Leading in Leeds

Ever-expanding Gateley has opened an office in Leeds with a couple of Cobbetts partners (see story).

Gateley has had a busy 18 months – opening in Manchester, rebranding from HBJ Gateley Wareing and breaking into the top quartile of The Lawyer UK 200 for the first time – and looks to be one of a myriad of firms for which getting critical mass is top of the agenda.

The firm has launched in the centre of Leeds with restructuring partner William Ballman, who will lead the office, and litigation partner Rob Payne – both of whom join from Cobbetts.

Of course, the chance to launch an office for a growing firm is an enticing prospect for many a lawyer, but it’s hard to read this story in isolation from the news that Cobbetts is understood to be close to merging with DWF – and not everyone from Cobbetts is said to be on board.

But then, that’s law firm mergers for you: creating opportunities all round.