I was born in Nigeria as one of five children. My parents were medical doctors. My father was one of Nigeria’s pre-eminent neurologists, and quickly became globally renowned. A typical aspirational father, he built himself up through effort and excellence and thought all his children should be equally excellent. By the age of 15 I was sent to a boarding school in England to do my A levels. After that I did an economics degree at Queen Mary London.
I went back to Nigeria and did national service. Not as exciting as it sounds, more community service than military service. Did that for a year and part of it was working in a bank. It was not for me. Continue reading “Life During Law: Segun Osuntokun”
I’m London born and bred, never lived anywhere else apart from three years in Manchester at university. Went to City of London School up the road, worked at St Martin’s Le Grand, Aldersgate Street, Fleet Street, Adelaide House in London Bridge and here [Fleet Place]. My wife would say I’m limited in a whole bunch of ways. To be honest, I don’t like to be too far from my family.
My mum was a formidable primary school teacher. I was in her school when she was deputy head at a state primary. Interesting experience. Continue reading “Life During Law: David Collins”
I’m less Marmite than I was. Never been deferential. Having a Mancunian directness, I was brought up by people who called a spade a spade. Helps me with clients massively. Sometimes it’s not what other lawyers want. I could be more political and in the past, I’ve tried. You can only be yourself.
I was the first person in my family to go to university. I didn’t grow up dreaming of being a solicitor. I still think football coaching was my true calling. Continue reading “Life during law: Ian Bagshaw”
It never occurred to me to be a lawyer until sixth form. I went to a regular comprehensive school and there wasn’t much career advice. I was a teenager who just wanted to be a footballer or rockstar.
My parents hadn’t been to university. I’m from Nottinghamshire, born in Mansfield. My grandad was a miner and the one thing he wanted was for his son not to be a miner, so my dad imaginatively went to the coal board as an accounts clerk. Continue reading “Life during law: Andy Ryde”
I didn’t plan a career in law. At school I did those career survey things twice and on both occasions it said I should become a fashion designer.
I have been a bar manager in a country house hotel and then a golf club bar. Great fun. Taught me the concept of keeping people in the line happy. I always say to junior lawyers: ‘Make sure you respond quickly to clients.’ It doesn’t mean you produce all the work in half an hour, as long as they know someone is looking after them. Continue reading “Life during law: Dominic Griffiths”
My mother is Irish and my father English. They were first-generation immigrants. I was born a year after my mother’s arrival in Australia.
Perth was a fantastic place to grow up. We were close to the ocean. A very outdoors environment – you’d cycle to school. Fantastic as a child. Continue reading “Life during law: Shane Gleghorn”
I’ve been 27 years at Freshfields. I’m not sure where the time has gone.
It’s International Women’s Day on Friday [8 March]. Thinking about my career in that context, when I was starting out, the biggest issue for me was that I was from Liverpool. Continue reading “Life during law: Claire Wills”
My mother was always convinced I was going to be a barrister. She used to watch TV dramas involving barristers. My father, a much more practical man, was desperately trying to convince me I should do a subject that was useful. So I went into the law and really enjoyed it.
I started at Edwards Geldard, one of the ‘big four’ in Cardiff. I joined the IP group because I loved the tech side. Contentious and non-contentious surrounding tech: being paid to do what I enjoyed seemed amazing. Continue reading “Life during law: Jeremy Drew”
My dad was born in Kashmir and was in the Pakistani Air Force, posted to Turkey. India and Pakistan were separating and he decided he wouldn’t go back. He moved to the UK and met my mum at night school. She worked in a biscuit factory when I was a kid and was all about, ‘You’re going to do better than this.’
I didn’t start working life as a lawyer. I’m Asian and started in retail – freshly-squeezed orange juice and health food products. My dad wasn’t impressed. He was first generation here and said: ‘This is a fantastic country with great opportunities, I did not come here for you to be another Asian shopkeeper.’ Continue reading “Life during law: Leona Ahmed”
I was probably the world’s worst children’s entertainer. I needed a Saturday job to earn money but played football on Sunday mornings and rugby on Saturday mornings. A friend had a business that did magic tricks for children’s parties and I could fit the job around the sport. No, I didn’t dress up as a clown. I might have been a bit of a clown, but I didn’t dress up as one! I was the person at whom the children shouted: ‘I know how you’re doing that trick!’
They gave you a Fisher Price magic set. My stage name was Roger because they already had a Michael. I’m amazed you managed to find out about this – I thought it was quite a well-kept secret! Continue reading “Life during law: Mike Francies”