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Butcher & Barlow LLP

Work 0161 797 5650
Fax 0161 797 4878

The Firm of Butcher & Barlow has practised in Bury for over 130 years and has passed from Father to Son through four generations. The Firm prides itself on maintaining the same name, standards and identity that it had when it was first formed. The Firm remains approachable and accessible and focused on building long-term personal relationships with its clients.

The Firm:

Butcher & Barlow is a full service law Firm with 10 offices across Cheshire and North Manchester. The offices in Bury remain the head office of the Firm which has doubled in size in the last 10 years, now boasting 27 partners and over 70 additional fee earners.

The Firm has its roots on the High Street but has always had a strong commercial client base. In 2014 Butcher & Barlow opened a dedicated commercial and agricultural office on Gadbrook Park, Northwich. By having a dedicated office for the two departments it is able to harness the skill and expertise of its Solicitors in one office and provide a focused team that can provide advice and assistance on commercial and agricultural matters in a professional, business-centred setting. The Firm is able to offer detailed expertise and a dedicated commercial team at rates lower than City Centre practices due to lower overheads. The Firm’s commercial clients include regional construction companies, commercial landlords, manufacturing companies and builders’ merchants.

Whilst the Firm is based within the North West, the reputation it has established has meant that work has been undertaken for individuals based in the Midlands and South East and the use of technology has meant the speed at which transactions are conducted has increased.

Types of work undertaken: Corporate and commercial: headed by one of the Firms four equity partners, Jonathan Aldersley, the department's expertise includes mergers and acquisitions, asset finance and secured lending, shareholder agreements and review of commercial documents. The department has a particular expertise in advising charities such as The Hulme Trust Estates and Booth Charities on management and administration and property and investments. Particular experience has been built up in respect of the sale and purchases of companies in the care home sector as well as those involving the brewery industry and is able to provide advice on licensing matters. Partner Justin Kelly specialises in advising businesses on employment issues.

Commercial property: the team is led by John Hyatt, a partner with over 30 years of experience in property law. The department is noted for its expertise in land acquisition, planning and development in the commercial and residential sectors, public house sales and purchases, commercial re-financing and commercial property and self-invested personal pensions.

Agriculture: the agricultural team is based at the dedicated Gadbrook Park office and is led by Mike Bracegirdle. Mike is a fellow of the Agricultural Law Association. Working with partners Graham Gigg, also a fellow of the Agricultural Law Association (and an associate of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and honorary legal officer of both the Agricultural Chaplaincy in Cheshire and the Cheshire Agricultural Society), John Hyatt and Rebecca Jepson, the team can advise on all aspects of agricultural land, development, agricultural tenancies, succession issues and partnerships. The Department acts for a number of landed estates in relation to agricultural holdings and tenancies and farm business tenancies.

Private client: Chris Hopkins is the head of the private client team and also a member of STEP. The team provides a full range of private client services, including preparation of wills and trusts, succession planning, administration of estates and trusts, Court of Protection applications, and powers of attorney. Partners of the firm also act as trustees and are involved in the management of a number of trust funds totalling several million pounds which have been operating for many years. The department holds niche expertise in agricultural work and is able to offer a bespoke service in relation to estate planning for farmers. The team undertakes work on behalf of business owners and high net-worth-clients, frequently working in combination with the Corporate and Commercial department to offer clients wide ranging and well-rounded advice.

Litigation and dispute resolution: headed by Anthony Higham in Lancashire and Alex Sandland in Cheshire, the team advises both individual and corporate clients on land and property disputes, corporate and partnership disputes, adjudication and construction matters and contentious probate issues. Alex has recently had success in the Court of Appeal with the reported case of Winterburn v Bennett [2016] EWCA Civ 482. Members of the team also cover all areas of personal injury claims and medical negligence actions.

Family: the firm has an experienced family law team, with solicitors who are members and accredited specialists of recognised family law associations including Resolution, the Law Society’s Children Panel and the Advanced Family Panel. The firm has a collaboratively trained lawyer in Helen Oakes and accredited mediator in Caroline Cockill-Guy. The firm has legal aid contracts to carry out family legal aid work at seven offices and holds the specialist quality mark. The firm thus boasts a highly regarded team specialising in divorce and financial matters of substantial complexity and value. The team is well equipped to deal with all children and financial issues arising from a relationship, including pre- and post-nuptial settlements, businesses and inheritance disputes.

Residential property: as an accredited member of the Conveyancing Quality Scheme the firm provides high-class residential property services to a wide range of clients.

The firm also has four notary publics, spread across the region who are impartial legal experts with a wealth of varied experience within this distinct facet of the legal profession.




  • Number of UK partners: 28
  • Number of other UK fee-earners: 45
  • Breakdown of work %

  • Corporate and commercial & Commercial Property: 25
  • Conveyancing: 24
  • Private client: 17
  • Litigation: 15
  • Family: 19

Above material supplied by Butcher & Barlow LLP.

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