Law firms keeps it in the family

NORTH Essex law firm Ellisons Solicitors has taken its first steps into Suffolk - with an acquisition from the father of one of its managing partners. Ellisons, which has offices in Colchester, Clacton-on-Sea, Dovercourt and Frinton-on-Sea, is incorporating the Bury St Edmunds business of Wanham Longhurst & Co into its operation with effect from today.

NORTH Essex law firm Ellisons Solicitors has taken its first steps into Suffolk - with an acquisition from the father of one of its managing partners.

Ellisons, which has offices in Colchester, Clacton-on-Sea, Dovercourt and Frinton-on-Sea, is incorporating the Bury St Edmunds business of Wanham Longhurst & Co into its operation with effect from today.

Wanham Longhurst is mainly involved in residential conveyancing, with some commercial property and wills and probate work also being handled.

Sole practitioner Tony Longhurst is retiring retires after 37 years of practice as a solicitor, the last 25 of them based in Bury and the previous 12 as a partner in a firm in Cambridgeshire. His son Guy, who lives in Suffolk, is a commercial property specialist at Ellisons and one of the managing partners.

“Ellisons is by far the best firm of solicitors to look after my clients on my retirement,” said Tony Longhurst. “It means a great deal to me that it will be my son's firm caring for my clients and advising them on their future legal affairs.

“Keeping it 'in the family', so to speak, has been warmly received by most of my clients who value the continuity of the personal connection. In addition, there are the obvious benefits in that Ellisons cannot only provide my clients with all the same services but very much more.”

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Ellisons is not currently planning to establish an office in Bury St Edmunds and will mainly service clients from its other offices or by making local arrangements for meetings.

Guy Longhurst said he was delighted that the proposal to acquire his father's firm had won the full support of the Ellisons partnership.

“Taking over my fathers practice makes good commercial sense,” he said. “Although Essex-based, Ellisons acts for clients across East Anglia. The idea of having a base in Suffolk has been mooted frequently and the opportunity to acquire Wanham Longhurst & Co was just too good to miss.

“The business and client profile perfectly matches those of our offices on the Tendring peninsula which are essentially strong private client practices but with some commercial clients who will benefit from the wider resources in Colchester.”

He added: “I always knew that my father would find it difficult to retire completely and so by incorporating his practice into Ellisons but staying on as a consultant, it is a 'win win' situation for both sides.”