A LEADING law firm is going from strength to strength after celebrating a landmark anniversary.
Edward Hughes Solicitors marked 70 years in business by securing a prestigious quality mark and revealing plans for further expansion in 2019.
The company employs up to 30 staff in Rhyl and Colwyn Bay and is one of the longest-standing and most respected companies in North Wales, having again secured the Law Society’s Lexcel Accreditation for Excellence in Legal Practice Management and Client Care.
Partners David Jones, Richard Johnson and Alex Fitzgerald all live in Denbighshire and have more than 65 years’ experience between them.
They were all trained by the organisation before rising through the ranks to take the helm and share a vision to remain at the forefront of advances in the legal arena.
The three of them have seen many changes, notably the amount of time spent face to face with clients and in the different forms of offence being carried out, from digital and cyber crime to online fraud.
Despite this, Edward Hughes – part of the Quality Solicitors Group – has managed to stay ahead of the curve and meet demand, notably in the conveyancing and probate (wills and estates) side of the business.
Specialising in criminal, family, probate and conveyancing and civil law, they have big plans for the future.
“We have seen growth over the last few years and definitely have plans to add to our offices in Rhyl and Colwyn Bay, possibly in the Vale of Clwyd,” said Richard, who lives in Prion, near Denbigh.
“As a company we are growing and have plans to open one more office in 2019/20 and another within five years.
“That will mean recruiting more staff but also building on our existing expertise and experience, which is one of our key strengths.”
Reflecting on his 20 years with the firm, the 44 year-old added: “We are proud to be part of an institution which prides itself on its face to face contact with clients and trying to provide that personal touch in even the most difficult of circumstances.
“That’s one thing we never want to change, though the impact of technology on the legal sector means more and more is happening digitally, from video and Skype in the courtroom to telephone hearings and digital dictation.
“It’s a world away from when I started, and I’m sure the founders of this organisation would never have imagined the way things would be all these years later.”
David, from Denbigh, has been with Edward Hughes Solicitors since 1991 and says giving clients a more hands-on bilingual experience via a workforce of trained professional is vital to them.
His son Ben has even joined the team as a trainee solicitor, adding to the firm’s welcoming, family approach.
“Like Richard I’ve seen significant changes in my time with Edward Hughes,” said the 49 year-old.
“There were no mobile phones or even computers here when I joined them, and the family solicitor would be with you from cradle to grave – that’s all changed.
“We now cover so many different types of law and are particularly focused on increasing our probate and commercial work, which is an area we can see growth.”
He added: “As partners we all became solicitors to represent people who did not have a voice, and to help those who were unable to help themselves; to do something worthwhile.
“Edward Hughes Solicitors has managed that for 70 years, though the industry has faced major faced obstacles along the way – the lack of young solicitors coming through and erosion of legal aid being two of them.
“This organisation has survived through it all and changed many lives for the better, whether that’s in supporting families or fighting for compensation for people who suffered injuries.
“We look forward to many more years here in North Wales and hope to remain a firm where people can still come in and see a friendly face to get advice while attracting a new generation of trainee solicitors who can take the name Edward Hughes forward.”