Freshfields has made a record number of partnership appointments. Its 21 internal promotions is a 62 per cent increase on last year's figures. The majority of the new partners will be based outside the UK. The City giant now has 298 partners out of a total of 1,498 fee-earners.

The Lawyer is holding its second in-house forum on Tuesday 16 May 2000. Chaired by Stephen Ball, the former chief general counsel to investment bank Nomura, it will include talks on marketing legal departments internally and relations with external firms. Other speakers include Pricewaterhouse- Coopers dispute analysis partner Tony Samuel.

Beachcroft Wansbroughs has recruited the legal adviser to the PFI projects team of Siemens Healthcare Services for its London office. Ruth Wilkins will be an associate in the firm's PFI projects team. She has specialised in major hospital building and other PFI managed service contracts.

Lovells' highly-respected head of banking John Penson has died at the age of 44. He was one of the leading lawyers in his field and was expected to have made a full recovery after being taken ill with pancreatitis at Christmas. Banking partner Matthew Cottis will continue standing in as head of department.

Sidley & Austin has promoted three of its London associates to partner. They are Nick Brittain and Elizabeth Uwaifo in the international finance group and Struan Oliver in the corporate group. They will join the partnership of the Chicago-based firm on 1 April, giving the London office 16 partners.

SJ Berwin is launching the first interactive guide to broadcasting legislation, dubbed Media Wizard. The online resource allows media owners, investors, and analysts to cross-check for potential conflicts of interest regarding media ownership. The site, developed with KPMG, will also track developments in media ownership legislation.

Clifford Chance has expanded its securitisation practice by luring Lovells' highly-rated securitisation partner Peter Voisey. His arrival gives Clifford Chance eight partners in the firm's London securitisation practice, which was recently boosted by John Woodhall's arrival from the firm's Hong Kong office and Elizabeth Knox's return from Singapore.

Clifford Chance's Paris office has been hit by the departure of its head of litigation, Jean Pierre Duffour. Duffour is understood to be one of the 10 partners that voted against the merger with Rogers & Wells and Punder Volhard Weber & Axster. He is leaving to start his own firm in September in a joint venture. Duffour ran his own practice before joining Clifford Chance.

Doughty Street Chambers has taken two new tenants, both former solicitors. Stephen Cragg, an expert in public and social welfare and civil actions against the police, joins from 2 Garden Court and Paula Starks joins from pupillage after re-qualifying as a barrister. She was previously the senior lawyer for the Association for Victims of Medical Accidents.

Stephenson Harwood, led by corporate finance partner Judith Shepherd, has advised Everton Football Club on the £22.5m sale of 69 per cent of its shares to Bill Kenwright and his company True Blue Holdings. Kenwright was advised by McGrigor Donald.