Freshfields corporate partner and former London head Tim Jones is leaving the firm to join England Rugby 2015 as general counsel.
England Rugby 2015 was set up by the Rugby Football Union, whose general counsel is Karena Vleck, to run the international tournament when it arrives in England and Wales in three years. Jones’s role, which will be on a three-day-week basis, will begin on 1 November.
Jones stood down as London managing partner at the magic circle firm in 2011 (27 November 2011) to run the firm’s delivery of legal services to the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games (Locog) (17 November 2012), to which the firm was appointed in 2009 (3 February 2009). Jones was the relationship partner to Locog.
Jones played rugby to a high level in his youth, representing Oxford University, London Welsh, Wales B and the Barbarians.
He said: “It’s bringing together some of my great enthusiasms – rugby, legal work and a sporting event, all in one package.”
Jones has spent his entire career at Freshfields. He ran the firm’s Spanish office for several years and in 2007 was appointed the firm’s London managing partner (3 December 2007).
Preparations are taking shape for the 2015 tournament, with games taking place at Twickenham, the Millennium Stadium and the Olympic Park. Clifford Chance has picked up the mandate to advise the International Rugby Board (IRB) and its commercial affiliate Rugby World Cup (RWCL) in connection for the preparation and staging of the tournament.