Work Life Quiz: Richard Tinham, Winckworth Sherwood

What was your first-ever job? Shop assistant at Waitrose, where I first learnt that the customer is always right.

What was your worst ­experience as a trainee?

Passing through East ­Croydon Station at high speed on a non-stop train to Gatwick, just before I was due to attend a pre-hearing meeting at ­Croydon Employment ­Tribunal.

Where’s the best place to go if you want to find out what’s really going on in the office?

The nearest pub with a selection of colleagues. They know who they are.

What time do you usually leave the office?

Between 6.30 and 9pm.

What do you do at weekends?

Whatever keeps my ­children amused and ensures they are worn out by bedtime.

What’s your favourite ­restaurant?

Chapter One, Farnborough Common.

If you weren’t a lawyer what would you have been?

A RNLI coxswain.

What is your favourite film?

The Shawshank ­Redemption.

What was the first record you ever bought?

It’s a Sin, Pet Shop Boys.

Who’s your hero and why?

Sir Ranulph Fiennes, for demonstrating that the apparently impossible is usually achievable if one remains sufficiently focused and determined.

What’s the best thing about your job?

Participating in other ­people’s dreams and ­business ventures, ­particularly when they are topical or high-value.

What’s the toughest thing about your job?

Trying not to look at the BlackBerry on holiday.

What’s your biggest work/career mistake and what did you learn from it?

Telling my client in a blunt manner what I thought of the other party’s proposals, not realising my client was using a handsfree car phone and the other party was a passenger in the car. I learnt that clients ­appreciate an honest assessment of the position, even if others don’t.

What car do you drive?


What book are you currently reading?

Catch 22 by Joseph Heller.

What’s your favourite ­children’s book?

Mortal Engines by Philip Reeve.

What’s the most exciting deal/case you’ve worked on and why?

A deal involving a private equity investor, a port authority joint venture and the construction of a new harbour involving the investment of tens of ­millions of pounds. The deal involved all manner of interesting corporate and commercial issues.

If you were stranded on a desert island what two luxury items would you take?

A picnic basket and a beachcaster fishing rod.

What’s the worst partner ­conference location you’ve attended and why?

The one held at a hotel in Richmond several years ago. The junior partners quickly established that the ­allocated room size was directly proportional to seniority. Mine was the smallest room.

What’s the longest you’ve worked without sleep?

Forty hours.

If a movie was being made about your life, which actor would play you and why?

I would want the movie to be realistic, so anyone tall, muscular and with a full head of hair.

Who would you least like to be stuck in a lift with and why?

Paul Daniels. I have never understood which part of his act constitutes ’entertainment’

Tell us two truths and one lie about yourself (in any order)

I won several gold medals at the British University Sports Association ­National Windsurfing Championships; my ­geographical knowledge of the UK is second to none; I qualified as a lifeguard before becoming a lawyer.


Name: Richard Tinham

Title: Head of commercial

Firm: Winckworth Sherwood

Lives: Bromley


1994-97: LLB, University College ­London

1997-98: College of Law, Guildford

Work history:

1998-2000: Trainee, Winckworth ­Sherwood2000-03: Assistant solicitor, ­Winckworth Sherwood

2003-07: Partner, Winckworth ­Sherwood

2007-present: Partner, head of ­commercial, Winckworth Sherwood