People: Trowers & Hamlins; DWF; Leaders Romans Group; Smoking Gun; Henrock; Vincents Solicitors

Suzanne Benson

Manchester-based Partner, Suzanne Benson, has been appointed as the new national head of law firm Trowers & Hamilins’ Real Estate Sector. She takes over from Senior Partner, Sara Bailey, who has stepped aside after a decade in the role.

Suzanne is currently head of Trowers’ Manchester office and leads the firm’s North West Real Estate team, roles which she will retain alongside her new appointment. She has been with Trowers for 25 years and specialises in major projects, including strategic land, joint ventures and regeneration, and the delivery of residential schemes.

Trowers has more than 450 people advising clients in the real estate sector across all of the firm’s nine offices in the UK, Middle East and Asia and includes lawyers from diverse service lines including corporate, dispute resolution, finance, tax and employment.

Suzanne said: “Trowers is rare in the depth and breadth of our expertise and our work in the real estate sector and I am deeply proud to take up this role to lead on our real estate growth strategy.

“I very much look forward to working with our talented colleagues across our network to build on the excellent work already done by Sara. I’d like to thank her for all her hard work in steering the group over the last decade to enable Sara to dedicate more across the wider firm’s growth priorities.”

Sara Bailey said: “At such an exciting time for the industry I am really pleased that Suzanne has taken on the role and I look forward to continuing to work with her as part of the wider growth strategy for the firm.”


Katy Philips

DWF, the Manchester-based global law firm, has announced 32 promotions in its Manchester office.

This round of promotions by DWF, which has its largest office at Scott Place on Hardman Street, includes promotions to partner for real estate lawyers Thomas Armstrong and Miles Sinclair and corporate lawyer Katy Philips.

Global head of employment and pensions at DWF, Joanne Frew, was also promoted to the highest level within the partnership.

Solicitor-advocate in the DWF costs team, Rebecca Heyes, commercial insurance lawyer Nina Lewis, real estate lawyer Samantha Chadwick and commercial lawyer Sarah Briscall were all promoted to the position of director, strengthening the leadership in the location.

Office managing partner of DWF in Manchester, Kirsty Rogers, said: “Congratulations to you all – I know a lot of hard work and effort has gone into the achievements of all concerned over many months and in a lot of cases, years.”

The full list of promotions is: Joanne Frew, Global Head of Employment and Pensions; Thomas Armstrong, Partner; Miles Sinclair, Partner; Katy Philips, Partner; Rebecca Heyes, Director; Nina Lewis, Director; Samantha Chadwick, Director; Sarah Briscall, Director; Anissa Ahmed, GEM Manager; Joshua Finn, Senior Clerk; Charlotte Ellis, Senior Associate; Lauren Highton, Senior Associate; Elinor Jackson, Senior Associate; Ian Jenkinson, Senior Associate; Kate Kay, Senior Associate; Helen Mulvey, Senior Associate; Luke Peddar-Adams, Senior Associate; James Thomas, Senior Associate; Sheheryar Anjum, Associate; Eleanor Beaumont, Associate; Alex Eaton, Associate; Thomas Fleming-Cooney, Associate; Laura Hawkins, Associate; Eleanor Lavery, Associate; Heena Shahzad , Associate; Jacob Slinger, Associate; Zara Salmon, Senior Paralegal; Zak Croft, Lead Paralegal; Rachael Lomax, Lead Paralegal; Aqsa Rafiq, Lead Paralegal; Charlotte Worrall, Lead Paralegal; Gordon Fraser, Senior Company Secretarial Assistant.


Tom Bailey

National property services group, Leaders Romans Group (LRG), has appointed Tom Bailey as a Director within its Property Management team.

This is a new appointment which will enable LRG to strengthen its Property Management division further and will strengthen LRG’s presence in the North West. Tom will be based in LRG’s Manchester office.

Tom joins the group from Purplebricks where he was Director of Lettings.

He will work closely with Kim Lidbury, Group Director (Property Management), supporting her on the implementation of the group’s Property Management Strategy and he will oversee a number of projects. This addition coincides with a strengthening of the team, having just had 30 people graduate from the senior Property Management Programme.

Kim said: “Already, Tom has demonstrated that he has the skills and experience needed to enable us to expand into new areas. There are a number of key projects that Tom will be working on and we look forward to sharing more information about these in the future.”

Tom Bailey said: “As a large company with a strong high street presence, LRG combines the best of both worlds. And the well established face-to-face service combined with growing online expertise is very much in sync with the way in which the market is moving.”


Caroline Aspinall, Steven Hallmark, Lindsay Jones

Marcomms agency, Smoking Gun, has made two appointments after announcing a raft of new business wins, just six months after launching its B2B offering.

Led by Commercial Director and Head of B2B, Caroline Aspinall, the agency has won a number of significant competitive pitches across property, finance, technology and manufacturing – billing more than £400,000 already.

To add more firepower to its offering, Caroline has appointed former Newsquest news and business editor Steven Hallmark as B2B Media Manager. Meanwhile, Lindsay Jones joins the division as Account Director following senior roles at TrunkBBI, Big Brand Ideas and Zeus PR.

Caroline said: “Smoking Gun is famous for its ingenious award winning work – so to see more B2B brands trusting us to deliver their briefs with the same creativity and flair is incredible. With the team’s intelligent and disruptive approach to B2B, we really have hit the ground sprinting and have big ambitions for growth in 2024 and beyond.”

Smoking Gun CEO, Rick Guttridge, said: “Our first global effectiveness award was for a B2B campaign and with our new focus and team in place we’re gunning for plenty more. Caroline is building her specialist team to blend seamlessly into our existing offering. The new client wins are testament to the strength of the offer and we have ambitious plans for the coming year.”


Mark McCabe and Simon Rogan

Mark McCabe has been taken on as the new Head Chef of Henrock by Simon Rogan, the Lake District restaurant situated within Linthwaite House Hotel, which overlooks Windermere.

Mark’s appointment at Henrock, which sits alongside Simon Rogan’s other Lake District restaurants L’Enclume, Rogan & Co and Aulis in nearby Cartmel, follows four years as Chef Owner of The Ethicurean restaurant in Bristol before the restaurant closed its doors in the autumn. Prior to his time at The Ethicurean, Mark was part of the team at Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall’s River Cottage in Dorset, after training in kitchens in Paris as well as Lancashire.

He takes over the position from chef Cillian Hennessy, who will step into the role as Aulis Development Chef. Cillian will be in charge of researching and refining new dishes for Aulis and our restaurants in The Lakes.

Mark said: ”As a chef I have always been compelled and inspired by nature, seasonality, and sustainability and so the Simon Rogan way of sourcing and cooking aligns so closely with my own personal ethos, it feels like the perfect continuation of the work I have dedicated my career to so far.’’

Simon Rogan said: “Mark is not only a highly-skilled chef but following his experience in kitchens which also harness such a strong connection to where its food is grown, means he has developed a true understanding of growing and an appreciation for nature and sustainability that is rare to find. We’re excited to welcome Mark to the Henrock kitchen and wider Simon Rogan team.”


From left: Sean Aldridge, Mary E Lowe, Lisa Lodge, Chris Mathews

Vincents Solicitors’ clients in Lytham and Penwortham are set to benefit from the arrival of experienced wills and trusts specialist Sean Aldridge. A STEP-qualified practitioner with 29 years’ experience in private client law, Sean joins Vincents from Napthens in Preston.

He will split his time between the Penwortham branch in Liverpool Road, and the firm’s boutique practice Mary E Lowe @ Vincents Solicitors in Park Road, Lytham. Sean will support clients in both areas – and across the wider business – with a focus on wills, trusts, probate, and estate planning cases.

Sean, who is a Chartered Legal Executive, will work closely with Private Client director Lisa Lodge and director Mary E Lowe to provide clients with a highly personal level of service.

He said: “This is a face-to-face job, where I often work with clients over many years, even decades. In that time we build strong relationships, and some become good friends whose personal recommendation to others is welcome reassurance that I’m doing something right. I want my three decades’ experience to benefit both clients and colleagues, and I am pleased to also have an opportunity to bringing on junior team members in this same vein.”

Vincents’ director, Lisa Lodge, said: “With nearly 30 years’ experience in this role, Sean is a very experienced and knowledgeable practitioner for me to entrust our clients to, and I know he will be an excellent example for our up-and-coming junior employees.”

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