Womble Bond Dickinson (WBD) has confirmed a number of senior promotions across its UK offices, including seven new partners and six legal directors.

The promotions bring the total number of UK partners at WBD to 128 and follow the promotions of 23 new managing associates and associates last month.

Jonathan Blair, UK managing partner at WBD, comments:

"Congratulations to all of our new partners and legal directors, whose hard work, commitment and contribution to the growth of our business deserves to be recognised and celebrated.

"We're proud of the incredible talent we've developed at the firm. People are at the heart of what we do and we want them to enjoy long and successful careers with us. This is why we make it our priority to ensure everyone has the opportunity to develop, grow and be rewarded for their success."

The new partners include:

Leeds-based Andrew Hirst, who is a projects and procurement lawyer with over 13 years' experience advising on public sector contracts and public procurement. His key specialisms include heat networks, leisure, waste and PFI handback. Fiona Graham, who works across both WBD's Leeds and Newcastle offices. Fiona joined the firm's property disputes team in 2005 and specialises in commercial property litigation advising both landlords and tenants across a wide range of sectors on complex contentious property matters.

London-based Lucy Pringle and Jonathan Dunkley. Lucy is a commercial law specialist working predominantly with businesses in the manufacturing and chemicals sectors. She has a wealth of international trade experience, advising clients on supply chain contracts and global routes to market as well as managing business critical projects and high value corporate transactions. Jonathan works in WBD's restructuring team and has extensive experience advising on non-contentious corporate restructuring and insolvency matters, acting for a range of stakeholders at each stage of the business distress curve.

Hilary du Randt and Jonny Gribben from the Newcastle office. Hilary is an employment lawyer advising both public and private sector clients on all aspects of employment law. She has particular expertise acting for and defending clients in relation to high profile discrimination claims, including equal pay. Jonny specialises in dispute resolution with a particular focus on the manufacturing, technology, energy and transport sectors. He also advises clients in relation to risk management and strategies for avoiding disputes.

Nikki Powell from the Southampton office. Nikki is a real estate lawyer acting for a range of business clients and institutions in relation to their property requirements including acquisitions, lease renewals and disposals, and the management of large property portfolios.

This year's partner promotions follow a number of senior hires across the firm with new partners Kathryn Wood (real estate, Leeds), Deborah Ramshaw (public sector, Newcastle), Jessica Tresham (construction, London and Southampton), Will Ford (private client, London), Paul Mason (real estate, Edinburgh) and James Radcliffe (private client, Bristol) joining the firm since May 2020.

The new legal directors include:

Ashley Borthwick, who is based in Bristol. Ashley specialises in regulatory compliance and litigation issues with key experience in the retail and manufacturing sectors on a wide range of health, safety, environmental, trading standards and product safety issues.

Katherine Crowley from the London office. Katherine heads the real estate knowledge team which supports the expertise, development and operational efficiency of the group. Throughout the pandemic, she has led the roll-out and firmwide adoption of electronic signatures which have become a business critical tool for the sector. Katherine and her colleagues worked both internally and externally to create a culture of change and enable lawyers and clients to embrace the use of the technology.

Newcastle-based Francesca Hodgson and Stephen Dagg. Francesca is a regulatory specialist advising clients on a range of regulatory and compliance issues and disputes in the areas of the environment, health and safety, care and education. Stephen is a planning lawyer acting for commercial and public sector clients in relation to planning, highways and compulsory purchase order issues. He has particular expertise in infrastructure projects including Development Consent Orders and Transport and Works Act Orders.

Dan Fawcett and Nicholas Brown who are both based in Southampton. Dan is an employment lawyer advising clients on a wide range of both contentious and non-contentious employment matters, including defending complex and high value tribunal claims, including worker status cases, as well as advising on wider equality law issues. Nicholas is a commercial real estate lawyer advising public and private clients on investment acquisitions and disposals; retail and office occupiers on their leasehold and freehold property acquisitions, disposals and estate management work. Nicholas has a particular specialism in the area of overage and clawback.

Ranking in the UK's top 20 law firms, WBD advises clients across eleven key sectors of expertise from seven cities in the UK and 19 offices in the US. Last week, WBD announced the election of its new UK Managing Partner, Paul Stewart, who will succeed Jonathan Blair at the end of his current term in early 2022 after 13 years at the head of the firm.