A Law firm which has one of the largest criminal defence teams in Britain hopes to grow its operations in Yorkshire after completing a merger.
Cartwright King has enlarged its number of offices to 14, after securing the merger with The First Law Partnership.
Cartwright King already has offices in Sheffield and Leeds, and Andy Cash, one of the firm’s directors, said the firm would act if the right opportunities for growth in Yorkshire came along.
Mandip Kumar, who heads the firm’s professional discipline department, said he saw the potential to grow the scale of the operation in Yorkshire, where the firm has 12 staff.
He added: “Things are happening in Leeds. We are a very proactive firm. We’re always alive to potential opportunities. I wouldn’t be surprised if the operation in Leeds grew.”
Mr Cash said: “We’re always looking for opportunities to add to the strength of the firm. Our introduction (to the Leeds market) is part of that. We’re regularly contacted by other firms. We’re open to all different kinds of ways of working together. Yorkshire is a huge market. The work will always be there. What changes is the structure of it, and critically, how it’s funded.”
Last year, legal professionals from Yorkshire were among thousands across England and Wales who joined a protest against the Government’s proposed cuts to legal aid. The Law Society continues to oppose these planned cuts, because critics claims they could limit access to justice.
Mr Cash added: “There are going to be cuts and part of our responsibility is to ensure that human rights, and the rights of the individual, don’t suffer.”
The latest merger follows the recent absorption by Cartwright King of the Bastian Lloyd Morris criminal defence team in Milton Keynes. BLM became Cartwright King’s ninth office. Apart from Leeds and Sheffield, the firm has offices in London, Birmingham, Newcastle, Nottingham, Derby and Leicester.
The latest expansion increases the size of the firm’s in-house chambers, bringing more barristers and higher court advocates to the crown court practice.
Following the merger with The First Law Partnership, Cartwright King has 230 staff and £13m turnover. In recent years, the firm’s clients have included the Coronation Street actor William Roache.