2013 has been a huge year here at Lodders, from welcoming lots of new faces, to expanding our presence in the Cotswolds.
It has been a year jam packed with activity. Back in January we celebrated the promotion of Kim Klahn, Laura Eaves and Emma Vaqueiro to associates.
In February we launched our HR and compliance service, Empline which aims to provide legal peace of mind for a fixed annual fee.
During March we expanded our marketing department by appointing professional services expert and marketing specialist Hilary Campton as Marketing Director.
In April we sponsored an evening with Jon Snow at the Stratford Literary Festival and also the Sporting Club Dinner which raised £4,320 for the firm’s nominated charity, the Heart of England Community Foundation; special guests included footballer Kevin Keegan and rugby legend David Duckham.
In May Lodders expanded its marketing department further by appointing Hollie Coyne as Marketing Coordinator.
In the middle of June Hannah Taylor qualified as a fully-fledged solicitor into our Agriculture department. We also confirmed that, for the fourth year running, we would be sponsoring Stratford’s Big 10k, which would take place on Sunday 8 September.
During July we hosted a breakfast for clients at the annual CLA Game Fair which was held at the nearby Ragley Hall in Alcester. Among the guests were Stratford-upon-Avon MP Nadhim Zahawi and Ragley Hall owner Lord Hertford. Towards the end of July, we promoted two of our rising starts to partner, Sofia Tayton and Alex Robinson. Following this success we celebrated fantastic CILEX exam results from Holly Kennett, a trainee legal executive, who gained the Level 6 Professional Higher Diploma, as well as Vicki Gow, a wills and probate administrator, and marketing coordinator Hollie Coyne, who both work in our Stratford-upon-Avon office, gained the Level 3 Professional Diploma in Law and Practice.
In August we welcomed Michael Campbell to our Real Estate team. Mike previously worked as an in-house lawyer for a national house builder and has proved to be a real asset to our team. We also announced our plans to open a major operation in Cheltenham to service our substantial and gorwing base of clients in Gloucestershire and the wider Cotswolds area.
September proved to be our busiest month here at Lodders. We kicked off on the first Saturday in September by entertaining guests and fellow professionals at the annual Moreton-in-Marsh Show. We followed this on the Sunday by sponsoring and taking part in, Stratford’s Big 10k; we entered a team of 12 runners in the race as well as having a large number of helpers handing out well deserved bottles of water, T-shirts and bananas to the finishers. We closed September in style by opening our new office at 25 Imperial Square, Cheltenham.
October started with our Empline seminar on pensions auto-enrolment, with a full house of HR professionals and business owners keen to find out how to prepare their business for this substantial change to the pension regime. This was followed by our official launch party for our new Cheltenham office. The drinks event was held at The Queens Hotel on the other side of Imperial Square, where guests were welcomed by David Lodder. This event was closely followed by the Lodders-sponsored Stratford Music Festival, an event which we have supported for a number of years. Lodders hosted a reception before guests were seated to listen to the renowned concert pianist Freddy Kempf.
October also saw the release of the of the ratings in the Legal 500 and Chambers publications, the leading independent guides to the legal profession and we are delighted to announce that we retained our top tier rankings for both agricultural and private client work. Also during October private client’s Laura Eaves obtained the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP) diploma. STEP is the industry body which focuses on professional development for those specialising in family inheritance and succession planning. Obtaining the Society’s diploma is the culmination of four exams and two years of study.
November brought round the Annual Lodders Property seminar. We hosted over 100 clients and professionals, who battled through gale force winds and numerous round cloaures to make it to Henley Gold Club and hear from speakers Tony Green, chief executive of Horton’s Estates, Simon Horan of Savills in Birmingham, and Michael Campbell and Michael Orlik of Lodders. Guests were welcomed by Lodders’ chairman, George Campion.
Throughout December we are looking forward to the festive season and we would like to wish our clients and fellow professionals a very merry Christmas and a happy new year and we look forward to seeing you all in 2014.