Earlier this month, Top 100 UK law firm Ward Hadaway was championing the success of the 50 fastest growing businesses in the North East as part of its annual Fastest 50.
Now in its 20th year in Newcastle, the Fastest 50 awards have become one of the highlights of the business calendar, as business and community leaders come together with representatives from the companies in the Fastest 50 to see the winners crowned.
Jamie Martin, managing partner at Ward Hadaway, said: “In 1998, we chose to celebrate the successes of the region’s business community by creating the Fastest 50, and we continue to do so 20 years later.
“We are witness on a daily basis to the hard work, entrepreneurial spirit and competitive drive of those who work within North East businesses.
“As entrepreneurs ourselves, who have invested in creating a successful, growing and profitable independent law firm with its own impressive history, we know the effort that takes.
“In creating the Fastest 50, we are proud to champion the success of others, whilst hopefully inspiring the wider business community in the region and celebrating the capabilities of the North East.”
Ward Hadaway, which this week received another impressive write-up in 2017’s Legal 500 directory with the most leading individuals and next generation lawyers in the North, has received its own acknowledgement from a number of sources over the past year.
Ward Hadaway’s renowned corporate team has enjoyed a very busy year, advising on a string of high-profile deals both within the North East and outside the region including the sale of Cramlington-based online holiday company sunshine.co.uk to On The Beach plc, the sale of leading care home group Helen McArdle Care to national operator HC-One and the management buy-out of outdoor clothing retailer Weird Fish.
So it was deserved recognition when the team were named Corporate Law Firm of the Year in the North East Insider Dealmakers Awards in September 2017, after having triumphed in the Northern Law Awards 2017 earlier in the year, winning Corporate & Commercial Team of the Year at a ceremony which also saw Ward Hadaway’s employment team in Newcastle named as Employment Team of the Year.
Continuing the award-winning theme, last autumn the firm’s property team won a national award as they were named UK Regional Law Firm of the Year in the Legal 500 Awards 2017.
An example of the property team’s leading-edge capabilities which secured them this accolade can be seen by the work of its specialist ‘plot sales team’, which advises housebuilders on the sale of newly -completed homes.
The team successfully completed the sale of an impressive 3,336 new homes in the 12 months to the end of April 2017 at new development sites across the country, a figure which represents one in 50 of all new homes built in England during the period.
The technicians in the planning team are also in the running for the Excellence in Technology award in the highly-respected Law Society Excellence Awards 2017, whilst the education team, which has a strong presence in the education and skills sector, has been shortlisted for the Legal Advisers – Deal making category in the national Education Investor Awards 2017. Both are due to be announced later this year.
The national standing of Ward Hadaway’s healthcare team was demonstrated in two high-profile appointments earlier this year.
The firm was reappointed by NHS Resolution to provide legal advice to organisations across the NHS on both defending clinical negligence and on regulatory, health and disciplinary matters for the next four years – one of only eight law firms across the country to be chosen for both of these areas.
Ward Hadaway also won a place on the North of England Commercial Procurement Collaborative (NOE CPC), whose members comprise more than 80 healthcare organisations across the country.
Public Sector lawyer Melanie Pears was meanwhile recognised in a top international award for outstanding client service. She has won the United Kingdom Projects and Procurement category in the Client Choice Awards 2017, organised by the International Law Office (ILO) and legal industry publisher Lexology.
And just last week Ward Hadaway received the national award for “Job Satisfaction” from Lex 100, the industry guide for those seeking a training contract, following a survey of many thousands of trainees around the country.
Reflecting on the year, Jamie Martin said: “We appreciate the recognition of these awards. However it is in the successes and achievements of our clients and their businesses that our work is best demonstrated, and we are lucky enough to be able to experience this on a daily basis.
“We are proud to be a ‘Northern based Law Firm for National Business’ and we look forward to benefiting from a political commitment to the Northern Powerhouse as we support and champion our clients’ ambitions across the North.”