Rumours are flying around the City about the real reason for former Addleshaw Goddard litigation department head Simon Twigden’s decision to depart.
Twigden is leaving to set up a niche firm, this much Tulkinghorn knows. But there is talk that it is more than a desire for ’a change’ that is motivating the move.
The high biller was in the running for the chairman role along with Malcolm Pike and the eventual winner Monica Burch.
Now it’s been whispered that, while he was canvassing partners during the race, Twigden was asked what he would do if he lost the election. He replied that he’d have to leave the firm.
If that did play a part in his decision to move on then his clients will presumably appreciate the fact that he is someone who keeps to his word.
But according to one of Tulkinghorn’s moles, there could be an additional contributing factor.
One associate who was fed up with the long-hours culture and low morale at Addleshaws decided to do something about it.
The associate left a note on Twigden’s desk indicting that unless something was done about the bad morale then a number of them would be looking for other jobs quick sharp.
In the spirit of the enviable work-life balance for which the firm is known, a ’witchhunt’ was promptly launched to find the source of the threat, according to the mole.
An Addleshaw’s spokesperson confirmed: “There was an anonymous note left in March for one of our contentious partners, Simon Twigden, raising concerns that some of our associates held. We take feedback of all kinds very seriously and acted accordingly, meeting with all contentious associates to discuss their concerns and to resolve the issues raised.”
So that’s alright, then.
NME to BLP
When you’re finished with this week’s diary page you could do worse than to turn to page 15 and check out the Work-Life Quiz.
The subject is Patrick Somers, a Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) partner who claims to have played guitar in a band in the 1970s that “had a single in the indie charts”.
Somers preferred not to reveal the name of his seminal punk outfit from 1977, but a little digging unearthed the name XS Energy and a rock spat to rival theOasis v Blur feud two decades later. Well, sort of.
“We considered writing to XTC demanding they change their name as it was so like ours they’d obviously stolen it,” recalls Somers. “In the
end we didn’t bother.
“But it’s true that NME did review our single, Use You.
They said it was a nice tune but had the most moronic lyrics they’d ever heard.”
Somers built on this encouraging hint at his drafting abilities by plumping for the world of law, heading off to university and ending his rock career.
But years later his wild youth came back to haunt him when, having lost his only copy of the record at a party where he’d been tired and emotional, Somers ended up buying his own single off eBay for his kids.
“It cost me forty quid,” he recalls.
Carey on England
It’s possible you may have noticed that the World Cup started last week. Tulkinghorn understands that this is a large tournament featuring teams from around the globe playing association football. However, the great man was less familiar with all of the participants.
That is until Carey Olsen came to his rescue. The offshore giant generously took an entire page in last week’s issue of The Lawyer to inform readers of the identity of the teams, the dates of their games and the structure of the tournament itself. It stopped short of predicting a winner, but offers more or less everything else an avid fan might need (other than a ticket).
And, just to make sure that non-readers of The Lawyer (apparently there are one or two out there) don’t miss out, the firm has also printed up a few handy pocket-size versions.
When Tulkinghorn says a few, he actually means 40,000, which helps you avoid double booking yourself for England’s gracious exit in the second round.