The lowdown on Manchester

This report contains:

  • a stratification of 35 of The Lawyer’s UK Top 100 firms with offices in Manchester
  • a breakdown of headcount and growth data for all 35 firms
  • details of lateral partner hirings in and into the city over the past year
  • commentary on the key challenges and opportunities
Posted July 2023
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It is official — Manchester is the second-largest legal market in the UK outside London. The debate as to whether that is Birmingham, Leeds or Manchester has been going on for some time, but the data compiled for this report proves that the North West city is king of the regions.

Manchester is home to more UK Top 100 law firms than any other UK city outside the capital (36, to be exact) and the city and wider North West region boast more lawyers than anywhere else outside London, too. What is more, Manchester has 57 per cent more partners than Leeds or Birmingham.

There are so many firms in Manchester that this report had to draw the line somewhere. With this in mind, the report stratifies Manchester’s 35 UK Top 100 firms (minus Freshfields) into a handful of groups based on partner headcount and determines who the big players truly are in the market. In each group, a small number of defining characteristics emerge, which are examined in greater detail. We include details of lateral partner hirings in and into the city over the past year and also explore the opportunities and challenges in the city, incorporating commentary from the law firm leaders who live, work and play in Manchester. The data shows that there has been a total of 95 lateral hires in the city.

All figures for team sizes, distribution and demographics have been taken from firms’ websites and data from ATLAS by Codex Edge. The information is correct as of 25 May 2023, but should be treated as indicative.

To find out who the true players are in the market, read the full report now.


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Posted July 2023
Written by