Wright Hassall appoints first female chief

Topics: Law firm & practice management,Equality and diversity

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  • Sarah Perry

One of the biggest and oldest law firms in the Midlands has appointed its first female managing partner.

Wright Hassall announced today that Sarah Perry (pictured) has taken over from Richard Lane, who becomes senior partner of the Leamington-based practice.

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Perry, who trained at Wright Hassall, was promoted to partner in 1998.

Perry said she was ‘looking forward to building on the considerable success the firm has achieved in recent years and taking the firm forward to achieve our ambitious plans for growth’.

The firm’s 270-strong team includes 145 lawyers and 39 partners. According to its latest equality and diversity statistics, women account for a higher proportion than men of solicitor, fee-earner and business support roles. One in five female employees works part-time.

After seven years as senior partner, Nick Abell has been appointed company chairman. Abell, a director at the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership, said the firm ‘provides a credible alternative to the top 50 law firms in the market’.

Readers' comments (7)

  • Hardly newsworthy is it ....

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  • By going on about this issue all the time those who do so simply underline, for me anyway, the fact that women generally don't make it to the top. There are lots of good reasons for this as well as bad ones. But why keep banging on about it all the time? It was quite a hot topic in the 1970s when Germane Greer brought out her "Female Eunoch" and we ended up with Margaret Thatcher as PM. Women wanted equality with men in the workplace and now they are complaining that, as a direct result, they have to work to age 67 before getting a state pension.

    Be careful what you wish for.

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  • No less newsworthy than some of the other articles we often see in the Gazette these days so congratulations Ms Perry. I must however take issue with David's comment about working until I'm 67 for a state pension though. No problem with that provided I also receive equal pay for my efforts throughout my career David and sadly that it not the case for a great number of women in all manner of jobs these days, despite Several decades since the Equal Pay Act.

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  • Good point, Anon 00.19. However, that is double edged. My ex-wife simply wanted to keep her hand in after maternity leave and so was quite happy to work as a languages teacher for less than a man, or should that read 'principal breadwinner', would, or even could, have done. She was just content to keep her skills honed and earn a bit extra. There was no need for her to have worked at all. (Those were the days when a SP could earn enough to keep a wife and two children in private education plus pay a mortgage) She certainly would not want to go on to the age of 67.

    And do I detect that from the time of your post that you were working until after midnight? I was fast asleep by then and I am not yet 67, well not quite!

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  • I request that the Equalities and Diversity Prefect from the SRA immediately investigate Wright Hassall - the numbers suggest that men are not being taken on as much as women as Solicitors in fee earnings roles...

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  • Hear! Hear! Marshall. I think we shall have to start a 'masculinism' movement before long... Do we burn our athletic supports? Ouch!

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  • This morning on Radio 4 Nick Robinson interviewed two of about 20 women in Swindon, as he put it, knocking seven bells out of one another, before going off to work. Presumably this was to fight their corner once they got there? I think we had better throw in the towel now, Marshall.

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