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Award Nominations in Recognition of Team's Achievements

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Alison Leith

Tilly Bailey & Irvine Solicitors cites the commitment and achievements of its Commercial Litigation Team as the reason it has been shortlisted for the Law Team of the Year (Litigation and Dispute Resolution) at the first ever Northern Law Awards.  Alison Leith, who heads to team, has also been shortlisted for the Lawyer of the Year Award.

Mrs Leith said: “It’s time to celebrate the success of our team, our achievements in the cases we have worked on and our growth in size and in reputation.  We have the best resourced and most experienced Commercial Litigation team in the Tees Valley, and these nominations reflect the dedication of the lawyers and support staff that has seen this team grow and achieve throughout the last 10 years.”

The Commercial Litigation team is based at Tilly Bailey & Irvine Solicitors’ Wynyard offices.  Since 2005, it has grown from one solicitor to a team of six full time specialists.  The award nomination comes at the end of the year when the landmark Harrison & Others v Shepherd Homes & Others case concluded securing significant, multi million pound damages for Tilly Bailey & Irvine’s clients, 77 Hartlepool home-owners.

With its growth in size, the Commercial Litigation team has expanded its areas of industry expertise.  In addition to each member dealing with general commercial disputes, each has developed niche areas.  Alison Leith deals with partnership and shareholder disputes and education related matters. Partner Kenton Bazeley specialises in professional negligence and insolvency-based litigation.  Associate Solicitor Debra Burton, who worked alongside Alison Leith on the Shepherd Homes case, deals with contentious probate.  Solicitors Gemma Smith and Helen Lyne specialise in property litigation. Paralegal, Ellie Gilbert handles general debt recovery and enforcement.

Alison Leith’s nomination for Lawyer of the Year represents her achievements in her legal work and as a partner in the Law Firm.  It reflects her knowledge and her tenacity in leading the team in the Shepherd Homes case, a unique case in that, although there were multiple claimants with the same causes of action, they each had individual claims which had to be considered separately.  Harrison & Others v Shepherd Homes & Others is now being cited in other claims, and in legal training.  Amongst her other roles within the firm, Alison has been actively involved in the development of staff, leads the marketing for the firm and regularly speaks at seminars.

She added: “The Lawyer of the Year nomination recognises not only my achievements as a lawyer, but also as a partner of the law firm, and active member of our local business community.  When I joined Tilly Bailey & Irvine Solicitors ten years ago, my aim was to build a team that works successfully together, with our clients’ needs at the heart of everything we do.  It’s also important to me to encourage our junior staff to develop their careers within the firm, those with a legal background and also our support and secretarial staff.

“We hope to be celebrating a win or two next week, but the nominations and being shortlised are certainly reward for my committed and capable team.”

The winners of the first Northern Law Awards will be announced at a ceremony at the Biscuit Factory in Newcastle upon Tyne on Thursday, 11th June, 2015.

Tilly Bailey & Irvine Solicitors is the Tees Valley’s largest full service law firm with offices in Wynyard Park, Stockton on Tees, Hartlepool and Barnard Castle.  It has a multi-disciplinary business law team, based at Wynyard Park, offering expertise in fields including commercial property, mergers, acquisitions and disposals, intellectual property, employment law and dispute resolution.

{Picture Alison Leith, Partner & Head of Commercial Disputes}