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Rebecca Fortescue-Halliwell, Spärka.
Jane Imrie

This week's Yorkshire appointments

Rebecca Fortescue-Halliwell, Spärka

Ironmongery specialist Spärka has appointed Rebecca Fortescue-Halliwell as marketing manager.

Rebecca brings 13 years of previous experience working within product development and marketing in the construction industry from her previous role at TIMco.

As marketing manager, she assisted with building TIMco’s brand and launching products as well as developed the TIMco website into an e-commerce platform.

Commenting on her appointment, Rebecca said: “I’m delighted to join such a young, dynamic company that knows the construction industry so well.

“The products Spärka offers are designed to help make its customers’ lives easier by providing high-quality, tested and certified products and information all in one pack as well as a wide-range of individual products.

“I can’t wait to work with the Spärka team as well as our builders’ merchant customers to promote our industry-leading door hardware across the UK.”

Sue Carter, Switalskis Solicitors

Law firm Switalskis has appointed Sue Carter as a non-executive director.

Formerly Clydesdale and Yorkshire Bank’s UK head of professional services, Sue has 40 years of experience in the banking and professional services sectors.

Sue set up her consultancy business, Consult Sue Carter, in January this year. During her banking career, she spent over 20 years advising law firms in areas including succession planning, mergers, acquisitions and disposals, coping strategies, funding solutions and balance sheet restructuring.

Sue was appointed to her senior leadership role at Clydesdale Bank PLC in 2011 and, for the last 10 years, led a team of 28 sector specialists across the UK.

In 2008, Sue achieved an MBA in legal practice management and since 2015 she has held a voluntary position as a lay member on the Law Society of Scotland Council.

Switalskis’ managing director, John Durkan, commented: “I am excited to welcome Sue to Switalskis.

“Her input will further strengthen our management team, and her knowledge of both our business and the wider legal and professional services landscape will be invaluable as we position the group for further growth.”

Sue added: “I have known John Durkan and the Switalskis team for 20 years, and in my banking role I supported them through some of their previous mergers and acquisitions.

“Switalskis has always been a forward-thinking business - John was one of the first non-lawyers to lead a law firm – and there is a great future ahead for the group. I’m very much looking forward to helping the management team shape that future.”

Victoria Kay, Clarion

Clarion has appointed Victoria Kay as legal director in its business restructuring and insolvency practice.

With experience working for leading regional and national law firms, Victoria has experience in all aspects of corporate restructuring and insolvency matters.

Her knowledge includes acting on both bank-led and business-led restructuring work, acting for insolvency practitioners on formal insolvencies and advising businesses and directors on a range of financial distress related issues.

Commenting on her appointment, Victoria said: “Clarion is a major player in the field of insolvency and restructuring, with the largest dedicated team in the North.

“It commands a significant market share of restructuring and insolvency work and I am delighted to be joining such a prominent, well-respected and ambitious team.

“Clarion’s values, such as its focus on investing in client relationships, resonate with me. I like the fact that Clarion champions individuality, encouraging its people to be who they are. It is this culture that creates the spark and energy which the firm has.”

Ryan Millmore, Clarion’s joint managing partner and head of its business restructuring and insolvency practice, added: “As we continue to pick up significant restructuring and turnaround assignments both at a national and regional level, Victoria will further strengthen our offering, adding breadth and depth to our already excellent team.”

Laura Milburn, Loreena Walker, Yasmin Walker, Zuzanna Taithe and Demi Wain, Ridley and Hall

Law firm Ridley and Hall has made four new promotions and appointments in its Yorkshire team.

Laura Milburn has been promoted to partner and Loreena Walker to associate, Yasmin Walker and Zuzanna Taithe have been awarded two-year training contracts with the firm and Demi Wain has joined as a legal apprentice.

Laura has worked in family law for the last 13 years and has specialised as a child care lawyer since 2014. She trained as a barrister and undertakes her own trials and advocacy. She is a member of the Law Society Children’s Panel and represents children in care proceedings.

Laura also specialises in representing parents and extended family members where social services are involved with families as well as advising grandparents seeking contact with their grandchild or who are considering taking on the care of their grandchild.

Loreena joined Ridley and Hall as a chartered legal executive within the family department in 2018. Loreena’s knowledge includes dealing with complex matrimonial issues and child contact disputes as well as applications relating to domestic violence.

Yasmin joined Ridley and Hall in September 2019 as a residential conveyancing assistant at its Pontefract office where she had undertaken work experience.

Zuzanna started working with the firm in 2019 as a placement student through the Legal Advice Clinic. Later that year, she was appointed as a paralegal working across the residential and commercial property teams, and in 2020 she moved to the child care and public law team in the role of legal secretary.

Demi has been with the firm since 2017, remaining in its public Law department after completing an administrator apprenticeship. Last year she moved to the Central Services Team (CST) and is currently training on the CST Helpline where she will remain during her apprenticeship.

Emma Pearmaine, managing partner at Ridley and Hall, commented: “As a firm, we are committed to continuing to nurture talent as we recognise that our people are our strength.

“Despite the disruption of last year, it is vital that we invest in supporting our lawyers in developing their careers with us, and also in strengthening the expertise we offer to clients.

“Laura and Loreena’s promotions are well deserved recognition of their contribution to the success of the firm, and we are excited to bring three more young people into the team as they embark on their legal careers.”

Laura added: “I feel lucky to be part of such an experienced team and such a forward-thinking firm. With our senior partner, Nigel Priestley, recently having been awarded an MBE for services to families and children, and a team full of experienced child care lawyers, there is no better place to be offered partnership.

“The caring ‘family feel’ of the firm is what attracted me to join Ridley and Hall and I will to continue to promote that ethos in my new role as a partner.”

Sarah Coates-Madden, Gordons

Law firm Gordons has appointed Sarah Coates-Madden as solicitor on its property disputes team.

Sarah joins Gordons from Bhayani Law where she established a litigation department to service the needs of clients across property, civil and commercial litigation issues.

With 15 years’ property disputes experience, Sarah has advised private and corporate clients across a range of sectors including leisure, hospitality and charities.

Sarah’s experience spans commercial and residential property disputes including lease renewals, forfeiture, dilapidations disputes, rent arrears, and breaches of covenant.

Commenting on her appointment, Sarah said: “Gordons’ is highly regarded for its property disputes expertise both regionally and nationally, so I am very pleased to be joining a firm known for its expert capabilities and practical, effective advice.

“I’m looking forward to working with my new colleagues to grow our offer and to secure further instructions from existing and new clients.”

Gordons’ head of property disputes, Richard Cressall, said: “Sarah brings a wealth of experience across a wide range of property disputes to the firm and has worked in numerous sectors.

“This varied background, combined with her ability, personable approach and commitment to outstanding client service, means Sarah is a great addition to our team at Gordons.”

Colleen Dooney, Dylan Friend and Sam Brightman, Wake Smith Solicitors

Law firm Wake Smith Solicitors has added three new hires to its growing team.

Associate Colleen Dooney joins the private client team, paralegal Dylan Friend joins the clinical negligence department, and residential and commercial property paralegal Sam Brightman starts in the firm’s property department.

Colleen joins from a niche private client practice in Sheffield where she spent the last two and a half years assisting clients with estate administration, Inheritance Tax Planning, Wills and Powers of Attorney matters.

Colleen completed a law and criminology degree at Keele University, and the Legal Practice Course (LPC) at the College of Law in York and qualified in 2011.

Sheffield Hallam University law graduate Dylan Friend comes to Wake Smith from a year long position at a local firm; while Sam Brightman, who also graduated from Hallam with a law degree, joins after spending two years as a real estate paralegal.

Colleen commented: “Wake Smith’s loyal client base, its established reputation and forward thinking business strategies attracted me to this role.

“I look forward to collaborating with colleagues to offer the highest standard of advice and assistance to all of our clients.”

Head of private client Suzanne Porter added: “I am delighted to welcome Colleen, Dylan and Sam to the Wake Smith team.

“Their appointments will further enhance the services we already provide to our individual and business clients across South Yorkshire and North Derbyshire.”

Jason Taylor and Sharon Stevenson, 6B

Digital product consultancy 6B has appointed Jason Taylor as junior front end developer and Sharon Stevenson as credit controller.

Formerly a secondary school maths teacher of five years, Jason will be building on his pre-existing development experience joining the team to assist with creating high quality web applications that ensure the best possible user experience.

Jason commented: “Without a doubt, 6B is full of incredibly talented and passionate developers. Despite being the best at what they do, the team is still driven by a collective eagerness to continue learning more. It’s this culture of constant improvement that really makes the company stand out from others.”

Sharon will work within the finance team to manage the cash flow at the business and work with clients to resolve any queries in relation to payments and invoices.

Sharon said: “6B provides an environment where colleague input is not only valued, but also encouraged and nurtured. I’m very pleased to be joining such a forward-thinking company that genuinely appreciates its team members.”

Managing director at 6B, Paul Brown, added: “Last year, we ended on a high note as several new recruits joined the agency. It’s great that we have kick started 2021 with the same momentum.

“Jason and Sharon are both perfect additions to our expanding team and I’m really pleased to have them on board.”

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