Lester Aldridge LLP > Bournemouth, England > Firm Profile

Lester Aldridge LLP
RUSSELL HOUSE
OXFORD ROAD
BOURNEMOUTH
BH8 8EX
England

Dispute resolution > Commercial litigation: Dorset, Devon and Cornwall Tier 1

Lester Aldridge LLP has ‘a realistic commercial approach coupled with careful legal analysis’ and is ‘always working towards practical solutions’. The practice excels in the marine, defence and financial sectors and is also active in regulatory issues and insolvency procedures. The team is also regularly involved in claims with an international aspect, particularly proceedings involving Europe or the US. Bournemouth-based department head Chris Evans is often instructed in Part 8 Companies Act claims and insolvency mandates, while Michael Veal, who is also qualified in the Republic of Ireland, specialises in fraud issues and emergency relief applications; and Edward Foster handles asset recovery and commercial lending issues.

Practice head(s):

Chris Evans

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

‘Realistic commercial approach coupled with careful legal analysis.’

‘Michael Veale – engaging, sensible, carefully considered advice.’

‘Solid team. Genuinely partner led. Good value for a premium service.’

‘Chris Evans was excellent, balancing technical detail with a realistic commercial view.’

‘No nonsense, keeping it simple for me. Always working towards practical solutions and helping me understand my options.’

‘Chris Evans (partner) – potentially the most helpful lawyer I have ever met. His advice is so clear, helping simplify and explain and therefore he has my complete trust.’

Work highlights

    Employment > Employment: Dorset, Devon and Cornwall Tier 1

    Lester Aldridge LLP is well equipped to handle matters concerning employment liabilities, transfer agreements, restructurings and TUPE. In addition, the practice is familiar with the handling of complex jurisdictional issues and employment disputes. The practice is led by Kevin Barnett – he has vast experience advising both corporations and individuals in either contentious or non-contentious matters.

    Practice head(s):

    Kevin Barnett

    Other key lawyers:

    Edward O’Brien

    Testimonials

    ‘Kevin Barnett has always been efficient, knowledgeable and always helpful. Whenever I have an employment issue, it’s Kevin I turn to as I know he will guide me in the right direction. Always very friendly and professional.’

     

    Key clients

    Curtiss Wright Corporation

    Ceuta Holdings Limited

    Osprey Europe Limited

    FRP Advisory LLP

    Lush Limited

    Dorset Wildlife Trust

    Durable (UK) Limited

    Care South

    Poole Lighting Limited

    Global Maritime Consultancy Limited

    Work highlights

      Finance > Insolvency and corporate recovery Tier 1

      Lester Aldridge LLP‘s restructuring and insolvency department is best known for its non-contentious corporate insolvency work. This involves advising on administration and liquidation appointments, insolvency transactions, demergers and procedural applications. The department has specialist sector knowledge in charities, hospitality and leisure. Practice head Melia Hirst advises insolvent companies while Nick Keitley specialises in corporate restructuring. Rebecca Walker has expertise in the financial services sector and Matthew Barrow is well-versed in enforcement of securities.

      Practice head(s):

      Melia Hirst

      Other key lawyers:

      Nick Keitley; Rebecca Walker; Matthew Barrow

      Testimonials

      ‘Lester Aldridge are a highly reputable firm in the Solent area. I have every confidence in the advice they provided. Their R&I team are also very commercial and able to cut through complicated legal matters with strategies designed to maximise return/outcome. I would not hesitate to recommend them to clients.’

      ‘Nick Keitley is a lovely guy, technically excellent and able to apply the law in a commercial way. Rebecca is friendly, technically excellent and is able to work under pressure and to tight timeframes when its required. Melia is friendly, technically excellent and I would not hesitate to recommend any of the R&I team to a client.’

      ‘Great wide ranging team that can offer services all around the subject.’

      ‘Nick Keitley is an excellent lawyer. Knowledgeable around his subject and surrounded by a great team.’

      ‘A widely experienced team who know what they are doing, particularly in non-contentious insolvency with a developing practice in contentious matters as well.’

      ‘Nick Keitley is one of the wise owls of insolvency on the south coast. Vast experience coupled with commercial awareness.’

      ‘A provincial footprint with city talent and expertise.’

      Key clients

      Azets

      Begbies Traynor

      BTG Advisory

      FRP Advisory Trading Limited

      Interpath Advisory

      James Cowper Kreston

      JWS Business Recovery

      Mazars

      Leonard Curtis Business Solutions Group

      Menzies LLP

      Moorfields Advisory Limited

      Portland Leonard Curtis

      Quantuma Advisory Trading Limited

      RSM Restructuring Advisory LLP

      Santander Bank plc

      Shawbrook Bank Limited

      Smith & Williamson LLP

      Work highlights

      • Advised FRP Advisory on the administration of G.I.Sportz Europe Ltd involving a sale of the business and assets to the Canadian-owned purchaser, Kore Outdoor.
      • Advised RSM Restructuring and Advisory on continued property aspects of the liquidation of Chiquito Limited including numerous assignments, surrenders and disclaimers of the restaurant leases.
      • Advised Quantuma Advisory in the liquidation of Aronex Developments Limited.

      Transport > Shipping Tier 1

      The specialist marine law team at Lester Aldridge LLP, LA Marine, is based on the south coast and is instructed by domestic and international clients on both transactional work and disputes. ‘Stand-out leader in the field‘ and contractual dispute specialist Linda Jacques is a key team member as well as practice head Russell Kelly, whose commercial shipping and leisure marine expertise sits alongside his superyacht sector knowledge. Commercial shipping expert Philippa Langton has also joined the team.

      Practice head(s):

      Russell Kelly

      Other key lawyers:

      Linda Jacques; Jennie Harris; Lucy Goff; Philippa Langton

      Testimonials

      ‘Linda Jacques is a stand-out leader in the field.’

      ‘Very helpful, hugely knowledgeable in sector.’

      ‘I work with Lucy Goff. Her technical knowledge in the area of shipping is outstanding.’

      Corporate and commercial > Corporate and commercial: Dorset, Devon and Cornwall Tier 2

      At Lester Aldridge LLP, the Bournemouth-based team handles a steady stream of deals involving SMEs across sectors including IT, hospitality and manufacturing. In addition to its corporate offering, which includes expertise in M&A, demergers and restructurings, the practice also advises on joint ventures and commercial transactions. Practice head Grant Esterhuizen has substantial transactional experience, with Dean Drew and Edward Adamson also key partners in this area; Adamson particularly stands out for his work in the hospitality space, while Drew takes the lead on much of the practice’s commercial work. Danielle Slater was promoted to associate in May 2021 and has taken a lead role on a number of high-value share sales. Senior associate Alexandra Clapp departed in June 2021 to join Steele Raymond LLP.

      Practice head(s):

      Grant Esterhuizen

      Other key lawyers:

      Dean Drew; Edward Adamson; Susan Cowan; Danielle Slater; Ruth Chornolutskyy

      Testimonials

      ‘Very easy to work with, excellent subject matter expertise relevant to my transaction, very responsive to my needs.’

      ‘Grant Esterhuizen – good communicator, quite accessible, very relevant experience for my issue. Susan Cowan – thorough, detailed, high quality support.’

      ‘I can not emphasize enough how excellent, incredibly efficient and professional the firm has been. Their extensive legal knowledge and service excels on both commercial and personal matters.’

      ‘Grant Esterhuizen is without any doubt on all matters an exemplary lawyer with incredible, impressive expertise.’

      ‘Lester Aldridge are our ‘go to’ solicitors for all our commercial requirements. They have an excellent team with a real depth of knowledge and experience; and excellent attention to detail. You feel you are in safe hands and know that you are going to get a thorough job.’

      ‘Grant Esterhuizen’s knowledge and experience are excellent, I’d say the best in the area. We wouldn’t undertake any significant transaction without having him on board. Danielle Slater also stands out as a pleasure to work with. Nothing appears to phase her and you know everything will be done accurately and on time.’

      ‘Lester Aldridge LLP have advised our business for a number of years on various non-contentious matters. We find their approach to be clearly focused and their advice to be thorough and easy to understand. They guide us through more complex issues patiently and make sure that we understand their advice.’

      ‘The key individual that I have spent the most time working with is Susan Cowan,. Her approach is typical of the various members of staff that I’ve worked with at Lester Aldridge LLP. She quickly grasped a number of rather unique factors influencing the transfer of our business and successfully reflected this in her advice and drafting of documents.’

      Key clients

      Supernova Events and Esports Limited

      LA Technologies Limited

      Think Research Limited

      Futwiz Ltd, the leading esports platform and part of the Wiz Media Group

      ESET Software UK Limited

      Mar-Key Marquees Limited

      Osprey Europe Limited

      Wealth Migrate Limited

      Langham Industries Limited

      Supernova Events and Esports Limited

      Work highlights

      • Advised the outgoing shareholders/owners of Park School Bournemouth on the sale of the entire issued share capital to a corporate buyer.
      • Advised Enhanced Computer Solutions Limited on the sale of part of its business and assets to Access UK Ltd.
      • Advised EVA.ai Limited on its debt finance and restructuring including employee incentive scheme.

      Employment > Health and safety Tier 2

      Lester Aldridge LLP splits its focus between both prosecution and defence work. The team is well versed in the handing of prosecution work for the HSE in addition to the Maritime & Coastguard Agency. Its defence work mainly concerns key marine, manufacturing, care and construction players. Michael Veal  leads the practice.

      Practice head(s):

      Michael Veal

      Testimonials

      ‘Michael Veal is head and shoulders above many other health and safety practitioners. His knowledge of this area of law is beyond impressive. Combined with a delightful and charming personality means he is a stand out.’

      ‘Michael Veal is an acknowledged expert in the field and someone whose judgement can be relied upon absolutely. His case preparation is meticulous and he brings real value to the conduct of a case. I would recommend him without hesitation.’

      ‘The team has a wealth of experience in managing legal interventions in a range of situations, which can be emotional and stressful for all concerned.’

      ‘The Lester Aldridge team members have a wealth of experience and provide pragmatic advice and reassurance. I would particularly recommend Michael Veal for their straightforward no-nonsense approach.’

      Key clients

      Health & Safety Executive

      Maritime & Coastguard Agency

      Hampshire County Council

      CK IT Solutions Limited

      Work highlights

      • Represented the Health and Safety Executive in the prosecution of Ensure Asbestos Management Limited, Philip Hopwood and Billy Hopwood, following work to asbestos on a construction site.
      • Represented CK IT Solutions Limited and Stephen Chisholm, an IT sector company, in defending a prosecution concerning the safety of electrical accessories.
      • Represented the Health and Safety Executive in investigating and prosecuting following conversion of a property to flats, which resulted in a gas explosion causing life changing injuries to a resident.

      Insurance > Personal injury and clinical negligence; claimant

      The personal injury team at Lester Aldridge LLP specialises in handling claims arising from road traffic accidents, representing clients who have suffered brain, spinal and orthopedic injuries. The practice experienced changes at the top in 2021, with Tim Blackwell departing in April to join Novum Law and being replaced as practice head by David Healy. In addition to his work on road traffic accidents, Healy also handles public and employers’ liability claims, and is also active in the clinical negligence space. Liz Oaten joined the team from Iacopi Palmer in August 2021 and is another name to note in clinical negligence.

      Practice head(s):

      David Healy

      Other key lawyers:

      Liz Oaten; Fiona Brooke

      Work highlights

        Public sector > Health Tier 2

        Lester Aldridge LLP‘s healthcare group is known for its strong regulatory practice, often acting for independent health care providers, and is praised for being ‘approachable, efficient and knowledgeable’. ‘Standout professional legal advisor’ Laura Guntrip leads the practice from Bournemouth with a particular focus on safeguarding issues, coroner’s inquests, criminal matters affecting care providers and due diligence. Also in Bournemouth, head of medical practices and professionals team Susan Cowan is regularly sought out for her expertise in GP partnership agreements and corporate structures. Bethan Dodd, based in Southampton, joined the firm in August 2021 from DR Solicitors and specialises in healthcare property matters.

        Practice head(s):

        Laura Guntrip

        Other key lawyers:

        Testimonials

        ‘Bethan Dodd has outstanding experience in dealing with GP property matters. She is approachable, highly professional and explains complicated legal issues in laymen’s terms. She is always willing dedicate the extra mile for her clients.’

        ‘The team are very approachable, efficient and knowledgeable. They are very up-to-date in respect of sector knowledge, and apart from acting upon our instructions they take time to keep us updated on wider issues impacting upon our sector which is much appreciated and is an example of their collaborative approach.’

        ‘Laura Guntrip is a stand-out professional legal advisor. She is highly valued by our organisation and is our ‘go-to’ person for sector knowledge and advice.’

        ‘A quality, specialist team.’

        ‘Bethan Dodd offers sensible, pragmatic advice.’

        ‘Excellent specialist knowledge on issues affecting care homes.’

        ‘Laura Guntrip – She is calm, considered and provides insight on the key issues.’

        ‘Leicester Aldridge LLP is an amazing professional team, who always makes time providing a personalised service to their customers.’

        Key clients

        HC-One

        Graham Care

        Registered Nursing Homes Association

        Hampshire Care Association

        Colten Care

        Kent Integrated Care Alliance

        Work highlights

        • Provided regulatory advice and undertook regulatory due diligence for a private equity fund on proposed purchase of a large national group of independent hospitals in a transaction valued at circa £770m.
        • Represented a care provider in defending enforcement action by the Care Quality Commission, including responding to allegations relating to criminal offences and appealing a notice imposing conditions of registration, both with successful outcomes.
        • Represented a large national provider of care homes for older people during a criminal investigation by CQC and interview under caution, resulting in no further action being taken.

        Real estate > Commercial property: Dorset, Devon and Cornwall Tier 2

        Praised for its ‘clear ability to understand and translate a complex brief or situation’, the real estate practice at Lester Aldridge LLP is particularly well versed in advising the housing with care and later living as well as affordable housing, and self-storage market sectors. The firm’s expertise, situated across Bournemouth and Southampton, covers the full gamut of commercial property matters, including finance and recoveries. Further specialisations relate to the telecoms, housebuilding and marine sectors. Housebuilding expert Mark Benham, telecoms and secured lending specialist Suki Samra, and Tom Alder, who focuses on planning law, jointly head the team.

        Practice head(s):

        Mark Benham; Suki Samra;  Tom Alder

        Testimonials

        ‘The team has outstanding individuals who collaborate effectively to pool specific talent to tackle complex development contracts.’

        ‘We have found Mark Benham to be an outstanding lawyer with a clearly evident depth of knowledge in the real estate sector. He is highly regarded by us for his work on healthcare developments and residential land promotion.’

        ‘Their level of expertise is far in excess of other solicitors that I have used in the past for property transactions, both simple and complex.’

        ‘They are always contactable and responsive. Very pleasant to deal with.’

        ‘Highly Capable. Very approachable. Personable. Always willing to help. Clear ability to understand and translate a complex brief or situation. Clear and concise appraisals.’

        ‘Friendly, approachable, professional, reliable.’

        Key clients

        McCarthy & Stone

        Yorkshire Building Society

        Allica Bank

        Lloyds Bank plc

        Shawbrook Bank

        Merck

        Affordable Housing & Healthcare Group

        Generation Home

        Work highlights

          Real estate > Commercial property: Hampshire Tier 2

          Southampton-based Tom Alder heads Lester Aldridge LLP‘s real estate team, which handles the full range of commercial property work in areas including housebuilding, finance, and management. Lucy Stevens is well known for her work for clients in the hotels and leisure sector, as well as her work for regional and national developers and landowners. The team was strengthened by the summer 2021 arrivals of partners James Realff and Bethan Dodd. Realff is experienced in all aspects of commercial property, while Dodd has specialist expertise in the healthcare sector, where she acts for NHS foundation trusts, primary care providers, and care home operators, as well as investors and developers. Rebecca Humm adds strength in planning, and associate Sian Rogers is also recommended.

          Practice head(s):

          Tom Alder

          Testimonials

          ‘The Lester Aldridge team provide a high standard of work whilst also being readily available for calls and respond quickly to emails. The high standard of client service and responsiveness makes Lester Aldridge stand out amongst their peers. Lester Aldridge are also readily able to take a pragmatic view of how best to apply the law to achieve a solution for their client, which takes an understanding of the commercial realities of the situation.’

          ‘Lucy Stevens has provided us with excellent service and is readily available to take a call or to respond quickly and grasp an understanding of complex issues and how best to deal with them. Lucy also regularly makes time to call clients to ensure they are happy with the progress of work being carried out by colleagues. The nature of the work our company asks Lucy to advise us on is extremely varied and has included some very unusual situations and each time Lucy and her team have strived to achieve a solution that is best for our interests in each situation.’

          Key clients

          McCarthy & Stone

          Care South

          Lloyds Bank plc

          Fragrance Group

          Insurance > Professional negligence Tier 3

          Lester Aldridge LLP continues to handle negligence claims against a range of insured professionals, including surveyors, auditors, accountants and solicitors. The team represents private individuals as well as companies, liquidators and creditors in these disputes. The ‘technically excellent’ Chris Evans leads the team and the overall dispute resolution practice. Other names to note in the team include Kate Stewart, who focuses on claims related to property transactions, and Michael Veal, who provides clients with ‘very sound legal analysis’.

          Practice head(s):

          Chris Evans

          Other key lawyers:

          Kate Stewart; Michael Veal; Benjamin Kerley; Rachel Gimson

          Testimonials

          ‘Efficiency, engagement, realistic approach’

          ‘Michael Veal – thoughtful, very engaging, very sound legal analysis.’

          ‘Chris Evans is technically excellent. Benjamin Kerley is friendly and concise.’

           

          Work highlights

            Private client > Charities and not-for-profit Tier 3

            Lester Aldridge LLP handles matters concerning registration, charitable status, governance, constitutions and regulatory issues. The practice is led by Lisa Watson-Cook who joined the practice in April 2021 from RSPCA Legal Services. Her expertise lies primarily in charity governance and regulation matters and is also a member of the Charity Law Association.

            Practice head(s):

            Lisa Watson-Cook

            Other key lawyers:

            Edward O’Brien

            Testimonials

            Lisa Watson-Cook has proven very friendly, helpful, knowledgeable and finally very personable.’

            ‘Lisa Watson-Cook is very approachable, straightforward, friendly and very good at explaining the more legal terminology when needed.’

            ‘Lester Aldridge LLP were able to supply urgent advice.’

            Key clients

            Lewis-Manning Hospice Care

            Care South

            Adventure Under Sail

            Guerrand Hermes Foundation for Peace

            Talbot Village Trust

            Brent Lodge Bird & Wildlife Trust

            Dorchester Municipal Charities

            West Bay Housing Society

            Dorset Community Foundation

            The Tank Museum Limited

            Work highlights

            • Acted for Guerrand Hermes Foundation for Peace on a collaboration agreement with a University to structure the charity’s research work within the university framework in order to apply to be formally recognised by UNESCO.
            • Advised Charity members on constitutional matters of a charitable company, the British Wheel of Yoga, on exercising their statutory rights to call a general meeting of the charity.
            • Advised trustees of RSPCA West Suffolk on a three way merger, particularly the capture of future legacies and drafted documents to underpin the agreement and clarify the trusts under which assets of the dissolved charity are held by the transferee charities.

            Private client > Contentious trusts and probate Tier 3

            Private client > Family Tier 3

            The practice at Lester Aldridge LLP places particular attention to the resolution of financial remedy cases. The team is also well equipped to handle children matters, including TOLATA related claims. Rosemary Sharp - 'a beacon in the field of family law' - heads the team; she is experienced in handling international matters, with particular experience in South African based arrangements.

            Practice head(s):

            Rosemary Sharp

            Other key lawyers:

            Laura George

            Testimonials

            ‘Client focused; proactive; engaged; transparent’

            ‘Client focused; Always briefed and ready; Transfer of information is swift; Understanding and compassionate; Transparent with fees.’

            ‘I would always expect professionalism and expertise from a solicitors firm. But it’s also important to me they are have that human element of friendliness, politeness, and care. Lester Aldridge do.’

            ‘Laura George is a solicitor who I would not hesitate to recommend. She is a true professional & a credit to LA.’

            ‘The staff are passionate, committed and their attention to detail is impressive. Lester Aldridge are excellent in providing good, prompt communication that is detailed, client-focused and pragmatic.’

            ‘Rosemary Sharp is a beacon in the field of family law. Rosemary is a strong leader and her presence is impressive and persuasive.

            ‘They are one of the ‘go to’ firms for high net worth individuals.’

            ‘The family team here is a breath of fresh air.  It is a very safe pair of hands when it comes to any financial proceedings and they are capable of handling the most demanding of high net worth clients.’

            Work highlights

              Private client > Personal tax, trusts and probate Tier 3

              The practice at Lester Aldridge LLP is split into three core teams; those being UK private client, UK tax and trusts and international private client. The practice is collectively led by Kurt Lee , Richard Fairbairn and Oliver Phipps. New arrivals include senior associate Precious Igbokwe from Taylor Rose MW in August 2021.

              Practice head(s):

              Kurt Lee; Richard Fairbairn; Oliver Phipps

              Other key lawyers:

              Parisa Jones; Precious Igbokwe

              Testimonials

              ‘Oliver Phipps has a good experience of international matters and who able to adapt to the specificities of the other legal systems.’

              ‘The team is particularly strong in respect of their cross-border expertise and provide a high standard of service and value compared with firms offering similar services.’

              ‘Oliver Phipps has an ability to explain complex areas of law in easy to understand and easy to digest way. He demonstrates an in-depth knowledge of his subject areas and provides pragmatic and practical solutions to complex scenarios.’

              ‘Parisa Jones has good technical knowledge and a pleasant, professional manner.’

              Work highlights

                Real estate > Property litigation Tier 3

                At Lester Aldridge LLP, the property litigation team supports the wider real estate group in addition to advising standalone clients on contentious matters. Maritime-based landlords are also part of the practice’s client portfolio, for which it can draw on the expertise of the firm’s specialist maritime department when necessary. The Bournemouth team is led by Kate Stewart, whose broad experience allows her to advise on all aspects of property litigation. The ‘extremely efficientRachel Gimson was promoted to partner in May 2021 and regularly handles construction, telecoms and insolvency property issues.

                Practice head(s):

                Kate Stewart

                Other key lawyers:

                Testimonials

                ‘Rachel Gimson: She was very on the ball, on top of the brief and commercially aware.’

                ‘Efficient service.’

                ‘Rachel Gimson was extremely efficient and quick to respond to me at all times. Her advise was clear and concise.’

                Key clients

                MDL Developments Limited

                Work highlights

                  Real estate > Environment and planning Tier 3

                  Based in Southampton and led by Tom Alder, Lester Aldridge LLP’s planning team has a strong reputation for its work with housebuilders, including both regional and national clients. Rebecca Humm is noted for her expertise negotiating and drafting agreements for planning and infrastructure, while Alder provides a wide range of advisory and non-contentious services. The team has increasingly turned to environmental matters in recent years, including natural capital work, assisting with the establishment of a nitrate credit scheme. The firm also offers a niche practice advising port and harbour authorities on regulatory issues.

                  Practice head(s):

                  Tom Alder

                  Other key lawyers:

                  Testimonials

                  ‘Practical lawyers who understand our objectives and develop and maintain very good relationships with other parties.’

                  ‘Tom Alder is able to find practical solutions to unforeseen planning problems. Very good relationships with local authority lawyers.’

                  ‘Able to explain the most complex issues in a simple way. Willing to offer robust advice on development issues such as restrictive covenants.’

                  Key clients

                  McCarthy & Stone

                  Bargate Homes

                  C & G Properties

                  Captiva Homes

                  CHG Developments Limited

                  Big Yellow Self Storage

                  Fragrance Group

                  Dandara Southern

                  Dicentra Developments

                  Rangeford Retirement Villages

                  Insurance > Personal injury and clinical negligence: claimant Tier 4

                  Lester Aldridge LLP's medical negligence practice is led from Southampton by Paula Barnes; she can draw on decades of experience and is known for fighting for her clients 'every inch of the way', specialising in birth injury cass and spinal injury cases. She works alongside Liz Oaten, another hugely. experienced practitioner who joined in 2021 from Iacopi Palmer Solicitors, where she led the clinical negligence team.

                  Practice head(s):

                  Paula Barnes

                  Other key lawyers:

                  Testimonials

                  ‘I have found the practice to be reliable and client focused. They keep me up to date with any new developments. They are fantastic, very professional and knowledgeable.’

                  ‘I have worked with Liz Oaten for several years. She is an exceptional solicitor with a real focus on her clients’ best interests and wellbeing. She is extremely diligent and goes above and beyond on her clients’ behalf.  She is highly expert in her field.’

                  ‘A very good team led by the superb Paula Barnes with support from new addition Liz Oaten.’

                  ‘Liz Oaten is a five-star solicitor. She really does know her stuff. She has extensive experience as the defendant and the claimant. She is able to understand both sides. She is always able to answer my questions and advise me wisely.’

                  ‘Liz Oaten is empathic and is a good client advocate. A pleasure to work with.’

                  ‘Paula Barnes is one of the best clinical negligence lawyers in the country with a mass of heavy cases in her caseload. Clients love her because she fights for them every inch of the way.’

                  South East > Real estate > Commercial property: Hampshire

                  Southampton-based Tom Alder heads Lester Aldridge LLP‘s real estate team, which handles the full range of commercial property work in areas including housebuilding, finance, and management. Lucy Stevens is well known for her work for clients in the hotels and leisure sector, as well as her work for regional and national developers and landowners. The team was strengthened by the summer 2021 arrivals of partners James Realff and Bethan Dodd. Realff is experienced in all aspects of commercial property, while Dodd has specialist expertise in the healthcare sector, where she acts for NHS foundation trusts, primary care providers, and care home operators, as well as investors and developers. Rebecca Humm adds strength in planning, and associate Sian Rogers is also recommended.

                  Practice head(s):

                  Tom Alder

                  Testimonials

                  ‘The Lester Aldridge team provide a high standard of work whilst also being readily available for calls and respond quickly to emails. The high standard of client service and responsiveness makes Lester Aldridge stand out amongst their peers. Lester Aldridge are also readily able to take a pragmatic view of how best to apply the law to achieve a solution for their client, which takes an understanding of the commercial realities of the situation.’

                  ‘Lucy Stevens has provided us with excellent service and is readily available to take a call or to respond quickly and grasp an understanding of complex issues and how best to deal with them. Lucy also regularly makes time to call clients to ensure they are happy with the progress of work being carried out by colleagues. The nature of the work our company asks Lucy to advise us on is extremely varied and has included some very unusual situations and each time Lucy and her team have strived to achieve a solution that is best for our interests in each situation.’

                  Key clients

                  McCarthy & Stone

                  Care South

                  Lloyds Bank plc

                  Fragrance Group

                  South East > Real estate > Environment and planning

                  Based in Southampton and led by Tom Alder, Lester Aldridge LLP’s planning team has a strong reputation for its work with housebuilders, including both regional and national clients. Rebecca Humm is noted for her expertise negotiating and drafting agreements for planning and infrastructure, while Alder provides a wide range of advisory and non-contentious services. The team has increasingly turned to environmental matters in recent years, including natural capital work, assisting with the establishment of a nitrate credit scheme. The firm also offers a niche practice advising port and harbour authorities on regulatory issues.

                  Practice head(s):

                  Tom Alder

                  Other key lawyers:

                  Testimonials

                  ‘Practical lawyers who understand our objectives and develop and maintain very good relationships with other parties.’

                  ‘Tom Alder is able to find practical solutions to unforeseen planning problems. Very good relationships with local authority lawyers.’

                  ‘Able to explain the most complex issues in a simple way. Willing to offer robust advice on development issues such as restrictive covenants.’

                  Key clients

                  McCarthy & Stone

                  Bargate Homes

                  C & G Properties

                  Captiva Homes

                  CHG Developments Limited

                  Big Yellow Self Storage

                  Fragrance Group

                  Dandara Southern

                  Dicentra Developments

                  Rangeford Retirement Villages

                  South East > Insurance > Personal injury and clinical negligence: claimant

                  Lester Aldridge LLP's medical negligence practice is led from Southampton by Paula Barnes; she can draw on decades of experience and is known for fighting for her clients 'every inch of the way', specialising in birth injury cass and spinal injury cases. She works alongside Liz Oaten, another hugely. experienced practitioner who joined in 2021 from Iacopi Palmer Solicitors, where she led the clinical negligence team.

                  Practice head(s):

                  Paula Barnes

                  Other key lawyers:

                  Testimonials

                  ‘I have found the practice to be reliable and client focused. They keep me up to date with any new developments. They are fantastic, very professional and knowledgeable.’

                  ‘I have worked with Liz Oaten for several years. She is an exceptional solicitor with a real focus on her clients’ best interests and wellbeing. She is extremely diligent and goes above and beyond on her clients’ behalf.  She is highly expert in her field.’

                  ‘A very good team led by the superb Paula Barnes with support from new addition Liz Oaten.’

                  ‘Liz Oaten is a five-star solicitor. She really does know her stuff. She has extensive experience as the defendant and the claimant. She is able to understand both sides. She is always able to answer my questions and advise me wisely.’

                  ‘Liz Oaten is empathic and is a good client advocate. A pleasure to work with.’

                  ‘Paula Barnes is one of the best clinical negligence lawyers in the country with a mass of heavy cases in her caseload. Clients love her because she fights for them every inch of the way.’

                  X

                  Lester Aldridge is a full-service law firm with offices in Bournemouth, Southampton and London. The firm’s core practice areas are real estate, litigation and recoveries, dispute resolution, corporate and commercial services and private client, which it delivers regionally, nationally and internationally.

                  The firm: Lester Aldridge offers something to clients that other, larger firms do not: a genuine partnership. Client satisfaction is reflected in the growth it has experienced, seeing revenues increase steadily. Big-name clients include Ceuta Holdings, Lloyds Bank, Marina Developments, Moore Stephens and Monzo Bank.

                  Lester Aldridge is a growing firm whose breadth of service continues to broaden. Formed following the merger of two large Bournemouth firms in 1988 (with origins tracing back to 1796); in 2007, it changed status from a traditional partnership to that of a limited liability partnership and is a “go to” firm, which has proved to be attractive to partners from other firms.

                  Lester Aldridge has been accredited with the Law Society’s Lexcel Quality Standard since 2007.

                  Types of work undertaken include
                  Real estate: the firm’s extensive property team span sectors including commercial development, care, residential and lending, investment and retail, with expertise to handle a wide range of property issues, from development projects, management and investment, buying and selling properties, landlord and tenant issues, to planning, environment and construction. It also has expertise in the niche areas of ports and marinas, waterside developments and assisted living.

                  Dispute resolution: Lester Aldridge’s experienced team covers a broad range of general commercial litigation, as well as working for clients in specific industries, handling everything from emergency injunctions to mediation and high court litigation in areas as diverse as debt collection and multi-million cross-jurisdictional claims.

                  Corporate and commercial: The team handles an array of corporate work for a diverse client base. Particularly noted for its M&A work, the team regularly advises clients on other company and commercial issues, including joint ventures, IT and IP licensing, competition law and restructurings. The team also acts for international, national and regional clients in many sectors, including charities and the third sector.

                  Litigation and recoveries: Lester Aldridge’s team has a proven track record in providing effective advice to banks, building society, finance houses, leasing companies and insolvency practitioners. It specialises in the recovery of secured and unsecured commercial and personal finance, as well as asset recovery.

                  Marine: LA Marine is the specialist shipping and marine law team of Lester Aldridge, providing expert advice and practical solutions to the commercial shipping, logistics, superyacht and leisure marine industries. LA Marine deals with all aspects of maritime law, from non-contentious matters to collisions, charterparty issues, bill of lading disputes, demurrage claims and personal injury.

                  Healthcare: One of the leading areas of expertise at Lester Aldridge and one for which the firm has a national reputation. For over 20 years, members of the specialist healthcare team have been specialising in the regulation of health and social care services, regularly acting for independent social care providers, independent hospitals, NHS Trusts and GPs. The team also acts for children’s homes, schools and fostering agencies.

                  Employment: As one of the leading employment teams in the south, the team provides specialist advice on all areas of employment law, acting for international, national and major regional employers in all sectors. The team supports HR and senior management in dealing with a multitude of employment issues, from drafting service agreements, employment contracts, employment policies and handbooks, to advising on tribunal claims, redundancy programmes and TUPE-related matters.

                  Private client: The firm offers a full range of services for individuals, with specialists in wills and estates, tax planning and trusts, contentious probate, community care, residential conveyancing, family, employment, personal injury and medical negligence. The international private client team supports both professionals and private individuals across a range of global estate planning and administration matters, including a specialist medallion signature guarantee service.

                  DepartmentNameEmailTelephone
                  Managing Partner Matthew Barrow
                  Chair Suki Samra
                  Real Estate Group Mark Benham
                  Litigation & Recoveries Ann Lloyd
                  Corporate & Commercial Grant Esterhuizen
                  Dispute Resolution and Property litigation Kate Stewart
                  Employment Kevin Barnett
                  Family Rosemary Sharp
                  Healthcare & Community Care Laura Guntrip
                  LA Marine Russell Kelly
                  Personal Injury & Medical Negligence David Healy
                  Private Client Kurt Lee
                  Regulation & Business Crime Michael Veal
                  Restructuring & Insolvency Nick Keitley, Melia Hirst
                  Shipping & Logistics Linda Jacques
                  Property & Conveyancing John Townsend
                  Charities & Social Enterprise Lisa Watson-Cook
                  PhotoNamePositionProfile
                  Stephanie Adams photo Stephanie AdamsStephanie Adams is a Partner in the Property & Conveyancing and Real…
                  Edward Adamson photo Edward AdamsonEdward advises businesses in a range of sectors on transactional matters such…
                  Kevin Barnett photo Kevin BarnettKevin Barnett is a Partner in the Employment & HR team. Kevin…
                  Mark Benham photo Mark BenhamMark Benham is a Partner in the Real Estate team. Mark is…
                  Joanne Clarke photo Joanne ClarkeJoanne Clarke is a Partner in the Family team. Joanne advises a…
                  Susan Cowan photo Susan CowanSusan Cowan is a Partner in the Corporate & Commercial team. Susan…
                  Martin Coward photo Martin CowardMartin Coward is a Partner in the Real Estate team. Martin’s practice…
                  Dean Drew photo Dean DrewDean is a corporate partner with over 20 years’ experience at national…
                  Grant Esterhuizen photo Grant EsterhuizenGrant is a partner at Lester Aldridge who heads up the firm’s…
                  Chris Evans photo Chris EvansChris Evans is a Partner in the Dispute Resolution team. Chris is…
                  Rachel Gimson photo Rachel GimsonRachel Gimson is a Partner in the Property Litigation team.  Rachel has…
                  Laura Guntrip photo Laura GuntripLaura Guntrip is a Partner and Head of the Healthcare team. Laura…
                  Victoria Jones photo Victoria JonesVictoria is a Partner in our Disputed Wills, Trusts & Probate and…
                  Parisa Jones photo Parisa JonesParisa Jones is a Partner in the Tax, Trusts, Wills & Probate…
                  Kurt Lee photo Kurt LeeKurt Lee is a Partner and Head of the Tax, Trusts, Wills…
                  Ann Lloyd photo Ann LloydAnn Lloyd is a Partner and Head of the Litigation and Recoveries…
                  Danielle Montezuma photo Danielle MontezumaDanielle Montezuma is a Partner in our Litigation & Recoveries team. She…
                  Oliver Phipps photo Oliver PhippsOliver Phipps is a Partner & Head of the International Private Client…
                  Catherine Rawles photo Catherine RawlesCatherine is a Partner at Lester Aldridge specialising in residential development, acting…
                  Suki Samra photo Suki SamraSuki Samra is a Partner in the Real Estate team. Suki acts…
                  Rosemary Sharp photo Rosemary SharpRosemary Sharp is a Partner and Head of the Family team. Rosemary…
                  Kate Stewart photo Kate StewartKate is a Partner and heads the property litigation team. She advises…
                  Michael Veal photo Michael VealMichael Veal is a Partner in the Dispute Resolution & Commercial Litigation…
                  Number of UK partners : 42
                  Solicitors & associates : 60
                  Other fee earners : 107
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                  COMPANY/FIRM: Legal Director at a global freight forwarder
                  TESTIMONIAL: “I have worked with Linda Jacques, partner at Lester Aldridge, on a few disputes involving liens among other questions, and she has proved to be extremely responsive and creative. She advises with a breadth of experience in the marine, shipping and logistics sectors and she gives pragmatic and business-oriented options to complex situations. It is a real pleasure working with her.”


                  CLIENT: Raoul Perfitt, Managing Director
                  COMPANY/FIRM: Herb UK Limited
                  TESTIMONIAL: “We have used Grant Esterhuizen and his team of corporate lawyers at Lester Aldridge for over a decade now. They have supported us through thick and thin. Since our original management buy-out, Grant and his team have advised us successfully on a range of commercial and corporate transactional matters, from commercial contracts and mergers and acquisitions to internal company law advice involving shareholder related matters and changes to our articles of association and general corporate governance issues. We have found them to be accessible, quick to respond, commercial in their approach and razor sharp in their ability to cut to the main issues and help in resolving our legal requirements swiftly and professionally. As a UK based international distribution company, our requirements for legal advice are varied and often span cross-border jurisdictional issues – we have found that Grant and his team are able to cover all of these bases. In many respects we see Lester Aldridge as a business partner rather than as our advisers. Grant in particular is a determined lawyer who is focussed on getting the best results for his client.”


                  CLIENT: Peter Burrows, VP of International Business Development and M&A Integration
                  COMPANY/FIRM: Ceuta Group
                  TESTIMONIAL: “Lester Aldridge have represented Ceuta Group across all legal matters for over 20 years. On the occasions we have had to call on the advice and expertise of the Lester Aldridge Dispute Resolution Team we have been hugely impressed with their depth of knowledge across a wide range of issues and their ability to secure excellent outcomes for our business.”


                  CLIENT: Individual client
                  TESTIMONIAL: “I cannot rate Chris Evans and the professional negligence team at Lester Aldridge highly enough.
                  Throughout, my case was handled with the upmost professionalism and Chris Evans and his team guided me through the complexities of professional negligence law at every stage. But more than that they provided me with reassurance and compassion at what was an incredibly difficult and emotional time for me personally. I would strongly recommend the professional negligence team at Lester Aldridge, incredible service!”


                  CLIENT: Richard Hardy
                  COMPANY/FIRM: Lansdown Land
                  TESTIMONIAL: “I’m always impressed by the depth of knowledge and experience within the team. We require a high level of attention to detail on what are often complex development sites. They are very commercial in outlook and provide well considered solutions to any site specific issues. There are team members with clear specialisms such as restrictive covenant issues, right of way/easements and telecoms. We feel that they really take the time to understand our business and what is important to us. Budget communication is excellent, we feel that they go the extra mile and always deliver value for money.”


                  CLIENT: James A
                  TESTIMONIAL: “Great support for our move. Lester Aldridge supported us with a move back to the area. They were very responsive, attentive and professional, making the process as smooth as possible. We’d recommend their services.”


                  CLIENT:
                  COMPANY/FIRM: Shawbrook Bank Limited t/a Shawbrook Asset Finance
                  TESTIMONIAL: “Lester Aldridge have supported our Asset Finance business for many years. A very professional team that is always prepared to assist and offer clear advice. The team has a wealth of knowledge and expertise which enables them to deliver high-quality advice which is both practical and commercially viable. The advice and action taken, frequently results in a positive, swift outcome.”


                  CLIENT:
                  COMPANY/FIRM: Head of Planning at a local developers.
                  TESTIMONIAL: “We have used Lester Aldridge’s Planning and Real Estate team over the last five years. The work they do for us involves advising on planning application and appeal strategies, representing us at Public Inquiries, drafting and negotiating Planning S106 Legal Agreements and also securing land opportunities via Option Agreements all the way through to Site Purchases. The team at Lester Aldridge is very professional and understands our business needs. They are able to provide pragmatic and sound advice in a timely way, including dealing with matters effectively in very tight timescales. They have very good relationships with Local Authority solicitors, which has been of great help to us when negotiating legal agreements which accompany our planning consents.”


                  CLIENT:
                  COMPANY/FIRM: OSHCS Register Consultant/ OSHCS Ltd
                  TESTIMONIAL: “I have worked with Michael Veal and others from the Lester Aldridge Health and Safety team over a number of years. I found them professional and helpful with a pragmatic approach to dealing with a range of health and safety issues. In my opinion, they have a comprehensive understanding of health and safety legislation. Unlike some other legal firms I have dealt with, they have an ability to rapidly understand some of the technical aspects that could often be involved in considering the application of the law to a particular situation.”


                  At Lester Aldridge, we believe in equality and diversity for everyone – employees, clients and the firm. As part of our overall commitment to equality of opportunity, we are fully dedicated to promoting a good harmonious working environment where everyone is treated with dignity and respect.

                  Our Equality and Diversity Committee is chaired by the Head of Human Resources and consists of a group of staff members who represent different levels, departments and locations within the firm. We have a group of Equality and Diversity Champions who support the committee members on raising awareness of the different strands of diversity throughout the year. The Committee also meets regularly to consider equality and diversity issues throughout the firm, policy reviews and compliance with relevant legislation as well as identifying areas for improvement. The Committee works to a 3 year plan, which is updated when required to ensure that what we aim to achieve remains relevant. The Head of Human Resources would update the Managing Partner on a regular basis.

                  We have an equality and diversity policy which we are committed to making effective and will take all appropriate steps to ensure everyone is treated fairly.