Olswang has boosted its property department from four to six partners overnight by poaching almost half of Stones Porter's property team.
Two partners, two assistants and two secretaries are all going to Olswang. One of the two partners, Tim Westhead, had been at Stones Porter for 11 years; his colleague Martyn Needham joined in 1987 as a trainee and was made partner last year.
The two are bringing five-year qualified assistant Mark Haywood and one year-qualified Darran Browne with them.
Westhead said his departure from Stones Porter was amicable. He leaves behind four commercial property partners headed by Jonathan Molshead.
“I just felt things weren't going in the right direction here. We went to talk to a number of firms to see what was available and settled on Olswangs. They are not just doing property litigation but are into expanding sectors.”
He said Olswangs had a strong investment and retail property side, headed jointly by senior partner John Akerman and David Custow. “We are taking the side they are not strong in – the institutional, city-funded property investment side,” added Westhead.