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Firms senior partner retires

Charles Godfrey, one of the founding members of Atherton Godfrey Solicitors, began his career as an articled clerk in 1971. Less than eight years later his enthusiasm for the law had led him to start his own firm with business partner John Atherton. Together with only a handful of staff they ran the business out of a small office on Hall Gate.Today, Atherton Godfrey is a substantial business. It is one of the largest law firms in Doncaster and employs almost 130 staff, with offices on Hall Gate, South Parade and Silver Street. It is home to Doncaster’s largest Family Law department and the area’s largest Clinical Negligence department, which has received national recognition and is ranked in the Legal 500 along with industry giants such as Irwin Mitchell. It also has a widely respected Commercial and Conveyancing department, which is led by Charles. The standard of training and recruitment within the firm has also been recognised nationally and last year a trainee solicitor in the firm’s Personal Injury Team won an award that had for the previous six years been won only by a global law firm. At the end of April, Charles will hand over as senior partner of the business to Don Bird, who has been a partner at the firm for almost 33 years. Don is a specialist Family lawyer with particular expertise in dealing with the financial aspects arising from divorce and separation. He is the head of the firm’s Family department and is an advanced member of the Law Society’s Family Law Accreditation scheme, as well as a trained mediator. He serves on the firm’s management board and is a member of Doncaster St George’s Rotary club, raising funds for charity and a Trustee of the William Appleby Trust. Charles said: “I have thoroughly enjoyed my legal career and have many clients that I now count as friends. “Building up the firm hasn’t been all plain sailing, there have been some difficult economic periods over the years, but we have weathered the storms.”I have a dedicated and committed team and I am leaving the firm in the very capable hands of my seven partners who I am confident will ensure it continues to flourish.”

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