In 1979 a small solicitor’s practice was established in Grantham at the No.15 Castlegate premises. Trading proceeded with modest success for a number of years until in 1985 control of the Firm was taken over by Mr Michael Bird.
Mr Bird, who was admitted as a solicitor in 1969, had been employed for a number of years at a large general practice in the city of Nottingham. His accumulated experience as a full-time prosecutor and then as a criminal practitioner greatly enhanced the capability of the Firm in terms of the range of legal services offered and the types of casework undertaken.
Shortly after Mr Bird’s arrival in Grantham the business commenced trading as Bird & Co Solicitors, and since then, due to a number of associations, mergers and take-overs, all areas of general practice have been strengthened.
In the autumn of 1998 the Partners acquired part of the adjoining premises, No.14A Castlegate, and by the summer of 1999, an office block extension had been constructed, comprising 4 new offices and disabled access. In September 2000 further office space was acquired at No.71 Castlegate and the Firm’s Property, Wills and Probate Department commenced trading from No.71 in October 2000.
In December 2001 the Grantham firm “E N Hamilton and Co” ceased trading and the erstwhile sole practitioner Mr E N Hamilton, a former Deputy District Judge on the Midland and Oxford circuit, joined “Bird & Co. Solicitors”, thereby strengthening the Firm’s private client team.
Expansion continued in September 2002 when the Firm opened a branch office in Newark – a legal service being provided for those clients seeking advice regarding family matters, property transactions, civil disputes and personal injury claims. In March 2005 this Newark enterprise, based at No.11 Middlegate, was developed further when the Firm opened a second office at No. 20 Middle Gate. The purpose of the expansion was to enable criminal casework to be undertaken not only at the Firm’s Grantham site but also at the Firm’s Newark premises.
Meanwhile additional office accommodation was acquired adjacent to the main site in Grantham – a development which eliminated the need to continue leasing the No.71 Castlegate premises. Occupation of No.13 Castlegate by the Firm’s Personal Injury & Civil Litigation Department took place in January 2004 and occupancy of No.12 Castlegate by the Criminal Law Department followed in December 2005.
In July 2006 the Firm opted for a change of status – converting from a traditional partnership to a limited liability partnership and hence becoming known as “Bird & Co Solicitors LLP”. The change made good business sense but in no way affected the high quality of the legal services offered by the Firm – in that context it was, and has remained, very much a case of business as usual.
In January 2014 the Firm was hit by the tragic sudden death of Partner Jane Overland, although heartened by the many tributes paid to Mrs Overland in the months that followed.
In recent years there has been a growth in the international work of the Firm, and a large increase in the amount of conveyancing work.
In July 2016 the Partnership was further expanded with the addition of Daniel Chard, the Firm’s senior conveyancing partner and an experienced commercial property solicitor.