Ellisons Solicitors has once again been recommended within the Legal 500 directory – and this year, the firm has been recognised as a top scoring firm for client service in East Anglia.

The Legal 500 Client Service Survey is the largest and most comprehensive survey of client satisfaction conducted of the UK legal market.

In total 11 practice areas were recommended in the 2021 edition across Essex and East Anglia with four Partners noted as Leading Individuals, three Partners recognised as Next Generation Partners and one Senior Associate named as Rising Star.

The firm received notable mentions within the following practice areas: Commercial Property, Corporate and Commercial, Employment, Immigration, Personal Injury, Commercial Litigation, Family and Personal Tax, Trusts and Probate.




  • Petra Sharp, Senior Associate, Corporate and Commercial


The corporate and commercial team at Ellisons Solicitors is well-regarded for its work on mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures and company restructures. As part of the international Alliott Global Alliance network, it is able to handle multi-jurisdictional transactions in tandem with accounting and law firms of equal repute. Paul Forsyth is noted for his expertise in transactions arising from insolvency, and senior associate Petra Sharp is recognised as Rising Star.


‘Excellence in engaging with and communicating with clients to understand very clearly what the clients goals are so that interests and focus can be aligned.’

‘Ellisons is a very strong regional practice which has all relevant specialisms covered. The quality and reliability of the firm, its partners and staff are excellent.’

‘The team has a broad knowledge and skill set, whilst being quick, efficient and reasonably priced. As a growing start-up, it’s really important we can get all our legal support in one place, from a trusted partner.’


Ellisons Solicitors’ commercial property team is known for its work in acquisitions, disposals, joint ventures and consortium agreements. Managing partner Guy Longhurst deals with the acquisition and disposal of residential and development sites, while team lead Philip Roberts handles the full spectrum of sector transactions. Well-regarded senior associate Wendy Martin joined from Holmes & Hills. Ellisons Solicitors also joins the ranking this year having built up a substantial practice in its Ipswich office. The firm now has three experienced partners in Toby Kramers, Tim Bacon and Catherine Abbott. All have broad-ranging practices with niche areas of specialism. Kramers deals with leasehold enfranchisement, wind farm developments and matters for gas transportation operators; Bacon is adept in landlord and tenant matters; and Abbott stands out for the acquisition and set up of development sites.


Ellisons Solicitors in Ipswich has a small team that is part of a broader employment practice across its offices in East Anglia and Essex. Alongside its diverse range of local work in these regions, the firm also handles some national and cross-border HR matters. Julian Outen, who is a trained mediator, is regarded as a leading practitioner in this area of law with 25 years’ experience in contentious matters, TUPE and corporate support work. Solicitor, Tina Maxey is also recommended, particularly for advising employers on exit strategies, terminations and employment tribunal claims.


Ellisons Solicitors acquired Bury St Edmunds firm Gross & Co in late 2019, bringing in practice head Graeme Kirk and partner Sohan Sidhu, who are greatly experienced immigration specialists. Kirk, a former chairman of the Immigration and Nationality Law Committee of the International Bar Association, has almost 40 years’ experience in all aspects of business immigration, including the Points-Based System Tiers 1-5, having handled applications for innovators and investors, sole representatives, and related family applications.


‘The firm has exceptional knowledge of the work type but offering a practical and pragmatic approach.’

‘Trustworthy and reliable advice from Graeme Kirk. He knows his stuff and does not just regurgitate guidance.’

‘The firm is very unique in terms of thinking strategically and inventively. The team is always brainstorming new ideas, analysing the situations, defining clear policies. They guide clients with step-by-step procedures. The team has very strong technical ability and the utmost care of each client. The team goes above and beyond to support and provide solutions for clients.’


‘This team takes on highly complex injury cases without losing sight of the welfare of the individual claimant,’ remarks a client of Ellisons Solicitors. Led by partner Robert Gair, who has ‘a practical approach and is a humane point of contact for clients throughout the litigation process’, the practice handles a diverse range of claims encompassing fatal accidents, acquired brain injury, industrial disease, road traffic accidents, work place accidents, public liability, occupiers’ liability, bystander/nervous shock matters and psychiatric claims.


‘This team takes on highly complex injury cases involving multiple experts without losing sight of the welfare of the individual claimant.’

‘Robert Gair stands out. As well as bringing a practical approach to litigation, he maintains a humane point of contact for clients throughout the litigation process.’

‘I work only for one partner, Robert Gair. He is an extremely experienced head injury practitioner. The quality of his work is of the highest standard. I consider him to be amongst the top three or four personal injury practitioners in East Anglia. I work for most of them.’


Ellisons Solicitors’ litigation practice has significant experience in commercial matters, as well as banking litigation and contentious probate matters. Key contacts include practice head Lee Pearce, Graeme Wallington and head of insolvency Scott Porter.


The family team at Ellisons Solicitors, which handles matters such as family litigation, property disputes between unmarried couples and dissolution of civil partnerships, is led by Nicola Coates, who advises on complex and high-value divorce matters. Mediation-trained lawyer Lisa Dawson continues to act in litigation and child arrangement orders and handles the firm’s work in pre and post relationship agreements.


Ellisons Solicitors manage all areas of tax and estate planning, trust and probate administration, as well as wills. The group has a ‘traditional’ family solicitor approach and caters to a longstanding client base of high-net-worth individual and local companies. Ellisons Solicitors also joins the ranking this year having extended its private client offering from its home base in Essex to its Ipswich office, which is steadily building out a comprehensive range of services.

Ellisons Solicitors joins the ranking this year having extended its private client offering from its home base in Essex to its Ipswich office, which is steadily building out a comprehensive range of services.

Work highlights

Acting on behalf of a deceased client and his deceased Executors in the administration of an estate in the UK, South Africa and Australia.
Acting as Executors in the administration of the firm’s former senior partner’s estate.
Administering estate with a value in excess of £3.5m. Complex IHT issues with exempt and non-exempt residuary beneficiaries.

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