Helen Thomson: Bond Pearce

Which pub do the non-lawyers drink in? I can’t speak for all the support teams, but the business development team seem to have a habit of ending up in an awful 80s club.


Helen Thomson
Helen Thomson

Name: Helen Thomson        

Firm: Bond Pearce

Position: Head of communications

Lives: Bristol

What time do you start work each day?

I get in somewhere between 8am and 9am. I’m not really an early bird; the cleaners are always hoovering around my feet in the evening.

What’s the dullest task you’ve ever been given?

My PR career has been pretty exciting actually, but the summer after I graduated I had a temping job that involved going to a small room on an industrial estate and photocopying forms for five days straight. That was totally mind numbing.

How much time do you spend on Facebook each week?

More than I’d like to. It’s a nightmare if you’re a bit nosey – I mean naturally curious – about people.

What is the most unusual Christmas present that you have received from a colleague?

My last employer used to give us champagne and cake at Christmas. That was definitely the way to my heart.

If you could introduce one law, what would it be and why?

That every child should be issued with a puppy as standard. It would have saved me begging my mum for one every year until I was about … actually I’m still asking her to get one that I can walk at weekends.

How did you spend your last bonus? (If you have never received a bonus, how would you hope to spend it in the future)?

It made a very small dent in a two-month trip travelling across Africa.

What are the best perks of your role?

Great people, lots of autonomy, total variety – no two days are the same.

What do you wear on dress-down Fridays?

Whatever doesn’t need ironing – accompanied by one of my many pairs of jeans and flats.

What’s the strangest thing you’ve been asked to do at work Having to take a bunch of journalists on a falconry day, when I have an irrational fear of birds. It certainly wasn’t the easiest thing I’ve ever been asked to do.

What is the most irritating habit of any partner you’ve worked for?

Not specific to partners, but it’s pretty irritating when people say “So, that story will just go into the FT, yeah?”. I usually just about manage a friendly “editorial is different to advertising” reply through gritted teeth.

How do you unwind after the end of a hard week?

I’ve recently discovered baking, there’s something very soothing about the whole thing.  Especially when accompanied by a glass of Oyster Bay.

Do you see your colleagues on weekends?

Not often, but Bristol’s a small city so you do end up bumping into people.

Have you ever fallen in love at work? (If so, please provide details).

Never. But I have been with my lovely husband for my whole working life so that might explain it.  Either that or I’ve been picking the wrong places to work.

If you were a lawyer what would your practice area be and why?

No desire to be a lawyer thanks very much. Although the gossip in me says that being a media lawyer would be good for finding out what’s really going on behind the scenes. 

Which is the best practice group for gossip and why?

I can’t tell you that – they’ll stop telling me the gossip.

Given the chance, which overseas office would you work in?

With offices in the glamorous locations of Bristol, London, Plymouth, Southampton and Aberdeen to choose from why would I even consider moving to New York or Sydney??

What do you eat for lunch?

Having spent seven years donating a vast amount of my salary to Pret in London, I’ve finally cracked the art of the packed lunch. Tin of soup. No preparation required.  

Is your salary (in thousands) greater than your age?

I think there are two questions in there that you’re not supposed to ask a lady.

What items do you always carry around with you at work?

Security pass, pen, mug, BlackBerry.

Of whom do you have photos on your desk?

My twin baby nephews – they live in Australia so I like keeping them close. Oh, and my husband – that one’s pretty much obligatory isn’t it?

Which pub do the non-lawyers drink in?

I can’t speak for all the support teams, but the business development team seem to have a habit of ending up in an awful 80s club.

Soy Latte or Nescafe?

I’ve tried to be a coffee drinker; all that eternal search for the perfect cup business seems very glamorous and grown up. I just can’t get excited about it though. Give me a mug of builders any day.

City break or weekend in the country?

I recently moved from London so am less obsessed with getting out of the city at every possible opportunity, but am still happiest tramping up a hill or sitting in a village beer garden.

Sum up your firm, chambers or employer in three words

Ambitious, thoughtful, different.