Ellisons Solicitors, with offices in Colchester, Clacton on Sea, Dovercourt and Frinton on Sea, has crossed the county border into Suffolk for the first time with the acquisition of sole practitioner Tony Longhurst’s practice in Bury St Edmunds.

Wanham Longhurst & Co, which offers primarily residential conveyancing services with some commercial property and wills and probate, will cease operating on 30th September 2008 when the Firm will be formally incorporated with Ellisons. Tony Longhurst retires after thirty seven years of practice as a Solicitor, twenty five of them based in Bury St Edmunds; the previous twelve as a partner in a firm in Cambridgeshire.

Tony Longhurst’s decision to retire and entrust his clients to Essex-based Ellisons may cause some surprise because of the perceived geographic focus of his choice of successor but in fact Ellisons was the natural choice. Guy Longhurst, Tony’s son, who lives in Suffolk and is a past pupil of Culford School, is a Commercial Property specialist and one of the Managing Partners of Ellisons Solicitors.

“Ellisons is by far the best firm of solicitors to look after my clients on my retirement.” explains Tony. “It means a great deal to me that it will be my son’s firm caring for my clients and advising them on their future legal affairs. Keeping it “in the family”, so to speak, has been warmly received by most of my clients who value the continuity of the personal connection. In addition, there are the obvious benefits in that Ellisons can not only provide my clients with all the same services but very much more.”

Guy Longhurst also recognises the personal appeal and the business logic of acquiring his father’s firm and was delighted that the proposal won the full support of the partnership: “Taking over my fathers practice makes good commercial sense. Although Essex – based, Ellisons acts for clients across East Anglia. The idea of having a base in Suffolk has been mooted frequently and the opportunity to acquire Wanham Longhurst & Co was just too good to miss. The business and client profile perfectly matches those of our offices on the Tendring peninsula which are essentially strong private client practices but with some commercial clients who will benefit from the wider resources in Colchester.” Guy explains: “I always knew that my father would find it difficult to retire completely and so by incorporating his practice into Ellisons but staying on as a Consultant, it is a “win win” situation for both sides. ”

Tony Longhurst has been considering retirement for some time with a view to spending a little more time at his holiday home in Norfolk with his wife Nora and pursuing their other interests.

Ellisons is not currently considering establishing an office in Bury St Edmunds but will primarily service clients from its other five offices and by making local arrangements to have meetings and relationship management.