Womble Bond Dickinson (WBD) is supporting Business Insider's Future Cities campaign this year.
The Future Cities campaign looks at the evolution of our cities, with Business Insider considering changes in the way we live, work and shop, advances in technology as well as a growing demand for a more sustainable future.
Last week on Thursday 11 February Business Insider and WBD led a roundtable event focused on planning and infrastructure. WBD gathered a table of industry leaders, including Business West, Hydrock, Bristol and Bath Regional Capital and Stride Treglown for the discussion. The Planning and Infrastructure Roundtable examined how towns and cities will work in the future and specifically how planning and infrastructure has its key place in forming our environments – how we will work and live in future years.
WBD banking partner, Philip Withey joined the conversation: "The Future Cities campaign is an interesting and exciting one to be a part of. This year has certainly been unexpected and it has changed the way we live and work and presented some interesting challenges. The roundtable was a thought provoking discussion as to how our cities are evolving, what this means for businesses and communities in the South West in terms of how we meet the planning and funding needs of the future."
The Future Cities campaign began in December where energy partner Chris Towner took part in an online forum event which was the kick-start of the campaign. Chris covered decarbonisation and how more and more businesses are coming to WBD for advice on how to achieve net zero. This event was followed with a roundtable in January, Future Cities and the Green Industrial Revolution, where planning and infrastructure partner Jonathan Bower joined the discussion on climate emergencies and sustainable energy and how urban living can prepare for the future.
Since the beginning of the new year, WBD has been looking into how Britain will rebuild following the COVID-19 pandemic. Business owners across all sectors have been faced with the most disrupted trading year since war time, and following all major crises, the UK rebuilds. Business owners now want to tackle the challenges of today, but with an eye on the future, feeling inspired to move forward and plan, with practical advice, support and guidance, all the while feeling educated and given the competitive advantage of knowledge. The future of our cities is intertwined with rebuilding Britain and WBD is at the forefront of the discussion.
The South West is central to the WBD story, we have a fantastic client base in the region and recently celebrated our 22nd anniversary in Bristol, building on its 1881 origins in Plymouth, opening our first office in Bristol in 1998 with a then team of five. Fast forward to 2021, we're now one of the largest law firms in the city where we employ more than 230 people.
Ranking in the UK's top 20 law firms, WBD advises clients across 11 key sectors from eight cities in the UK and 19 offices in the US. The firm's clients in Bristol include, to name just a few, Bristol Charities, Bristol City Council, OVO Energy, Bristol Airport and international company Spandex, with its UK headquarters at Aztec West, North Somerset District Council and South Gloucestershire Council.