Firm Profile > Watkins & Gunn Solicitors > Pontypool, Wales

Watkins & Gunn Solicitors

Family Tier 3

Headed from the firm's Newport headquarters by the 'vastly experiencedSophie Hughes  and also able to call upon the expertise of practitioners spread across the firm's Pontypool and Cardiff offices, Watkins & Gunn Solicitors' six-strong team is well-positioned to advise south east Wales-based clients across the myriad of family law matters. Appreciated by clients for her 'sensitivity and pragmatism', Hughes excels in highly disputed and complex divorce and cohabitation disputes.

Public sector Tier 3

Watkins & Gunn Solicitors has an excellent reputation in the market acting for claimants in judicial review challenges of the decisions of public bodies, including a number of cases arising from devolved law in Wales. 'Very dedicated' team head Michael Imperato is noted in particular for his expertise at handling cases in the healthcare and education sectors.


The firm has a good reputation for claimant public law matters

Key clients

Haemophilia Wales

Haemophilia Northern Ireland

Coleg Elediyr

Future Generations Commissioner for Wales

Personal injury: claimant Tier 4

Traditionally strong throughout the Gwent region, and increasingly gaining a foothold in Cardiff courtesy of the growth of the firm's office there since its opening seven years ago, Watkins & Gunn Solicitors handles a range of personal injury work for private clients and trade union members. The firm has particular strength in relation to employers' liability, an area that managing partner Clive Thomas has particular expertise in.

Key clients

Bakers Food and Allied Workers Union

Community Union

Watkins & Gunn is a forward-thinking, innovative law firm, and a specialist provider of high-quality legal services in Wales and the UK.

The firm: Watkins & Gunn Solicitors is a five partner law firm, with offices: in Cardiff,  Newport and Pontypool  providing a full range of legal services. The roots of the firm go back over 140 years. They gained Lexcel accreditation in 2006 and in 2009 won the Lexcel Award for Excellence in Practice Management at the Law Society Excellence Awards and were a Highly Commended for Excellence in Technology in 2016. They are a multi award winning law firm, most recently winning the Family Law Team of the Year and Private Client Team of the Year  at the Wales Legal Awards 2019.

The firm holds six Law Society Quality Marks (in personal injury, family law, children law, criminal law, wills and inheritance, and conveyancing). It is well known for personal injury law, acting for two trade unions. It also has a niche practice in public/administrative law, for which it has gained a national reputation, and is one of the leading Welsh divorce and family law firms. They are one of the firms authorised to act in the Infected Blood Inquiry, representing Hemophilia Wales and Hemophilia Northern Ireland

Types of work undertaken:

Personal injury:  Their specialist personal injury lawyers deal with many different types of accident claim, most commonly accidents at work, road traffic accidents and slipping/tripping accidents. The firm offers a fast, high-quality service and has a success rate of over 90%. The firm’s lawyers are Members of the Law Society’s Personal Injury Panel and are accredited by the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers.

Divorce and family matters:  The family law team advise on all aspects of relationship breakdown, divorce, unmarried couples, separation agreements, financial settlements, residence/contact arrangements for children, change of name deed and living together agreements. The firm’s lawyers are accredited by Resolution and are members of the Law Society’s Family Law Panel. They won the Family Law Team of the Year  at the Wales Legal Awards 2019

Childcare law:  The childcare team offers sound advice and support with sensitivity and professionalism throughout the care proceedings process. It also acts on behalf of children through court-appointed guardians. The firm can also put clients in touch with other organisations and professionals to help in their dealings with social services.

Private client:  The specialist private client lawyers provide advice on a wide range of matters from wills and probate, lifetime trust and tax planning through to lasting powers of attorney and Court of Protection proceedings. They were awarded the Private Client Team of the Year  at the Wales Legal Awards 2019.

Employment: the specialist team assists in unfair dismissal; redundancy; tribunal hearings; settlement agreements; contracts of employment; general employment advice; strike action; bullying or harassment at work; grievance and disciplinary procedures; unlawful deductions from salary; discrimination; executive severances; family-friendly rights at work; and recruitment.

Property (residential and commercial):  The property team specialises in residential and commercial conveyancing across England and Wales. It has embraced the latest technology to provide a fast, efficient and effective premier service that delivers the highest standard of client care.

Clinical negligence: The firm has expertise in claims including pregnancy issues and maternal or infant birth injuries; surgical claims including general surgery, gynaecological, neuro and cardio thoracic; anaesthetic-related problems; cosmetic surgery; and ophthalmic and laser eye surgery errors.

Public/administrative law:  The firm has extensive experience of challenging the unlawful actions of public bodies through judicial review in the High Court. Its cases often involve human rights law and include challenges to: hospital, school reorganisation and library closures; and the granting of planning permission in environmental matters. They are one of the leading firms representing victims of the  contaminated blood scandal at the Infected Blood Inquiry.

Criminal law:  They advise and assist on all aspects of criminal law, motoring offences and road traffic law and represent clients at the Magistrates Court and Crown Court.

Other offices: Cardiff , Newport & London (by appointment)


Department Name Email Telephone
Managing partner and Head of PI Clive Thomas 01495 762244
PI Clive Thomas 01495 762244
Clinical Negligence Jonathan Wellington 01633 262122
Family Law Sophie Hughes 01633 262122
Private client (wills and probate) Linda Dack 01495 762244
Crime Jonathan Wellington 01633 262122
Public and Administrative law Michael Imperato 02921 154313
Property Joanne Whitehead 02921 154313
Childcare law Kate Roberts 01495 762244
Employment Law Lisa Guscott 01495 762244
Family Law Leah Rhydderch 01633 262122
Photo Name Position Profile
 Linda Dack  photo Linda Dack
Ms Kate Roberts  photo Ms Kate Roberts
 Clive Thomas  photo Clive Thomas
Number of UK partners : 5
Number of other UK fee-earners : 19