Personal injury boutique Greenwoods is gearing up for aggressive growth after launching an office in Manchester.

Greenwoods has recruited Beachcroft partner Mike Suddards to head its Manchester office, who leaves after 25 years with the firm. Suddards, a catastrophe personal injury (PI) specialist, joins Greenwoods with two members of his Beachcroft team: catastrophe PI specialist Elaine Ibbotson and insurance fraud specialist Alex Puddy.

Senior executive Malcolm Henkes said the firm plans to aggressively grow its staff base in Manchester to between 20 and 25 lawyers in the next two years. He said: “We do not intend to sit back and get on with just three lawyers. We are in talks with a number of lawyers and we are going to be quite aggressive about our growth plans.”

The personal injury specialist also plans to expand its Bristol office significantly. “We see there being an enormous opportunity for niche players in niche sectors, and we intend to get in on that,” said Henke.

Greenwoods sits on various insurer legal panels, including Norwich Union, Royal Bank of Scotland Insurance, and Provident. Henke said the firm was strategically recruiting lawyers with established relationships with insurers to improve its chances of selection.

“We pulled together a specialist team so that we sit on insurer panels and work with insurers who go off panel for specialist work,” said Henke. “This is core to our growth going forward.”

A Beachcroft spokesman said there were no plans to replace Suddard.