Work Life Quiz: Anton Balkitis, Rothera Dowson Solicitors

Where’s the best place to go if you want to find out what’s really going on in the office? My office is right next to our boardroom and the kitchen. I have both bugged and our ­receptionists are open to bribes.


Anton Balkitis
Anton Balkitis

What was your first-ever job?

Saturday assistant at Lord John Men’s Fashion shop. I held the record for selling the most shoe polish.

 What was your worst ­experience as a trainee?

Getting tongue-twisted at a district judge’s ­appointment. The forklift truck I was referring to came out as a tork lift f**k. I quickly moved on.

 What time do you usually leave the office?

When the cleaners throw me out, although ­frequently my office is my car.

 What do you do at weekends?

I work off my business lunches by digging my allotment.

 What’s your favourite ­restaurant?

Currently Iberico World Tapas, Nottingham, ­particularly for the sweet bitter lemon tart.

 If you weren’t a lawyer, what would you have been?

A travel writer or a resort waterslide tester.

 What’s your favourite film?

La Vita è Bella.

 What was the first record you ever bought?

Convoy by CW McCall. My interest in trucking and road transport started early.

 Who’s your hero and why?

I don’t really have any heroes, just people of ­influence – although a box of Heroes would be quite nice.

 What’s the best thing about your job?

Each day is different, you get out and about a lot, and if you’re really lucky, you get taken out for lunch by clients.

 What’s the toughest thing about your job?

Early starts and morning traffic when heading to regulatory public inquiries and faraway courts.

 What’s your biggest work/career mistake and what did you learn from it?

Thinking that lawyers are well paid! I’ve learnt to be content with my lot.

What car do you drive?

A blue BMW, but not a flashy one.What book are you currently reading?

Wilkinson’s Road Traffic Offences, edited by Kevin McCormac.

What’s your favourite ­children’s book?

I loved Stig of the Dump in primary school but I’m also partial to a bit of Thomas the

Tank Engine. It’s my obsession with transport again.

 What’s the most exciting deal/case you’ve worked on and why?

The case of Boekenhoutskloof Syrah I had last month was rather good.

 If you were stranded on a desert island, what two ­luxury items would you take?

A solar-powered Segway and my guitar.

 What’s the worst partner ­conference location you’ve attended and why?

The penthouse in our Lace Market office. I hit my head on a low beam and nearly knocked myself out.

 What’s the longest you’ve worked without sleep?

Not long. I once fell asleep standing up (like a horse) in a phone box. I’m ­currently campaigning to make afternoon naps ­compulsory.

 If a movie were being made about your life, which actor would play you and why?

Jack Nicholson, for his often dark themed ­portrayals of neurotic characters. Jack and I have so much in common.

 Who would you least like to be stuck in a lift with and why?

Jordan/Katie Price. It might be a bit cramped.

 Tell us two truths and one lie about yourself (in any order)

I have appeared in over 60 different ­magistrates’ courts in the last 15 years. I have never been late for a court ­hearing. I hold a clean driving licence.

 

CV

Name: Anton Balkitis

Firm: Rothera Dowson Solicitors

Title: Partner and head of road transport ­department

Lives: Nottingham

 

Education

1981-84: University of Keele

1984-85: College of Law, Chancery Lane, London

Work history

1985-87: Trainee, Fidler & Pepper Solicitors

1988: Assistant solicitor, WBW Solicitors

1989-92: Assistant solicitor, Rotheras Solicitors

1992-present: Partner, Rotheras Solicitors (firm became Rothera Dowson Solicitors in 1997)