and commercial disputes and litigation expert James Woolstenhulme.

Peter added:

This enables us to support a farming business with all its legal requirements, whether commercial development opportunities, diversification or energy and renewables. “Agricultural law is a niche but highly sought-after and prestigious area of law, and we are continuing to expand the team with the aim of building a centre of excellence in the country.
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Peter leads our Agriculture team. The team deal with land purchases, options, promotion agreements, tenancies, rights over land and all kinds of agricultural disputes.

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Leicester consultant recognised for pro bono contributions

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Pro bono contributions to the Leicester community

Shakespeare Martineau consultant Mark Dunkley has been recognised for his pro bono contribution to the Leicestershire community at a prestigious industry award night for the county.

Mark took home the Peter Smith Award for Voluntary Services at the Leicestershire Law Society’s annual legal awards. The newly-introduced category commemorates Peter Smith – a long-serving and much-respected secretary and past president of the law society, who died in December 2019.

Over the years, Mark – who specialises in advising on all aspects of wills, trusts and probate law, as well as capital taxes planning, charity law, and the Court of Protection and deputyship matters – has carried out a multitude of pro bono work in the Leicestershire community.

Currently, he is a trustee of Prostaid and the Leicestershire Historic Churches Trust; chair of governors at Leicester High School Charitable Trust and the Oadby Village Hall Fund; treasurer of the Society of Conservative Lawyers; clerk to the trustees of the Carlton Hayes Mental Health Charity; and long-standing member of the University of Leicester’s development fundraising board.

Mark said: “I am delighted to have accepted the inaugural Peter Smith Award for pro bono contribution to the Leicestershire community and for work done over many years in that regard. In those many roles, I have met and continue to meet many interesting and hard-working people.

“Peter Smith was my dear friend and I am very grateful to the society for perpetuating his name locally by including this award in this year’s ceremony. I had known Peter for 36 years before his sad and untimely death. Those who knew Peter found him always to be fun and engaging company, and you could always rely on having a laugh and an evening of great bonhomie if you sat near him at dinners or events.”

Until recently, Mark was a trustee of the Red Arrows Trust, having retired in March 2021, as well as the Loughborough Students’ Union. He served as chairman of the STEP Worldwide Mental Capacity Global Special Interest Group steering committee. In that role, he contributed to think tanks and policy discussions with the Office of the Public Guardian and the Ministry of Justice, probate registry and HMRC capital taxes.

Mark started his career 39 years ago as an articled clerk at Stone & Simpson at 37 New Walk in Leicester. He joined Shakespeare Martineau as a partner and consultant in 2012.

He is rated band 1, tier 1 in private wealth work by Chambers and Partners and band 1 by the Legal 500. He has also been named as a top 100 private wealth/client lawyer by Citywealth.

Mark said: “I have thoroughly enjoyed my career as a solicitor working with many dedicated professionals over the years, principally in Leicester. My star is very much in the descendant now as I plan to retire from practice at the end of April 2022, but this award, named in memory of a good friend who was a big part of my career, has topped it off perfectly.”

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Mark specialises in advising on all aspects of wills, trusts and probate law and capital taxes planning and charity law.

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We appreciate that your concerns and objectives are unique to you.

Complex tax and trust regimes that impact on our personal lives can make it feel like an uphill struggle to safeguard your wealth for you and your family. Our private client solicitors recognise the importance of listening to you when it comes to helping you achieve your estate planning goals.

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Immigration expert joins Shakespeare Martineau

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Law firm Shakespeare Martineau is growing its Lincoln presence and boosting its immigration legal offering with the appointment of Calum Hanrahan.

Calum, who joins as a solicitor, has more than six years’ experience in immigration law, working with individuals, families and businesses.

Specialising in personal immigration planning, which will be a new service offering for Shakespeare Martineau, Calum has helped many people successfully apply for British citizenship, as well as apply for visas for individuals, spouses and children, including working with those who have previously had applications refused.

Calum’s appointment follows a raft of new hires for Shakespeare Martineau in Lincoln, including the recent appointment of employment expert and partner Helen Molloy.

Calum said:

Calum_Hanrahan-circle
Having spent my entire career working in Lincolnshire, it’s an area close to my heart. Despite being such a large county it has a really close-knit community feel to it, where relationships mean a lot.

“I’m excited to bring a new service to the firm and work with the wider team, across corporate, employment and family law. Being able to tap into the expertise of hundreds of lawyers across our UK offices, as well as non-UK jurisdictional expertise through Multilaw membership, means that we really do bring something different to the local Lincolnshire market.

“I’ve been so impressed with the culture at Shakespeare Martineau and the ambitions it has and looks forward to raising our profile in Lincolnshire and the East Midlands.

Michael Squirrell, corporate partner at the Shakespeare Martineau Lincoln office, said: “Calum’s appointment adds another valuable string to our bow. For a long time our immigration team has specialised in supporting businesses; Calum brings another dimension to this, being able to deal with family immigration, including human rights immigration and applications for British citizenship.

“Not only are we expanding our service offering, but we also continue our investment in the Lincolnshire market, a region in which we see a lot of potential and have built a lot of traction since our opening in January.

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Michael is a corporate and commercial lawyer with particular passions for digital & tech, intellectual property and advising charities.

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Shakespeare Martineau boosts south team with triple hire

Law firm Shakespeare Martineau has welcomed three new experts to its South region, including banking partner Russell Jarvis, restructuring partner Frank Bouette and restructuring and insolvency legal director Nicola Holton.

Nicola Holton
Legal Director

Accomplished corporate banking specialist Russell Jarvis joins the firm’s London team with more than 30 years’ experience and has acted for a wide spectrum of lenders including major banks, sponsors and debt funds across a wide number of sectors focusing particularly on the commercial, SME and mid-markets space.

Restructuring expert Frank Bouette has more than 17 years’ experience, having previously headed up the restructuring team at EMW where he worked with a major airport, charities, large manufacturers and professional service firms across Gatwick and the South. Acting for a variety of SMEs, directors, lenders and insolvency office holders, Frank advises on both contentious and non-contentious matters, from administrations, contract terminations and exit strategies and joins Shakespeare Martineau’s South region.

Insolvency expert Nicola has more than 10 years’ restructuring and insolvency experience having worked with a wide variety of clients ranging from insolvency practitioners and litigation funders to corporates and their directors.  She advises on a variety of restructuring, recovery and insolvency issues and has extensive experience in contentious insolvency work. Nicola is also a qualified insolvency practitioner having obtained a first time pass in the Joint Insolvency Examination Boards in 2014.

Russell said: “I’m looking forward to expanding our London team and working collaboratively with the huge number of experts across the firm to offer a well-rounded service to banking clients. I will be working closely with our corporate and investment funds teams to ensure our clients are lending to the right businesses, on the right terms. It’s a really exciting time in the sector: we’re seeing new banking disruptors launch in the market as well as lots of activity within middle-range banks.

Frank said: “This an exciting period in our market place and for Shakespeare Martineau as a Firm.  We can make our London and South restructuring team the natural choice in the region, as well as nationally. It’s our job as restructuring and insolvency experts to create managed strategic solutions by support directors, lenders and other stakeholders to evaluate their options, formulate a plan and execute it. As a firm, we are exceptionally well placed to do that.

Andrew Taylor, partner and head of restructuring said: “I am delighted to welcome Frank and Nicola to our growing national restructuring recovery and insolvency team. Their appointment underlines our commitment to growing the team in the South East and across the UK. Frank and Nicola bring a wealth of experience, both contentious and non-contentious. I very much look forward to welcoming them on board, at a time where restructuring professionals have a pivotal role to play in helping businesses move on from the economic challenges of the last year to more sustainable and profitable times ahead.

Kavita Patel, partner and head of South region at Shakespeare Martineau said: “The South is a key region for us and has grown significantly since the start of the year. Due to Covid there is a lot of liquidity in the market as well as turbulence across a range of sectors; Russell, Frank and Nicola all offer expertise that can help banks, investors and businesses navigate choppy waters and unlock business potential. We’re really pleased to welcome them to the team.

The London trio’s appointments follow a raft of announcements including 13 internal promotions, six appointments in Milton Keynes and a further two in the East Midlands.

Shakespeare Martineau is proactively seeking mergers, acquisitions, team recruitment and lateral hires nationally.

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Gender Pay Report 2020

Taking responsibility for equality, diversity and inclusivity is not just a nice thing to do, or a moral thing to do, it’s actually a commercial thing to do. It’s better for business, better for the economy, better for society, better for the world.

This last year has shown just what we can achieve when we work together, when we are kinder, when we are flexible, when we represent neurodiversity in decision-making and when we trust each other to do the right thing.

Unlike a number of our peers within the sector we did not reduce the hours or salaries of our people during the pandemic, managed to top up those who we had to place on Furlough and we set up a hardship fund accessible to all and we provided a ‘work from home’ allowance; we also ensured a focus on health and wellbeing including the creation of a dedicated wellbeing hub, increased number of mental health first aiders across the firm and hold regular health and well-being sessions.

Our purpose is to unlock the potential of our people, clients and communities. We look to do this without bias, ensuring everyone is treated as an individual and has an equal opportunity for fulfilment, progression and fair reward, regardless of gender and ethnicity or any other diverse characteristic. So, for the second year running, we are again reporting on our ethnicity pay gap and by doing so continue to take full accountability and identify opportunities for positive change.

We are pleased to see a reduction in the gender pay gap in 2020 however, we recognise that there is still a gap. And while we can’t influence the personal choices of our people who may opt for lower-paid roles, we can maintain our commitment to ensuring that all people have equitable opportunity to develop their careers and move into the higher paid roles, if this is right for them.

We are proud to note that 61% of our promotions in 2019/20 were female, and 25% were people from an ethnic minority group. 

We are fully confident that all our people are paid equally for equivalent jobs and that reward is based purely on skills and experience.

Steps so far

We’re still on a journey – but we’re heading in the right direction.

Below are just some examples of our actions, commitments, pledges and processes we’ve put in place to create a culture of inclusivity and equitable opportunity.

It’s these actions in the last year that have seen us recognised as ‘outstanding’ by Best Companies 2021. Thanks to independent, anonymous votes from our people, we are listed in the Best Companies to work for: top 20 law, top 100 Midlands and top 75 large companies in London.

‘Own your diary’ - Empowering our people to work flexibly to better manage work-life balance at a location and during the hours that work for them, including individuals with children and caring responsibilities.

LiveSmart - a year-round programme to support our people with a range of resources from flexible benefits and financial guidance to wellbeing webinars and workouts.

More in Common (MiC) inclusion group – Educating the firm on all diversity issues with intersectionality at its core.

Social Mobility Pledge - Undertaking outreach activities mentoring individuals, providing access to work experience and apprentice opportunities and working to adopt open recruitment practices to promote a level playing field for people from disadvantaged backgrounds or circumstances.

Mental health support - Offering comprehensive mental health support through our Wellbeing Hub, 25 trained Mental Health First Aiders and external Employee Assistance Plan open to all our people; along with providing one-to-one counselling support from a trained business psychologist and counsellor.

Race at Work Charter - Signing the Race at Work Charter and committing to zero tolerance of harassment and bullying, publishing our ethnicity data and progress made and taken action to support ethnic minority career progression.

Award-winning Connectors Programme - Reverse mentoring scheme that fosters inclusion, propels innovation and improves diversity within our future leader pipeline.

Award-winning Shadow Board - Increasing diversity of voices heard at decision making level; by gaining broader perspectives, challenges and ideas making us better.

Fair Redundancy Pledge – Committed to reporting transparent EDI stats for any redundancies.

Hardship Fund – Open to any of our people who need it to provide a one-off amount, with no requirement to repay.

Wellbeing Cafes – Regular firm-wide virtual ‘Wellbeing Cafes’ for all through peer support.

My Ideas – Collaborative ideas generation platform to boost how we work and build our culture during lockdown and beyond.

Talent Inclusion and Diversity Evaluation – Significant improvement (+21%) in our Talent Inclusion and Diversity Evaluation (TIDE) score since 2018.

ED&I programme - ED&I programme with external D&I Consultancy.

Unconscious bias - training for all our people.

Diverse hiring - Diverse hiring with approximately 75% of talent recruited directly by sourcing candidates from diverse talent pools and continuing to promote inclusive our culture and working practices.

Blind recruitment - Implemented blind recruitment for trainees and removed minimum qualifications from 2021 for trainees; we recruit our trainees on skills and experience only and have removed any factors that can lead to biased recruitment decisions.

50:50 - Targeted measures to represent a 50:50 split of genders across events, content and PR.

C-19 Pledge - Providing our people practicable support and advice for personal wellbeing, financial security and mental wellbeing, proactively supporting our clients and communities during the pandemic.

Change the Race Ratio - Working to increase ethnic diversity among board members and senior leadership, publishing our progress and continuing to build on our inclusive culture.

Our full gender pay gap report for 2020 statistics can be viewed here.

How can we help?

Our expert lawyers are ready to help you with a wide range of legal services, use the search below or call us on: 0330 024 0333

Our Previous Gender Pay Gap Reports

We recognise that our people will always be the reason for our success. We are, and always have been, committed to creating a culture where everyone has access to equal opportunities for fulfilment, progress, and fair reward.

Shakespeare Martineau Gender and Ethnicity Pay Report | 2020

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Shakespeare Martineau Gender and Ethnicity Pay Report | 2020

Shakespeare Martineau Gender Pay Report | 2019

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Shakespeare Martineau Gender Pay Report | 2019

Shakespeare Martineau Gender Pay Report | 2018

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Shakespeare Martineau Gender Pay Report | 2018

Shakespeare Martineau Gender Pay Report | 2017

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Shakespeare Martineau Gender Pay Report | 2017

News

Shakespeare Martineau appoints award-winning education real estate partner as Birmingham head

Law firm Shakespeare Martineau has appointed heavy-weight education and real estate partner Clive Read as its head of Birmingham.

Winner of the Birmingham Law Society’s ‘partner of the year’ award 2021, Clive Read joins the firm this month and has 30 years experience in advising universities and colleges on the management and development of campuses. Advising across all aspects of real estate, he has worked on major redevelopment projects, land sales and acquisitions, large-scale student lease agreements and the management of occupiers, for the likes of University of Arts London and University of Derby.

Clive joins the firm from VWV, where he was head of the Birmingham office for five years. During this time he took the team from single figures to more than 30 people and grew the office turnover to more than £3m.

Clive said: “I’m delighted to be heading up the Birmingham team, as the culture and ambition of the firm fits so well with my own values. It’s also great to be part of a firm that is already so well-known for property and education. I look forward to growing the teams and collaborating with experts in different fields, to better service our clients.

“Education has had a tough year and the pandemic will likely result in major changes for the sector moving forward, it’s our job as legal professionals to help protect the best interests of institutions, their staff and students.

Shakespeare Martineau is recognised for its expertise in real estate, planning and the higher and further education sectors. The firms acts for more than 100 higher education institutions and further education colleges, ranging from large research intensive universities such as Cambridge and Nottingham, metropolitan universities and colleges such as UCLAN and Dudley College and specialist institutions such as the Royal College of Art and the University College of Osteopathy.

Joanna Deffley, regional head for West Midlands, said: “Clive is such a well-recognised name in Birmingham and the education sector and we’re so pleased that he is joining our team and heading up our largest regional office. He brings exceptional experience and shares our market-focused, growth ambitions.

Clive added: “I actually started my career in 1990 with Martineau Johnson and left just before it turned into Shakespeare Martineau, following a merger. I’m really pleased to come back and see some familiar faces, as well as meet lots of new people. I have been very impressed with the drive, enthusiasm, focus and direction for where the firm is going. It feels like a very different business and is a breath of fresh air, in all senses. In many ways it doesn’t feel like a traditional law firm – and that’s a compliment!

Clive’s appointment follows a raft of announcements including internal promotions, six appointments in Milton Keynes and a further two in the East Midlands.

Shakespeare Martineau is proactively seeking mergers, acquisitions, team recruitment and lateral hires in the Midlands and nationally.

 

Getting to know Clive…

What attracted you to Shakespeare Martineau?

It is clear that there’s excitement and a change of direction going on at the firm.  Shakespeare Martineau is a firm that is going places – and knows where it wants to go – and values its people.  For me, culture is vital - get that right and people and businesses thrive. Since I’ve arrived I have been blown away by the sense of purpose, combined with an open and transparent way of doing things.

What do you find exciting about your area of expertise?

I love seeing the physical end result of a real estate project – whether it’s a brand new campus for a university or college, or the acquisition of land that is then developed by another one of my clients – and knowing I played a small part in that.

Real estate is a massive commodity and the pandemic has brought home how quickly things can change – both in terms of how land is occupied and used, but also the purpose. For example, universities and colleges are looking at how they teach and accommodate students. How will their real estate needs change going forward?

There is still a housing shortage in the UK which government needs to get to grips with - the government’s proposals to streamline and make the planning regime more effective probably happens every five years!  However, what it does show is how fluid and constantly changing the real estate world is on so many levels and how we need to be open to new opportunities and different ways of doing things.  I am really looking forward to working with my colleagues and our clients to unlock their potential and make things happen.

What do you hope to achieve while working at Shakespeare Martineau?

I want to support our clients and help them deliver on their strategic goals, whether that’s education institutes seeking real estate advice, or for real estate clients more generally – including developers, owner-occupiers, or landowners. I’m also really looking forward to helping our people fulfil their careers and ambitions and watch them develop.

How can we help?

Our expert lawyers are ready to help you with a wide range of legal services, use the search below or call us on: 0330 024 0333

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Shakespeare Martineau continues Lincoln expansion with partner duo

Law firm Shakespeare Martineau welcomes two new partners to its Lincoln and East Midlands team as part of its growth strategy.

Employment law expert Helen Molloy joins on 1 June, with 17 years’ experience in employment law, HR and commercial matters, including military employment law (service complaints, medical discharges and disciplinary matters), high value cross-border commercial contracts and business turnaround advice.

Helen moves to Shakespeare Martineau after working in-house as group general counsel and HR director at a UK/US engineering group, where she was responsible for global HR and employment matters, commercial contracts and compliance across the group.

Amy Cowdell specialises in agricultural property law and joins the firm this summer, bringing with her more than 16 years’ experience in a variety of matters such as buying and selling farms and estates, agricultural tenancies and Agricultural Holdings Act tenancy matters, easements, bank security work, and advising on diversification projects such as commercial leases and selling land for development. Amy is also a leading figure in agricultural organisations across the East Midlands including Women in Agriculture and Nottinghamshire Rural Support.

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Shakespeare Martineau announced its expansion into Lincoln earlier this year, following the appointment of Michael Squirrell and Jonathan Stork, partners in the corporate and litigation teams, respectively.

Helen said: “I was attracted to Shakespeare Martineau because of its reputation and the genuine investment made in its people, with the consequential investment in its clients and the high level of service provided to them.

“Lincoln is a vibrant city, with diverse businesses and sectors, which makes it an exciting place to work as a lawyer. Alongside the 880-strong team at Shakespeare Martineau we’re able to offer clients a holistic service, with great strength and depth of knowledge in business growth and personal legal matters.

The full-service law firm supports businesses, professionals and their families as well as entrepreneurs such as the founders of Human Alchemy Dawn and Paul Barron, for whom the firm recently acted on the sale of Human Alchemy Limited to Lincoln College. Other deals for the newly formed Lincoln team include acting for Adam Price, the founder of Hatch Financial Planning, on the multi-million-pound sale to Octopus Group, as well as continuing work in a variety of commercial, agricultural and inheritance and estate disputes.

Duncan James, head of East Midlands region at Shakespeare Martineau said: “I am really pleased that Amy and Helen are joining us and helping to grow our team of experts in the area so quickly. This is just the start for us and we are on the lookout for further experts in the area to join our growing team.

Shakespeare Martineau is proactively seeking mergers, acquisitions, team recruitment and lateral hires in Lincoln, the East Midlands and nationally.

Helen Molloy: Partner FAQ

Helen_Molloy
Years of experience?

Qualified in 2004, I'll be 17 years qualified in September.

What are your specialisms?

Employment Law and Commercial Contracting. I was an Employment Lawyer for 14 years, working in Preston and Leeds before settling in Lincoln. I am able to go into a business and provide Employment and Commercial legal advice, having been involved in the management and strategy of the business as a statutory director in addition to having legal oversight.

What do you think is exciting about Lincolnshire business and the market in the county?

Lincoln is a vibrant city, with many diverse businesses of all sizes and in various markets.  From food & farming, manufacturing & engineering to tourism. It makes it an interesting market for us as lawyers to operate in.

What attracted you to Shakespeare Martineau? 

Its reputation. Particularly, the culture of being a truly diverse and family friendly law firm, with a genuine investment in its people, and the consequential investment in its clients and high level of service it provides to them.  Many businesses say they invest in their people, Shakespeare Martineau actually do it and I can't wait to be a part of that.

What do you hope to achieve while working with us? 

To be part of a team responsible for establishing and growing a Lincoln office with the ability to provide clients with a high quality one stop shop law firm locally.  Personally, to use my broader skills as a legal business advisor and to create a niche in the market over and above the standard employment lawyer offerings.

Amy Cowdell : Partner FAQ

Amy_Cowdell-circle
What attracted you to Shakespeare Martineau? 

The broad range of expertise and specialisms on offer that can service farmers and land owners throughout the East Midlands. A truly progressive dynamic law firm that is looking to break the mould from the conventional law firm. SHMA is people focussed, which I believe is the right strategy to create an exciting, vibrant and fun place to work.

What do you hope to achieve while working with us? 

I would like to build a leading agricultural team in the East Midlands area and create a one-stop shop with regard to legal services for farmers, landowners and the rural community.

What do you find interesting in your area of expertise and why can people across the firm refer work to you?

What I find most interesting is working with farmers. Once you've built up that trust with them it can be a really rewarding business relationship. In the majority of cases, their lives are devoted to the farm, which is inseparable from their family life.

 

How can we help?

Our expert lawyers are ready to help you with a wide range of legal services, use the search below or call us on: 0330 024 0333

SHMA® ON DEMAND

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Shakespeare Martineau makes six appointments in Milton Keynes

Law firm Shakespeare Martineau has announced six new hires – including three new partners - at its Milton Keynes office as part of its national growth strategy and commitment to bolstering specialist expertise in healthcare, education, social housing and real estate development.

All six hires were formerly at EMW, within its healthcare, education, social housing and development teams, with their appointments being ‘just the start’ of accelerated growth for Shakespeare Martineau in the South region.

Joe Soul, Jordan Glackin and Allawee Albaghdadi join Shakespeare Martineau as partners, Hannah Brassington joins as associate, Hayley O’Leary joins as paralegal, and Georgina Tilley joins as due diligence manager.

Joe Soul, who will lead Shakespeare Martineau’s national commercial property and development team, brings more than 20 years’ experience and expertise in real estate and property development,   specialising in sectors such as social housing, healthcare and education. He has particular expertise in the ownership, development and funding of care homes, private medical hospitals, medical diagnostic operators, private medical hospitals, GP surgeries, pharmacies, dentists and vets.

Jordan Glackin joins us as partner with specialist knowledge of healthcare and education sectors. Jordan has over 10 years’ experience acting for healthcare clients, particularly buying and selling business for owners and operators in the social care, dental, GP and pharmacist sectors. Jordan’s education experience includes academy conversions, setting up and advising free schools, setting up and acting for multi academy trusts, various corporate matters for independent schools, buying, selling and advising children’s daycare nurseries and advising local authorities in relation to schools and academy conversion.

Allawee specialises in real estate development with wide experience both within private practice as well as in-house for major retailers Amazon and Frasers Group. Allawee has worked extensively with commercial and residential developers, corporate occupiers and clients within the education and leisure sectors on acquisitions, lettings, development funding, corporate real estate as well as other operational real estate matters within the UK and overseas.

Hannah Brassington is an experienced real estate development lawyer, assisting commercial and residential developers as well as education clients on a variety of development projects across the region.

Due diligence manager Georgina Tilley and paralegal Hayley O’Leary will assist with co-ordinating transactions, undertaking commercial enquiries, and regulatory reviews, as well as assisting the team on a variety of ancillary corporate and real estate matters. Georgina also has specialist knowledge of NHS contracts and partnership arrangements in respect of dentists and GPs.

The Milton Keynes expansion follows the firm’s launch earlier this year in Lincoln and recent ‘House of Brands’ strategy announcement that will see the firm double in size by 2023.

Joe Soul said: “Milton Keynes is an exciting place to work because it’s a relatively young city and is highly inclusive – it also has a number of great connections with Oxford, Cambridge, London and Birmingham, and in recent years we’ve seen an influx in businesses setting up offices in Milton Keynes.

From previous experience I know how important culture is when trying to deliver a strategic growth plans and it was clear to me that everyone at Shakespeare Martineau shares a positivity and common goal. I’m looking forward to developing the Milton Keynes office, not only in my key specialist areas, but also our commercial and private offering.

The team will be joining the firm’s infrastructure and specialist markets business unit working collaboratively with teams across the firm.

Alex Smith, managing director of the infrastructure and specialist markets business unit, said: “I’m delighted that Joe, Jordan, Allawee, Hannah, Georgina and Hayley have joined us, their arrival enhances our breadth of client services, and our specialist sector expertise both regionally and nationally. We already have a strong reputation in education, healthcare, social housing and commercial development; so, I’m thrilled to welcome our new team members to further reinforce our expertise and strengthen our Milton Keynes and London footprint.

I’m excited to see the team unlock their personal potential and as well as that for our clients.

Kavita Patel, partner and head of South region said: “We know that location means a lot to our clients – so unlike a lot of firms that are retreating from regional locations, we’re expanding – not only does this widen our talent pool, but also benefits our clients by having local experts – backed by 850-person strong national firm.

Currently, Shakespeare Martineau is based in Milton Keynes, London, Birmingham, Stratford-upon-Avon, Solihull, Nottingham, Leicester, Sheffield, Glasgow and most recently Lincoln.

Shakespeare Martineau is proactively seeking mergers, acquisitions, team recruitment and lateral hires in Milton Keynes, South and nationally.

 

How can we help?

Our expert lawyers are ready to help you with a wide range of legal services, use the search below or call us on: 0330 024 0333

SHMA® ON DEMAND

Listen to our SHMA® ON DEMAND content covering a broad range of topics to help support you and your business.

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Best Companies names Shakespeare Martineau as ‘outstanding’

Shakespeare Martineau has been ranked in three of the ‘Best Companies to Work For’ lists 2021, including the Top 20 law firms to work for, Midlands’ Top 100 best companies to work for and London’s Top 75 best large companies to work for.

The firm has also been awarded ‘outstanding’ accreditation for employee engagement, achieving the impressive accolade in its first year entering the rankings.

Ben Buckton, chief marketing and people officer at Shakespeare Martineau said: “We are thrilled with our Best Companies result in our first year being involved. It’s important to me that our people feel they can bring their true self to work, feel empowered to share their opinions and have their voices heard - achieving recognition as a top employer in law, the Midlands and London is testament to the collaborative and authentic culture we share at Shakespeare Martineau.”

Best Companies lists are the highest regarded league tables for great places to work in the UK, with data collated independently and anonymously from employees working in the business. Businesses from all sectors compete for a coveted space in the top tables, from major car manufacture Toyota to national retailers like Hobbycraft.

Official places within each list are due to be announced 21 May 2021.

Sarah Walker-Smith, CEO at Shakespeare Martineau said: “Our people are what we are all about – it’s by investing in our people, their ambitions, their development and their wellbeing that they deliver their best and in turn the best for our clients and communities. We already knew we had strong engagement, but I’m so pleased to see the recognition for outstanding levels of engagement with our Best Companies survey. I can’t wait to see the final results, and the honest insight from our people that will help us continue to improve, develop and grow.”

Shakespeare Martineau is proactively seeking lateral hires, teams, mergers and acquisitions as part of its on-going growth strategy that will see the firm double in size by 2023 - read more here

 

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Shakespeare Martineau announces 13 promotions including two partners

Law firm Shakespeare Martineau, is celebrating a raft of internal promotions in its Shakespeare Martineau, Lime Solicitors, and Marrons Planning teams, as part of its ambitious growth strategy.
Partner

Birmingham-based property litigation expert Justine Ball has been promoted to partner after nearly 10 years with Shakespeare Martineau. Justine specialises in telecoms and advising landowners on the termination and renewal of leases.

Contentious trust and probate expert Debra Burton who works as part of the inheritance disputes team at Lime Solicitors, has also been promoted to partner at the firm’s Leicester office. Debra represents people and their families as well as trusts and charities in rectifications claims and professional negligence.

Planning Director

David Pendle and Jenny Keen, who work as part of Marrons Planning, have been promoted to planning director in Nottingham. Both are experienced in project managing large and complex schemes including mixed-use developments, strategic planning and land promotion.

Legal Director

Also in Nottingham family law expert Nikki Aston who specialises in children, divorce and complex financial settlements has been promoted to legal director for Shakespeare Martineau. In Birmingham, Hannah Pickering and Lucy Haynes join the ranks of legal director, working in the corporate and residential development teams at Shakespeare Martineau, respectively. Hannah works with long term institutional lenders, short term lenders and borrowers on a wide variety of property finance transactions. Lucy works with commercial, residential and mixed-use developers and promoters, advising on large scale acquisitions.

Associate

Shakespeare Martineau has also awarded six promotions to associate level: Laura Taylor and Samantha Vaughan of the firm’s Birmingham office and Aller Dawlat in Nottingham, sitting within the commercial property and development team; Monica Ghai and Nicola Lediard in Birmingham, supporting the wealth and litigation and restructuring teams, respectively. The final associate promotion is Sarah Parker in Solihull, who sits within the residential development team.

Taking our business forward in our next phase of growth

The promotions follow a number of updates including launching in Lincoln and the firm’s announcement to move to a ‘house of brands’ group structure, where Shakespeare Martineau, Lime and Marrons Planning will become separate entities unified by an overarching umbrella brand, with full details due to be announced later this year.

Sarah Walker-Smith CEO of Shakespeare Martineau said: “Unlocking the potential of our people is fundamental to our growth. It's our people who make our business – and it’s our clients who benefit from our investments in our people. Everyone promoted has shown outstanding commitment to our values and working collaboratively across our regions to take our business forward in its next phase of growth.

Shakespeare Martineau is proactively seeking mergers, acquisitions, team recruitment and lateral hires.

How can we help?

Our expert lawyers are ready to help you with a wide range of legal services, use the search below or call us on: 0330 024 0333

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