Movers & Shakers 2014

Who was doing what and where in 2014...

15 December 2014

Blake Morgan – the Cardiff office of Blake Morgan has promoted 10 lawyers across a range of practice areas. Emyr Lewis, senior partner, Wales for Blake Morgan said: “The promotions highlight our growth following the merger earlier this year, and our focus on developing the people that make the firm. We wish them all every success in their future careers with Blake Morgan.” More










JNP Legal - a Merthyr apprentice and her mentor at JNP Legal have both picked up awards for their work in the legal sector. Amanda Jones scooped the Higher Apprenticeship in Legal Services Apprentice of the Year award and solicitor Rebecca Rees scooped the Higher Apprenticeship in Legal Services Mentor of the Year award. More

Capital Law – Cardiff based Capital Law has strengthened its senior team with the promotion of intellectual property specialist, Wayne Beynon, to the position of partner. In addition, corporate lawyer, Maria Coggins, has been promoted to associate. More

Insight Law – Cardiff based property specialists Insight Law secured finance from Santander to buy out the existing equity of the sole practitioner and partner of Roy Coles & Co. Claire Bate has now joined Insight Law as a partner and head of the Bristol office with senior partners Simon Fox and Paul Jones having overall responsibility for the enlarged firm. More

Simon Fox

Watkins & Gunn - based in the firm’s Pontypool office, Lindsay Tasker from Watkins & Gunn Solicitors has been appointed to the Law Society’s Children Panel. Lindsay was selected to join the prestigious panel following a rigorous screening process which means she is now a certified Children’s Representative and can act for children through court appointed guardians in all care proceedings and complex family law cases. More

12 November 2014

Synergy Costs - Clare Parnell and Jan Lavelle, previously of John M Hayes, have struck out on their own and formed Synergy Costs Ltd at Paragon House, 13 St Andrews Crescent, Cardiff, CF103DB. It’s early days yet but you can contact Clare and Jan at (mob 07855 303 193) or (mob 07789 643 937) or generally at

ASWLS - Clive Thomas, Managing Partner at award winning Watkins & Gunn, Solicitors, with offices in Newport, Pontypool and Cardiff, has been selected to head up ASWLS, which is the representative body of six local law societies – Monmouthshire, Bristol, Gloucestershire & Wiltshire, Devon & Somerset, Cornwall & also Plymouth. Read more here.







22 October 2014

Howells - Having witnessed significant growth in the last few years, law firm Howells has promoted two of its solicitors to the role of director. Rhidian Hobbs heads up the firm’s commercial property department and has played a key role in expanding this area of work. Laith Khatib works in the firm’s private client department, which deals with wills, trusts and estates. His practice focuses on high value trusts and estates, and litigation in those areas. Read more here.

24 September 2014

Eversheds - advising on Simbec, Biomonde and Mangar International, Eversheds scooped Legal Team of the Year at the Insider Wales Dealmakers Awards 2014 on 17 September. Judges noted: "A broad range of activity". The award was sponsored by Status Audio Visual and the shortlisted firms were: Blake Morgan; Capital Law; Geldards; and Hugh James. More here.








3 September 2014

Capital Law - Christopher Agius has been appointed as head of banking at Cardiff’s Capital Law. Chris is a commercial property lawyer specialising in acting for banks in a separate representation capacity, and borrowers who need to be guided through the due diligence requirements of their funder. He joins Capital Law form Harrison Clark Rickerbys in Cheltenham where he was head of real estate finance. More here.

West Wales - JCP Solicitors has announced it will merge with Carmarthen–based Pritchard Edwards in October to create a 150-strong team with offices in Carmarthen, Swansea, Fishguard, Haverfordwest, St Davids and Cardiff. Hayley Davies, partner and chief executive of JCP Solicitors, said: "This is our fourth merger in West Wales and, once again, we are delighted with the continuing growth and development of our legal services in the region. Read more here.

Red Kite Law - Neil Walker and Simon Campbell-Davies have joined West Wales law firm Red Kite in a bid to accelerate growth. Neil has been hired as chief operating officer and finance director and Simon has taken up the role of head of marketing and business development. More here.

Neil Walker Simon Campbell-Davies

19 August 2014

Convey Law - Gareth Richards, Head of Legal Practice at Newport based conveyancing specialists, Convey Law, joined the company 11 years ago as a Conveyancing Assistant, qualified as a Licensed Conveyancer and became a Legal Director at the business in 2012. Gareth was recently the subject of a “Five minutes with…” piece in the South Wales Argus. Read the full article here.

23 July 2014

Frances Edwards - Frances Edwards became the 51st President of the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEx) at a ceremony in Cardiff City Hall on Friday, 11 July. Originally from Newport, Frances works for Caerphilly-based firm Caswell Jones as a legal aid lawyer specialising in family law and is the first female President of CILEx from the principality. More here.

Darwin Gray - Commercial law firm Darwin Gray has appointed as partner the former head of property dispute resolution and social housing at Hugh James, Neil Morgan. Neil has more than 20 years' experience and expertise in property disputes and housing law and has built up a reputation and client base among property professionals, house builders, developers, housing associations and local government. More here.

Gordon Dadds - continuing its development as a niche law firm in the Welsh market, Kelly Lewis and Veena Velani have joined the Cardiff branch of the London based Gordon Dadds as solicitor and paralegal respectively. The driving force behind the Family Law department at the firm’s newly established Wales office, Wendy Hopkins, said “Gordon Dadds is a leading and independent law firm with an excellent reputation for corporate, property, commercial litigation, private client and family work – so I am delighted to be playing a part in what is the creation of a new legal centre of excellence for the people of Wales.” More here.

10 July 2014

Blake Morgan - confining the names of Morgan Cole and Blake Lapthorn to history, the merger of the 2 firms as Blake Morgan was formalised on 1 July 2014. Long-standing Morgan Cole partner, Emyr Lewis, takes up the reins as senior partner for the Wales offices. The new firm has offices in Cardiff, Swansea, London, Oxford, Reading, Portsmouth and Southampton. More details here.








24 June 2014

Rhys Rowlands - Former Cardiff Crown Court circuit judge Rhys Rowlands has been appointed as the new senior judge for north Wales, taking over from Judge Merfyn Hughes QC, who recently retired. Born in Bangor and an alumnus of University College London and Cardiff University, HHJ Rowlands will work across north Wales. Read more here.

Hopkins Law - established in 2006 and employing 20 staff, Hopkins Law has relocated its new headquarters to 20 Windsor Place in Cardiff city centre. According to director Liane Farthing, the new offices, spanning 2,400 square feet, will satisfy the sustained success of the business as it seeks to consolidate its position as “one of Cardiff’s leading family law firms, whilst increasing our property and private client portfolio across South Wales, along the M4 corridor and in London." Read more here.

10 June 2014

Capital Law - Welsh Government Business Minister Edwina Hart has announced the make-up of an independent advisory panel tasked with building the case for a Development Bank for Wales. The panel, chaired by Professor Dylan Jones-Evans and which includes the managing partner of Cardiff based Capital Law, Chris Nott, will explore the potential mission, role and operations that a development bank could undertake. It will also explore the legal and state aid framework required to establish and operate such an organisation. Read more here.











21 May 2014

Duncan Lewis - With offices throughout the UK, Duncan Lewis Solicitors, established in 1998, is the largest civil legal aid practice in the UK. Sarah Latimer is the latest solicitor to join the firm in its Cardiff office as a Senior Immigration Public Law Advisor. Having practised for over 12 years, Sarah has considerable expertise in Immigration and Asylum Law covering Iraq, Sangatte, Burundi, and DRC and Article 8 Cases. More here.

Douglas-Jones Mercer - one of the best-performing commercial law firms in Wales, DJM has appointed Sheraz Akram as a director and head of its Corporate and Commercial team, which has grown by 40% in the last 12 months. Previously at Cardiff’s Berry Smith LLP, Sheraz moved to DJM in 2012 and has since grown the commercial department by combining his legal expertise with his practical business knowledge, to secure a raft of new corporate clients across the UK. More here.

13 May 2014

Hugh James - Emma Burns, head of employment at Hugh James Solicitors, has taken up a leading role with one of the major cancer charities in Wales. Emma, the youngest candidate ever to be appointed as chairwoman of Breast Cancer Care, has been a trustee of the charity since 2008. Read more about Emma’s remarkable story here.

Morgan Cole and Eversheds - two of the capital’s leading legal services employers have made promotions in their Cardiff offices. Eversheds has confirmed the promotion of Tom Bray to partner in the Human Resources Practice Group with a raft of other senior appointments elsewhere whilst Morgan Cole has announced the promotion of commercial lawyer Jason Richards to partner and a further 14 senior appointments. More here.









Everett Tomlin Lloyd and Pratt - strengthening its agricultural and private client team with the acquisition of a well-respected Usk practice. Already with over 40 staff across offices at Gold Tops Newport and Clarence Chambers, Pontypool, ETL&P has been actively building its private client agricultural and commercial departments and now acts for many well-known local and national businesses. More here.

23 April 2014

Everett Tomlin Lloyd & Pratt – the Newport based firm has boosted its conveyancing team with appointment of Jen Finch as the new Head of Conveyancing. Jen, from Newport, specialises in all aspects of residential conveyancing including transfers of equity, right to buy, Help to Buy, purchases, sales and re mortgages. Read more here.

1 April 2014

Eversheds – Kathryn Roberts has been appointed the new senior partner at Eversheds’ Cardiff Office. Kathryn joined the firm in 1996 as a professional negligence lawyer and rose through the ranks to head up the business - the first woman to do so. More here.

Greenaway Scott – the company’s founder, Nigel Greenaway, features in a wide ranging interview for WalesOnline where he describes the freedom of rejecting the traditional “planning by committee” method of running a law firm and doing things differently. More here.

Capital Law – after pursuing separate career paths, childhood friends Siôn Tudur and Alys Carlton have returned to Cardiff to join Capital Law as associates. Siôn returns to Capital Law, where he trained between 2003 and 2005, following stints at Eversheds in Cardiff and RDP in Newport. Alys has spent her entire career in London at Allen & Overy, where she trained as a corporate lawyer. More here.

Gabb & Co – Wales’ oldest law firm has promoted commercial property lawyer Matthew Price to associate after four years at the firm. Joining Matthew in the commercial property team is former Loosemores solicitor Nigel Flanagan, who returns to Wales after practising in Cornwall and Gloucestershire. In addition, the firm’s well-respected employment law team has been boosted by the appointment of employment and HR specialist Rachel Stephens. More here.

18 March 2014

NewLaw – “lawyer and entrepreneur” Helen Molyneux has become the first woman to chair the Institute of Welsh Affairs, an independent think tank “dedicated to promoting the economic, social, environmental and cultural well-being of Wales”. Read more here.

Thomas Simon – the Cardiff based firm has appointed Stuart Brothers, Dave Coles, Emma Hughes and Becky Jones from SRB Legal. The team specialises in commercial and financial services law such as mis-sold rate swap products, SIPP and SSAS trustee work, UCIS and QROPS products, alternative investments sold via SIPPs, and the provision of compliance support to IFAs. More here.










4 March 2014

Civitas Law - Keith Bush has been appointed Queen’s Counsel honoris causa “for his contribution to the development of the National Assembly for Wales as a legislature, as well as contributing to the development of devolved law and to the discussion and study of wider Welsh legal issues.” Keith was called to the bar in 1977, worked as a legal adviser to the Welsh Government, then the National Assembly and is the current director of the Legal Wales Foundation which organises the annual Legal Wales Conference. Read more about Keith’s appointment here and view a full list of the new appointments here.

12 February 2014

Watkins & Gunn - To support the continued expansion of its award-winning business, Watkins & Gunn Solicitors has recruited Michael Imperato to head up a new team focusing on public and education law. Michael previously headed up the employers and public liability teams at NewLaw Solicitors. Read more here.

HardingEvans - Matrimonial expert Kate Thomas has joined Newport based HardingEvans, one of South Wales’ leading family law specialists, as a partner to consolidate the firm’s position in the sector. In addition to being a member of Resolution, Kate is an accredited member of the Law Society’s Children and Advanced Family Panels and joins from another South Wales firm where she was also partner. Read more here.

Capital Law - Joining Consult Capital as director of learning and development, Chris Sweetman will be responsible for creating a value proposition for Capital’s L&D services, drawing on his previous experience and expertise in legal and consultancy businesses. His appointment marks a move by Capital to re-position learning and development as a core service and key strategic driver for the businesses. Read more here.

NewLaw - James Pink, Lowri Morgan, Daniel Price and Maria Georgantzoglou have all been awarded training contracts based in the company’s Cardiff and Bristol offices. The quartet overcame intense competition for the coveted roles and a challenging, four-stage interview process that tested all the elements required of a solicitor. Read more here.


29 January 2014

HBJ&W - Hornby, Baker, Jones & Wood has recruited 4 new employees to expand its office in Newport: Samantha Collier has been appointed to head up the conveyancing department; Kirsty Oram heads the costing department; Heather Perrott  joins as head of Marketing; and Laura Price has been appointed as a Digital Marketing Assistant. The practice covers several areas of law such as criminal, civil actions against police, conveyancing, wills and probate and has now introduced music and media law to its practice areas. Read the full press release here.

John Prosser QC - After a long and distinguished career, John Prosser QC has put pen to paper and published his memoirs as a circuit judge. A flyer has been released to promote the book and you can download it here or order the book itself from Amazon here.

JCP Solicitors -

Mei Yee Li has joined West Wales firm JCP Solicitors as an associate solicitor, where she will build on her considerable medical negligence expertise within the firm's injury services practice group. JCP Solicitors has more than 20 years' experience leading many of Wales' most serious medical negligence and catastrophic injury cases, and has gained a reputation as a specialist in head and other catastrophic injury. Read more here.


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