Gardner Leader, one of the largest law firms in Berkshire with offices in Newbury, Thatcham and Maidenhead, has welcomed a new solicitor to its family division.

Nicola Brocklehurst, who will be based in Newbury, will be the ninth member of the Gardner Leader family team, which offers a range of services in areas such as matrimonial matters, divorce and relationship breakdown, and children issues.

Nicola specialises in divorce and relationship breakdown as well as financial divorce settlements and matters relating to children post-separation. Nicola is also skilled in protecting her client’s assets for the future with pre- or post-nuptial agreements or cohabitation agreements.

Nicola is a familiar face in the firm having worked for Gardner Leader three years ago as a conveyancing assistant but left after moving to Southampton where she trained and qualified as a family solicitor at Moore Blatch solicitors in Hampshire.

She joins Gardner Leader during an exciting time of growth.

The firm, which was shortlisted for firm of the year in the national Halsbury Legal Awards 2014, has recently expanded after acquiring two local law firms.

In November, Gardner Leader acquired the probate, conveyancing and litigation teams of Charles Hoile in Newbury and on 1 October this year the firm also acquired Health Buckeridge in Maidenhead. Both moves have seen Gardner Leader’s team increase to 13 partners and over 90 staff with offices in Newbury, Thatcham and Maidenhead and a 19% increase in turnover in a year.

Last year also brought individual success with solicitors accepting awards.

Judith Rountree, associate solicitor in the dispute resolution team, won young lawyer of the year award in the national Lawnet awards. Meanwhile, Chris Dale, solicitor in the residential property team won silver for the young conveyancer of the year award at the Law Firm Services Conveyancing Awards.

‘It’s great to be part of the Gardner Leader team once again,’ Nicola said: ‘Family law is something I love. It gives me a chance to help people through what can often be an emotionally tough and stressful time. 

‘I’m looking forward to continuing my success at Gardner Leader and getting to know all the new faces at the firm and to be part of such an exciting time of growth and expansion.’