Masons raids Scottish firms to double office

Masons has more than doubled the number of lawyers in its Scottish practice group one year after it first opened in Glasgow by continuing its hiring spree.

The City firm has poached two “associate partners”, the Scottish equivalent of a City salaried partner, from rival firms in Scotland.

With the new arrivals, it will grow from a two-lawyer, two-partner outfit to a 13-lawyer practice group.

Aileen Thomson is quitting Edinburgh-based Alex Morison which is currently in merger talks with Bishop & Robertson Chalmers, the Glasgow firm.

Lesley Blair joins later this month as an associate partner from Arthur Andersen's associated firm Dundas & Wilson.

She will be followed by assistant solicitor Geraldine Kelm, who is being poached from Wright Johnson & Mackenzie, a firm known for its legal advice on Dolly the cloned sheep.

Vincent Connor, construction partner at Masons, says: “The focus of our recruitment drive has been to replicate Masons' strengths at a Scottish level.”

Last month Masons recruited Hugh Bruce-Watt from Dundas & Wilson. Bruce-Watt is based in Masons' London office but is part of the Scottish practice group.

“It is a vital development for us to have Aileen and Hugh working for us and a serious departure for her former firm,” says Connor.

James Salmon joined Masons as a full equity partner from Bird Semple's Tech-Media group earlier this year. Two assistants specialising in IT joined along with him.