137-YEAR-OLD LAW FIRM CELEBRATES EXCITING NEW CHAPTER FOLLOWING ACQUISITION
A LEADING West Midlands law firm is celebrating an exciting new chapter after announcing a significant acquisition of a Staffordshire-based solicitors’ firm.
Enoch Evans LLP, which was established 137 years ago and is the largest law firm in Walsall, is taking over the highly-regarded Cannock-based Gardner, Iliff and Dowding (GID).
The move brings together two businesses with an impressive heritage – both firms have served their communities since the late 19th century. It also marks only the second time Enoch Evans LLP has expanded outside Walsall, after opening a new branch office in Sutton Coldfield in 2018.
The acquisition will provide local individuals and businesses with a more extensive range of legal services than previously available, backed by Enoch Evans LLP’s expertise and modern approach.
Enoch Evans LLP plans to build and expand GID’s expertise in Wills, Tax and Probate, Conveyancing and Family law. Significantly, expertise in key practice areas such as Corporate and Commercial, Commercial Property, Commercial and Civil Litigation, Employment, Administration of Financial Affairs and Contested Probate will now also be provided, strengthening the service offering available to individuals and businesses in Cannock.
The firm will continue its key role in the community from the town centre office in Wolverhampton Road, providing traditional legal services but in a modern fashion, embracing technology and continuing to put service first.
“We are incredibly excited to have completed this acquisition and to be growing our client base in such a great town as Cannock,” said David Evans, Enoch Evans LLP’s Managing Partner.
“The firm of Gardner, Iliff and Dowding has been an outstanding presence in the town. Both our practices offer traditional legal services in a modern way, always putting our quality of service first when working with individuals and business clients.
“The acquisition of GID proves that Enoch Evans LLP is not standing still; we are growing and developing whilst still retaining our long-standing family values while clients will benefit from a firm offering a full spectrum of services for the first time.
“Cannock will be an exciting focus for us in terms of development and recruitment and being able to deliver a wide range of legal services. We will be joining forces with the GID team and recruiting staff to grow the business offering.”
Enoch Evans LLP is a full-service law firm servicing clients throughout the UK. The company, which has more than 90 members of staff and is ranked in the Legal 500, a directory of the world’s best law firms, was first established in 1884 by former Mayor of Walsall Enoch Evans.
David said: “We are thrilled with this acquisition which illustrates the strong position our firm is in and which has developed over so many years. It also underlines our deep understanding of the value of being embedded in a community. We look forward to serving the people and businesses of Cannock.”
GID, which was set up by James Gardner in 1864, is recognised for its professional team’s dedication to providing quality legal services and has an excellent reputation throughout Staffordshire.
Nicholas Dowding, Senior Partner in GID, said: “Enoch Evans LLP is an impressive law firm which shares our ethos of having a strong client-focused approach. We also have a long history of serving our communities.
“Our current clients and all those to come in the future are in very safe hands.”
For more information about Enoch Evans LLP, visit https://enochevans.co.uk/ or contact 01922 720333 (Walsall office) or 0121 355 2336 (Sutton Coldfield office).
Welcoming new faces to our team
As we continue to grow and expand, we are delighted to announce the addition of two new team members, Kelly Pledger joins us as a solicitor in the Commercial Litigation team and Laura Phillips as a solicitor within our Residential Conveyancing department.
Having previously trained at a Legal 500 recognised law firm, Kelly practised as a litigation officer at a housing trust.
Kelly said: “Enoch Evans LLP has a very long, respected history in Walsall and is known for offering a fully personalised service to its clients. I strongly believe that law firms based outside of large cities such as Birmingham are best placed to understand and serve their clients, being physically located next to many businesses and communities.
“Wanting to continue to practise in commercial litigation, Enoch Evans LLP offered me the opportunity to work within a well-established team, recognised by the Legal 500, and one that is constantly growing due to its continued success.”
Laura has over six-years of experience in residential conveyancing and has worked on cases ranging from quiet rural properties to new-build developments.
Laura commented: “One of my ambitions at Enoch Evans LLP is to continue expanding my skills set, I am also looking forward to getting involved in conveyancing matters on all levels. Properties are major investments and it can be, at times, a stressful process. My role is to assist people during these times and help them to achieve the result they want.
David Evans, managing partner at Enoch Evans LLP, added: “These two new appointments are an example of the firm’s continual growth and commitment to providing the highest-quality service. Both Kelly and Laura arrive at Enoch Evans LLP with well-defined skillsets and the abilities to provide different perspectives to their respective departments, which are essential in meeting the ever-changing needs of our client base.”
We've Made the Shortlist
The shortlist for Birmingham Law Society’s 2020 Legal Awards has been unveiled and we are proud to be among the nominees for Law Firm of the Year (Regional).
The 19th annual event will celebrate achievement among law firms and individuals across 12 different categories including overall law firms of the year.
Shortlisted nominees will be interviewed by a panel of judges and the winners will be announced at an awards ceremony at the ICC on 18th September.
A lifetime achievement award will also be presented on the night for someone who has given exceptional service to the Birmingham legal sector.
This year’s guest speaker will be broadcaster and writer Reverend Richard Coles.
Swapping Fees for Fundraising
We are pleased to announce our continued support for Sutton Coldfield-based charity, The Cancer Support Centre by taking part in its “Make A Will Fortnight” for the second year running.
During the two weeks – which begin on the 10 February 2020 – participants of the initiative will benefit from the Enoch Evans LLP team waiving its usual fee when preparing a standard Will in lieu of donations to the centre.
Partner Reiss Matthews said: “The new year is the perfect time for people to get their affairs in order and prepare their Will. For us, the ‘Make A Will Fortnight’ is a great opportunity to work with those looking to take action and prepare a Will while raising vital funds for such an important community resource. With our second office now established in Sutton Coldfield, we are looking to continue our support of local organisations such as The Cancer Support Centre.
“Last year, our team took part in the fund-raising event for the first time and we were very proud to announce that we were able to donate £1,595 to the worthy cause.”
Jackie Price, centre manager at The Cancer Support Centre, said: “We are very grateful for Enoch Evans LLP’s continued support. Last year, the firm’s fantastic donation helped us to continue our work supporting those with cancer and their families and went a long way to helping us continue our work providing one-to-one support, groups, workshops, and talks. We do not receive any Government or NHS funding and have to raise every penny through supporters fundraising events and donations.”
Charity of the Year Figure Announced
We’re proud to have raised £2,500 for St Giles Hospice. Over the past 12 months our staff have taken part in all sorts of fundraising events for the cause; including an abseil, Sutton Fun Run, Golf Day, Christmas card sales, Spring Raffle, volunteer day and cash donations.
We are proud of the efforts from everyone across the firm.
Pictured in the image is Sam Nicholson; Corporate Fundraiser for St Giles Hospice, David Evans our Managing Partner and Anita Topliss, our Charity Fundraising Coordinator.
Funds Raised for Local Hospice
Our firm has raised £2,150 for local charity, St Giles Hospice, after taking part in its “Make Your Will Fortnight”.
During the two weeks (7-18 October 2019), participants of the campaign benefited from the Enoch Evans LLP team waiving its usual fee when preparing a standard will in lieu of donations to the hospice.
Partner and head of the wills, tax and probate department at Enoch Evans LLP, Richard Neea, said: “This was a great opportunity to work with those looking to take action and prepare a will whilst raising vital funds for such an important community resource. With our office now established in Sutton Coldfield, we are looking to continue our support of local organisations such as St Giles Hospice who provide care for people with potentially terminal illnesses and their families across Lichfield, Walsall, Sutton Coldfield and surrounding areas.”
Elinor Eustace, fundraising director at St Giles Hospice, said: “We’re extremely grateful to everyone at Enoch Evans LLP for supporting ‘Make Your Will Fortnight’. It costs £10 million each year to provide our care and little more than a third of that comes from NHS funding. This means that we really depend on donations from the local community and gifts in Wills to continue our work. Around 30 per cent of our income from fundraising comes through legacies left to us in wills.
“Last year the campaign raised over £10,000 for St Giles Hospice and we hope we can raise even more this year.
“St Giles is always keen to encourage people to make plans for the future. Making a Will through a firm of solicitors means you get qualified legal advice from someone who can ensure you protect your loved ones and who can suggest effective estate planning to meet your requirements.”
Top 500 for the Third Year
Three practice areas of our firm have been included in the Legal 500 UK 2020 rankings, with our corporate and commercial department making the cut for the third year and our commercial property team and commercial litigation expertise being recognised for the first time.
The national guide ranks the world’s best practices and is used as a point of reference by millions of people in search of legal advice each year. The ranking is based on detailed analysis of submissions from practices across the country as well as thousands of individual interviews. The ranking recognises quality of work as well as the commitment and loyalty of staff; attributes that are vital when dealing with difficult and sensitive issues experienced by individuals and commercial or corporate entities.
The Legal 500 also includes a Hall of Fame in recognition of individuals that receive consistent praise from clients and have honed a high-level of skill and knowledge within their specific area of expertise. Sukie Shemar was named for corporate and commercial services for the third time and was joined by Stephen Nixon who was named for the first time for in relation to commercial litigation.
David Evans, our managing partner at Enoch Evans LLP, commented: “Our whole team prides itself on its ability to understand client’s individual needs as well as their specific risk areas, meaning we respond to individual concerns in a commercial, pragmatic and cost-effective manner. We’re delighted that the respected Legal 500 ranking again recognises our consistent delivery of this service to clients both current and new.”
Stephen Nixon, partner at Enoch Evans LLP, added: “Being recognised personally by the Legal 500 is an honour and I’m pleased to be able to represent the commercial litigation expertise within our team. With a presence now in both Walsall and Sutton Coldfield, we’re a growing firm that’s servicing clients across the West Midlands and beyond; this is an exciting time for us, and we look forward to building on our success in 2020.”
Announcing Our New Partner
We are pleased to announce that Reiss Matthews from our wills, tax, and probate team has been promoted to partner.
Reiss specialises in a broad range of private client legal matters including inheritance tax, lasting power of attorneys and administration of estates. Reiss joined Enoch Evans LLP in 2014 after reading law at Aberystwyth University and completing a legal practice course at Birmingham City University. Reiss has also been instrumental in establishing the firm’s Sutton Coldfield office which opened its doors at the end of 2017.
Reiss said: “I am very proud to have been promoted to partner at Enoch Evans LLP and feel this reflects the ongoing success and growth of the firm.
“I enjoy having the opportunity to make a positive impact on someone’s personal circumstances and guiding them through what can otherwise be a complicated or stressful experience. My aim is to build long term relationships with my clients and their families and then support them in making some of life’s key decisions.
“I’ve also relished the chance to strengthen recognition of Enoch Evans LLP in a new location. As a Sutton Coldfield resident, it’s been fantastic to be involved with introducing ourselves to the community; we’ve hosted free legal advice drop-in sessions, presented at the town’s senior showcase, and partnered with the local Cancer Support Centre to raise money through our ‘make a will fortnight.”
David Evans, managing partner at Enoch Evans LLP, commented: “Reiss clearly demonstrates a passion for providing the best possible support and service to our clients. We have recently celebrated the first anniversary for our Sutton Coldfield office and a large part of its success in the town can be attributed to Reiss and his teams’ hard work and dedication. I am delighted to be able to congratulate Reiss on becoming a partner.”
Probate Pilot Service Invitation
Our Wills, Tax and Probate Department has been selected by Her Majesty’s Court and Tribunal Service to be one of the first Law Firms to trial and have input into the future of the new Probate Application system.
On the news Richard Neea, head of the Wills, Tax and Probate Team comments ‘It is exciting to be asked to be involved in the trial of the new Probate Application system. It not only gives us an opportunity to be involved in the development of what the new application procedure will be like, but also evidences the reputation and abilities our Team has in this area of Law. We are very proud to have been asked to take part.’
Enoch Evans LLP have been assisting clients with Probate applications for over 130 years along with advice on Wills and Inheritance Tax planning. If you have any queries on any of these topics please contact us on 01922 720333 for our Walsall office, or 0121 355 2336 for our Sutton Coldfield office. Or email email@example.com.
Solicitors Run in aid of Local Hospice
In early June, two of our solicitors took part in the Great Midlands Run in aid of Midlands-based charity, St Giles Hospice.
James McFarlane, senior solicitor in Enoch Evans LLP’s Company and Commercial department and Lucy Grimsley, senior solicitor in the Wills, Tax and Probate team raised just under £1,000 for the hospice.
Both James and Lucy agreed: “It was great to take part in such a well-supported event. The conditions were perfect bearing in mind the course was on varying terrain.
“We are delighted to be able to do something to help St Giles Hospice and the patients it cares for. We are very thankful for the support from everyone at Enoch Evans LLP; without their backing we would not have been able to raise such a fantastic sum of money.”
Elinor Eustace, director of fundraising from St Giles Hospice said: “The support from Enoch Evans LLP is fantastic, to have such amazing support for this historic event right in the heart of the communities we serve is wonderful. We rely on people like James and Lucy fundraising for us to continue our work.”
Black Country Chamber Mini Expo
Calderfields Golf Club and Country Club played host to one of a series of mini expos which will run throughout the year in areas throughout the Black Country for businesses in the Walsall region.
We were exhibitors at the event, which took place in mid-April, with Lauren Smith and Emily Parry there as exhibitors on behalf of the firm.
The event attracted around 25 businesses who were looking to work alongside the Chamber’s members, Patrons and commercial providers, together with exhibitors in the many sectors the region has to offer. The Chamber were on hand to offer advice and support from their multi-talented team of policy, Brexit, international trade and membership offers.
Coffee and a Chat in Sutton Coldfield
In April a selection of fee earners across our Private Client departments hosted a coffee morning at Caffé Botanico; located within House of Fraser in Sutton Coldfield.
The team were able to discuss matters relating to Wills, Probate, Inheritance Tax, Divorce, Matrimonial Finances, Civil Disputes, Property Sales and Purchases and Remortgages.
During the morning over 40 members of the public were able to benefit from the advice that was on offer. The event was considered to be a success and the management from Caffé Botanico were pleased to accomodate the firm.
Law Society Shortlist Announced
We have been shortlisted as finalists at the annual Birmingham Law Society Legal Awards in the category of Law Firm of the Year (Regional). Now in their 18th year, the Awards have become a permanent fixture in the legal and business calendar, with the event attracting a capacity crowd year-on-year to celebrate the success and achievement of both individuals and firms over the last 12 months.
To get through to the final stages our firm had to undergo an initial written submission, followed by an interview with selected individuals from the judging panel.
It is a proud moment for the firm to get to the final stages of the awards and this marks another significant step in Enoch Evans LLP being recognised by the legal sector for being a firm that maintains the highest of standards for legal services in Walsall and the Black Country.
The winners will be announced at the awards ceremony on Thursday 14th March 2019 at the International Convention Centre.
New Faces at our Sutton Coldfield Office
Following the successful launch of our first branch office in Sutton Coldfield, we have appointed a new matrimonial and family solicitor to further strengthen our team.
Monica Ghai brings with her over eight years of experience after working for a well-established high street firm as well as experience in managing the Birmingham office of a London based law firm.
Monica will be supporting our clients with divorce and financial proceedings and will act on a range of dispute cases including the division of finances following the breakdown of marriage or those involving children and domestic abuse issues.
Monica said: “I have experience in representing people on both sides of the fence and family breakdowns often involve tackling multiple issues at the same time. This means as law professionals, we have to be extremely sensitive and understand the people we’re advising are often going through some of the most difficult times in their lives.
“That’s why I’m extremely excited to have joined Enoch Evans as a practice which has such heritage and is grounded in offering a quality service to clients. I’m looking forward to providing practical and robust legal advice to the people of Sutton Coldfield and beyond. With any case, my ultimate goal is to help people reach practical solutions whilst minimising conflict.”
Legal executive, Julie Edmondson-Jones who has been working with us for over 15 years has also made a strategic move from our Walsall head office to be part of our residential conveyancing team in Sutton Coldfield.
Julie said: “We feel we can bring a forward-thinking different style of law to the Sutton Coldfield market. This is the start of something very promising for the firm. We will continue to service businesses and individuals across the West Midlands and beyond but having a Sutton Coldfield base allows our clients to see us face-to-face and gives them greater flexibility.”
Launch of our Sutton Coldfield Office
On Thursday 22nd November, professionals from the Sutton Coldfield and Walsall area gathered at Migas Wine and Tapas bar to celebrate the launch of Enoch Evans LLP’s new branch office.
David Evans, our managing partner, said: “This is the first expansion outside of Walsall for the firm since the opening in 1884 by Enoch Evans himself. We’re proud to offer traditional legal services in a modern way; working with individuals and business clients in a fashion that puts service first. As a business, the opening of the Sutton Coldfield branch proves we’re not standing still; we’re growing and developing whilst retaining our long-standing values.”
In recent years we have has grown to over 80 staff and are listed in the Legal 500 which ranks the world’s best practices. From a single location the firm has steadily built a solid reputation in providing legal support to generations of families and businesses that operate within the West Midlands and throughout the UK.
The Sutton Coldfield office will provide expert services to private clients as well as businesses from its convenient setting on Mill Street, adding particular value to professionals.
Promotion in Civil Litigation
Our Litigation department have a newly promoted senior solicitor in Katie Baker-Clifton.
Katie joined Enoch Evans LLP in 2016 and has a wealth of experience in Employment Law as this has been her sole area of expertise since 2009. She has a varied caseload from non-contentious advisory work for both corporate and private clients through to complex contested employment tribunal cases.
Regarding Katie’s promotion within the Litigation department Steve Nixon, Partner and Head of Commercial Litigation said “Katie’s hard work has been rewarded in her being promoted to Senior Solicitor within Enoch Evans LLP. As a firm we strive to promote from within and promotion within our teams means that we can build stronger relationships with our clients.”
Pharmacy Show 2018 Update
Our Company & Commercial team have just returned from a successful two days exhibiting at the Pharmacy Show 2018.
As certified Business Partners to the National Pharmacy Association they were at the NEC Birmingham, along with 400+ exhibitors, 200+ expert speakers, 150+ educational sessions and 7 theatres at the national event. Those attending included Pharmacy owners, Pharmacy Technicians, Hospital Pharmacy Teams, Wholesalers & Distributors and Pre-registration Pharmacists.
The Pharmacy Show is by far the largest pharmacy training event in the UK and plays a vital role in supporting both community, primary and secondary care pharmacy professionals with free continued professional development (CPD) content covering strategy, tactics, clinical, business, public health, digital health, leadership and GP practice pharmacy training and advice vital for the future of the profession.
Head of the Corporate and Commercial department Sukie Shemar commented; “We had a great show this year, with plenty of visitors to our stand. We look forward to following-up on the contacts that were made while maintaining relationships with existing contacts”.
Sutton Coldfield Branch Office
We have chosen Sutton Coldfield as the location of our first branch outside our Walsall headquarters.
In recent years our firm has grown to over 80 staff and is listed in the Legal 500 which ranks the world’s best practices. From a single location the firm has steadily built a solid reputation in providing legal support to generations of families and businesses that operate throughout the length and breadth of the UK.
David Evans, managing partner, said: “This is the first expansion outside of Walsall for the firm since the opening in 1884 by Enoch Evans himself. We are well-established in Walsall with a good understanding of the value of being embedded in a community and we plan to take this approach over to Sutton Coldfield.
“We’re proud to offer traditional legal services in a new way; servicing individuals and business clients in a modern fashion which puts service first. As a business, the opening of the Sutton Coldfield branch proves we’re not standing still; we’re growing and developing whilst retaining our long-standing family values.”
Reiss Matthews, a solicitor specialising in Wills, Tax, and Probate, said: “We recognised that many corporate clients stay in Walsall for work but now live in Sutton Coldfield due to the lifestyle it offers. It therefore made sense to have a dedicated branch that would be more convenient for them.
“As a Sutton Coldfield resident, I know this area incredibly well, and even though our Walsall office covers the whole of the West Midlands, the new office allows our team to be even more reactive and it’s much easier for clients to see us face-to-face; something that’s really important when working on sensitive personal cases.
“The opening is also about bringing a Birmingham style of law to the door step of businesses and individuals in this area. We take a professional and commercial approach; even though we’re outside the city, we utilise modern procedures and methods of communication which allow us to be clear and open with clients who are able to get hold of us whenever needed.”
The Sutton Coldfield office will provide expert services to private clients as well as businesses from the convenient setting on Mill Street, adding particular value to professionals such as accountants, surveyors, and financial advisors.
To celebrate the opening of our office in Sutton Coldfield (Mill Street, B72 1TJ), we will be holding a number of seminars that provide invaluable information on different topics. To keep informed on when these seminars and advice sessions will take place, visit www.enochevans.co.uk or call the new Sutton Coldfield office on 0121 355 2336. Alternatively, follow the firm on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn.
Visit to the Sensory Room at Walsall Child Development Centre