UK 200 position: 162
Newcastle firm Watson Burton had another tough year in 2011–12 as its partnership numbers continued to fall.
Despite being an LLP the firm declined to provide figures for last year's UK 200, but with nine fewer partners than the previous year a further fall in turnover looked certain.
Between 2009–10 and 2010–11 audited turnover fell by 11.3 per cent. The Lawyer has estimated turnover to have dropped by another 10 per cent last year to £11.3m.
The April 2010 loss of senior partner Rob Langley to local rival Muckle continued to have consequences as two more partners — charities specialist John Devine and construction lawyer Andrea Gardner — subsequently followed him.
Watson Burton also lost partners to firms including DWF, Ward Hadaway and Hay & Kilner during the year. It made no partner-level lateral hires.
The firm has offices in Newcastle, Leeds and London.
Overview1 St James' Gate
Newcastle upon Tyne
Tyne and Wear
Turnover (£m): 11.3
Total lawyers: 60