Housebuilder appoints first head of legal

Catherine Baines

Housebuilder Harron Homes has appointed Catherine Baines to head up its legal department across both its North Midlands and Yorkshire regions.

Baines is the first person to hold the position of head of legal as Harron.

She discovered her love of law from GCSE and A-level, but as a single parent wasn’t sure she could go much further until her Dad encouraged her to do a degree.

She said: “It’s been a bumpy road – I was working three jobs while at university, and had my second child around the same time – but my dad was my biggest cheerleader.

“I love how methodological conveyancing is. It’s still a very fast paced area of law, but no matter what, the processes are the same.

“I’ve spent 20 years conveyancing at several private practices in Leeds, so to work for a housebuilder is really just the flip side of that. I’m really excited to continue my career with Harron, it’s been a real labour of love to get here.

“My role ultimately makes the house-buying process easier for Harron customers since an in-house legal team will make the process more streamlined and efficient. Our goal is to get matters completed as soon as possible so customers can move into their dream home. At the moment I have a legal executive in each of our two offices, but I’m really excited to develop the team further.”

Baines’s ambitions don’t end there. She added: “While I plan on staying with Harron until I retire, I still have my long-standing dream of being a coroner to achieve.

“I think the message I’d like other women to take from my career path is to not give up on your dreams and ambitions. If I had listened to any internal doubts early on, I would never have reached this point in my career. I believe you can achieve anything you set your mind to no matter your circumstances.”

Tony Lee, managing director for Harron Homes Yorkshire, said: “Catherine is a fantastic role model and we are thrilled to have her leading our new in house legal team. At Harron, we are proud to encourage inclusion in what has been historically a very male dominated industry, supporting women into roles across our new homes developments and offices.”