People: Brabners; Open Partners; Kingdom Group; BSG Solicitors; Clarke Nicklin Financial Planning; UHY Hacker Young

Cara Nuttall and Nik White

North West independent law firm, Brabners, has added to its growing family law practice with another senior appointment.

Cara Nuttall joins as partner and will be based out of the firm’s new 20,000 sq ft Manchester office at Barbirolli Square. She joins from Simpson Millar where she led the national firm’s modern families team.

With almost 20 years specialising in complex child and fertility law, Cara brings with her proven experience in dealing with issues pertaining to domestic and international surrogacy, donation – also known as pre-conception agreements – and parenthood.

She is also highly regarded for her work in dealing with complex cross-border family disputes concerning children. Her work has included cases involving families in Australia, the US, Europe, Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Far East.

In her new role she will support one of the North’s largest family law practices, providing counsel to an extensive base of high net worth clients including business owners, media personalities, owners of landed estates and elite athletes.

Nik White, managing partner at Brabners, said: “2022 was another year of positive growth for the firm as we continued to invest in our people and the service we offer to our clients. In particular, our private client brand Brabners Personal has gone from strength to strength with a range of specialisms, and the addition of Cara’s expertise in fertility law and modern families related issues will undoubtedly create further new opportunities this year. I look forward to seeing her growing this area of our family practice as we invest further and build a team around her.”

Cara Nuttall said: “Brabners’ family law practice has grown significantly in recent years, with the team advising some of the UK’s most recognisable public figures on complex matters. The firm’s standout culture and reputation for excellence in customer service were a real draw for me, so it’s a pleasure to join and support as it continues to act as a force for good for clients and in the local community.”


Jon Greenhalgh, the former managing director of Adapt Worldwide, will be joining Open Partners as a managing partner in March.

Prior to his role at Adapt Worldwide, Greenhalgh launched Vizeum in Manchester and has worked at highly respected agencies Mediavest, iProspect, Carat and SEO agency Branded3.

The appointment comes as the agency reveals plans to increase its presence in the South of England. Open Partners will build on its existing London footprint by opening an office in Bristol in the first half of 2023.

Manchester-based Open Partners was founded in 2017 and works with a diverse client portfolio, generating revenues in excess of £7m, and employing a team of 100 people.

Jon Greenhalgh

Co-founder Joe Procter says: “To have a leader of Jon’s quality joining us is significant for Open Partners. He’s a proven operator with a track record of building high quality teams and products to deliver top performance for clients. He understands what is needed to be at the cutting edge and he demonstrates what it takes.

“Our ambition for the agency is to continue to deliver outstanding performance for our clients by the application of progressive ‘next gen’ thinking, harnessing media, creative and technology to deliver entertaining, inspirational and useful advertising campaigns. This appointment reflects our continued commitment to hiring the industry’s best talent to help us realise that ambition for clients across the UK.”

Greenhalgh said: “To be a cutting edge agency in the independent space takes the best talent in the market and, more importantly, a mindset to embrace new products quickly to create a difference for your clients and the team. Open Partners has this in abundance.

“The top team and beyond includes the most impressive people I’ve ever worked with. The runway for this agency is huge and I can’t wait to bring more of this talent, energy and mindset which has been nurtured in Manchester to the South of England.”


Jaimie Potts has been promoted to the newly-created post of group commercial director for Kingdom Group.

Under his new remit Jaimie has overall responsibility for building, transforming, and delivering best-in-class group commercials to accelerate the group’s sustainable growth and revenue ambitions while controlling contractual risk.

Jaimie Potts

The role includes overall responsibility for the Kingdom Group commercial, tender and major bids team, and the Kingdom Group sales centre, based in Newton-Le-Willows, Merseyside.

Kingdom Group director, Mark Wallace, said: “We all welcome Jaimie into his new SLT group role. Since joining us early last year, Jaimie has been excellent to work with and has demonstrated ambition and commitment to accelerate his personal growth within Kingdom. With our 2023 plans firmly in place and with several exciting announcements imminent, this appointment is perfect timing for Jaimie to take ownership in this very important role for Kingdom Group.”

Jaimie Potts said: “Kingdom is a business that is transforming at an exceptional pace, with very ambitious plans for 2023 and beyond. Mark and the leadership team in Kingdom have supported me over 2022 and have made it clear that our vision for the future is shared and I look forward to our continued success.”


BSG Solicitors has restructured its family law team, based in Lancaster, appointing specialist solicitor Barbara Richardson as head of divorce and finance and chartered legal executive (CILEX) Sara Williams who has specialised in family law for 18 years.

Specialist solicitor, Suzanne Willey, heads the children team working alongside solicitor Hannah Forsyth.

Barbara is accredited by Resolution in the areas of complex financial property and pensions on divorce and is currently the only Resolution-accredited pensions specialist lawyer in Lancashire. She is also the chair of the Lancashire and Cumbria Resolution Committee.

She qualified as a solicitor in 1995 and alongside late BSG partner, Andie Brown, she became a member of the Law Society’s Family Law Accreditation Scheme when it began in 1999.

Sara specialises in divorce and finance and deals with children and domestic abuse cases both privately paying and legally aided. She is a firm supporter of the CILEX route to becoming a lawyer having co-founded the Lancashire Branch of CILEX and is the current chair.

Back row: Vicky Atkinson, Terri Whitlow, Laura Poole, Sara Williams, Hannah Forsyth. Front: Barbara Richardson, Alex Byrne, Suzanne Willey

Suzanne has specialised in Children Law since qualifying 17 years ago. She is experienced in a wide range of family matters including care proceedings, private law children cases and domestic abuse cases. She is a member of the Law Society’s Children Panel and is accredited by Resolution in the areas of children law and domestic abuse.

Hannah is also a member of the Law Society’s children panel and is experienced in dealing with highly complex matters, having had a case referenced in The Law Reports and other high profile cases which have gone through the High Court due to their complexity. Her experience includes matters involving Special Guardianship Orders, neglectful parenting and non-accidental injury.

Alex Byrne is a solicitor with more than five years of experience in family law, both private law children cases and care proceedings, having previously worked for Bolton Council’s legal department. He deals with divorce, finance and children cases with varying degrees of complexity and he has a particularly keen interest in human rights issues.

He has also developed an in depth knowledge relating to the dissolution of civil partnerships, same sex relationships and cohabitation agreements. The department has highly experienced support from legal assistants Vicky Atkinson, Laura Poole and Terri Whitlow.

Barbara Richardson said: “We’re extremely proud to have such a depth of legal talent at BSG Solicitors. To have two people on the Law Society’s children panel and two Resolution-accredited specialists exemplifies the level of expertise we can offer to clients. From relatively simple matters to the most complex family law cases, we are on hand to provide the advice and support needed.”


As part of the ongoing development of the firm, Clarke Nicklin Financial Planning (CNFP) has made some significant changes to the team.

Christian Evans, who has been managing the CNFP team for more than 10 years, has now moved into the role of director for the business. Chris has more than 20 years in the financial services industry and is also a fully qualified independent financial advisor.

Christian Evans

He said: “I am really excited to be commencing my new role as director of financial planning and honoured to be recognised and rewarded with such an exciting opportunity to develop and progress my career further with CNFP.”

Stephen Mackenzie, who joined the business in early 2020, has now been made manager of the team. Stephen holds qualifications with the Chartered Insurance Institute and is working towards attaining a diploma. He said: “I am extremely proud to be given the opportunity to become adviser support manager at CNFP. With the support and backing of partners Scott Herbert and Andy Baggott, I have been able to upskill and progress since my tenure at CNFP.”

Both promotions are intended to support the continued growth of the financial planning team and strengthen the foundations of the business.

Partner and IFA, Scott Herbert, said: “Chris has worked so hard over the last decade and this is acknowledged with this new senior position. The CNFP team and I look forward to seeing Chris succeed in his new role.”

“Stephen has been promoted after a successful three years with the company. His hard work ethic, commitment and positive approach to his work will continue to be beneficial to both his colleagues and clients, too.”


The Manchester branch of national accountancy firm UHY Hacker Young has promoted Sarah Whalley to partner.

Sarah started her career in tax in 2004, joining UHY Hacker Young as a personal tax senior in 2007 and qualified as a member of the Chartered Institute of Taxation in 2008.

Sarah Whalley

She has been an integral part of the tax team for many years, providing valuable advice and support to clients and colleagues. Sarah’s experience covers all manner of tax issues, with expertise in advising owner-managed businesses, high net worth individuals and trusts.

Sarah said: “We have a truly amazing team that I am proud to be a part of. I am thankful to my colleagues and fellow partners who have shared their knowledge with me over the years and supported my career progression so far.”

David Kendrick, partner at UHY Hacker Young Manchester, said: “Sarah is a great example of someone who has worked hard to become a key member of the leadership team. With UHY Hacker Young’s ambitious growth plans, I have no doubt this will be the first of many promotions and new additions to our partner team.”