Trethowans has unveiled a new management line-up following the appointment of Simon Rhodes as ­managing partner.

Simon Rhodes

Simon Rhodes

Rhodes replaces Miles Brown, who stood aside 10 months early to avoid any fallout that might arise from a managing partner election in the middle of
a recession.

Rhodes told The Lawyer: “Miles decided to step down after nearly 12 years in the role.

“At his suggestion we brought the election forward so that the new team could get on with things in the ­current economic climate.”

Rhodes, who formerly headed the commercial ­services practice, was backed ­unanimously by the firm’s partners. He agreed to accept the job on the provision that a new management ­structure was set up.

Andrew Mercer, currently head of the family team, will become chairman of the firm, with Chris Whitely, the present head of litigation, taking up the senior partner role. Gary Treagust, head of commercial property at the firm, will take overall responsibility for the firm’s finances.

“We previously had a board of five, which was made up of our group ­leaders,” said Rhodes. “We’ve created new management roles, which are tailored to what the firm needs now.

“Gary Treagust, as finance partner, will be focusing on all our financial operations; Chris Whiteley, as senior partner, will help me manage the firm internally; and Andrew Mercer, as chairman, will help to pull everything together.”

Emploment partner Jon Loney, who joined the firm from Foot Anstey in May last year, will become head of the employment practice, while corporate partner Mike Watson will replace Rhodes as head of commercial services.