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Who attended Yorkshire Fastest 50

Who did I meet on the day?

This year's Yorkshire Fastest 50 Awards were a great success and it was fantastic to see so many of you attend the ceremony.

Many of the Ward Hadaway team were in attendance at the awards and thoroughly enjoyed meeting you. They are available to continue any conversations you were having or to answer any of your queries. Below we have provided some mini profiles to help you put faces to names.

If you would like to connect with any other attendee from the awards, we would be more than happy to facilitate an introduction. Please email and we will be in touch.

Ward Hadaway attendees

  • Emma Digby

    Emma is Executive Partner of our Leeds Office and  a partner in our Commercial Litigation department.

    Emma has been a litigator for over 20 years and has a loyal following due to the impressive real-world commercial approach she takes to her cases.

  • Rachel Blythe

    Rachel is a Managing Associate in our Employment team and is based in our Leeds office. She regularly advises public and private sector clients in all aspects of employment law.


  • Jonathan Dickson

    Jonathan is a real estate lawyer who specialises in all aspects of non-contentious commercial real estate transactions and regularly advises in the investment, regeneration, development, utility, renewable energy and landlord/tenant, sectors.

  • Damien Charlton

    Damien is a highly experienced lawyer, who has been advising businesses on company and commercial matters for over 20 years. He is the Head of the Commercial Department and advises clients on a national basis.

  • James Nightingale

    James is a Partner in the Corporate team with over 15 years of experience of advising on all aspects of corporate finance work with a focus on mergers and acquisitions, private equity, investments, reorganisations and restructurings.

  • Andrea Dyer

    Andrea is a Partner in the Family Law team.

    Andrea has always specialised in Family Law. She has over 30 years’ experience representing clients in a full range of family law issues, including divorce and financial issues and cases in respect of children.

  • Sarah Ellam

    Sarah is an experienced residential property lawyer with a wealth of experience and a strong focus on customer service.

    Sarah deals with all types of residential property work including freehold and leasehold sales & purchases, re-mortgages, transfers of equity, matrimonial transfers & buy to lets.

  • Neil Armitage

    Neil is an associate in our commercial litigation department.

    Neil deals in all aspects of commercial disputes providing practical solutions and attaining the best commercial settlement for the client, whether this be at the pre-litigation stage or through to trial and enforcement.

  • Liz Bottrill

    Liz Bottrill is a partner in our Family & Matrimonial team.

    With over 30 years’ experience, Liz is recognised as an expert in the field of family law having advised thousands of people through the myriad of issues that arise when a relationship breaks down.

  • Lesley Fairclough

    Lesley specialises in commercial property development work.

    Since qualifying as a solicitor in 1992, Lesley has worked in the Commercial Property Team at Ward Hadaway dealing with all aspects of commercial property work, but in particular development work (residential, commercial and mixed use schemes) acting for either landowners or developers.

  • Ellie Folger

    Ellie is a Solicitor in the Construction and Engineering team working in both contentious and non-contentious construction and engineering matters.

    Ellie works on a variety of construction and engineering matters involving developers, contractors and consultants.

  • Nick Gholkar

    Nick is a Partner in our Built Environment team.

    Nick advises on all aspects of Real Estate matters. Nick has extensive experience in acting on acquisitions, disposals, planning, development, leasing and financing of Real Estate assets.

  • Bill Goodwin

    Bill is a commercial lawyer with many years’ experience of advising on both contentious and non-contentious intellectual property and information technology matters. He is also a Chartered Trade Mark Attorney.

    Bill has gained a reputation amongst innovative businesses for providing practical, commercial and user-friendly advice, beyond the usual legal assistance

  • Laura Gooddy

    Laura is a partner in our real estate department

    She acts for a wealth of commercial property clients including developers, investors, care home providers, funders and charities.  She also provides property support to the firm’s corporate and insolvency departments and their clients.

  • Helen Hill

    Helen is a Partner in our Property Litigation team advising clients on commercial property disputes and the management of risk associated with the ownership and occupation of land and buildings. Helen has a particular expertise advising land owners on telecommunications leases and agreements and the application of the Electronic Communications Code.

  • Jessica Hurwood

    Jessica is a Solicitor in our Employment and Immigration team

    Jessica provides advice on all aspects of employment law. She undertakes non-contentious work, such as drafting employment contracts, advising on policies and procedures and post-termination restrictions, as well as defending Employment Tribunal claims and negotiating settlement agreements in contentious matters.

  • Suzanne Jaconelli

    Suzanne is a Solicitor in our Private Client team with experience in advising clients in connection with Estate Planning, Wills, Trusts, Estate Administration and Powers of Attorney.

    Suzanne is also an associate member of STEP – Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners – the global professional association for practitioners who specialise in helping families plan for the future.

  • Ian McCombie

    Ian has been advising business clients, from sole traders to multi-national enterprises, in relation to commercial disputes for over 30 years.

    He is very experienced in the use of mediation as a means of resolution, and of an early cards-on-the-table approach in appropriate circumstances, being very aware that for the majority of businesses a dispute is a disruption to and distraction from its core objectives.

  • Flora Mewies

    Flora is a Partner in the Employment team. She is an immigration solicitor specialising in helping employers recruit from overseas and helping individuals with visa applications.

    Flora provides immigration and employment advice to both public and private sector organisations and defends a wide range of Employment Tribunal claims for her clients.

  • Melissa Munday

    Melissa is a Managing Associate in the Commercial Litigation team.

    Melissa works in general commercial dispute resolution, has over 20 year’s experience in her particular specialism of commercial, marine and insurance litigation and holds a Masters in Legal Aspects of Marine Affairs and Commercial Law from Cardiff University.

  • Steph Nield

    Steph specialises in all aspects of residential conveyancing including freehold/leasehold sales and purchases, shared ownership properties, transfers of equity and re-mortgages. Steph works with a wide range of clients from first time buyers to buy-to-let landlords throughout England and Wales.

  • Contact Edward

    Edward is a partner in the Employment team and has over 18 years’ specialist experience in employment law. He leads a team of specialist employment lawyers.

    Edward deals with all aspects of employment and industrial relations work, including strategic planning, outsourcing and restrictive covenants. He has also prepared and delivered award-winning bespoke employment law training nationally.

  • Owen Ormond

    Owen is a partner in our Insolvency and Corporate Recovery Team based in Leeds, having joined the firm in January 2024. He has over 15 years’ experience in dealing with all aspects of non-contentious banking, restructuring and insolvency.

  • Contact Jessica

    Jessica is a Solicitor in the Commercial Litigation team. Having undertaking her training contract at Ward Hadaway, and qualifying with the firm in October 2022, Jessica has gained insight into a variety of sectors and has a variety of litigation experience.

  • Natalie Payne

    Natalie is a Solicitor and has worked in the Employment team since 2017 and qualified as a Solicitor in September 2018.

    Natalie advises on all aspects of employment law, from dealing with queries on employment contracts to carrying out advocacy at the Employment Tribunal, and provides practical, commercial solutions to clients.

  • Lucinda Peters

    Lucinda is a banking and real estate finance lawyer who undertakes legal due diligence on behalf of Banks and other lending institutions providing property investment and development finance facilities.

  • Stephen Radcliffe

    Stephen is a Partner in our Construction and Engineering team.

    Stephen provides advice to clients regarding development/site/project issues including contract reviews and/or interpretation as well as advising on potential disputes.

  • Jonathan Pollard

    Jonathan is a Partner in our Corporate team and is based in our Leeds office.

    He has experience of both public and private company work including Initial Public Offers, acquisitions and disposals, reorganisations and restructurings, takeovers and acting for both management and private equity houses on private equity transactions.

  • Sarah Stockdale

    Sarah is an Associate in the Property team at Ward Hadaway. Having qualified with the firm in September 2015, she has a broad range of commercial property experience in dealing with a variety of transactions and clients.

    Sarah acts on a wide variety of commercial property matters, including freehold disposals and acquisitions, leasehold transactions, real estate finance and the management of clients’ property portfolios.

  • Russell Ward

    Russell is an experienced commercial litigator of over 15 years’ experience, and who splits his time between Ward Hadaway’s Newcastle and Leeds offices.

    Having trained with the firm and qualified into the commercial litigation team in September 2006, Russell has risen through the ranks and joined the Partnership in May 2015.

  • Kevin Weston

    Kevin is a partner in our Real Estate Team.

    He has over 30 years’ experience working within the Yorkshire region. During that time he has developed a strong client base and is a key adviser to a number of clients. He acts for a number of private developers and charity clients.

  • Phil Edmondson

    Phil is a Managing Associate within our Business Group. He is commercial litigator and sports dispute resolution specialist with over 12 years’ experience. Alongside his reputation as a commercial litigator Phil has for many years been an industry recognised specialist in resolving disputes within professional sports. He has represented clients such as professional leagues, governing bodies, professional athletes and managers, with a particular emphasis on football.

  • Ella Dodgson

    Ella is a Solicitor in our Family & Matrimonial team.

    Ella has practised exclusively in Family Law since 2016 and deals with a full range of family matters arising from the breakdown of a relationship be it marriage, civil partnership of cohabitation.