THE SLS LEGAL AWARDS WILL TAKE PLACE ON THURSDAY 22 SEPTEMBER 2022

PLEASE NOTE THAT NOMINATIONS ARE NOW CLOSED

This prestigious event, now in its fourth year, will be a fantastic opportunity to celebrate the success of our SLS Legal Award winners and showcase the very best of Surrey’s legal talent, as well as offering members the chance to network and enjoy the entertainment.

This year, as well as incorporating the usual reception and dinner, the evening will include an after dinner speech from former barrister, broadcaster and comedy writer, Clive Anderson.

The reception, 3-course dinner, and wine are included in the cost and we will be raising money on the evening in aid of the President’s chosen charity

AWARD CATEGORIES

The categories for the 2022 SLS Legal Awards are:

  • Law Firm of the Year
  • Lawyer of the Year
  • Dispute Resolution Lawyer of the Year
  • Employment Lawyer of the Year
  • Family Lawyer of the Year
  • Private Client Lawyer of the Year
  • Paralegal of the Year
  • Property Lawyer of the Year
  • Rising Star of the Year
  • Support Team Member of the Year

2022 AWARDS SHORTLIST

  • Law Firm of the Year
    *** DMH Stallard LLP *** Howell-Jones LLP *** Peacock & Co Solicitors *** Nichols Marcy Dawson LLP *** Rosewood Solicitors *** Stevens & Bolton LLP ***
  • Lawyer of the Year
    *** Kate Doody, GBH Law *** Denise Herrington, GBH Law *** Emma Patel, Rosewood Solicitors *** Jade Quirke, Russell-Cooke LLP ***
  • Dispute Resolution Lawyer of the Year
    *** Jonathan Compton, DMH Stallard LLP *** Scott Taylor, Moore Barlow LLP ***
  • Employment Lawyer of the Year
    *** Nick Hawkins, Charles Russell Speechlys *** Abigail Maino, DMH Stallard LLP ***
  • Family Lawyer of the Year
    *** Victoria Clarke, Elite Law Solicitors *** Lauren Hall, Russell-Cooke LLP *** Niamh McCarthy, Stowe Family Law *** Grace Parker-White, Stevens & Bolton LLP *** Helen Worden, Blackfords LLP ***
  • Paralegal of the Year
    *** Justina Lukšaitė, Blackfords LLP *** Alasdair Poole, Elite Law Solicitors *** Deanna Stephenson, Russell-Cooke LLP ***
  • Private Client Lawyer of the Year
    *** Annika Bell, Russell-Cooke LLP *** Caroline Foulger, TWM Solicitors *** Jade Gani, Meadows Ryan Solicitors *** Julie Man, Russell-Cooke LLP ***
  • Property Lawyer of the Year
    *** Michael Daniels, DMH Stallard LLP *** Charles Hylton-Potts, Peacock & Co Solicitors *** Ruben Perin, Taylor Rose MW *** Abiola Sealy, Taylor Rose MW ***
  • Rising Star of the Year
    *** Seema Gill, Howell-Jones LLP *** Tabitha Lee, GBH Law *** Amber Matheson, Moore Barlow LLP *** Bethany Walker, Moore Barlow LLP *** Chloe Wallington, GBH Law ***
  • Support Team Member of the Year
    *** Ashley Burrow, Meadows Ryan *** Rebecca Carry, Peacock & Co Solicitors *** Kathryn Cotterill, GBH Law *** Marie Jackson, Meadows Ryan *** Pru Singer, Russell-Cooke LLP ***

VENUE & BOOKING INFORMATION

Date:  Thursday 22nd September 2022

Venue:  The Mandolay Hotel: 36 – 40 London Road, Guildford, Surrey, GU1 2AE (01483 303030).

Accommodation:  Surrey Law Society has reserved a number of bedrooms at the Mandolay for the night of the 22nd September.  Guests of the dinner can book these by calling 01483 303030, selecting Option 1 and quoting Event Reference Code: Surrey Law Society Gala.  The double occupancy rate is £130 per room per night and includes breakfast. Rooms are available on a first-come, first-served basis and any bedrooms still vacant by 25th August 2022 will be released.  The Surrey Law Society cannot guarantee that this accommodation rate is the most competitive available and it might be possible to find preferential rates via some of the major hotel booking sites.

 

How to Book:

Booking is now open and you can reserve your place at the Awards in the following ways:

Attendance Fees:

  • Individual Ticket: £150 plus VAT
  • Table of 10: £1,250 plus VAT

2022 Event Programme:

6:30pm Welcome Reception Mandolay Suite (Ground Floor)
7:10pm Welcome by the President Mandolay Suite (Lower Ground)
7:30pm Gala Dinner Mandolay Suite (Lower Ground)
9:00pm An After-Dinner Speech by Clive Anderson Mandolay Suite (Lower Ground)
9:45pm SLS Legal Awards Ceremony Mandolay Suite (Lower Ground)
10:45pm Drinks & Mingling Mandolay Suite (Lower Ground)
12:30am Carriages Mandolay Suite (Lower Ground)

GUEST SPEAKER DETAILS

This year we are absolutely thrilled to announce that our after-dinner speaker and Awards compere will be Clive Anderson.  Clive is a barrister by training but is best known for being an award-winning and versatile, broadcaster and comedy writer.

Winner of the British Comedy Award in 1991, Clive began his success during his 15-year law career with stand-up comedy and script writing, before rising to fame as the host of Whose Line Is It Anyway? on radio and then television.

Clive went on to front ten series of his own show, Clive Anderson Talks Back on Channel 4 and four series of Clive Anderson All Talk on BBC 1. As well as presenting several other TV and radio programmes, he has made many guest appearances on shows such as Have I Got News For You, QI, Mock the Week, and The Bubble. Clive has been the unflappable host of live events and award ceremonies for BAFTA, the London Evening Standard Film Awards, the Chortle Awards and the Olivier Awards and has fronted other events and programmes ranging from the Proms to politics.

In recent years, he has presented The Big Read and Maestro! on BBC 2. Clive has also presented a two-part series investigating China’s Football Revolution, as well as being a regular contributor to The Footballs On on BT Sport. Clive hosted Whose Line Is It Anyway?…Live the official worldwide première at the Adelphi Theatre in London in 2015. Due to popular demand, the sold-out show returned to London Palladium for a limited run in 2016 and again to Royal Albert Hall in December 2018 to celebrate its 30th birthday with an exclusive run of three live festive shows.

2018 saw Clive, along with anthropologist Mary-Ann Ochota, host Mystic Britain for showtime-owned Smithsonian Channel. Clive took his first solo show Me, Macbeth & I to the fringe in 2019 to critical acclaim and a sold out run.  He will take the show on the road, in debut tour across the UK. He writes for a variety of comedians, radio and TV programmes, for several national newspapers and magazines, hosts a variety of award ceremonies and continues to present Loose Ends and Unreliable Evidence (both BBC Radio 4). In 2021 Clive started his own podcast My Seven Wonders with Clive Anderson. The 18-part series saw Clive sitting down with famous guests and discussing their own personal Seven Wonders of the World. With no topic off limit, each guest guided Clive through the why, the how and the when of their seven passions.

2022 Sponsors

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HEADLINE SPONSOR OF THE SLS LEGAL AWARDS 2022

Actionstep is an adaptable all-in-one legal practice management platform for modern law firms.

Built in the cloud, with workflow at its heart, Actionstep transforms legal productivity at every step.

Combining CRM, Matter Management, Document Assembly & Storage, Time & Billing, Trust & Office Accounting, Reporting and much more in one system, Actionstep gives you everything you need to run your firm and full visibility across the health of your practice.

With unlimited scope to scale and evolve, Actionstep’s legal practice management software takes firms every step to being a modern, thriving law firm.

Visit the Actionstep Website

ACTIONSTEP, Headline Sponsor and Sponsor of Law Firm of the Year

Actionstep is an adaptable all-in-one legal practice management platform for modern law firms.
Built in the cloud, with workflow at its heart, Actionstep transforms legal productivity at every step.
Combining CRM, Matter Management, Document Assembly & Storage, Time & Billing, Trust & Office Accounting, Reporting and much more in one system, Actionstep gives you everything you need to run your firm and full visibility across the health of your practice.
With unlimited scope to scale and evolve, Actionstep’s legal practice management software takes firms every step to being a modern, thriving law firm.

View Website

Evelyn Partners Sponsor of the Drinks Reception & Family Lawyer of the Year Award

Evelyn Partners is the UK’s leading integrated wealth management and professional services group, created following the merger of Tilney and Smith & Williamson. With £55.8 billion of assets under management (as at 31 March 2022), it ranks as the second largest UK wealth manager measured by EBITDA and the sixth largest professional services firm ranked by fee income (source: Accountancy Age 50+50 rankings, 2021).  It has a network of offices across 27 towns and cities in the UK, as well as the Republic of Ireland and the Channel Islands. Through its operating companies, the Group offers an extensive range of financial and professional services to individuals, family trusts, professional intermediaries, charities and businesses.

Evelyn Partners’ purpose is to ‘place the power of good advice into more hands’, and it is uniquely well-placed to support clients with both their personal financial affairs and their business interests. Evelyn Partner’s personal wealth management services include financial planning, investment management and advice, personal tax advice and, through Bestinvest, an award-winning online investment service for self-directed investors. For businesses, its wide range of services includes assurance and accounting, business tax advice, employee benefits, forensic advice, fund administration, fund governance, recovery and restructuring and transaction services.

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Conscious, Sponsor of the Support Team Member of the Year Award

For 18 years we have been working with law firms of all sizes helping them design, build, run and maximise the return on investment of their websites. Whether it’s designing a new website, improving search engine rankings, or implementing a PPC campaign, everything we do is aimed at improving your website and digital marketing strategy.

With a “full service” solution – whether you need a blend of sophisticated technology or a library of professionally written legal copy both online and offline. We allow you to pick and choose which services you require depending on your existing resources, both in-house and outsourced.

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Landmark Information, Sponsor of Property Lawyer of the Year

Landmark Information is at the forefront of legal products and data supply to support the UK’s Property Professionals. Our dedicated, personal approach supports legal professionals in their due diligence in line with the Law Society and SRA requirements. Landmarks longevity in the legal market brings valuable experience and dependability to risk solutions whilst continuing to innovate.

 

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LawSure Insurance, Sponsor of Private Client Lawyer of the Year

LawSure Insurance, based near Gatwick, is the leading independent broker specialising in innovative insurance solutions for solicitors’ clients. We provide insurance across many classes of business – from Title Insurance for conveyancing solicitors and developers, Probate and Administration insurances through to complex Warranty and Indemnity covers for corporate solicitors.

Our service is completely free and there is no obligation to take out any of our quotes – although we hope you will!  As an independent broker, we have relationships with all the leading insurers in all our classes of business – so we are able to provide the most competitive terms most appropriate for your client, and remove from you all the pressures of regulatory compliance relating to client choice. Provided you are content to support our recommendation we will provide a ‘Demands and Needs’ statement that satisfies SRA and Insurance Distribution Directive requirements.

We offer a comprehensive independent broking service and we contact multiple insurers for each enquiry. So whether you need restrictive covenant indemnity insuranceFENSA insurancerights to light or any of the other 30+ title insurance products we offer for conveyancing transactions, or a missing beneficiary or executor/administrator insurance policy, or any other insurance, we can find the best solution for your client.

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Guildford Chambers, General Sponsor

Guildford Chambers is a progressive, multi-disciplinary set of barristers, uniquely positioned to provide competitive and effective advocacy for individuals and businesses in Surrey, Hampshire, Berkshire, London and the South East.

Our growing portfolio of clients value that we work with them as an extension of their team, and we endeavour to build strong and successful working relationships. We operate a system of specialist practice groups which ensure you receive the best advice and advocacy from your chosen barrister.

Our barristers and experienced, responsive clerking team share an uncompromising attitude to quality and client service with a sensible approach to cost.

Chantries & Pewleys, Sponsor of Rising Star of the Year

Chantries & Pewleys is Guildford’s largest independent estate agency with offices based in the town centre, Shalford and Merrow. They are perfectly located to handle sales and lettings across the whole of the town and surrounding villages. Their expert sales and lettings teams have a wealth of first-hand knowledge of the local areas throughout south-west Surrey.

Tower Street Finance, Sponsor of Dispute Resolution Lawyer of the Year

Tower Street Finance is an FCA regulated provider of solutions for both personal and professional representatives who need financial support when they’re going through the probate process. We have a five star Trust Pilot rating and a five star Defaqto rating for short term probate loans.

We know that when someone dies, the journey from starting the probate process to distributing an estate can be lengthy, challenging and emotional. Our mission is to help both the executors and the beneficiaries navigate the financial challenges by creating a range of financial solutions…

We provide four products which can be shaped to find the right solution for our customers.:

  • Estate Expense Funding – For funding testamentary expenses including WIP
  • Inheritance Tax Loan – Payment of IHT both installment and full amount owed
  • Inheritance Advance – Advancing much needed funds to the beneficiaries
  • Inheritance Dispute Funding – Provide funding assistance for any disputes

We have already helped hundreds of customers and have built relationships with many of the top professional probate administrators, law firms and IFAs.

We have a range of sponsorship options available for the 2022 SLS Legal Awards, details of which can be viewed here.

For further information on the opportunities available, or email Helen Opie, CEO at helen.opie@surreylawsociety.org.uk.

Meet the Judges

George Coates

George is Head of Guildford Chambers. He specialises in financial settlements in divorce proceedings and related family financial disputes. He takes a particular interest in disputes between unmarried parents, and has written and lectured on this topic.

George has wide-ranging experience of dealing with complex cases, often involving substantial sums made up of shareholdings in private companies (including family businesses), partnerships, family trusts, and pensions.

Other areas in which George has extensive experience include property disputes, and matters relating to children (having sat on the Social Security and Child Support Appeal Tribunal) and education, including challenging LEA policies on school admissions.

Over the years, he has undertaken a wide variety of general civil and commercial law cases, including professional or other negligence cases.

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Veronica Gilmour

Veronica is a partner in the family law team at Penningtons Manches Cooper. She has a broad range of experience which includes advising on private children disputes, pensions on divorce and pre and post marital agreements. She has particular expertise in high value, complex financial cases in both the UK and internationally.

Accredited by Resolution as a specialist family lawyer, she has been at the forefront of the development of non-adversarial alternatives in family law matters for a number of years. She is a qualified collaborative lawyer with a thriving mediation practice and is a long-standing member of the Surrey Resolution Committee.

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David Greene

David is senior partner at Edwin Coe, and vice president at the Law Society. He joined the Law Society Council in 2009 and his constituency is international practice. He is the chair of the International Committee. He is also chair of the Policy and Regulatory Affairs Committee and sits on the Law Society Board. He is also chair of the Brexit Task Force and the Law Society’s nominee on the Lord Chancellor’s Brexit Law Committee. He also runs a practice!

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John Hyde

John Hyde is Deputy News Editor at The Law Society Gazette. He reports extensively on all matters impacting the legal profession and has his finger on the pulse of latest developments.

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Rita Leat

Rita Leat is the Chief Executive of the Institute of Paralegals and a founder and Managing Director of the overarching voluntary regulator for Paralegals, the PPR. With over 27 years experience in the Paralegal sector, representing the interests of Paralegals Nationally, Rita has become known as the Chief Executive of All Things Paralegal.

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John-Paul MacNamara

John-Paul was called to the Bar by the Middle Temple in 2008 and cross-qualified as a solicitor in 2011. He worked for many years for a Top 100 Law firm and was eventually promoted to partner and Head of Crown Court Advocacy before moving to GT Stewart Solicitors and Advocates in 2017. He has appeared in the Crown Court as Leading Junior, Led Junior and Junior alone and has advocated extensively in the Court of Appeal (Criminal Division). He has represented defendants for offences ranging from intercontinental drug importation to kidnap and murder. He completed his vulnerable witness training with the Law Society and is well known in London courts for his measured style of advocacy and tenacious closing speeches.

J-P was shortlisted in the 2015 and 2016 Law Society Excellence Awards in the category of “Solicitor Advocate of the Year”. In the 2016 shortlist the Judges’ panel, described him as “having developed a reputation as a leading advocate – particularly in cross-examination of expert witnesses”. At GT Stewart he was a prominent member of their Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners ranked crime teams, and won The “Lawyer of the Year Award” with the Surrey Law Society in 2019.

In January 2020 J-P joined the staff at the City Law School and is an advocacy tutor as well as a tutor on the Criminal Litigation, Evidence and Sentencing module of the Bar Vocational Studies course. J-P also lectures to Pupils at Middle Temple and having formally returned to the Bar, holds a door tenancy at 33 Bedford Row.

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Sarah Pooley

Sarah Pooley is the Dean of the Guildford and Reading Campuses of the University of Law. Sarah has a BA (Hons) in History from the University of Sheffield and an M.Litt from the University of Cambridge. She studied for the Common Professional Examination and Law Society Finals at the University (then College) of Law in London. She trained and qualified as a solicitor at Slaughter and May and worked in financial regulation until she moved into legal education. Sarah is a former Head of Students at Guildford and Head of Tutors at the London Moorgate campus. She is the Chair of the Ethics Committee at the University of Law and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. She was made an Associate Professor in 2015.

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Neil Rose

Neil is a qualified solicitor and has been a legal journalist since 1995. He is the founder and editor of Legal Futures, a news-driven website providing market intelligence for law firms of the future. He is a recognised market commentator on ABSs, legal regulation and the future of the market. He also runs Litigation Futures, the first independent website dedicated to costs, funding and the Jackson reforms.

In 2014, he won the Legal Journalism of the Year award at the Halsbury Legal Awards.

Neil has freelanced for a wide range of publications, including The Guardian and The Times. He is also a co-director of Black Letter Communications, a specialist public relations agency for the legal sector.

Formerly Deputy Editor of the Law Society Gazette, he was also the Editor of the award-winning CILEx Journal, for which he was shortlisted for Editor of the Year (business and professional magazines, non-weekly) by the British Society of Magazine Editors in 2009.

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Lubna Shuja

In October 2022, Lubna is due to become the first Asian, first Muslim and only the 7th female President of the Law Society of England and Wales.

She qualified as a solicitor in 1992. She is a sole practitioner at Legal Swan Solicitors in Birmingham, a firm she set up in 2007, where she now specialises in professional discipline and regulation. She has experience in dealing with family law, conveyancing, personal injury claims, wills/probate and litigation. Prior to 2007, she worked in a high street firm in West Yorkshire for 14 years undertaking litigation and personal injury work.

She is also a Mediator (CEDR accredited) conducting civil and family mediations.

Lubna works with a number of professional regulators. She is a Chair of the Health and Care Professions Tribunal’s Conduct and Competence Committee, an Adjudicator Chair of Social Work England’s Fitness to Practise Committee, a Legally Qualified Deputy Chair of the General Pharmaceutical Council’s Fitness to Practise Committee and a Chair of the General Chiropractic Council’s Investigating Committee. Lubna was a Chair of the Disciplinary, Appeal and Regulatory Committees of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants for 11 years and she was also a Deputy Clerk at the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal for over 13 years. She is a past Chair of the Solicitor Sole Practitioners Group (SPG).

Lubna has been a member of the Law Society Council since 2013 representing the interests of sole practitioners. She is a member of the Law Society Board, the Chair of the Law Society’s Strategic Litigation Group and a member of its Conduct Committee. Lubna was the inaugural Chair of the Law Society’s Membership and Communications Committee (2018-2021) and was previously a member of its Membership Board as well as the Finance and Investment Committee.

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David Steed

David qualified as a Solicitor in January 1980 after articles with a London firm, specialising in property law.

Throughout most of his career however he has worked in the Surrey area dealing with both residential and commercial properties and secured funding work for banks and building societies.

He was on the Surrey Law Society committee for many years, and President twice in the 2000s.

He has also twice been chair of the Society’s conveyancing and land law sub committee.

David has now moved to the Isle of Wight but has maintained his links with Surrey, as he is a consultant to Harold Bell Infields in Ewell.

He is currently a Council Member of The Law Society holding the Commercial Property seat and sits on TLS Conveyancing & Land Law committee.

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FAQS

Is it free to enter?
Yes
Our firm has many individuals doing excellent work. Is there a limit on how many entries can be submitted?
No, but you will need to complete separate entries for each firm/individual category you choose to enter.
What is the criteria and format of each award?
Please view the categories and criteria page for details of each Award.
Can non-solicitors enter?
Yes. We accept entries from Solicitors, Barristers, Legal Executives, Licensed Conveyancers and from paralegals and support staff where appropriate so long as the firm and/or individual is a member of the Surrey Law Society.
Can I nominate someone for an individual award if I don’t work in a Law Firm?
Yes.
What is the deadline for nominations?
The deadline for nominations is 12 May 2022. Please note that all firms/individuals nominated must be members of the Surrey Law Society.
How do I nominate?
Nominating couldn't be easier, members can download the relevant Nomination Form for the category of their choice and return this to helen.opie@surreylawsociety.org.uk. You may support your nomination by submitting independent objective evidence of the nominees achievements from 3rd parties, for example, in the form of testimonials received on letter headed paper, by email, via press cuttings etc. – these should be concise and no more than three sides of A4.
When do the judges consider the nominations?
Between May and August 2022.
When will the shortlist be announced?
The shortlisted individuals/firms will be contacted during the week commencing in 13 June 2022.
When will the winners be announced?
The winners will be announced at the Awards Dinner and Ceremony at the Mandolay Hotel, Guildford, on Thursday 22nd September 2022
Who can attend the Awards Dinner?
Tickets are available to all members - you don't need to have entered the awards.

Contact us

Please do not hesitate to get in touch should you have any queries regarding an award category, the shortlist, judging process or the Awards Dinner.
Email: helen.opie@surreylawsociety.org.uk or phone: 0333 577 3830 Mobile : 07597 582400