Wards Solicitors LLP > BRISTOL, England > Firm Profile

Wards Solicitors LLP
BS16 5EL

Private client > Contentious trusts and probate Tier 2

Wards Solicitors LLP fields a team of experts that are regularly instructed on complex and high-value disputes. The practice enjoys a strong presence in the South West, with the team working across 12 offices in Bristol, Bath, Somerset, and Gloucestershire. Bristol-based Elizabeth Fry - who leads the team - has specialised in contentious probate for more than two decades. Also based in Bristol, Ian Williamson is noted for his expertise in trust work involving ownership of land held trusts.

Practice head(s):

Elizabeth Fry

Other key lawyers:

Ian Williamson; Emma Kerry


‘The team are responsive, in a fast, concise manner. Billing is always preceded by estimates of future costs, which is always helpful, and invoices are settled by their online payment system.’

‘Ian Williamson is friendly, professional, and hardworking. Very quick to communicate and reply to any emails with a same-day response. Works hard to get things done. Very knowledgeable.’

‘Emma Kerry has been, and still is, acting for me in a very complex case incorporating probate and family court. I trust her implicitly with all decisions made. Emma has been at my side and I can contact her anytime for advice and guidance. Emma is absolutely amazing.’

‘Wards has a strong brand around the Bristol region, and is highly accessible and visible to individuals and smaller business clients due to its extensive high-street presence.’

‘Emma Kerry is an experienced and sensible litigator with a good client manner.’

‘A first-rate contentious probate litigation team; very skilled.’

‘Elizabeth Fry, Ian Williamson, and Georgina Wookey provide an excellent service to clients.’

Work highlights

Insurance > Personal injury: claimant Tier 3

Wards Solicitors LLP‘s personal injury division has a strong reputation for managing claims related to various types of accidents, including those that occur on the road, at work, or due to industrial diseases. The team is headed up by Alison Underhill, a seasoned litigator whose work includes handling claims arising out of sexual abuse, and occupiers and public liability issues. Helen Boyd is a key name for catastrophic injury work.

Practice head(s):

Alison Underhill

Other key lawyers:

Helen Boyd; Richard Green


‘Friendly and helpful. Always kept in touch throughout my case.’

‘I worked all of my case with Helen Boyd and l honestly don’t think she could have done anymore to support, help and advise me.’

‘The practice is helpful, understanding and responsive to needs and protective and reassuring to those who are vulnerable. Helen Boyd in particular, has an understanding of medical issues which can only be a product of hard work and experience.’

‘Richard Green was excellent. Always kept in touch and information was quickly exchanged. He was also caring.’

‘Richard Green is a stand out PI solicitor within the firm. Knowlegable, approachable, and makes himself available to his clients as a priority.’

‘Kept informed every step of the way.’

‘Helen Boyd and Alison Underhill are both lawyers of the highest calibre with unmatched experience in the South West.’

‘I found Richard Green to be extremely helpful with all his advice.’

Private client > Family Tier 4

With noted specialisms inclduing pre-nuptial and post-nuptial agreements and  cohabitation matters, the team at Wards Solicitors LLP covers all aspects of family law, from divorce and finances to private law children law work. The team is led by Alison Bradley - praised as an ‘expert in the sector’ - who has expertise in financial cases, and deals with matters involving businesses, companies, trusts and inherited assets.

Practice head(s):

Alison Bradley

Other key lawyers:

Mandy McCabe; Louise Boustead; Sylvie Feltham; Emma Willott


‘The team, were amazing from start to finish. Always very clear, honest and made the process very straightforward. The billing was great, and all done online – very clear and easy.’

‘Alison was amazing. She made me feel very at ease, was very helpful and always on point with her advice. I could not be happier with her, and the outcome we achieved. She always was great at listening and then explaining everything to me. Her advice was always spot on and I got what I wanted when it came to the court case.’

‘The team were able to give constant sensible advise but empathised on a personal level too throughout.’

‘Mandy was able to give me good, solid and sensible legal advise while being able to relate to me as a mother. She was able to keep me level headed in the most frustrating and stressful situations.’

‘Very efficient to respond to instructions, on urgent matters these were processed within hours and you were always kept up to date with progress in respect of your case.’

‘Louise Boustead always responded to email requests within the same day. Always provided with updates and given chasing emails for deadlines.’

‘Wards always deliver for their clients. They have a personable touch which sets them apart from other firms. They work with counsel as a team to ensure that the client is well supported through the court process. They offer pragmatic and realistic advice.’

‘Alison Bradley is excellent. She is an expert in the sector but is also a partner that makes herself accessible and always puts the client first. She leads by example and is a credit to the broader team.’

Work highlights

Private client > Personal tax, trusts and probate Tier 4

With particular skill advising elderly and vulnerable clients, the ‘knowledgeable, professional and approachable’, Wards Solicitors LLP variously advises on family tax planning, trust management, powers of attorney, mental capacity work, and asset protection. Practice head Jenny Pierce is experienced in all aspects of later life planning, while Rachael Abbott is praised for her 'extremely efficient, articulate, and professional' approach.

Practice head(s):

Jenny Pierce

Other key lawyers:

Tom Scoffham; Laura Jakeways; Ruth Coles; Rebecca Parkman; Rachael Abbott; Alison Mellor


‘Rachael Abbott at the Yate, and latterly the Thornbury office is extremely efficient, articulate and professional. Pleasure to deal with.’

‘I found Wards Solicitors to be very professional and helpful throughout the process. They show that they care about their client especially in a very difficult time and they deliver.’

‘We dealt with Alison Mellor throughout and she was extremely knowledgeable and helpful throughout.’

‘I found this practice to be knowledgeable, clear in communication and eminent capable of interpreting my requirements in the required field.’

‘Tom Scoffam has been extremely helpful in all our dealings with him about various legal issues and in particular with our wills. He explained things very clearly and gave us a much better understanding of what we needed to do.’

‘Wards are a friendly and welcoming firm. They communicate quickly and effectively and give you a great sense of confidence in their ability to look after your interests.’

‘The team is very friendly and sensitive and accommodating to the needs of their clients. We certainly found them to respond well to our requests for consideration of health and disability issues.’

‘A firm with a high street presence offering an extensive range of services across the sector, delivered by a highly capable, approachable team who are a pleasure to work with.’

Work highlights

Wards Solicitors LLP stands out in the South West as a firm with a strong local heritage, going back more than 100 years, combined with a forward thinking and progressive approach to the law. It prides itself on developing close, supportive relationships with private clients and SME’s whilst delivering superb quality and value. The consistently high number of personal recommendations and excellent satisfaction levels reflect this.

Wards Solicitors’ has a deep sector knowledge of conveyancing and with more than 7,000 residential and commercial conveyances annually, a reputation for excellence. With 11 offices across Bristol, South Gloucestershire, Bath and North East Somerset and North Somerset, it has also established one of the largest wills, probate and mental capacity teams in the region, including specialist contentious and court of protection teams, a notary public and a growing name for medical negligence and accident and injury claims.

Photo Name Position Profile
Alison Underhill photo Alison Underhill Alison Underhill, Partner, specialises in all areas of accident and injury and…