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Beachcroft Wansbroughs has been secretly scouting out potential merger partners as it emerges that it approached niche Swindon firm Clark Holt.
According to Clark Holt head of corporate Richard Clark, Beachcrofts app-roached the firm last year but was turned down.
Details of Beachcrofts’ approach came to light when it emerged that Clark Holt’s head of property Graham Brothwood, who helped set up the practice in 1995, was joining the national firm.
Clark told The Lawyer: “We’ve had many merger approaches since we started eight years ago, including one from Beachcroft Wansbroughs. We turned the approach down for a number of reasons, not least because we wanted to stay independent. Graham did not, so he joined [Beachcrofts] and we wish him well.”
Beachcrofts commercial managing partner Simon Hodson said: “Our property department is one of the largest in the UK nationally and one of the strongest within the firm.
“The business has made some significant gains in the past 18 months both in terms of clients and partners. We’ll continue to look at ways to strengthen the business through lateral hires or appropriate mergers.”
Hodson added: “A merger isn’t essential to our success, as you can see from the progress we’ve made recently.”
As well as Brothwood, Beachcrofts has also hired seven solicitors for its national property department, who will be based in Bristol, Leeds, London and Manchester.