The Lawyer Africa Elite 2014 features an in-depth look at 46 leading independent firms’ strategies in 15 key sub-Saharan jurisdictions, as well as the views of in-house counsel from some of Africa’s largest companies... Read more
This year, The Lawyer’s annual ranking of the largest UK law firms by turnover is available as an interactive, digital benchmarking tool. For the first time this will allow you to manipulate each data set against the metrics of your choice.
What was your first-ever job? Dough machine cleaner in a bakery.
What was your worst experience as a trainee?
Snapping my key in the ignition on a no-parking zone, then locking my car with the briefcase still inside and taking the taxi ride from hell to borrow an alternative car, incurring repair and towing charges, then arriving at county court to hear the case was adjourned.
Where’s the best place to go if you want to find out what’s really going on in the office?
What time do you usually leave the office?
What do you do at weekends?
Look after my three children and will Bradford City on to victory.
What’s your favourite restaurant?
Bradley’s in Bradford.
If you weren’t a lawyer what would you have been?
What’s your favourite film?
What was the first record you ever bought?
C’mon Everybody by The Sex Pistols.
Who’s your hero and why?
Spike Milligan – a real human.
What’s the best thing about your job?
What’s the toughest thing about your job?
Constantly exceeding clients’ expectations.
What’s your biggest work/career mistake and what did you learn from it?
Rushing (even with the best intentions) leads to errors slipping through the net.
What car do you drive?
What book are you currently reading?
A world atlas with my children.
What’s your favourite children’s book?
Cops and Robbers by Allan Ahlberg.
What’s the most exciting deal/case you’ve worked on and why?
I acted for 19 dockers in Goole some years ago who felt let down by their previous advisers. We had some straight-talking meetings. Handing out cheques to the lads at the end of the case was a real moment of achievement. The stakes had been high.
If you were stranded on a desert island, what two luxury items would you take?
A hat and The Lord of The Rings trilogy.
What’s the worst partner conference location you’ve attended and why?
All been okay to date.
What’s the longest you’ve worked without sleep?
Forty hours. Concluded a 24-hour completion meeting at 8am and conducted an employment tribunal from 10am. Success on both, but too long a day for my liking.
If a movie was being made about your life, which actor would play you and why?
Eric Morecambe, if he was still here.
Who would you least like to be stuck in a lift with and why?
Nick Griffin – not my kind of guy.
Tell us two truths and one lie about yourself (in any order)
I once sparred with the British welterweight boxing champion; he knocked me down
three times in one round; he said I had the hardest punch he had ever felt.
CV Name: Chris Allen Firm: Blacks Solicitors Title: Managing partner Lives: Bingley
Education: 1986-89: LLB, Coventry Polytechnic 1990-91: LPC, College of Law, York
Work history: 1991-93: Trainee, Ralph C Yablon, Bradford 1994-97: Assistant solicitor, company commercial/employment department, Blacks, Leeds 1997-2008: Partner, Blacks 2008-present: Managing partner, Blacks