My Professional Background
For years I was part of the commercial department, a department of great experience, which can be used for the benefit of clients. As a firm, it is unlikely for us not to be able to come up with a good idea, plan or strategy on any particular subject. I was told when I was doing my ‘articles’ in the early seventies that our main purpose was to ensure our clients understood that we were shouldering their problems for them, so they could sleep easy in their beds at night – this is something that I know to be true.
In my early days, I was engaged almost exclusively in court work – crime, divorce and injury law. I remember being punched in the nose by one rather angry husband outside the court in which I’d acted for his wife. He was the same chap who was alleged in the divorce petition to have pulled off the head of the family budgerigar in front of the children. In his defence he said “I did not pull it off, it just came off in my hands”.
I then moved towards dealing with business clients and had less in the way of thrills and spills. I’ve been constantly amazed by the sort of work and challenges that I have been involved in over the past 20 years or so. I acted for one international company and engaged in a series of acquisitions, involving tens of millions of pounds each. That certainly taught me confidence. I also found myself pitted against the intellectual property lawyers for Coca Cola. My client was actually successful on that case and ended up assisting the multi-national giant Coca Cola, who also had to pay my client’s legal fees. On settling the fees, the lawyer for Coca Cola said I was giving my client value for money, and I think we still do.
I now have a consultancy role and spend the bulk of my time on IT, developing procedures to increase efficiency and ensuring maximum client engagement with and access to the work we do for them. I am also the firms Client Care manager and Data Protection manager
I went to the Kings School in Canterbury, alongside the Cathedral, and then moved to London University, Kings College, to do a law degree. Soon after taking my professional exams, I was asked to join what was then Attwater & Liell and have been here for 48 years since.
Despite originally wanting to be a lawyer because I fancied the idea of wearing a wig, I thrive on the fact that there is always a problem to be solved and each one seems to be different from the one you had yesterday. That applies to the IT work as well as client work. The end result is tremendous variety and an almost daily sense of achievement.
I was born and raised on a farm in Ongar, Essex, and now live in Cambridge. I am married with one daughter and two stepsons plus assorted grandchildren. My favourite food is just about anything Italian (derivation my spell between school and university living in a slum in Rome) and my preferred tipple is Campari. I enjoy gardening, reading and a fair bit of walking. My dream job was to be a lumberjack which I did for a bit, but the pay was not good. If I was to visit a desert island and could take one companion, it would be my wife.