Category Archive: News

Sintons certified as a carbon neutral business

Sintons is now officially certified as a carbon neutral business after working with carbon reduction experts, Planet Mark, to measure and reduce its carbon footprint.

The team achieved the certification – which complies with PAS2060, the international standard for carbon neutrality – through a combination of carbon reduction and carbon offsetting.

Sintons’ Office Services Manager, Matt Warner, explains more: “Since we started working with Planet Mark in 2022, our focus has been on measuring our existing carbon footprint and creating a carbon reduction plan based on that.

“We looked in particular at emissions created through our building – for example through electricity and water usage – by business travel and by the disposal of waste.

“With Planet Mark’s support, we’ve also invested in carbon offsetting, which is when an organisation balances out its own emissions by supporting a project which reduces emissions elsewhere.”

Sintons’ sustainability work is led by its environmental team, which meets regularly and includes members of staff from across the organisation. Together, the group chose to support a carbon offsetting project which provides cleaner, safer water for people in Cambodia by providing water purifiers. This removes the need to boil water, reducing fuel usage and pollution from burning wood.

Although the business has now achieved carbon neutral certification, Matt acknowledges there is still work to do to achieve Sintons’ target of reaching net zero as a business by 2040.

“We’ve reached the target of becoming carbon neutral more quickly than we’d initially hoped but that’s not the end of our journey,” said Matt. “Our next area of focus will be on further scope three emissions, which are those created through our entire supply and value chain. And we’ve also set targets for reducing our emissions even more in the year ahead.”

Find out more about Sintons’ sustainability practices here.

Half a million pounds plus physical and psychological therapy secured for woman hit by car

Sintons has helped a woman secure a settlement of £540,000, plus physical and psychological therapy, after she and her daughter were hit by a car on a pedestrian crossing.

Sintons’ team of personal injury specialists took over from Ms L’s previous law firm, after they submitted her claim via a portal only intended for straightforward, low value cases worth up to £25,000 – despite the seriousness of her injuries.

Adam Burton, an associate in Sintons’ Personal Injury team, explains: “Ms L was walking her daughter to school when a car failed to stop at a pedestrian crossing, hitting them both. She suffered multiple fractures to her ankle and foot and had to undergo several operations.

“Unfortunately, she’s been left with very limited movement in her ankle and went on to develop Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder as well. The effects of that day have been immense and led to her having to give up one of the two jobs she was working and reduce her hours in the other.”

Ms L approached Sintons after she became disillusioned with how her case was being handled by her previous law firm.

“We were more than happy to support Ms L through the process and help her secure the settlement, physiotherapy and psychological therapy she needed.”

“The aftermath of this incident very much affects her day-to-day life and her job prospects. She might also need further surgery, so we wanted to make sure that all of these factors were reflected in the settlement,” said Adam.

Sintons worked with Ms L to put together a claim which included a past and future loss of earnings, along with the cost of future care and help with tasks like housework and gardening, costs of medical devices like orthotics and costs of future operations. The team also made sure she had access to physical and psychological therapy in the meantime.

Ms L was awarded a total of around £540,000 – more than 20 times the amount her previous law firm could have secured via their claim – and received the physiotherapy and cognitive behavioural therapy she urgently needed.

Find out more about our team of personal injury specialists, who help people secure compensation and rehabilitation support, here.

Delivery driver secures settlement after serious collision

A delivery driver who suffered serious injury in a road collision has secured a six figure settlement with support from specialists at law firm Sintons.

The driver was airlifted to hospital after his van was hit by another vehicle, which careered through the central reservation of the A171 near Whitby straight into his path.

He sustained serious injuries to his arm – which required surgery – and his leg as a result of the collision, which happened in September last year at around 1.30pm.

The claimant was returning from Scarborough to Newcastle, after completing his last deliveries of the day, when he was involved in the collision.

A van, travelling in the opposite direction, did not follow the natural bend in the road and came onto the other carriageway, hitting the claimant’s vehicle at around 50mph.

The claimant was cut out of his van by the Fire Brigade, and the Yorkshire Air Ambulance attended the scene to take him to James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough.

Injuries to his right forearm and right tibia meant he was significantly limited in his movement and remained largely housebound.

He appointed serious injury specialists at Sintons to support him in making a claim, with senior associate David Knipe – a lawyer with over 20 years’ experience in this specialist field of work – acting on his behalf.

A six-figure settlement was negotiated by Sintons, which is enabling the man to move on with his life after the horror of the collision.

The claimant praised the support from Sintons – nationally-renowned for its work in personal injury – and particularly that of David Knipe.

“David Knipe is a brilliant and committed lawyer and a great man who I’ve got to know very well,” he said.

“Nothing was any bother to him. Whenever I had questions they were always answered promptly. He’s a top bloke!”

David – hailed by Legal 500 as being a lawyer who ‘puts the client at the heart of the process and is always striving to achieve the best possible result’ – said: “This was an horrific collision in which our client, through no fault of his own, was left with serious injuries which restricted his mobility and ability to work. This has had a significant impact on him and his family.

“We were very pleased to be able to step in and support him to secure a settlement that will enable him to get his life back on track after this hugely distressing incident. For most people, pursuing a claim of this kind is a totally unknown process which can seem daunting, and we are committed to being by the side of our clients every step of the way.

“I am grateful for the kind feedback because it demonstrates that Sintons are delivering on our commitment to providing a first-rate legal and excellent client service, and we all wish him the very best for the future.”

Ask the Experts – a Monthly Q&A with Sintons’ Employment Team – episode 50

Today we recorded our ‘Ask the Experts monthly Q&A with Sintons’ Employment Team – episode 50’ – with Catherine Hope & Samuel Scott.

The team covered the following questions:

  • Should an employee who is off sick over a bank holiday receive a day off in lieu?
  • Is there a risk of discrimination when using AI in the workplace from an HR perspective?
  • What should an employer consider when it comes to offering suitable alternative employment in a redundancy situation?

Please click below to either listen as a podcast or watch as a video.

Man suffered physical and psychological injury in workplace incident

A man who was left with both physical injuries and psychological trauma after being injured while moving goods in a warehouse has been supported by serious injury specialists at Sintons in securing a settlement.

The worker was moving an American-style fridge freezer using a sack trolley when it fell and landed on his right leg.

He suffered a fracture and cuts to his right ankle and soft tissue injury to his right knee, which have caused permanent damage to his mobility.

Medical experts said his injuries would be amplified by prolonged mobilisation, which would disadvantage him in the jobs market, and he was also at risk of degenerative disease in future.

The claimant, who was 49 at the time of his injury, also suffered depression and anxiety as a result of the incident – which was amplified by his employer’s denial of any responsibility.

He turned to serious injury specialists at Sintons for support in making a claim, and was represented by senior associate David Knipe. Legal 500 2023 listed David as a key individual, who is “willing to back the underdog and cares about clients”.

Investigations established that the task of moving the fridge-freezer was not one that was necessary if the warehouse was better organised, and he also lacked training in moving goods. The sack truck being used was also too small and unsuitable for the purpose.

The claimant’s employer denied liability throughout the 3.5 year life of the case, however despite this Sintons were able to secure a settlement.

“Sintons were there to help me pick up the pieces,” said the Claimant.

“They listened to my concerns, believed in me and helped me to get the justice and compensation I deserved. They explained everything in great detail and helped through every step of my fight for justice.

“The most important thing for me was that they believed in me, and fully supported me even though I was being told by my employer that I was the one at fault! They helped me through a low point at that time in my life.

“I would personally like to thank David Knipe, with his expertise and understanding, he explained everything so I could easily understand.”

David Knipe added: “As well as significant physical injury, which will have permanent consequence, the psychological trauma our client suffered through this incident was exacerbated through the defendant’s ongoing denial of any responsibility.

“That added significantly to our client’s ordeal, making him feel like this was his fault and drawing the process out for several years, until we were able to secure a positive outcome which will help our client to look to the future and move on from this very distressing process.

“Sintons, are known for legal excellence and settlements achieved in such circumstances are testament to this. However, we also pride ourselves on the support we give to clients during times of distress – we were absolutely committed to delivering that in this case, and were by the side of our client from the earliest days of the claim and throughout the process supporting him in every way possible.

“We are very pleased to have been able to secure a positive outcome for him, and wish him all the very best in moving on with his life.”

Barnoldswick family speak for first time after horrific crash leaves former Burnley College student with brain injury

A young Barnoldswick man who suffered a traumatic brain injury when a car he was a passenger in collided with a lorry has inspired a fundraising ‘army’ to support others with life-changing injuries. Oliver Stevens’ family feared he may never see, walk or talk again when he was left with brain damage following the horrific crash in West Marton, near Skipton, North Yorkshire, on July 15, 2022. Oliver, who was 21 at the time, suffered life-threatening injuries when his friend’s car collided with a 40-tonne articulated lorry at around 9-30pm at crossroads on the A59.

Oliver, who was a rear-seat passenger, suffered the worst injuries out of the four people in the car, with paramedics spending over an hour on the scene. Oliver’s lungs had collapsed and he wasn’t breathing. They also had to operate to save his eyesight. He was then air lifted to Leeds General Infirmary – home to the region’s Major Trauma Centre, where he spent four weeks in a coma while doctors saved his life.

Oliver suffered several fractures to his skull, paralysis down his left side, broke his ribs and collar bone, and damaged his vision and hearing. He spent months at the trauma centre in Leeds and a further nine weeks at Rakehead Rehabilitation Centre at Burnley General Teaching Hospital, closer to his home in Barnoldswick.

Now, 15 months on from the horrific crash, Oliver, 23, is walking and talking, but is still recovering at home with support from his mum Vicky Mara, who has had to reduce her working hours at family-run estate agents Move In Sales and Lettings in Barnoldswick. He’s also supported by his stepdad John, who works for Rolls Royce in the village, his brothers, and his dad Andy, who was also regularly in hospital. Oliver, a former pupil at Coates Lane Primary School, Barnoldswick, Fisher More RC High School, Colne, and Burnley College, needs regular physiotherapy, speech and language therapy, occupational therapy, and psychological support. The left side of his body, especially his face and arm, still suffers from paralysis.

To help with his rehabilitation, and to keep himself motivated, Oliver decided to take on a 180,000-step walking challenge, which is around 85 miles, over 30 days to raise money for the charity that was there for him and his family.

While at Leeds Major Trauma Centre, Oliver’s family were supported by charity Day One Trauma Support, which provides a caseworker at the hospital to help people who have suffered catastrophic injuries. Day One provided Oliver’s mum Vicky with emotional and practical support, including counselling, legal advice, and a small grant to cover the immediate cost of travel and parking. Vicky, John, and Andy were commuting 80 miles each day to be by their son’s side.

The charity continued to provide support and advice while they were in Burnley, and remain on hand throughout Oliver’s ongoing recovery. Oliver also continues to be supported by specialist law firm Sintons, which is a legal panel member of Day One.

Over the past month, Oliver has been joined by his supportive family and friends to complete the walking challenge, even inspiring others to join Oliver’s Army and walk their own distance to support Day One. This Saturday, Oliver is due to complete his challenge in his home village of Barnoldswick, where he will be joined by all his family and friends for one last walk. So far, he has raised more than £1,000.

To support Oliver click here.

Oliver said: “I’m still in full rehabilitation and this will continue for a long time. It’s hard to motivate myself some days, but this challenge has helped give me the motivation I needed to be more active and help my recovery.

“The money my mum and stepdad needed to visit me in Leeds General Infirmary was £250 a week. That was just for petrol and parking, not including what I needed. I was in hospital for five months. This is why I’m raising money for Day One Trauma Support. They are a small charity and hopefully you will never need them, but they need us.

“Day One supported my family in our darkest days and continue to be there for us. They offer so many services such as counselling and legal information. I can’t imagine not seeing my mum every day when I needed her the most. We were lucky to have such supportive family and friends, but unfortunately some people aren’t as lucky as us and can’t afford the travel expenses. Day One Trauma Support need more money to help all these families be with their loved ones. That’s why I wanted to give something back by walking 180,000 steps over 30 days – around 85 miles. This has been a huge challenge for me, alongside all my rehabilitation too, but it’s been amazing to get the support and donations for such a worthwhile charity.”

Oliver’s mum Vicky, 43, said: “Oliver has always been a fun, loving outgoing person with a big personality, lots of friends and an active life in sports and fitness. Before the accident he wouldn’t have thought twice about walking this distance, but it has been a massive challenge. He’s done amazing and to see how far he has come in 15 months is mind blowing.

“When you’re told your child has brain damage and might not walk or talk, you don’t know what the future will look like. It’s been hard and tough for us all, but he is so strong and motivated and we’re so proud of him.

“When we got the dreaded knock on the door from a policeman who asked if I was Oliver Stevens’ mum, I just froze. He said Oliver had been involved in a serious road crash and the air ambulance was taking him to hospital. When you hear ‘air ambulance’ you know it’s serious.

“The time in hospital was scary. We were limited to how much time we could spend with him when he was in ICU. I was walking round in a bubble. All I was thinking is I want my son to wake up. I just wanted him to be fine.

“Day One Trauma Support were amazing. When I first met their caseworker I just broke down as the enormity of it all dawned on me. I had counselling, which I needed and likely to need in the future. It was really helpful. They helped with legal advice, which was so valuable. I wouldn’t have known where to go. I’ve since learned how important it is to get that legal support as early as possible as it is such a long process.

“I can’t imagine not having any funds to see your child on a daily basis. It’s sad that a lot of people don’t have the funds. For a single mother they might have to decide whether to feed their children or go to hospital, and that’s not a choice anyone should have to make. I can’t imagine what it would have been like without Day One. We hope people don’t ever need Day One, but if they do it’s amazing they exist and should be there for more people.”

Kirsty Christmas, fundraising manager for Day One Trauma Support, said: “Oliver’s story of recovery is truly inspiring. It’s been fantastic to see him back out walking after such horrendous injuries and we’re delighted that he’s completed his challenge, while raising money for Day One. With his help, we can ensure no one is left to rebuild their life on their own following catastrophic injury. A big thank you to Vicky, Oliver and his army of supporters for choosing Day One.”

Featured in The Burnley Express on 20/10/2024.

Sintons praised across the board by Chambers and Partners 2024

Law firm Sintons has again been confirmed as a leader in its field with Chambers and Partners 2024 illustrating its capability in practice areas across the business on a regional and national basis.

The esteemed independent legal publication, released today, highlights the breadth of expertise at Sintons, hailing a number of departments as leaders in the North of England and on a national basis.

It also names a number of key individuals as leading lawyers in their respective areas, showing the talent that exists within Sintons and spans the entire firm.

The findings of Chambers and Partners come only weeks after the release of Legal 500 2024, which also praised Sintons for its delivery of legal and client service excellence in departments throughout the firm.

In Chambers and Partners 2024, Sintons is ranked as being leaders in its field in 14 key department areas in the North of England – four of which are also ranked on a national basis. Twenty seven of its lawyers are also hailed as being experts in their specialist areas of work.

Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons, said: “For over 125 years, we have been known as a law firm which is absolutely committed to our clients, delivering legal and service excellence and placing them at the centre of everything we do.

“For everyone at Sintons, that is our priority and what we strive to achieve – and when it is independently recognised that we are doing so, that is something we take great pride in.

“The findings of Chambers show the deep capability we have here, and acknowledge the outstanding levels of client service we also achieve. This closely mirrors what was reported by Legal 500 in their own independent assessments of our work.

“For everyone at Sintons, this is due recognition of their hard work and commitment, and we are very pleased to again be hailed as a leader in the North of England and beyond.”

Departments ranked 

Individuals ranked 

Apprentice burned while welding suffers permanent scarring

An apprentice who suffered burns and permanent scarring after an incident in February 2020 while he was welding has secured a settlement with support from serious injury specialists at Sintons.

The claimant was welding, initially under supervision, but then left unattended when combustible materials from the weld caused his overalls to catch fire.

The man suffered serious physical injury through burns to his left lower leg, which have caused permanent scarring and required a skin graft.  He experienced severe pain, causing him difficulty in standing and reliance on crutches for several weeks after the incident.

His scarring remains prominent, and could not be improved by laser treatment, and he continues to experience permanent tingling and stabbing pain sensations in his leg.

He also experienced psychological injury and has experienced an adjustment disorder, with anxiety and depressed mood, poor sleep, nightmares, flashbacks and loss of confidence. He remains very anxious about the possibility of undertaking welding duties at work and has been unable to do so since the accident.

The claimant turned to law firm Sintons, a leading name nationally in personal injury work, for support in securing a settlement. Senior Associate David Knipe handled his claim.

Sintons ere able to arrange psychological support, and in addition to his medical treatment, secured a five-figure settlement to help him move forward with his life.

The claimant praised the work of Sintons, and particularly of David, who he hailed as “brilliant”.

“I am unable to fault him and I was pleased to have had him as my lawyer throughout my claim. Everything was explained thoroughly and dealt with swiftly,” he said.

“I would not hesitate to recommend David Knipe and Sintons.”

David Knipe said: “This was a hugely distressing incident for our client, who was going about his apprenticeship and learning skills vital to his future career when this awful incident occurred.  He has been left with permanent scarring and experienced great trauma.

“We are very pleased to have been able to support him in securing access to the therapy and support he needed, and in securing a settlement which will enable him to look to the future.

“At Sintons, we are committed to being by our clients’ sides every step of the way, fighting hard on their behalf to get the best possible outcome for them and their circumstances. We are delighted to have secured a positive conclusion to this case for our client, and his very kind feedback is testament to the service and commitment we provide in each and every matter.”

Man who suffered crush injuries at work secures settlement

A worker whose hand and wrist were crushed while moving barrels at work has been supported by serious injury specialists at Sintons in rebuilding his life.

The man was replacing a barrel of varnish when his hand and wrist were caught between two full barrels.

He was required to work without suitable mechanical lifting equipment. The location was cramped, the plinth he was standing on was slippery and had unsuitable spill mats in place.

The injury caused significant damage to his left hand and left wrist, and also led to psychological problems including stress and depression as a result of the ordeal.

He turned to law firm Sintons, a specialist in serious injury work, for support in seeking justice from his employer.

Through the assistance of the law firm – whose personal injury team is renowned on a national basis for the quality of both its legal capability and client service – the man was able to access bespoke rehabilitation to support his ongoing recovery.

His claim, overseen by senior associate David Knipe, was also settled for a five-figure sum.

The claimant said of his experience at Sintons: “The service I received was second to none.

“Having used solicitors in the past the service I received was excellent, the attention to detail, the ability to contact and discuss issues and the final settlement and charges were excellent.

“If every member of your team is as diligent and professional as David Knipe, then Sintons will thrive and prosper.”

David Knipe added: “Our client suffered both physical and psychological injury while carrying out his work, which left him struggling to recover and in need of  rehabilitation.

“We are very pleased that, through our intervention, he was able to access the bespoke support he badly needed which has enabled him to move on with his life.

“At Sintons, we are very proud of our reputation for fighting on our clients’ behalf to secure the best possible outcome for them and their circumstances, and it is always great to hear the positive feedback which confirms we are delivering on the legal and client service excellence we aspire to.

“We wish our client all the very best for the future and are very pleased we could support him during this difficult time in his life.”

Apogee to acquire Document Specialists, Datatron

Apogee Corporation Ltd has agreed to acquire Datatron Document Image Archiving Ltd, to further strengthen their Outsourced Document Services scale and capabilities. Founded in 1996, Datatron became the first dedicated bureau in the North of England, pioneering Document Scanning Services.

Datatron will complement Apogee’s existing portfolio of Outsourced Document Services, allowing them to deliver a market-leading scanning operation coupled with a unique Virtual Record Management platform. Datatron currently processes over three million documents per week, delivering services to a large number of customers across Private and Public Sectors. They also have a distinguished expertise within the NHS and are responsible for building and maintaining one of the UK’s largest digital patient record archives.

Aurelio Maruggi, CEO of Apogee said, “The Datatron acquisition forms part of our ongoing strategy to be the market leader in Managed Workplace Services, both in the UK and throughout Continental Europe. This acquisition will strengthen our existing portfolio of services, helping Apogee’s and Datatron’s customers to accelerate their adoption of more secure and efficient ways to manage documents and personal records. Digital transformation strategies have resulted in an increased demand for sophisticated scanning and record management requirements as businesses adopt more digital working practices. Utilising Datatron’s experience and expertise in this market, we are excited to see our portfolio of services continue to evolve to match the growing needs of our customers.

Among many industries served by Datatron, their reputation and expertise are particularly strong within the NHS. This represents a perfect match with Apogee’s large and growing presence within this market segment.”

Datatron’s MD, David Popay, commented on the acquisition, “This is an exciting new chapter in Datatron’s 27 year history, the opportunity to blend our specialist digital transformation skills into one of Europe’s leading business service providers is a once in life time event and opens up a wealth of opportunity for Apogee clients.”

Apogee has a great history of growth, both organically led and through M&A, and this acquisition is another part of the journey for the organisation as it continues to strategically strengthen its Managed Workplace Service capabilities.

As organisations continue to evolve and adapt with the introduction of new technology and working behaviours, Apogee aims to help businesses work smarter and work safer in a more sustainable world. Reviewing the technology and processes employees use, Apogee will continue to invest in its portfolio of services, ensuring it continues to provide world-class Managed Workplace Services to its customers.

Legal advice  to the management team was provided by Sintons, led by partner and head of corporateAdrian Dye and supported by Daniel Earle. Adrian added: “We are delighted to assist David and his team on the transaction. Having worked with Datatron for many years, we have seen the business go from strength to strength and the acquisition will allow the business to further develop its services.  We wish the team all the best for the future and are excited to see the next phase of Datatron’s development.”

Decorator secures settlement after dog attack

A decorator who suffered permanent facial scarring after being bitten by a dog while carrying out his work has secured a settlement with support from serious injury specialists at Sintons.

The tradesman was visiting a private address to give a quote for work within the home when he was attacked by the dog who lived there.

The dog had been in the kitchen but escaped when its owner was trying to put it on a lead. It ran at the claimant, jumped up and bit his right upper lip and right side of his nose.

He suffered permanent scarring to his lip and also has ongoing difficulty with his speech. The man has also experienced phobic anxiety disorder around contact with dogs and significant loss of confidence in his appearance.

The claimant turned to Sintons, whose personal injury team is known nationally for its legal and client service excellence, to support him in securing a settlement.

Senior associate David Knipe – hailed by Legal 500 as being a lawyer who ‘puts the client at the heart of the process and is always striving to achieve the best possible result’ – acted for the man in his claim, securing a five-figure settlement.

Hailing the service he received from Sintons as “fantastic”, the claimant added:

“David Knipe was a true gentleman to deal with. I was always updated, and everything was explained to me in detail.

“More than that, I always felt like David was looking after my best interests, everything he said and did was so true to this.”

David, who has specialised in personal injury litigation for over 20 years, said: “This was a very distressing incident for our client, who has been left with permanent physical injury as a result of going about his work. We are very pleased we have been able to support him after this ordeal and secure a positive outcome for him.

“Sintons are renowned for the quality of legal advice we deliver, as well as the personal dedication we have to our clients – we will always fight hard for their best interests and to secure the best possible outcome for them and their circumstances.

“We wish our client in this matter the very best for the future as he rebuilds his life.”

Employment specialist joins Sintons

The employment team at Sintons continues to grow with the addition of a new specialist to the department.

Samuel Scott arrives at Sintons with experience of supporting employers on a range of day-to-day issues, as well as representing clients in the Employment Tribunal and drafting and reviewing settlement agreements.

He has acted for clients across a variety of sectors including hospitality, finance, construction, charity and transport.

Samuel’s arrival at Sintons comes at a time of strong growth for the employment team and firm as a whole, with ongoing recruitment and new client wins helping to further develop the law firm’s capability and capacity.

Sintons’ employment team, led by Keith Land – consistently recognised by Legal 500 as one of the leading lawyers in the North of England – is regarded as one of the leaders in its field in the North, acting for growing numbers of well-known clients on a range of matters. It gained national recognition for its support of businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic, during which it made a range of resources available for free to assist during the unprecedented times.

“Sintons has a strong reputation for its employment specialism and I am very pleased to join a team known for its commitment to delivering a first-class legal and personal service to clients,” said Samuel.

Christopher Welch, managing partner at Sintons, said: “Our employment team is held in the highest regard and acts for growing numbers of businesses and organisations across the North East and beyond. We continue to see a period of strong growth, which is testament to the work and capability of Keith and his team.

“We are very pleased to welcome Samuel to Sintons and look forward to working alongside him as we work together to make even stronger progress, while being absolutely committed to delivering the best possible service to our clients.”

The life-changing impact of prosthetics

After an incident which forced a man to have his arm amputated, the use of cutting-edge prosthetics has proved key in him being able to rebuild his life.

Undergoing an amputation just below the shoulder after his right arm was dragged into a conveyor belt at the recycling centre where he worked, the man suffered both physical and psychological trauma.

While his specialist solicitors at law firm Sintons were able to secure a £1.83m settlement and a bespoke package of therapy to support him in his recovery, their ability to access cutting-edge prosthetics has proved particularly key in him being able to look to the future.

Through relationships with specialist prosthetics providers including Blatchford, and the London Prosthetics Centre – part of Sintons’ vast national network to support personal injury clients – the man was able to access state of the art prosthetic devices to help him resume many activities in his life, in a way he feared would no longer be possible.

In this case, the claimant was fitted with a Myoelectric arm which can be used with  two separate electronic hands, one to allow fine movement and the other for heavier more demanding tasks. These represented  some of the many options on the market, the suitability of which will be  determined by a person’s unique needs and circumstances.

The electronic components with the myoelectric prostheses are ultimately controlled by input from electrical signals generated by muscles in the injured person’s residual limb and allow much greater levels of function than manual prosthetics.

Technological advances have made this more intuitive than ever before, and after skilled training with this device, the man could control multiple features in his arm, from his shoulder to his hand.

The electric Greifer hand enables a powerful grip giving the user the ability to hold items securely and to handle heavy objects. The Tasker Hand user can adjust the functionality and requirements of the hand in just a few seconds, and also adjust further for particular tasks.

In addition to the myoelectric prosthesis The man was also fitted with the latest cosmetic prosthesis, which has a the high resolution silicon finish to ensure the most realistic appearance, for use at social events where arm function is not so critical..

The latest technology enables the closest resemblance to a person’s skin tone and characteristics before the amputation, including matched pigmentation, freckles, veins, hair and tattoos.

Supported by bespoke therapy and rehabilitation from a highly experienced team, the man is now able to enjoy function and use in his right arm which he feared had been lost forever at the point of amputation.

Phil Davison, head of the general personal injury team at Sintons, led this claim and said the impact advanced prosthetics can have on a person’s life can truly be transformational.

“ Finding the right prosthetic limb for a person after the trauma of amputation can be a truly life-changing moment and can add a whole new dimension to their their recovery,” says Phil, regularly hailed by Legal 500 as one of the leading lawyers in the North of England.

“The ongoing advances in technology mean that cosmetic prosthetics are incredibly life like in many respects.. Whilst such prosthetics are not particularly functional, they can greatly assist an individual in dealing  with the change in their appearance, and can be of substantial psychological benefit.

“This combined with the  advancing functionality of prosthetics is of huge benefit to our clients. Their ability to integrate with muscle function and replication of lifelike movement – with even the benefits of being able to participate in sports or heavy lifting – enables a person to resume many activities they feared may have been lost. The significance of regaining a substantial degree of independence cannot be understated. It is extremely gratifying to see somebody develop confidence and skill in the use of their prosthesis with the opportunities that become available to them as a consequence. It is no understatement to suggest it is a life changing process, both of them and their family.

“This case in particular points to the huge impact of appropriate prosthetics – our client lost his arm in extremely traumatic circumstances, but his participation in everything from basic tasks to sports has been absolutely critical in him being able to look forward and move on with his life.”

The relationships and the national network of experts that Sintons have  established through its position  as leading personal injury specialists proves very important in situations like this, says Phil.

“This is a sizeable and growing field, with new devices and providers coming into the market all the time.  Our experience of supporting clients after life-changing injuries and the network we have developed ensures that we can keep abreast of the latest changes and innovations,” he says.

Our network continues to expand so we are fully on top of all the latest introductions which may benefit our clients.

“Over many years, we have seen the changing face of prosthetics, and the hugely positive impact they have on clients’ lives – something which is only increasing with the development of their appearance and function. It gives us as a team great satisfaction to see our clients benefit from this and to enable them to move forward in their lives with the support of the right prosthesis.”

JCT 2024 is on the way

The Joint Contracts Tribunal (“JCT”) contracts is one of the most widely used standard form suite of construction contracts in the UK. With the current edition of the JCT contracts being published in 2016, the time has come for an updated suite to take account of recent legislation, case law and market practice. We are currently short on detail, but the JCT has outlined some key changes it hopes to make in the 2024 editions, as follows:

Modernising and streamlining

JCT users can expect to see provisions that allow for increased flexibility for notices to be sent electronically together with electronic signing, which we are sure will be a welcome change as the industry continues to take a progressive approach to digital working.

The JCT 2024 will also see the adoption of gender neutral language across the suite of contracts.  We are particularly pleased to see this announcement given our recent work alongside Constructing Excellence in the North East and other law firms in the region, and our commitment to adopting gender neutral language in the drafting of bespoke construction and engineering contracts and ancillary documentation.

Legislative change

Given the key recent changes to the law, namely the Building Safety Act, it has been reported that the new edition will include significant updates in this regard. Further, changes will be made to take into account the new insolvency grounds that were introduced under the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act 2020.

Additionally, the new edition will include a due date for final payment after termination, which will remove the uncertainty on this point within the 2016 suite and will reflect the requirements of the Construction Act.

Liquidated Damages and Termination

We understand the new edition will make clear when liquidated damages apply upon termination to take account of the decision of the Supreme Court in Triple Point Technology Inc v PTT Public Company Ltd in which it was confirmed that a liquidated damages clause will generally only apply up to the termination of a contract, with general damages for delay applicable thereafter. A full discussion of this case can be found here.

Extensions of Time

It is anticipated that the period of time for an Employer to assess an extension of time claims will be reduced from 12 weeks to 8 weeks from receipt of the required particulars.

In addition, there will be updates as to how statutory powers are dealt with and ‘Statutory Undertakers’ will be redefined to ‘Statutory Providers’.

Finally, new Relevant Events will be included to deal with epidemics, unexploded ordnance, contaminated materials and asbestos.

Resolving Disputes

The JCT 2024 is reported to put further emphasis on senior executives to meet sooner in an attempt to negotiate a settlement to disputes. It is also envisaged that parties will be able to choose their own Adjudicator Nominating Body as opposed to a shortlist being provided.

Future Proofing

It is anticipated that the changes will reflect the Construction Playbook and will incorporate previously optional provisions that relate to collaborative working and other matters such as sustainability.

New Target Cost Contract

Finally, JCT will be introducing its own JCT Target Cost Contract which will comprise a main contract, sub-contract and guide.  This contract is likely to be seen as an alternative to NEC ECC Option C.

The foregoing provides only outline detail at this stage, and we will be providing further updates and training in due course.

Summer Social golf and networking events programme unveiled

A series of golf and networking events are to be held by Sintons to help bring together the region’s business community.

The Summer Social events – held during July, August and September – are being run jointly with CMYK Business Technology at Close House.

The events have been created to help bring together people working across the region’s business community in an informal atmosphere.

Sintons is committed to supporting the development of business in the North East, and holds a number of events to provide a focal point for networking and social opportunity for business figures and professional advisors.

The Summer Social programme – held on July 4 and 18; August 1 and 29; and September 12 and 26 – runs from 5pm, with tee-off time for nine holes of golf at 5.30pm and networking from 7.30pm.

A prize will be given for the best score over three cards submitted.

David Pritchard, head of marketing at Sintons, says: “At Sintons, we have a very busy programme of events designed to help bring professionals from across the region together, to meet and socialise in an informal and enjoyable setting. After so long being apart during the COVID-19 pandemic, we are finding that social opportunities are especially welcome.

“Our Summer Social events, which we are pleased to host alongside CMYK, are set to follow that trend and we expect a great turnout of golfers of all abilities in what promises to be a series of great evenings.”

Quiz held to support Trainee Challenge fundraising

An annual quiz night hosted by Sintons’ trainee group is returning for 2023, to help raise funds for the firm’s staff charity.

The Trainee Challenge Quiz Night is being held to help support fundraising for this year’s Trainee Challenge, which has seen the 11-strong group successfully complete the Three Peaks Challenge.

Their fundraising goes to The People’s Kitchen, which supports homeless and vulnerable people in Newcastle with food and friendship, and is Sintons’ staff charity for two years.

The quiz night is a popular annual event in Sintons’ calendar, which attracts attendees from across the region. It is being held this year on July 6 in Shearer’s Bar at St James’ Park.

Sintons’ trainee group has already raised a significant total from its completion of the Three Peaks Challenge earlier this month, which saw them scale the peaks of Pen-y-Ghent (694 metres), Whernside (736 metres) and Ingleborough (723 metres) within 12 hours.

Over the years, the annual Trainee Challenges have raised thousands of pounds for regional good causes.

David Pritchard, head of marketing at Sintons and chair of the firm’s CSR committee, says: “Every year, our trainees dedicate themselves to training for and completing a gruelling physical challenge, in addition to their legal work and studies, to help raise funds for charity. This year, they have again excelled themselves with the completion of the Three Peaks Challenge.

“Through this ever-popular quiz night, we can help support them further in their fundraising, while also offering attendees an enjoyable social opportunity. To date, they have already raised a fantastic sum for The People’s Kitchen – at a time when their resources have never been more in demand, and fundraising has never been more necessary – and we’re very grateful to those who will join us on the night in helping to add even more to that total.”

The event, hosted by David Pritchard and Peter Jennings, will be held on July 6 from 6pm to 10pm in Shearer’s Bar, Strawberry Place, Newcastle. There will also be a raffle and game of heads and tails.

A table of six costs £60 or an individual place is £10. To attend, contact Peter Jennings on or sign up here

Meet the Family Team with Jo Scott

What is your role in the team and how long have you been at Sintons?

I am a senior associate at Sintons and joined in May 2023

Tell us about your career to date…

I have 30 years’ experience as a specialist family solicitor, and I have worked in the North East throughout that time.

I have been a qualified Resolution-accredited collaborative lawyer since 2010, and then gained accreditation as a Resolution-qualified solicitor mediator.

What attracted you to join Sintons?

Having practiced in the North East throughout my career, I am well aware of the high quality service it delivers to clients, and the legal expertise it has always had within its team. Its reputation in the marketplace really does stand out so the opportunity to join Sintons was a welcome one.

Through my long track record in working in family law, I have come to know Louise Masters, head of family law at Sintons, and consultant Elizabeth Gallagher through working with them both collaboratively and non-collaboratively. They are both very highly rated and highly esteemed names in family law, so I am delighted to work alongside them.

Additionally, I am very impressed by Sintons’ ongoing drive towards achieving net zero and the commitment of the firm in getting there. The firm’s CSR policy and how active it is in the local community clearly shows its ethos and was another factor in me wanting to join.

What does your role involve?

I am committed to supporting clients with a range of issues arising from the breakdown of relationships, including divorce, separation agreements, dissolution of civil partnerships and issues arising from the breakdown of a cohabiting relationship.

Through my many years of experience in this specialist area of law, I can handle with the full spectrum of matters associated with separation, but I specialise in complex financial arrangements and resolving issues involving children that arise upon the breakdown of a relationship. I also advice on pre- and post-nuptial agreements.”

Furthermore, I help to mentor junior members of staff within our team, supporting their development as they build their careers.

The award-winning Family team is one of the most highly rated in the North of England. What are the advantages of being part of it?

This is a fantastic team of people who I enjoy working with both personally and professionally. We were recently shortlisted again in the Northern Law Awards, verifying our place as one of the leaders in our field in the North of England. We are all committed to building our capability in family law even further.

While I have worked in this area of law for many years, I love how I continue to learn and grow within this team. The opportunities for continued development are fantastic and we are developing as a team too.

How does Sintons differ from other firms you have worked in?

Sintons has a fantastic reputation which is well known across the North East, but what has really struck me during my time here is the friendliness of the everybody who works here. From my very first day I have been made to feel very welcome.

But while it is a lovely place to work, it still maintains a very professional approach with an uncompromising level of client care, which are standards I have always aspired to deliver throughout my career.

What are your interests outside of work?

I love all things outdoors – particularly hiking, running, and gardening. I am also a fan of pilates.

Newcastle Building Society commits to Hexham with £500,000 investment into branch premises

The North East’s biggest building society has invested nearly £500,000 in Hexham and committed to its future in the town by acquiring the long-term leasehold of its Beaumont Street branch.

Newcastle Building Society created its full service and financial advice branch in the former Dickinsons site opposite Hexham Abbey in 2019 as part of its multi-million pound branch network investment programme.

Having traded successfully from the Beaumont Street space for the last four years, the Society has now chosen to acquire a 999-year lease for the branch, with freeholder Abbey View (North East) Ltd also set to invest in adapting the building’s upper floors into residential accommodation.

In further good news for the town, the Society’s previous branch next door is set to be occupied by a new tenant over the next few months, having been empty for the past few years.

The 1,410 sq ft Beaumont Street branch was designed to provide a modern and welcoming environment that offers customers easy access to services, information and advice.

It also includes a community space in which local people, groups and good causes are able to hold meetings and events.

The Society’s commitment to Hexham is the latest phase of its branch investment programme which includes the launch of a UK-first pilot to install multi-bank technology in two of its branches. Customers of any bank are able to use the OneBanx kiosks located in the Society’s Knaresborough and Gosforth branches to withdraw and deposit cash and coins from their accounts securely by use of a mobile app. Both Knaresborough and Gosforth have seen several bank branches close over recent years.

Michael Conville, chief customer officer at Newcastle Building Society, says: “We created a modern new branch in Hexham four years ago and that decision has been more than justified by the response of local people over the last four years.

“Customers tell us repeatedly how much they value the reassurance and friendly service they receive in a branch and the cost of living crisis means local communities need local financial services more than ever. Whilst other providers are closing branches on our high streets, we’re innovating and investing in our branch network, with a clear ambition to open more if our local communities tell us they need them. Our commitment to Hexham is a part of that investment and we’re delighted to have secured our long-term future in the town.”

Allan Fenwick, director of Abbey View (North East), said: “We’re delighted to collaborate with Newcastle Building Society in their acquisition of the long leasehold; construction work repurposing the previously defunct commercial upper floor space into residential accommodation will start soon.”

Advice on acquiring the leasehold was provided to Newcastle Building Society by law firm Sintons and commercial property consultants Reid Birkett.

Trainee Challenge 2023 will tackle the Yorkshire Three Peaks

Sintons’ trainee group will embark on the Yorkshire Three Peaks Challenge for the Trainee Challenge 2023, it has been announced.

The annual Trainee Challenge is a key part of Sintons’ annual fundraising effort, and sees the firm’s graduate trainees and solicitor apprentices undertake an ambitious physical challenge to raise vital funds for the firm’s nominated charity.

For 2023, the 11-strong trainee group will take on the Yorkshire Three Peaks Challenge, which involves climbing the peaks of Pen-y-Ghent (694 metres), Whernside (736 metres) and Ingleborough (723 metres), in under 12 hours.

After training together in the coming months, the group will take on the challenge in early summer, with the aim of raising hundreds of pounds for The People’s Kitchen, Sintons’ current staff charity.

Previous Trainee Challenges have included last year’s Paddle the Bann – a two-day 58km canoeing expedition from Lough Neagh in Ireland to Coleraine on the coast of the Atlantic; the 136-mile Coast to Coast cycle trek from Whitehaven to Tynemouth; and the Three Peaks Challenge of scaling Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Mount Snowdon – a combined height of 3,408 metres.

Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons, says: “Our annual Trainee Challenge is a renowned event within the firm, with our trainee group going to ever greater lengths to challenge themselves while raising vital funds for local charities.

“At Sintons, we are always very keen to promote the importance of exercise in both physical and mental wellbeing, and our trainees challenging themselves in this way is hugely positive. The Trainee Challenge also strengthens the great relationship our young lawyers enjoy in the workplace, which only increases their ability to do an outstanding job for our clients.

“Everyone at Sintons is always only too keen to wish the trainees well on their challenge, keenly following their progress through their training in the run-up to the main event itself, and we all wish them the very best of luck. The Yorkshire Three Peaks Challenge is known as a very physically demanding challenge, and we are very grateful our trainee group are taking this on to help increase our support for The People’s Kitchen.”

To add your support to the Trainee Challenge 2023, please click here

Neurotrauma team continues to grow with new appointment

The growth of the Neurotrauma team at Sintons is continuing with the appointment of a new specialist.

Nadia Hussain has worked in personal injury for over ten years and has extensive experience of litigation, with a strong track record in securing strong outcomes for clients.

She joins Sintons at a time of strong growth for its Neurotrauma team, which continues to win new instructions from across the country on the strength of its reputation for legal and client service excellence.

Supporting clients and their families after life-changing brain and spinal cord injury, Sintons is known for fighting hard to secure the best possible outcome for the unique circumstances of each client, giving them access to the rehabilitation and compensation that will enable them to rebuild their lives.

“Sintons has a very strong reputation for its legal excellence and its support of clients and I am very pleased to move here,” says Nadia.

“I pride myself on going above and beyond for my clients, to give them the best level of service and dedication, and it is great to be working with colleagues who share that commitment. I look forward to working with them to achieve the very best for our clients.”

Andrew McGowan, head of Neurotrauma, says: “We are delighted to welcome Nadia to our team, at what is a time of strong and ongoing growth for us.

“The reputation we have for our Neurotrauma work is hard earned and well deserved, and we continue to win new instructions on a national basis, the majority of which come from referral or recommendation – a huge independent endorsement of what we are delivering.

“There is huge capability and experience in our team, and great potential in here too, and together we are committed to building our department and its reputation further still. We look forward to working with Nadia in achieving that.”

Sintons take on 100k in June challenge

A team of cyclists from law firm Sintons are taking part in a fundraising challenge to raise vital funds for a charity which supports people from the earliest days after life-changing injury.

The cyclists are taking part in the 100k in June challenge, run by Day One Trauma Support, which is calling for individuals or teams across the country to complete the distance to raise money to help fund its work.

The charity works in a number of Major Trauma Centres across the country to give personalised to support to individuals and families after life-changing injury.

From the very earliest days post-injury, Day One’s team will stay with families for an indefinite period, providing practical advice and guidance on how they can rebuild their lives.

It is the only national charity to provide personalised care to anyone affected by any kind of catastrophic injury, their loved ones and their families, for as long it is needed.

Sintons, whose serious injury team is nationally renowned for its work, works closely with Day One to support its work as a fast-growing charity, as well as delivering its expert legal advice and outstanding client service to families when needed.

The team, which will also comprise members from Parklane Plowden Chambers, will complete their 100k by cycling the 25k route around Kielder Reservoir on June 17.

Sintons has taken on a number of cycling challenges previously, including some on behalf of Day One, and is a longstanding supporter of a number of charities which make a difference to the lives of seriously injured people and their families.

Phil Davison, head of personal injury, said: “We see first-hand that the work and intervention of Day One truly changes lives. From the earliest days after life-changing injury, when the outlook may be unknown and the situation can be extremely traumatic and distressing, to have people by your side to guide you through that is absolutely invaluable.

“As specialist serious injury lawyers, we know how much that matters to families, and as such are only too keen to support Day One in any way we can. The 100k in June challenge is a great initiative for exercise and wellbeing, which we are always keen to promote at Sintons, while also raising vital funds for a great cause.

“We will be getting back on our bikes for this great challenge, joined again by colleagues from Parklane Plowden, and are grateful for any support in helping to sustain and further develop the work of Day One and its brilliant team.”

* To donate to Sintons in their 100k in June challenge, click here

Brighter Times On The Horizon

Well nobody saw that coming!  This may seem an unusual way to start an article, but if you cast your mind back to this article 12 months ago, we thought that the industry had turned the corner, the dark days of Covid-19 were behind us, and there was plenty of opportunity to bounce back to profitability.

But how could we foresee the troubles that have hit the industry in the last 12 months?

With utility prices sky high, product prices rising as a result of suppliers carrying increased costs of production, the high rate of inflation hitting the pound in the pocket of many punters, and the chaos that followed September’s mini-budget, it became another increasingly tough year for many in the industry. With hindsight, it seems like the sector had walked out of a dark tunnel into the light, but that light was just the lightning flashes of the approaching storm!

But as always, this industry we love has been resilient and found a way forward. New outlets have popped up all over, from smaller microbusinesses (pubs and street food outlets), through to high end fine dining establishments, indeed it can easily be argued there has never been a better time to be a foodie in the region. Other areas of the industry have also continued to thrive, such as the holiday and caravan park market, where demand for sites is higher than ever and prices being paid are at all-time highs.

There has also been a strong uptick in the conversion of former retail space to leisure uses, so much so that statistics indicate the number of bars, large venues and high street units increased by 0.5%. Whist Pubs sit within a Sui Generis planning class, the introduction of Class E has allowed food focused operators to benefit from this relaxation in planning laws, and we’ve been pleased to see the opening of outlets such as NQ64 on Pilgrim Street and Four Quarters on Dean Street in Newcastle City Centre, which both build on the competitive socialising scene.

Licensing however remains tight in many city centre locations and as licensing authorities begin to review the pavement licences granted during Covid-19, there are no doubt some more changes to come.

That is not to say that there have not been closures of businesses, but the severity of closures was not as severe as many feared. The CGA/Alix Partners Report for October 2022 confirmed that total pub numbers in England & Wales declined by just 0.6% in the preceding 12 months (the increase in city centre venues, being offset by closures in the traditional wet led sector). This means that the total number of pubs would sit just short of 46,000 for the start of the year. These numbers, however, strongly suggest a distinct slowing in the rate of decline over the last 5 years.

Now whilst last year was undoubtedly hard work, there are still lots of positive things coming up. Once again, the RFL Magic Weekend returns to Newcastle, for an unprecedented 7th time, and the continued performance of Newcastle United, Middlesbrough and Sunderland will continue to ensure the hostelries of their respective town centres are full on match days. Music, Comedy and Theatre performances are back, audiences are growing and Sam Fender’s two nights at St James’ Park and Beyonce at the Stadium of Light will be the biggest shows the cities have seen for some time. Hopefully, the recent Business Rates Revaluation will result in reduced liabilities for operators, but even if your Rateable Value has not fallen, there are still ways to make sure that you are making the most of the savings available.

Whilst 2022 didn’t prove to be the year we all hoped, there’s every reason to think 2023 looks like it’s going to be another interesting year and hopefully, this isn’t another false dawn.

Article from our North East Leisure Supplement 2023, produced in conjunction with Sanderson Weatherall.

Sarah Smith, Head of Licensing and Gambling at Sintons – – 0191 226 4897.

David Downing, Partner at Sanderson – 0191 226 4897. 

Sintons supports ABI Week

Law firm Sintons is again giving its support to an annual campaign to raise awareness of brain injury and its impact on individuals and families.

Action for Brain Injury (ABI) Week 2023 is themed around ‘Every 90 Seconds’ – shining a light on the fact that every 90 seconds someone in the UK is admitted to hospital with a brain injury.

ABI Week, led by brain injury charity Headway, highlights the scale of brain injury nationally – with one in three people sustaining brain injury in their lifetime – the support on offer, and the need for even greater provision of resources.

Sintons has again thrown its weight behind ABI Week – which runs from May 15 to 21 – committing its support to doing all it can to improve the lives of survivors and their families.

The law firm’s Neurotrauma team is renowned nationally for its support of clients with brain injury, fighting hard on their behalf to secure the best possible settlement and access to rehabilitation to enable them to rebuild their lives after trauma.

Andrew McGowan, head of Neurotrauma at Sintons, says: “It is a truly shocking statistic that someone will be admitted to hospital every 90 seconds with a brain injury – something that can be a truly life-changing event, which can shatter the lives of whole families in an instant.

“As a law firm absolutely committed to supporting these survivors and their families, we see first-hand the devastation this can cause every day. For this reason, we are only too keen to support valuable initiatives like ABI Week.

“This very important week provides a focal point for the need for greater awareness of brain injury, and with it more and better access to resources for survivors and their families in the community. We will always do all we can to champion such vital issues.”

Sintons racks up thousands of miles during Active April

Around 7,000 miles were covered by 50 staff at Sintons during a month-long initiative to promote wellbeing through activity at the law firm.

The Active April challenge brought together people from across the business, working together in teams of five to accrue as many miles as possible.

The participation of 50 staff is the most the annual challenge has ever had, with activities including walking, running, cycling, rowing and swimming.

Active April – which has previously been known as Miles in March at the firm – supports Sintons’ commitment to promoting health and wellbeing among its team, with exercise playing a key role in that.

This year’s challenge was organised by trainee solicitor Emily Richardson and facilities assistant Simon Anderson, who coordinated teams’ activities throughout the month.

Gemma Hewitt, head of HR at Sintons, said: “Getting active is a really important way to create healthy habits both for your physical and mental health.

“Active April has been a fun way to get people doing physical activities they may not have done before, enjoying the fresh air and getting to know their team members.

“We have recently signed up to the Better Heath at Work Award and this is a fantastic way to continue to support our colleagues on important aspects of their own health and wellbeing.”

Christopher Welch, managing partner at Sintons, added: “Supporting the wellbeing of our team is something we care deeply about at Sintons. Our absolute commitment is to delivering the best possible service to our clients, but in doing that, we must also be mindful of taking steps to safeguard our own health and wellbeing.

“Active April has been a real success, with a record number of our team taking part and a phenomenal total being achieved. Initiatives of this kind are also very important in team building, and strengthening relationships between colleagues further still.”

Sintons’ charity golf day returns for 2023

Golfers can help raise vital funds for a much-loved charity which supports vulnerable people living in Newcastle by attending Sintons’ upcoming golf day.

The firm’s 2023 Charity Golf Day is always a hugely popular annual event, with teams competing for accolades including the overall winner, straightest drive, longest drive and nearest the pin.

This year, the event – held on May 11 at Close House, home of the world’s only two Lee Westwood golf courses – will be raising money for The People’s Kitchen, which is Sintons’ nominated charity.

The People’s Kitchen has been supporting homeless and vulnerable people in Newcastle since 1985, giving daily hot meals and other vital supplies to those in need. Staffed entirely by volunteers, its resources are under unprecedented pressure amidst the cost of living crisis.

The golf day entry fee is £300 per team of four, which includes breakfast, golf and a two-course meal.

David Pritchard, head of marketing and chair of Sintons’ CSR committee, said: “Our charity golf day is keenly anticipated and always oversubscribed, and brings together professionals from across the region in a day of friendly competition and social opportunity. It’s always a great occasion.

“But more importantly, it helps to raise vital funds for a charity whose support has never been more badly needed. We are very proud to have The People’s Kitchen as our nominated charity, with it playing a crucial role in enabling individuals and families from our city to find friendship and support during times they need it most.

“We hope for another fantastic turnout for this year’s golf day and look forward to meeting our guests in May.”

* To sign up for the Charity Golf Day, contact Peter Jennings on or 0191 226 7907

Double shortlisting for Sintons in Northern Law Awards 2023

The specialist family and dispute resolution teams at Sintons has been shortlisted for a prestigious award in recognition of their expertise and dedication to client service.

Both teams have been named as finalists in the Northern Law Awards 2023, which acknowledge the outstanding efforts of businesses and individuals working in the legal sector across the North of England.

Sintons’ family and dispute resolution teams are both previous winners of these awards in 2019.

Sintons’ family team – a previous winner of this award, having secured it in 2019 – has a long track record in supporting people in matters of separation and divorce, as well as in protective planning for the future. It is a specialist in high net worth matters, as well as cases involving children and those with complex assets.

Its shortlisting for the Northern Law Awards is the latest recognition for the specialist team, after winning praise from both Legal 500 and Chambers 2023 as a “knowledgeable and respected” advisor committed to delivering legal and client service excellence.

The highly esteemed dispute resolution team, which has a top-tier ranking by Legal 500, has a long track record in supporting businesses and individuals regionally and nationally in achieving the best possible outcome in the event of a dispute.

Hailed as “excellent”, it works across a wide range of sectors and has some of the eminent names in dispute resolution in the North of England in its team, including partners Hilary Waters – also head of department – Angus Ashman and Graeme Ritzema.

The family and dispute resolution teams were the only department at Sintons to enter this year’s awards, and team members will be attend the ceremony on June 22.

Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons, said: “We are of course delighted to see Sintons shortlisted twice in the Northern Law Awards, which are regarded as a benchmark of quality and ability in the legal sector in this region.

“Sintons is known throughout the business for our commitment to securing the best possible outcome for clients, working hard on their behalf to achieve that in what can often be very complex situations.

“This is true of both our family and dispute resolution teams, both of which are well used to negotiating sensitive situations to secure the best outcome for their clients. Our reputation in both of these very specialists areas of law is hard earned and well deserved, and we are very proud of the independent recognition we continue to secure.”

Sintons strides towards net zero status

Law firm Sintons is stepping up its efforts in carbon efficiency by working with an international leader in sustainability to help achieve its sector-leading target of securing net zero status by 2040.

Sintons has partnered with Planet Mark, an organisation which works with some of the biggest names in the UK to support them in collectively creating a more sustainable future for the planet.

Newcastle-based Sintons has long been committed to reducing its carbon footprint, and has continually implemented initiatives to reduce paper and energy usage within its headquarters, The Cube.

Now, in what is known as the ‘Decade of Action’ to address the climate emergency, Sintons is working alongside Planet Mark to enable it to achieve net zero by 2040 – ten years ahead of the Government’s proposed 2050 deadline.

Targeting a reduction of 2.5 per cent in carbon emissions each year to get to net zero, Sintons will be supported to achieve PAS 2060 carbon neutrality status, which it hopes to achieve in the near future and has recently become a Planet Mark Certified Business.

Securing Planet Mark certification recognises an organisation’s continuous improvement and action to reduce its carbon footprint, and builds a community of like-minded ventures and people who are committed to making a difference.

And in addition to the carbon efficiency work being done in The Cube and by members of the Sintons team, Sintons’ work with Planet Mark will also be supporting charity Cool Earth to protect areas of the Ashaninka endangered rainforest in Central Peru, as well as sustainability pioneer The Eden Project.

Matt Warner, office services manager at Sintons, is leading the firm’s sustainability efforts.

“The need to be more sustainable has been a concern for Sintons for many years now, and we are very proud of the efforts we have made in cutting our emissions,” he says.

“However, we are very aware of the need to do more and urgency with which to act, and are delighted to be working with Planet Mark in enabling us to really focus on delivering our ambitions of securing net zero by 2040.

“This is an ambitious target, but one we are committed to meeting. We are working with colleagues throughout the business in considering the environmental impact of all of our activities, individually and collectively, and to implement actions in how to increase our performance in these areas.

“We are very pleased with the progress we are making already in our work with Planet Mark, and their support will be vital in us achieving our goals.”

Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons, adds: “Being environmentally responsible is a massive issue for businesses and one absolutely every one of us needs to act upon without delay.

“We are already a sector leader in this field, through our early action on this issue over the course of several years, so are now in a strong position to take this forward with the support of Planet Mark.

“Few are aspiring to achieve net zero ten years ahead of the Government deadline, but as a business very conscious of our role in protecting the planet, we recognise the need to take action without delay and are proud to lead the way on this.”

Sintons sponsors Headway Darlington conference

A conference shining a light on the need for early intervention after brain injury, and which brings together a number of key figures to look at the topic, is being sponsored by Sintons.

The Headway Darlington conference on 19 May 2023 has a theme of ‘Every 90 Seconds Counts’ which ties in with National ABI Week, and aims to highlight that earlier intervention post-discharge vastly aids TBI recovery.

The Darlington and Tees Valley area has traditionally seen a lack in post-discharge resource, meaning that Headway groups have played a particularly vital role in supporting brain injury survivors and their families.

The conference, on May 19, brings together Luke Griggs, Chief Executive of Headway UK, with other speakers including Peter Gibson, MP for Darlington, Dr Janet Walker, Medical Director for Tees Valley ICB, and Dr Geoff Hill, Consultant Neuropsychologist at South Tees Hospitals.

Sophie Moore, Senior Associate in Sintons’ specialist Court of Protection team, will also deliver a presentation, alongside Jo Wallis from Headway Tyneside, and Headway Darlington members Bill and Dorothy Barclay.

As a leading advisor nationally in brain injury and Neurotrauma, Sintons supports clients from across the country in rebuilding their lives. Much of the firm’s work comes from referrals by fellow neuro professionals on the strength of Sintons track record of delivering excellent client service and legal expertise.

Alastair Elliot, Partner in the Neurotrauma team at Sintons, and a Trustee of Headway Darlington, said: “The problems around access to resources for brain injury survivors after discharge from an acute setting is well-documented. It is not an issue seen only in this area, it is a matter of great national concern – but we are committed to playing our role in tackling this.

“By bringing together a number of leading figures in our area, we will look at how every 90 seconds really does count, and why early intervention can be absolutely critical to securing the best outcomes for survivors.

“This conference brings together professionals, people living with brain injury and family members from across the region, and will look at the steps being taken to improve post-discharge provision in our area. We are very much looking forward to welcoming them to Darlington.”

The Every 90 Seconds Counts conference will be held on May 19 2023, from 10.30am, at the Mercure Darlington Kings Hotel. To register your interest please email

Sintons sponsors walking football initiative

A walking football initiative for brain injury survivors – the first of its kind connected to a Premier League club – is being sponsored by Sintons.

The initiative is delivered by the Newcastle United Foundation and Headway Tyneside, and enables people with brain injury to enjoy sport, stay active and socialise in a safe environment.

The weekly sessions have been in operation for a number of months and have proved popular with survivors from across Tyneside, and are held at the Foundation’s recently-opened NUCASTLE community hub, which is only minutes’ walk from Newcastle United’s St James’ Park.

Law firm Sintons has become the sponsor of the walking football sessions, securing the future of the initiative and its vital role in helping to rebuild lives.

Sintons, whose headquarters neighbours both NUCASTLE and St James’ Park, is a leading advisor nationally in brain injury and Neurotrauma work and supports survivors from across the country in accessing all possible opportunities for rehabilitation.

“After brain injury, life for many people can look very different – social opportunities and levels of activity can both suffer, so this walking football initiative is hugely important in survivors being able to rebuild their lives,” says Andrew McGowan, head of Neurotrauma at Sintons.

“We are very fortunate to have such a great initiative, the first to be linked to a Premier League club, right on our doorsteps in Newcastle, and it is fantastic to see the Newcastle United Foundation and Headway Tyneside working together to deliver these sessions.

“We at Sintons are delighted to lend our support to this initiative, to enable to sessions to continue to be delivered free of charge to anyone who will benefit from them. This is such a vital project and we’re really pleased to be able to play a role in its delivery.”

Neurotrauma team adds new specialist

The Neurotrauma team at Sintons is continuing to expand with the appointment of a new specialist.

Louise Clark joins Sintons after more than 18 years working in personal injury and has extensive litigation experience.

With particular experience in road traffic accident work, Louise has a strong track record of securing optimum outcomes for clients.

She joins Sintons’ Neurotrauma team at a time of ongoing growth for the department, which acts for people after life-changing brain and spinal cord injury in rebuilding their lives.

Supporting both the client and their family from the earliest days post-injury, Sintons has built a reputation nationally for the quality of its legal and client service and its commitment to fighting hard to secure the best possible outcomes for its clients.

“I am very pleased to join Sintons, a firm with a first-rate reputation and a very strong presence in the field of Neurotrauma and serious injury,” says Louise.

“The team is known for its significant capability and the unrivalled service it delivers to clients, and I am looking forward to working with colleagues in building this even further.”

Andrew McGowan, head of Neurotrauma, adds: “Sintons rightly has a national reputation for our work in this very specialist area of law, in which our vast experience in brain and spinal cord injury litigation makes us a stand-out name.

“We are committed to delivering the highest possible standards of both legal and client service excellence, supporting a client and their family through some of the most traumatic times imaginable to secure the best possible access to rehabilitation and compensation to enable them to rebuild their lives.

“We are very pleased to welcome Louise to our growing team. Instructions continue to come into the department, the majority of which are based on recommendation or referral, and we will expand our department accordingly with the legal talent to enable us to continue to support our clients in every way possible.”

Neurotrauma lawyer promoted to Partner

A leading Neurotrauma lawyer has been promoted to Partner in recognition of his commitment to delivering the highest standards of legal and personal service to clients.

Alastair Elliot becomes a Partner in Sintons, having built a reputation for his specialism in personal injury work for more than 20 years.

A highly-esteemed figure for his work in brain and spinal injury claims, Alastair supports clients and their families to secure the best possible outcomes for their unique circumstances and situations, fighting hard on their behalf to secure that.

Having joined Sintons in 2021, Alastair – also a trustee of Headway Darlington – has contributed significantly to the ongoing development of the Neurotrauma team, which continues to build its reputation as a nationally-significant name in this specialist field.

In addition to his commitment to delivering legal and client service excellence to clients, Alastair also supports the development of more junior members of the Neurotrauma team to enable them to thrive in their own careers.

“I am very pleased to have been promoted to the Partnership at Sintons,” said Alastair.

“This role carries a great amount of responsibility in delivering the best possible outcome for individuals and families at what is often the most distressing and traumatic time of their lives. Every day I dedicate myself to delivering the very best for them I can.

“As a Partner, I will continue to deliver the highest possible standards of service to our clients, while also supporting the ongoing development of the department and our team.”

Andrew McGowan, head of Neurotrauma at Sintons, said: “Alastair is an outstanding Neurotrauma lawyer, who fights hard for his clients and their best interests while delivering the caring and sensitive service they need.

“Since he joined us at Sintons, he has made an immense contribution to our department and the development of our team. We are delighted his efforts have been rewarded with Partnership.”

Dog walk will raise funds for The People’s Kitchen

Dogs and their owners can help raise vital funds to support vulnerable people in Newcastle by taking part in a charity event.

The dog walking event involves a 5k walk along Newcastle Quayside, with a stop off at Tyne Bar for refreshments for dog owners and their pets alike.

Always a popular event, the Sintons charity dog walk attracts dogs and their owners from far and wide, who help to raise money for The People’s Kitchen – the law firm’s current nominated charity and the focus of its fundraising efforts.

The People’s Kitchen has been supporting people in need across Newcastle for 38 years, and offers food and friendship to those battling loneliness, homelessness and poverty in the city.

In the current cost of living crisis, the charity’s resources have never been more in demand, with Sintons already raising thousands of pounds for The People’s Kitchen, with more funds set to come in the remainder of its two-year commitment.

The dog walk, which will take place on April 27 from 5.30pm, will help to generate more money through the £10 entry fee for every dog/owner team, which includes a drink at Tyne Bar and a doggy goodie bag.

David Pritchard, head of the CSR committee at Sintons, said: “Our charity dog walk is always a particularly well-attended event, with dog owners able to bring their beloved pets along to what is a really welcome social opportunity, which also raises vital funds for charity.

“The People’s Kitchen is helping countless people in need in Newcastle during these very challenging economic times, and we are supporting them in every way we can – through staff volunteering their time and through fundraising through events like this charity dog walk.

“We hope as many dog owners can join us as possible for a walk along the Tyne and a drink – and even a gift for their pet!”

* The charity dog walk will be held on Thursday, April 27, from 5.30pm to 7.30pm, with participants meeting in the Forth Banks car park at 5.25pm. The entry fee is £10. To register, contact or 0191 226 7802.

Sintons appoints head of risk and compliance

Law firm Sintons is continuing to invest in its ability to deliver the highest standards to clients by appointing a new head of risk and compliance.

Catherine Prosser joins Sintons with over 20 years of senior-level experience in risk, compliance, operations, contract management and HR across a host of sectors.

She is a specialist in risk management, regulatory compliance, anti-money laundering, data protection and quality assurance.

Her appointment adds further to Sintons’ in-house expertise in these critical areas of safety and security for the firm in protecting its operation and ability to deliver legal and service excellence to clients.

Catherine, a member of the Institute of Risk Management (IRM) and International Compliance Association (ICA), says: “I am very pleased to join Sintons and to support the firm and its growing team in ensuring continuing adherence to the highest standards.

“I am passionate about supporting a collaborative compliance culture and look forward to working with colleagues across the firm to continue to deliver this for the benefit of everyone at Sintons.”

Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons, says: “Risk and compliance are of course fundamental aspects to the successful and effective operation of a law firm, and it is essential we do all we can to achieve excellence in these areas.

“We continue to make significant investment in our team and infrastructure to ensure this happens, and we are very pleased to welcome Catherine to the team to lead our efforts in this area. She has built a strong track record in risk, compliance and quality assurance over the past two decades, and has valuable insight and experience to contribute to Sintons.

“As we grow and continue to build our reputation regionally and nationally, it is essential we do so with the integrity and uncompromising focus on quality and excellence which are at the heart of all we do. By continuing to build our expertise and experience in such key areas as risk and compliance, we can be confident of achieving that.”

Two trainees qualify into solicitor roles

Two trainees at Sintons have taken on permanent roles with the firm after becoming qualified solicitors.

Ben McMurdo and Charlotte Gunn have both completed their training contracts with Sintons following two years of experience gained in departments across the firm.

Ben now becomes a solicitor in Sintons’ specialist commercial team, with Charlotte taking up a role in the wills, trusts and estate department.

Ben and Charlotte are the latest trainees to be offered permanent roles with Sintons after qualification, with the firm having a long track record in supporting the development and careers of young lawyers in the region. Indeed, many of the current senior figures at Sintons began their careers as trainees with the firm.

The development of the current aspiring solicitors at Sintons continues, with the firm’s first and second year trainees, alongside its solicitor apprentices, moving to new seats for the next six months as part of their ongoing development.

Second year trainees Emily Richardson, Amy Carlton and Leigh Garbutt move to corporate, Court of Protection and dispute resolution respectively; first year trainees Lucy Milnthorp, Edward Pattinson and Charles Bell take up roles in real estate, employment and real estate respectively.

Among the solicitor apprentices, Leah Greenwell moves to neurotrauma, Saffron Sinclair joins construction, Nathan Johnson remains in real estate and Sabrina Jackland remains in neurotrauma.

Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons, said: “Firstly, congratulations go to Ben and Charlotte on their qualification. We are delighted to offer them roles within the firm after they have worked so hard over the past two years within our team and on behalf of their clients.

“Supporting the next generation of legal talent is of great importance to us at Sintons and is a commitment we have maintained for many years. Our graduate trainees and solicitor apprentices are a vital part of our team, and form a vibrant and dynamic group in their own right which is central to our fundraising activities through the annual Trainee Challenge.

“We are very pleased to see our current trainee group doing so well and working hard to progress in their careers. Ben and Charlotte will now hopefully go on to enjoy long careers with us, and we hope to welcome others into the role of solicitor in the future.”

Personal injury team makes new appointment

The nationally-renowned personal injury team at Sintons is expanding further with the appointment of a new specialist.

Iain Baillie joins Sintons to support its work with clients across the UK who have sustained serious or life-changing injury.

Iain specialises in all areas of personal injury work, and he worked widely in road traffic accident liability in his previous role.

He joins Sintons at a time of progress for its personal injury team, which again secured a top-tier ranking from Legal 500 2023, and won praise both from Legal 500 and Chambers and Partners for its quality of legal advice and client service.

“Having worked in the North East in my previous role, I am well aware of the exceptional reputation Sintons has for its legal work, and particularly for the focus it has on client service,” says Iain.

“As someone who focused on making a positive difference to the lives of people who have been affected by serious injury, I am delighted to join such a committed and capable team. I look forward to playing my role in developing their first-rate reputation even further.”

Mark Quigley, head of personal injury at Sintons, said: “We are very pleased to welcome Iain to our team. This is a time of growth and development for the team, as we continue to attract new instructions from across the UK based on the strength of our reputation and the service we deliver to each and every client.

“We are known for our absolute commitment to doing the very best for our clients and their families during what can be very difficult and distressing times. Our legal experience and expertise, alongside a genuine commitment and determination from our team to fight for the best interests of their client, means we regularly secure life-changing outcomes.

“We look forward to working alongside Iain as we develop our team even further, with our clients at the centre of everything we do.”

Apprentice secures permanent position at Sintons

An apprentice at Sintons is to remain with the firm in a permanent role after completing his training period.

Andrew White has completed his apprenticeship in Sintons’ award-winning marketing department and will now take up a position as marketing assistant within the team.

Having specialised in digital marketing during his two years with the firm, Andrew has helped to further develop Sintons’ sector-leading website and online communications.

Under the guidance of head of marketing David Pritchard, Andrew has been supported through a wide breadth of learning and development, from digital through to wider marketing activities and events.

In his new role, Andrew will continue to work alongside David, marketing executive Peter Jennings and media relations specialist Deborah Busby to continue to develop its presence nationally.

Andrew says: “My apprenticeship has been challenging and a huge learning curve, during which I have developed my skills and learnt new ones. David is an outstanding marketer and I have enjoyed working with him and the team in building my career and skill set.

“I’m very pleased and grateful to be offered a permanent position at Sintons and look forward to continuing to push on with the progress we are making as a firm.”

David Pritchard adds: “At Sintons, we take a very creative and sector-leading approach to marketing, pushing the boundaries of what has traditionally been done and making Sintons stand out as an innovator in the marketplace. Our marketing team is very dynamic and fast-moving, and Andrew has been quick to adapt to the many challenges he has faced.

“We are very pleased he will be staying with us and to be able to offer him this role. Progression and development is a core part of what we offer at Sintons, and having supported Andrew through his apprenticeship, myself and the wider team look forward to continuing to work with him as he continues to develop.”

‘My life was turned upside down…Sintons has helped me rebuild it’

A man who lost his lower right leg when he was hit by a car is rebuilding his life with the support of a seven-figure payout and rehabilitation secured by law firm Sintons.

The man, now 59, was critically injured in December 2016, when he was walking one early evening and was hit when a car lost control and careered off the road.

He sustained severe and multiple injuries to both lower legs, with extensive surgery to his right leg over the course of the next four years in an attempt to restore function and mobility.

Forced to give up his job due to his injuries and relocate from the home he had lived in with his wife for more than 30 years, he confesses the outlook seemed bleak for him being able to rebuild his life.

But in December 2020, the man underwent a below-knee amputation on his right leg – something he has described as “the best thing that has happened to me” since the crash. He now has a prosthetic leg and is making strong progress in his mobility and regaining independence.

“What happened absolutely turned my life upside down, the life you knew disappears in an instant. But after having the amputation, it has been a massive turning point. It’s as if I’ve got my life back,” he says.

“After I came out of hospital, I didn’t want to go out anywhere. I didn’t want to get ready, I’d be in a wheelchair and it was almost more trouble than it was worth. I didn’t really want to see people anymore and my wife started to have health problems of her own through it all. It was a situation I couldn’t see how we could get out of.

“But now, we have just come back from holiday and we’ve had a fantastic time. I could walk on my own and feel like a world away from where I was before the amputation. I sometimes do have a few tears because I’m so happy – and I’m so grateful to Sintons for their support in getting here.”

The man’s long road to this point began late in 2016, when he was walking on the footpath beside a busy road during the early evening, when a driver lost control of his car and left the road, hitting him with such force he was thrown into a nearby house’s front garden.

Initially spending almost two months in hospital, including over Christmas, he began the long process of recovery. He appointed serious injury specialists at Sintons to support him in his case.

While he made significant progress in his therapies, his right leg continued to cause problems and hampered his recovery. Several rounds of surgery followed over the years, but after attempts to restore mobility to his lower leg were unsuccessful, he took the decision to have an amputation.

Following the procedure, he spent 13 weeks in STEPS Rehabilitation in Sheffield, a nationally-renowned residential rehab centre which proved fundamental to his recovery.

“After the amputation and I pulled back the covers on my bed, many people expect me to say I was horrified – but it honestly felt like a weight had been lifted. That had held me back for so long. I rang my wife and she said she could hear the relief and change of mood in my voice,” he recalls.

“I wasn’t sure about going to STEPS and being away from home, but it was absolutely fantastic. They didn’t mollycoddle me, there were no kid gloves – it was intensive and hard work but totally worth it. I got so involved in the therapies I didn’t want to leave.

“I learned how to walk with my prosthetic and it felt like I had my freedom back, I could do things for myself, without having to use the wheelchair or crutches, or rely on my wife. It was just fantastic – and I’d say my time in STEPS was the real turning point, and since my amputation and then, things have just been so much better.”

Although he and his wife had to relocate from their long-time family home, they have been able to buy a bungalow near to the area they have always lived which accommodates his mobility needs.

“It’s absolutely lovely here. I really enjoy just sitting either in the house or in the lovely garden, being able to relax. It feels like at last, after a long and really quite awful time, me and my wife can enjoy our lives again,” he says.

While he continues to experience some problems with his left leg, which had extensive fractures, and experiences lower back and upper body pain from the use of crutches pre-amputation – which may need future medical intervention – for now, he is able to move on with his life since that life-changing night almost six years ago.

Kate Oliver, partner in Sintons’ personal injury team – which was recently top-rated by Legal 500 in recognition of its legal and client service excellence – acted for the man and secured the seven-figure compensation package and bespoke support.

The claimant said: “Kate was brilliant. She gets to the point, there’s no false hope or feeling like she isn’t telling you the whole story – Kate is very honest and direct and we trusted her completely.

“We knew she had my best interests at heart and had great judgment. With things like going to STEPS, she encouraged me to change my mind when I didn’t want to do it – and it turned out to be one of the best things I ever did.

“We are so grateful for her support over the years and for the settlement she has secured for us. At last, it feels like we can move forward, thanks to Kate.”

Kate adds: “This was a long-running case following an incident which caused years of distress for our client and his wife. They went through a very traumatic time, during which every effort was made to save his right leg, but ultimately the amputation and prosthetic have had a positive and life-changing impact. His new accommodation has also given a much better quality of life and the settlement we secured will enable him to access any therapies, private prosthetic provision and further bespoke support he needs in years to come.

“We are very pleased we could assist in this case, where the access to rehabilitation has proved absolutely critical to recovery, and has enabled him to look to the future with renewed hope. This is a great outcome to this case and we wish him and his wife the very best as they move forward in their lives.”

Sintons supports BABICM workshop

 Law firm Sintons is giving its backing to a learning and development initiative to support new brain injury and complex case managers.

The Beyond the Beginnings foundation workshop is designed to give timely training to case managers who have recently joined the profession and are getting to grips with the wide range of issues that are fundamental to their role.

The workshop, hosted by the British Association of Brain Injury and Complex Case Management (BABICM), will cover aspects including the litigation process, duty of care, terminology and how the clinical work of case managers is central to client rehabilitation.

Beyond the Beginnings, held in Manchester on March 23, is hosted by Sintons’ specialist Neurotrauma team and will feature its head of department, Andrew McGowan, as guest speaker.

The session will be hosted by experienced case managers Jackie Waggott and Kevin Cross.

“Case management is an absolutely vital part of a client’s rehabilitation journey, with the case manager helping to assemble and coordinate the specialist team which will ultimately support their recovery – that is a huge responsibility and a truly life-changing role,” said Andrew McGowan.

“Training and development is hugely important for case managers throughout their careers, but particularly in those early stages when there is so much to learn and understand about their new role. Beyond the Beginnings helps to address many of the key points it’s vital to get to grips with and is set to be a really important workshop.

“We are very pleased to lend our support to such a great opportunity and I look forward to meeting some of the latest additions to case management and helping to share some insight to support their development.”

Fundraising pool tournament held by Sintons

A pool tournament is being held by Sintonstrainee group to raise money for The People’s Kitchen.

The tournament, a regular and popular event in the law firm’s calendar, brings together participants from businesses across the region.

Organised by Sintons’ trainee group, the event – on 23rd February- will raise funds for the firm’s nominated charity, the much-loved People’s Kitchen.

Sintons is known for its variety and quality of events, which are regularly filled to capacity, and raise thousands of pounds for good causes across the region. For the next two years, the People’s Kitchen will be the focus of all of its fundraising.

Sintons’ trainees are known for their active fundraising efforts, with their annual Trainee Challenge being a focal point. Each year, the group of trainees and solicitor apprentices take on a physical challenge, this year they are taking on the Yorkshire Three Peaks

David Pritchard, head of marketing and chair of the CSR committee at Sintons, said: “Our trainees are a dynamic group of young people whose efforts play a big role in our annual fundraising.

“As well as the Trainee Challenge, this is another opportunity for them to hold a great event which is also raising money for a brilliant cause. We have held pool tournaments in the past which have been very successful, with superb attendance and fundraising, and we hope this will be another memorable evening.”

* The pool tournament will take place on 23rd February from 5.30pm to 8pm, at Spot White on Stowell Street, Newcastle. The entry fee is £10 for a team of two and to register, click here

Solicitor secures full STEP membership

A solicitor in Sintons’ specialist wills, trusts and estates team has become the latest within the firm to achieve full membership of STEP.

Ed Liddell has completed the process of qualification for STEP, a global professional body whose members support individuals and families in planning for their future, having recently passed his final exam.

STEP membership is a highly regarded accreditation for a private client lawyer and a number of the Sintons team already have the endorsement, or are working towards it.

Ed’s achievement means he is now recognised as delivering the highest standards in supporting families in their future planning, adding further to Sintons’ reputation for delivering legal and client service excellence.

“I am very pleased to have secured full membership of STEP, which is very important for me personally in my development, but also in helping to grow the quality and standards we deliver here at Sintons,” says Ed, who joined Sintons in July last year.

Paul Nickalls, head of the wills, trusts and estates team, says: “This is a great achievement for Ed and independently confirms the excellent work he is doing for his clients. My congratulations go to him on passing his final exam after a stringent assessment process.

“STEP is a very prestigious accreditation, with full membership being the highest level of attainment and we are very proud to have a number of our team who now hold this quality mark.

“Our team continues to grow, underpinned by the increasing level of instructions we receive from across the country, and to meet this demand we continue to bring in new excellent people – Ed being one of our most recent additions. We are committed to delivering the very highest standards of legal and client service, and with a team which continues to develop in size and capability, we are able to support our clients in every way possible.”

Sintons staff to swim with sharks

Two intrepid Sintons employees are to swim with sharks to help raise vital funds for survivors of spinal injury.

Debbie Brewis and Julie Maloney are to dive amongst one of Europe’s largest collections of sharks, including sand tiger sharks – which are up to 3.2 metres long and 350lbs each – guitar sharks and black tip sharks, alongside stingrays and tropical fish.

The dive, organised by the Spinal Injuries Association (SIA), will help raise money to help support its work with people who live with spinal injury.

Sintons, as a specialist Neurotrauma advisor which supports clients nationally who have sustained spinal cord injury, enjoys a strong relationship with the SIA and is a keen supporter of its work.

Debbie and Julie will now help to generate vital funds to help sustain that through the event, held on March 4 at the Blue Planet Aquarium at Cheshire Oaks, near Chester.

Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons, said: “We at Sintons are never shy of taking on a challenge, but I think this is a new one even for us – Debbie and Julie are really doing something special by diving with sharks, while also raising vital funds for a charity we know very well and are only too keen to support its work.

“I wish them the best of luck with the event, which will be a hugely memorable occasion for them both, and with their fundraising too. While we are well aware of the challenging economic climate, any funds raised will help to sustain the work of the SIA in improving the lives of those with spinal cord injury. Sintons are only too pleased to lend our backing.”

To add your support to Debbie and Julie follow the links below:

To support Debbie, click here.

To support Julie, click here.

Sintons Extend Support To Eagles Women’s Court

Law firm Sintons is continuing its commitment to North East sport – and building further on its support of basketball – by becoming a sponsor of the Newcastle Eagles women’s team.

Newcastle Eagles are the most successful club in British basketball and North East sporting history, and since 2018-19 have operated the region’s top-flight Women’s British Basketball League (WBBL) franchise.

Sintons is a longstanding supporter of the Eagles as a club, but is now committing its backing separately to the WBBL team, to help highlight the role the role they play in women’s sport and in encouraging women and girls into sport in the North East and beyond.

“Sintons’ continued sponsorship of the club over the years has been brilliant and this extension of support to our WBBL team is a big boost to what we are doing to develop the women’s game”, said Dan Black, Newcastle Eagles Sales and Communications Manager.

“Having the backing of such a well-know and highly regarded partner as well as being able to see so many of their colleagues and clients able to attend our games and support in person too is massive for both the BBL and WBBL franchises.”

Women’s sport and in particular women’s basketball is growing significantly in mainstream prominence and in the region, evident from the Eagles’ recent WBBL attendance record breaking game when over 1,300 packed the Vertu Motors Arena.

“We are very proud of our track record in supporting North East sports clubs and athletes of all levels, and are committed to investing in the future success of our region in this field,” says David Pritchard, head of marketing of Sintons.

“The profile of, and participation in, women’s sport is growing strongly, which is fantastic in creating a diverse and equal sporting community. Equality and diversity are values at the very centre of Sintons and how we operate, and we are committed to promoting these in any and every way possible.

“The Eagles’ WBBL team has played a key role in this, and the club is a strong and vocal supporter of the need for more women and girls to participate in basketball and sport in general.

“We’re absolutely delighted to lend our support to the WBBL team, in addition to our backing of the men’s team, and in championing the efforts of the Eagles in promoting women’s sport.”

Update Your Will Week 2023 – 23rd – 29th January

This week (23rd – 29th January) is Update Your Will Week, an awareness campaign hosted by SFE to encourage more people to update their will and ensure their wishes are carried out when they die. This helps minimise disputes – easing distress (and costs) for your loved ones.

New research commissioned by SFE revealed only 56% of UK adults have updated their will within the last five years, meaning around a half of wills are out of date. It also showed that half of UK adults have experienced a life changing event, such as getting married, divorced, or having a child, since last updating their will.

We recommend that wills are reviewed and updated every five years, or when a major change occurs that impacts you or your loved ones.

In addition, the research revealed that almost three quarters (70%) of parents in the UK have no legal guardian in place to care for their children in the event of their deaths. According to the research, parents are almost completely unaware of the risks of not identifying a legal guardian in a will; this includes the courts or social services deciding what happens to your children.

With only two out of ten parents understanding that social services or the courts can step in to decide what happens to your children if you don’t have a will in place, Sintons is keen to raise awareness of the risks involved when a guardian isn’t appointed.

Paul Nickalls, head of the private client team at Sintons is a member of SFE, a national organisation of lawyers specialising in advising people planning for later life. They’ll be able to provide support and guidance as you discuss your unique situation and wishes, they can also help reduce your inheritance tax bill.

SFE lawyers are experts in this area of law and follow a strict code of conduct which has respect and dignity at its heart. Communicating in a clear, straightforward language, they’re trained to make sure you understand the important decisions you’re making.

Contact our team today about making changes to an existing will or creating a new one and make sure your wishes are communicated when you die.

Neurotrauma team expand through new appointment

The nationally-renowned Neurotrauma team at Sintons is continuing to strengthen its team through the latest new appointment.

Richard McLellan joins Sintons as a specialist in employers’ and public liability personal injury claims, both at pre-litigation and litigated stages.

Having worked in litigation for over 10 years, his experience also includes working in an international law firm.

Richard joins Sintons’ growing Neurotrauma department at a key time in its ongoing development, with instructions continuing to come from across the country and its reputation on a national level increasing.

It again won strong praise from both Legal 500 and Chambers and Partners 2023 for its commitment to delivering both legal and client service excellence, with both independent publications naming Sintons as one of the leading names in the North of England.

“Sintons is a very well known and respected name in Neurotrauma work and I am delighted to join. I look forward to working with the team to support even more claimants in securing the settlements they deserve to help them move on with their lives,” says Richard.

Andrew McGowan, head of Neurotrauma, says: “We are very pleased to welcome Richard to the team, a seasoned professional in supporting clients through their claim and in working hard to achieve the best possible outcome.

“Sintons’ ethos is about delivering the highest possible standards in legal and client service excellence, and we are very proud of the reputation we have earned on a national basis. We have a first-rate, committed team who fight hard for their clients to achieve the very best packages of compensation and rehabilitation for their unique circumstances.

“We look forward to working with Richard to continue to build our presence and reputation nationally.”

Pioneering solicitor apprenticeship launches for 2023

A trailblazing apprenticeship programme which has redefined the route into law for young people in the North East is again offering opportunities for aspiring lawyers across the region.

The North East Solicitor Apprenticeship (NESA) offers a six-year training scheme as a means to enter the legal profession, rather than the traditional route of qualification as a lawyer, and since its foundation in 2017, has created opportunities for young people in law firms and partner businesses across the North East.

Many apprentices who were part of the first NESA intake are now nearing qualification in leading law firms around the region.

Two of the NESA founder law firms – Sintons and Muckle – continue to be part of the initiative for 2023, and are joined by two of the leading names in North East business as partners – Barbour and Newcastle Building Society.

The programme offers paid employment as an apprentice and in-house training from lawyers, many of whom are regional and national leaders in their field. The on-the-job training is supplemented by academic support from Northumbria University.

The application process for the 2023 apprenticeships is open, with NESA engaging with schools and colleges across the region in the search for the next generation of legal talent.

An information evening is to be held at Northumbria University on January 17, when the application process will be officially launched, with the closing date set for February 24. Following interviews, successful applicants will begin in their new roles in September.

Gemma Hewitt, head of people services at Sintons, says: “The NESA programme has truly redefined the route into law as it has always been known, enabling young people for whom university was not an option to consider becoming a lawyer.

“This new accessible route, which also offers a salary, has meant the talent pool has been significantly widened in the search for the outstanding lawyers of the future, which is fantastic news for the career choices of young people at schools and colleges across the North East.

“Sintons are a founder member of NESA, and we are proud of the contribution we have made to creating opportunities for young people in the region, who are now valued members of our team. We look forward to adding more solicitor apprentices to our team in the near future.”

Sintons opens next round of graduate recruitment

Law firm Sintons has launched its latest training contract recruitment drive, continuing its longstanding commitment to supporting the next generation of legal talent.

Over the course of many years, Sintons has given opportunities to young lawyers, supporting them through their qualification and beyond, with many going on to enjoy long careers with the firm with ongoing progression and development. A number of current partners and senior figures began life at Sintons as graduate trainees.

The firm is well known across the region and beyond for its commitment to supporting emerging talent, with its graduate programme continuing to recruit even through the many challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Now, as Sintons continues to invest in the next generation of young legal excellence, it is opening recruitment for training contracts to begin in September 2025.

Recruitment will begin on 03 January 2023 and close on 30 April 2023. Those shortlisted from the first stage will be invited into Sintons in June to meet with Sintons’ graduate recruitment team and other people from across the firm, ahead of final interviews in July.

Gemma Hewitt, head of people services at Sintons, said: “We are very proud of our longstanding commitment to aspiring young lawyers and offering opportunities despite the most difficult of economic climates – while many firms paused or contracted their graduate recruitment programmes during the pandemic, the value we place on the importance of bringing young lawyers into the team was shown by the fact we continued as we ordinarily would.

“We have a vibrant and dynamic trainee group at Sintons who are supported by some of the leading lawyers in their specialist fields on a regional and national scale. Our lawyers, which also include our solicitor apprentices, work closely together and enjoy strong relationships both in and outside of the workplace, with our trainees playing a central role in the firm’s annual trainee challenge and other CSR activities.

“Joining Sintons as a trainee offers a host of opportunities for professional and personal development, working within an ambitious and supportive firm which prides itself on the quality of its people and supports them in every way possible. We look forward to hearing from any aspiring lawyers who would like to join us.”

Sintons’ training contract recruitment brochure gives more information about the opportunities available including more information about the law firm and tips and guidance to help those applying for a position.

For more information about Sintons’ training contract recruitment, or to apply, visit

Sintons renews festive support for Newcastle Hospitals Charity

Law firm Sintons is again sending its support to staff and patients in hospitals in Newcastle this Christmas by making a donation to help their festive season be the best it can be.

Sintons is a partner supporter of Newcastle Hospitals Charity, which is the dedicated charity for Newcastle Hospitals and covers internationally-renowned sites including the Royal Victoria Infirmary (RVI) and Freeman Hospital.

To help bring a bit of festive cheer to those who are spending Christmas in hospital, Sintons has made a financial contribution to fund decorations for the wards, and gifts for patients spending Christmas in hospital.

Through its healthcare, serious injury and Neurotrauma teams, Sintons works closely with Newcastle Hospitals, supporting both the organisation and patients within it with its nationally-renowned legal and client service excellence.

Kate Oliver, partner in Sintons’ serious injury team, said: “We’re very proud of the longstanding relationship we have with Newcastle Hospitals and to support the work they do in treating patients and supporting their families.

“Spending Christmas in hospital can be very difficult, and we hope that our contribution can make it as special and memorable as it can be for staff and patients alike. We’re delighted to partner with Newcastle Hospitals Charity in this way and add another dimension to the support that we can offer throughout the year.”

Head of NHS Healthcare at Sintons, Amanda McCabe, added: “The work of frontline staff in Newcastle Hospitals is absolutely amazing all year round, and as well as helping to brighten Christmas for patients, we hope we can also bring some festive cheer to the team who give such outstanding and selfless support to those on the wards.

“We’re very pleased to be able to support this charity and its vital work, particularly at this very special time of year.”

Montreal Convention and Psychological Injury: Climbing above the turbulence?

Sintons recently secured a settlement for a passenger in a personal injury claim brought against a well-known Airline following psychological injuries sustained following an accident on a flight. Further details can be found by clicking here.

As a result of the incident, our Client suffered from sleep disturbance, nightmares, flashbacks and became aware of the onset of obsessive compulsive rituals. A Clinical Psychologist instructed in the case diagnosed Obsessive Compulsive Disorder together with features of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. The case settled shortly before trial with the Claimant recovering damages for psychiatric harm and future psychological treatment.

Whilst that is not in itself unusual in personal injury claims, this was a claim brought under the Montreal Convention 1999 designed to protect passengers injured in plane crashes, incidents during a flight or whilst boarding or disembarking. Whilst the Defendant admitted liability they disputed that our client could recover any damages for psychiatric harm under the Convention. This was on the basis of the wording of Article 17 of the Montréal Convention which identifies that “the (airline) carrier is liable for damage sustained in case of death or personal injury of a passenger” in certain defined circumstances.

It is a common misconception that damages for psychiatric harm are irrecoverable under the Montreal Convention. Whilst this is true where the only injury is psychological, where there is a ‘ bodily injury’ an individual can also recover compensation for psychiatric symptoms. On other occasions it was argued that that in order for psychiatric injuries to be recoverable they had to be directly linked to the physical injury. This arose from the wording of the Convention itself, which refers to liability for ‘ bodily injury’ and as such only losses that were consequential to a ‘ bodily injury’ were recoverable (Morris v KLM [2001] 2 All Er).

However, in recent times this interpretation has changed.  In Doe v Etihad P.J.S.C., No. 16-1042 (6th Cir. 2017) an appellate court in the United States held that the reference to ‘ bodily injury’  in Article 7 of the Convention is a trigger for establishing liability, and that psychological injuries are recoverable if they are caused either by a bodily injury, or by the accident that causes the bodily injury. Accordingly, there was no requirement that any psychiatric injuries must be contingent on the physical injuries as previously maintained.

Whilst there is no reported case where the English Court has applied Doe v Etihad, Sintons pursued the claim on the basis that the Montréal Convention has international applicability and accordingly a court in England was likely to follow the reasoning in Doe. Further there is a longstanding line of authority that indicates that Article 17 simply governs the circumstances in which liability will attach under the Convention, rather than limiting the nature of the compensation that can be recovered. As a consequence we argued that on a plain reading of the convention there is nothing that expressly prohibits recovery for psychiatric harm.

Though it remains to be seen whether an English Court would follow the principles in Doe and that damages for psychiatric harm suffered in conjunction with physical injury, will be recoverable, the precedent set by Doe v Etihad is very persuasive.

Further information regarding accidents of this nature and possible claims for compensation can be found at here.

David Knipe is an Associate in the Claimant Personal Injury team at Sintons in Newcastle upon Tyne.  Contact him at or on 0191 226 7926.

Neurotrauma team continues to grow

The nationally-renowned Neurotrauma team at Sintons continues to grow with the appointment of a new specialist.

Emily Booth joins Sintons from another North East law firm, and has built experience in supporting clients who have sustained serious brain injuries.

Young lawyer Emily also has experience of working in Court of Protection matters – another area in which Sintons has renowned specialism – and is often vital in the support of clients after life-changing injury.

Emily, who achieved a distinction in her Masters in Law, joins Sintons at a time of continuing development for its Neurotrauma team.

The team, again praised for its legal and client service excellence by both Legal 500 and Chambers 2023, acts for clients with brain or spinal cord injuries nationally.

Sintons’ reputation for its capability and levels of client support means it regularly receives many instructions by referral or recommendation from its network of fellow Neurotrauma professionals.

“I’m really pleased to move to Sintons, which has a first-rate reputation for its work in Neurotrauma and in supporting people and families after life-changing injury,” says Emily.

“I’m really passionate about this area of work and in making a difference to people’s lives after such trauma, and look forward to working alongside my new colleagues at Sintons in doing this, as well as learning from them to support my own development as a lawyer.”

Andrew McGowan, head of Neurotrauma, says: “Our team is growing strongly nationally, with increasing numbers of new instructions coming from right across the country meaning we need to bring in new legal talent to support our increasing caseload.

“We are very pleased to welcome Emily, whose growing experience in Neurotrauma work and commitment to supporting clients after serious injury makes her a great addition to the team. We have a significant level of expertise here and many years of experience in this very specialist area of work, which can support Emily’s ongoing development.

“Our reputation and presence in the market continues to grow strongly and we are known as a go-to name nationally in the field of brain and spinal injury work – something we will continue to develop as a team through hard work and absolute dedication to our clients.”

Solicitor apprentice secures first-class degree

A solicitor apprentice at Sintons has achieved first class honours in her law degree, as she progresses closer to qualification as a solicitor.

Saffron Sinclair joined Sintons on the North East Solicitor Apprenticeship (NESA) programme four years ago, and since that time has excelled in her studies and legal work in departments across the law firm.

She became Sintons’ third solicitor apprentice under the NESA initiative – of which Sintons was a founding member – which created a new and more accessible route into law for aspiring young lawyers, enabling them to gain practical training while also taking part in academic study at Northumbria University one day a week.

Rotating seats every six months to gain experience of a wide range of legal practice, Saffron is currently part of the real estate team and continues to impress with her legal talent and commitment.

Saffron will now follow the lead of Sintons’ solicitor apprentices Leah Greenwell and Nathan Johnson – who joined in 2017 – in studying for the Solicitors’ Qualifying Exams as she progresses towards qualification, which is set for 2024.

“Sintons is the optimum environment for an aspiring lawyer like myself. It’s extremely supportive and full of talented lawyers, many of whom are leaders in their field regionally and nationally, yet always have time to help me in my work and support my progress,” says Saffron.

“I’m delighted to have achieved a first-class degree and qualification is now only two years away. Since joining in 2018, this has been a fantastic experience, and I look forward to completing the final stages of my apprenticeship.”

Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons, says: “We are all extremely proud of Saffron and how hard she has worked to complete her degree, and to achieve first class honours is outstanding.

“Saffron has shown first-rate commitment to the NESA programme from the first time we met her in her interview, and since joining Sintons has continued to progress strongly. Her commitment to clients – which is at the very core of everything we do here – is excellent, and her work as part of our trainee group in social and fundraising initiatives has brought an additional dimension to her vast contribution so far.

“Our congratulations go to Saffron on this brilliant achievement, and we look forward to supporting her through the final two years of her apprenticeship to qualification in 2024.”

Seminar to look at clinical outcomes of Calvert Reconnections

The groundbreaking approach of a specialist brain injury rehabilitation centre which concentrates on outdoor-based therapy is to be the topic of a seminar held by Sintons.

Calvert Reconnections was opened last year as the first of its kind ABI rehab centre in the country, providing a residential opportunity for survivors to take part of a host of outdoor therapeutic activities to boost their recovery.

The centre, near Keswick in the Lake District, has been hailed for its significant contribution to brain injury rehabilitation, and has shown life-changing evidence based outcomes including 100 per cent of participants improving their ability to carry out everyday activities and needing less support after discharge.

To discuss its approach and support for ABI survivors, head of service Claire Appleton and senior OT Elaine Roberts will present at Sintons’ upcoming serious injury seminar.

The event, the fifth in a series of seminars aimed at serious injury professionals, will be held on Thursday, November 29 at Sintons’ headquarters in Newcastle.

Andrew McGowan, head of Neurotrauma at Sintons, said: “In the year since it opened, Calvert Reconnections has become known for its unique approach to brain injury rehabilitation and the clinical outcomes it has already achieved for survivors.

“Its outdoor-based therapy approach brings something wholly new to the therapies available to survivors, and broadens options during a time when access to rehabilitation is under great pressure.

“The opening of Calvert Reconnections has been hugely successful, and I have enjoyed working with Claire and her team in getting to know more about the life-changing service they provide. We hope others will enjoy learning more about this at our seminar.”

The event will be on November 29 at The Cube, Barrack Road, Newcastle, NE4 6DB. It will begin at 6pm and last around an hour. Places are allocated on a first come, first served basis and can be booked via or by contacting or 0191 226 7907.

Sintons’ staff volunteer at The People’s Kitchen

Staff from Sintons are volunteering with The People’s Kitchen, extending the support for the firm’s nominated staff charity even further.

The People’s Kitchen is much-loved for its work in supporting homeless and vulnerable people in Newcastle, supporting them to fight hunger and loneliness since 1985.

Earlier this year, Sintons chose the charity – whose base on Bath Lane is only metres away from Sintons’ headquarters on the city’s Barrack Road – as the focus of its fundraising for the next two years, supporting the huge and growing demand on The People’s Kitchen as the cost of living crisis continues to impact more people and families.

Now, to extend its support further, a number of Sintons’ staff are volunteering at The People’s Kitchen during its meal service times. In addition to giving hot food, the charity also gives out packages of clothing, toiletries, food, mobile phones and sleeping bags, and plays a vital role in offering friendship and professional services to support mental wellbeing.

Since naming The People’s Kitchen as its nominated charity, Sintons has already raised a significant sum through holding a number of events in the past few months alone. Many more events and fundraising initiatives are planned for the remainder of the two years.

“The People’s Kitchen has played a vital role in our community for over 30 years, supporting local people during their most difficult times with food, kindness and friendship. We are very proud to have them as our staff charity,” says Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons.

“In addition to our fundraising, which will help to finance vital supplies, the charity depends entirely on the commitment of volunteers, so that seemed another way in which we could help. Our staff have kindly given up their time to do this and we are really pleased to lend our support in as many ways as possible.”

Sintons secures settlement following workplace injury

A Polish national injured when he was hit by falling crates in a workplace incident has secured a settlement with support from serious injury specialists at Sintons.

The man was injured while working near to a tractor reversing with a trailer, which shed part of its load of crates, some of which struck him on his head and shoulders.

He sustained an array of injuries, including a concussion, which left him with pain, dizziness, memory impairment and headaches for as long as eight months after the incident in September 2018.

He also sustained a soft tissue injury to his right shoulder and to both knees – caused when he fell through the impact of the crates.

As a result of his head injury he experienced tinnitus, which was to remain permanent which affected his sleep and by extension his ability to concentrate at work and therefore he was left disadvantaged on the open labour market.

As a result of his tinnitus, the man required tinnitus retraining therapy.

Furthermore, he was diagnosed with adjustment disorder, with mixed anxiety and depressed mood, after the incident.

The Polish claimant turned to law firm Sintons for support in securing a settlement from his employer.

As well as being a leading serious injury firm nationally – which recently won Personal Injury Team of the Year at the Northern Law Awards 2022 – it has an in-house Polish team to deliver a bespoke service of the highest standards to Polish-speaking clients.

Associate David Knipe, a serious injury specialist with more than 20 years’ experience, supported the claimant who said: “I highly recommend Sintons.

“The case lasted a long time, as it required many medical reports plus it spanned the COVID pandemic, but thanks to the reliability and great commitment of my lawyer David Knipe and his colleagues, it was successful.

“I am very satisfied and grateful for the help. I will recommend Sintons to my friends if ever they need a lawyer. Thank you.”

David Knipe added: “This was a very distressing situation for our client, who was injured through no fault of his own while doing his job. He sustained an array of physical and psychological injuries, some of which continue to cause problems years on from the incident.

“We are very pleased to have secured a bespoke settlement package to include the costs of specialist treatment to help him to move on with his life.

“At Sintons, we are absolutely committed to securing the best possible outcome for every client and their unique situation, and we fight hard to achieve that.

“Through our Polish team, we can offer a very personal service to clients for whom English may not be their first language, helping to remove barriers that may exist in them accessing the justice they deserve.

“We wish our client all the very best for the future.”

Event to explore the Rehabilitation Code in serious injury

Serious injury specialists are to share their insight into the application of the Rehabilitation Code in claims at a seminar held next week.

The Rehabilitation – Cracking the Code event, held by Sintons in association with Parklane Plowden, will consider the practical issues around the Rehabilitation Code in serious injury cases.

Speakers at the seminar – held on Thursday, November 17 at Sintons’ headquarters in Newcastle – are:

The seminar is the latest in a series of events organised by Sintons aimed at professionals working across serious injury, with guests coming from well beyond the North East to attend.

“The Rehabilitation Code is something that serious injury professionals work with routinely to support us in ensuring the claimant has the best chance of recovery in every way possible,” says Phil Davison.

“This seminar will enable us to share our insight into this important area of the claim and rehabilitation process, which we hope will prove useful to colleagues working in serious injury in us collectively working towards securing the best possible outcomes for clients.”

The event will begin at 6pm and will last for around one hour, with time for networking and discussion. Refreshments and canapés will be provided from 5.30pm and after the seminar.

* To attend the seminar, visit here or contact

Family Law Implications after Serious Injury

Sintons in association with Parklane Plowden recently held the third in our 2022 series of free evening seminars, covering key and current issues.

The seminar series has addressed a number of topics affecting professionals working with and supporting people with serious injury, and has welcomed attendees from across the North.

This seminar featured Louise Masters, head of family law, who assessed what may lie ahead for families after life-changing injury to their loved one.

If you would like to watch a recording of the event, please email to request the link.


Sintons extends commitment to Close House

Law firm Sintons has renewed its longstanding support for one of the UK’s leading leisure venues, Close House.

The Northumberland golf resort is home to the world’s only two Lee Westwood courses, as well as the North East’s only PGA Academy, and attracts visitors from around the world.

The venue was also the host of the 2017 and 2020 British Masters, adding further to its international status.

Sintons has been a corporate partner of Close House for many years and hosts a number of major client events there each year, including its flagship annual golf day.

The stately home Close House dates back to 1779, but has only been a golf resort since 2005, when it was opened after multi-million pound investment and redevelopment by businessman and philanthropist Sir Graham Wylie.

“Close House is one of the most prestigious golf venues in the North East and indeed the wider UK, and attracts visitors from across the world to play on its two Lee Westwood golf courses,” says Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons.

“It is a huge asset to the region and one to which we are very pleased to lend our backing.

“Sintons has been a proud partner of Close House for many years, and we are delighted to again commit our support. We look forward to being associated with this excellent venue for many more years to come, as it continues to push to maximise its potential on a national and international scale.”

Fundraising netball tournament open for entry

A fundraising netball tournament is being organised by law firm Sintons on behalf of its nominated charity, The People’s Kitchen.

The tournament is open to mixed teams of ten players, who will compete over the course of the event to be crowned eventual champions.

The event, to be held on December 1 at the Vertu Motors Arena, will raise money for the much-loved People’s Kitchen in helping to sustain their work with vulnerable and homeless people in Newcastle.

The netball tournament is the latest in a series of popular events to be held by Sintons, which bring together businesses and individuals from across the region.

Even in the short time Sintons has had The People’s Kitchen as its nominated charity, the law firm has held several events which have collectively raised thousands of pounds, with many more planned over the two-year period.

“We are well known for the wide range of events we offer at Sintons, which provide the opportunity for teamwork and socialising while raising money for our nominated charity, The People’s Kitchen, to support its fantastic work,” said David Pritchard, head of marketing at Sintons and chair of its CSR committee.

“The netball tournament is already proving popular, we have held a similar tournament previously and it was a fantastic success, so we are very much looking forward to putting on another fun and memorable afternoon for all those who take part.”

* The netball tournament will be held on December 1 from midday to 4pm, at the Vertu Motors Arena, Newcastle, NE4 7AF. To enter a ten-player team costs £195. To book or for more information, contact

Sintons appoints new head of people services

Law firm Sintons has appointed a new head of people services.

Gemma Hewitt joins the Newcastle-based law firm to oversee and further develop Sintons’ commitment to its staff.

With almost 20 years’ experience of working in human resources, Gemma has worked in both public and private sector roles and is a Chartered Member of the CIPD.

Sintons has a longstanding reputation as a great place to work for its team, with a focus on staff wellbeing and opportunities for progression and development throughout their careers.

Continually innovating and devising new ways of making Sintons even more appealing, its people services team is key in making the law firm stand out.

Gemma said: “I am really pleased to join Sintons. The firm is known as an excellent place to work for many reasons, but not least the great efforts it makes to look after its team. We spend most of our time at work, so it’s vital that businesses make it a positive experience for their teams, and Sintons’ work in this area is first-rate.

“Supporting the wellbeing of your workforce is essential and Sintons show genuine commitment in doing that, while continually devising new ways to attract and retain talent. I’m really looking forward to working with the team to develop that even further.”

Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons, says: “We are absolutely committed to our team, they make us what we are, and looking after them and their wellbeing is our priority.

“We are proud of the reputation we have as being a great place to work, which extends far and wide. As well as attracting clients from around the country, we also have many of our team members relocating to the North East on the strength of what we have to offer at Sintons.

“People services plays a key role in us being able to deliver that and we are very pleased to welcome Gemma as our new head of department. Her experience in supporting the wellbeing and development of staff over almost two decades will bring valuable insight and ideas to our current practice and we look forward to working with her to develop ways in which we look after our team further still.”

Sintons support GloWeek

Law firm Sintons is again pledging its support to the GloWeek campaign which promotes the importance of road safety for children and other vulnerable road users.

GloWeek highlights the need to be ‘seen and not hurt’ by wearing bright items – such as reflective clothing while cycling and brightly-coloured clothing while out walking – to stand out in the dark as the nights become darker earlier.

The annual awareness week, led by the Child Brain Injury Trust, urges people to ‘glow’ in support of its message, to help protect more children and other more vulnerable road users this winter, while also raising vital funds to support its work.

Sintons is a longstanding supporter of GloWeek, with its Neurotrauma team working closely with the Child Brain Injury Trust for a number of years. The team acts for clients nationally who have sustained life-changing injury, including many children, and it is regularly appointed in cases based on its stellar reputation for its legal and client service excellence.

Its team are again joining in with the ‘glow’ theme, to play their part in sharing such a vital safety message geared around preventing serious injury.

Andrew McGowan, head of Neurotrauma, says: “We see all too often the consequences of road collisions and the life-changing, or even sometimes fatal, impact that can have on vulnerable road users. There are very real dangers in using the roads, and we must do all we can to promote the message of safety to all road users – motorists, cyclists and pedestrians alike.

“We see first-hand the work of the Child Brain Injury Trust in supporting young people and their families after serious injury, helping them through some of the most difficult days they will have faced and enabling them to rebuild their lives. Their commitment to being by the sides of families mirrors that of our team, and we are very pleased to work together in so many instances.

“We would urge everyone to do their bit to get behind GloWeek – as well as the vital fundraising element, the awareness is hugely important, particularly as the nights become darker. We all have a role to play in making the roads a safer place for everyone.”

DoLS seminar held for second time on strength of demand

An event which analyses key changes in liberty protection safeguards under the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) regime is being held for a second time due to popular demand.

The specialist Neurotrauma and Court of Protection teams at Sintons are hosting the seminar for a second time – the first was in York, this time it will be in Newcastle – which will look at the new approaches and how clients can best be supported.

The event – to be held at Sintons’ headquarters, The Cube in Newcastle, on November 3 – will hear from the expert speakers whose insight was so well received at the event earlier in the year.

Eleanor Tallon, an Independent Social Worker & Independent Best Interest Assessor at MCA Professional, alongside Susan McKendry, a specialist Court of Protection, community care and adult social care work barrister at KBW Chambers, will both again be addressing the event.

The seminar is the latest in a series of events held by Sintons’ nationally-known Neurotrauma team to examine many of the key topical issues affecting professionals working across the sector.

The team works closely with Sintons’ Court of Protection specialists to ensure clients who have sustained life-changing injuries and their family can be support throughout their claim and beyond by Sintons’ renowned standards of legal and client service excellence.

Alastair Elliot, a senior associate in the Neurotrauma team, and Court of Protection solicitor Sophie Moore are leading on the event.

“Safeguarding our clients is at the core of everything we do, and enables us to ensure their best interests are being protected – changes in the key regulations surrounding these DoLS measures are very significant and something everyone working in this area must be alive to,” says Alistair.

“In our initial event on this topic in York, the feedback from attendees was fantastic and we realised how very useful this was to our colleagues working in the field of Neurotrauma and serious injury, and how beneficial it is to enhance their knowledge and understanding of the very latest developments in this field.

“Our seminar programme is known for tackling the topical issues which affect everyone working within this sector, and we are delighted to run this particularly successful event for a second time.”

The seminar will be held at The Cube, Barrack Road, Newcastle, NE4 6DB on Thursday, November 3. It will begin at 6pm and last for around an hour, with refreshments served from 5.30pm. To book a place, visit or contact or 0191 226 7907

‘Excellent’ personal injury team wins praise from Chambers

The specialist personal injury team at Sintons has been hailed as an “excellent choice” for claimants by Chambers and Partners 2023.

Again confirming the team as a leader in its field in the North of England, Sintons is highlighted for its work in high-value and life-changing injury claims.

Its breadth of offering across the department is also praised, with claims including occupational and industrial diseases, workplace injuries, road accidents and Neurotrauma all handled with expertise.

Sintons’ Court of Protection specialism adds an “all round service” to the personal injury offering.

Head of general personal injury Phil Davison, regularly hailed as one of the leading lawyers in his field in the North, is again named as a go-to advisor with a “vast well of knowledge”.

Partner Kate Oliver is also praised for her serious injury specialism, and is said to “always go the extra mile” for clients.

The findings from Chambers come only weeks after the publication of Legal 500 2023, which again confirmed Sintons’ place as a leader in the North of England, with an outstanding commitment to both legal and client service excellence.

Managing partner Christopher Welch says: “Our personal injury team has a national reputation for its expertise in the most complex of cases, which sees it secure bespoke packages of compensation and rehabilitation to give clients the best possible chance of recovery. Its attention to client service is unrivalled, supporting individuals and their families throughout what can be very traumatic circumstances and being by their side throughout the process.

“To again be confirmed as a leader in our field is great news, and well deserved recognition for the outstanding work of the team. Coming so soon after Legal 500 similarly endorsed our commitment to legal and client service, this is yet more independent evidence of why we are continually appointed in cases on a national basis.”

Five-a-side tournament raises £2,750 for The People’s Kitchen

A five-a-side football tournament organised by Sintons has raised thousands of pounds for its nominated charity, The People’s Kitchen.

Twelve teams competed in the event, held at Goals in Gosforth, which saw mixed teams taking part to win the overall title.

The event raised £2,750 for The People’s Kitchen, the much-loved charity which supports homeless and vulnerable people in Newcastle and is the focus of Sintons’ fundraising for two years.

Sporting Chance North East were named as winners of the tournament.

The five-a-side tournament is the latest event to be organised by Sintons on behalf of The People’s Kitchen, and several thousands of pounds have already been raised to support the charity’s work in assisting people at risk of homelessness – and those who are unemployed, lonely or living in poverty – with food, essential supplies and friendship.

Many more events and fundraising initiatives are planned over the course of the next two years.

David Pritchard, head of marketing and chair of the firm’s CSR committee, said: “We are well known for the quality and variety of events we organise, which are always so well supported by businesses across the region. Our five-a-side tournament has seen a similarly positive response and we are very grateful to those who took part and made donations.

“The People’s Kitchen is a fantastic charity, whose resources and support are needed by growing numbers of individuals and families in this very challenging economic climate, and we are delighted to again raise such a significant sum for them.

“We have many more events planned on behalf of The People’s Kitchen and are very grateful to the North East business community for their support in making them the success they are.”

Sintons becomes corporate supporter of the Our Hospitals Charity

Law firm Sintons is giving its backing to a charity which supports the life-saving work and life-changing rehabilitation of the South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

The Trust supports more than one million patients across Middlesbrough, Redcar & Cleveland, Hambleton & Richmondshire and North Yorkshire. Among its key locations is the James Cook University Hospital major trauma centre and its nationally-acclaimed spinal injury unit.

Sintons, whose Neurotrauma team works closely with specialist medics at James Cook, has become a corporate supporter of the Our Hospitals Charity, which raises vital funds to help sustain and grow the work of the Trust.

The Neurotrauma team works nationally supporting clients who have sustained life-changing injury, particularly brain and spinal cord injury, and supports them and their families from the very earliest days post-trauma in rebuilding their lives and accessing the rehabilitation that will help them do that.

Andrew McGowan, head of Neurotrauma at Sintons, said: “The South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust comprises an array of vital NHS resources, which are lifelines within their communities. The James Cook University Hospital is known nationally for its work in major trauma and spinal cord injury specialism in particular, and we have seen first-hand how our clients have received life-saving, life-changing care and rehabilitation from its hugely committed team. This is an absolutely crucial first step in rebuilding their lives.

“By becoming a corporate supporter, we hope we can play some part in sustaining this amazing work through the fundraising of the Our Hospitals Charity. We are very pleased to be associated with such a great charity, which is supporting a very dynamic NHS Trust, and together play a vital role in people’s lives, both everyday and in times of the most acute trauma.”

Joiner secures settlement with support from specialists at Sintons

A man who will need hearing aids for the rest of his life after being exposed to noise while working as an apprentice joiner has secured a settlement with support from specialists at Sintons.

The man worked as a joiner from 2005 to 2009 and worked in very loud environments for prolonged periods during that time.

While hearing protection was provided by his employer, its use was not enforced, so it was not always used.

Having experienced significant hearing problems, the man decided in 2017 – aged 30 – to pursue an industrial deafness claim against his former employer, and turned to Sintons for support.

Represented by Paul Woodford, partner and head of industrial disease at Sintons, the claim was settled for a five-figure sum less than 24 hours before it was due to proceed to trial.

“Paul was a real pleasure to work with, very informative with excellent communication,” said the client.

“I have dealt with solicitors before and to say he was a breath of fresh air would be an understatement.

“I felt in safe and assured hands from start to finish with my best interests a priority at all times.”

Paul Woodford, a specialist in noise-induced hearing loss claims who was hailed by Legal 500 as being a key name in his field, said: “Our client was a teenager when he was first exposed to damaging levels of noise in the course of his work, and the impact of that has been significant and damaging.

“In an environment where safety equipment is essential, such as the ear protection our client was given the option to wear, it is critical that its use is enforced and is mandatory. This is something all employers and workplaces must have as a priority at all times, and hopefully this case will be another reminder of that obligation.

“We are very pleased to have been able to secure a settlement for our client, which we hope will enable him to move on with his life. We wish him the very best for the future.”

‘Gold standard’ personal injury team wins top ranking

The “gold standard” personal injury team at Sintons has won a top ranking from Legal 500 2023, in recognition of its outstanding legal capability and the service it delivers to clients.

Sintons has nationally-renowned expertise in serious injury work – including life-changing brain and spinal cord injury claims through its specialist Neurotrauma team – and continues to grow through increasing levels of instructions from across the UK.

Again confirming the team as a leader in its field in the North of England, Legal 500 awards a band one ranking, and highlights key team members across the whole department as go-to names in serious injury work with “specialist expertise”.

“Exceptional solicitor” Phil Davison, head of general personal injury, again wins recognition as a leading individual in the North of England. As does “extremely driven and passionate” head of Neurotrauma Andrew McGowan, who is also named as a leading individual.

Legal 500 hails the department for its delivery of Sintons’ core values – exceptional legal and client service – and praises its approach in what can be complex and distressing cases for clients.

“This is probably one of the most experienced PI teams in the North East and is considered by all to be gold standard,” the independent legal guide quotes.

“There is a breadth and depth of legal and medical knowledge that means that they can deal with all cases well and successfully.”

Another testimonial says: ’“This firm is able to take an aggressive approach to litigation whilst treating their clients with care and dignity.

“They do not rush their clients into making decisions, instead they always take time to explain the legal process and to ensure that their clients understand what is happening in their case.”

Key individuals singled out for praise include “tenacious and meticulous” head of personal injury Mark Quigley, Neurotrauma specialists Kate Oliver and Alastair Elliot and serious injury associate David Knipe, who is “willing to back the underdog and cares about clients”.

Managing partner Christopher Welch says: “Our personal injury team has a national reputation for the outstanding service it delivers, offering first-rate legal advice to clients in what can often be life-changing cases while being by their sides of them and their family throughout the process. For that reason, Sintons’ reputation in the marketplace is second to none, and is the reason so many new instructions and recommendations come from across the UK.

“This has again been independently confirmed by Legal 500 2023, which praises our deep capability and highlights the highest standards of personal service we offer our clients through some of the most difficult times they will face. We are very proud of our reputation, and we are very pleased with Legal 500’s endorsement of this.

“It is also excellent to see so many of our team named as key individuals in this very specialist area of work. Sintons is the firm it is because of its people, so the recognition for them personally for the outstanding contribution they make to the ongoing growth of the personal injury team – and most importantly, the outcomes we secure for clients – is very pleasing.”

Sintons extend commitment to Newcastle Eagles

Sintons has continued its support of the North East’s most successful sports team through reaffirming its commitment to Newcastle Eagles for the 2022-23 season.

As the most successful team in British Basketball League (BBL) history, the Eagles are a huge name on the national and international sporting stage with their multi-purpose arena home also now globally renowned for hosting world-class events.

The basketball club it remains committed to its North East roots, with the Eagles Community Foundation supporting schools and thousands of children in the region who take part in sport and physical activity.

Sintons have been a keen supporter of the Eagles for a number of years, with guests attending every match at the Vertu Motors Arena.

The law firm has also supported the club and foundation with legal work, including the landmark move into its new home on the city’s Scotswood Road, overseeing the construction and corporate aspects for plans to become reality.

Now, Sintons has affirmed its status as a corporate supporter of the BBL team for another season.

“The Eagles are a huge asset to the North East, both through their unrivalled levels of sporting success and also the commitment they make to the local community through the Eagles Foundation,” says Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons.

“It has been a great privilege to work with the Eagles team for a number of years now, supporting them in the development of the club and its infrastructure – not least through the major investment of creating a new stadium, which has also been highly significant for Newcastle as a city – and giving them our backing on the court.

“We are delighted to commit our support for another season and look forward to attending matches at the Vertu Motors Arena and cheering the Eagles on to yet more success.”

Paul Blake, managing director of Newcastle Eagles, added: “Sintons continued support both as a sponsor and with their unrivalled legal services throughout the years has been huge for us.

“My thanks to Chris, his fellow partners and colleagues for being a big part of our journey so far and in the future.

“This is a great partnership for us and we’re in excellent hands. We look forward to welcoming Sintons staff and their guests to our BBL games and we look forward to working with them again this season.”

Sintons supports staff with cost of living bonus

Law firm Sintons is supporting its staff through the cost of living crisis with a £1,000 bonus for each of its employees.

As fuel bills and basic living costs continue to rise, combined with the additional pressure of the increases in interest rates, families across the country are facing mounting financial challenges.

Mindful of the situation its employees face, Sintons is making a £1,000 one-off payment to everyone in the firm to help them weather the economic storm.

The significant contribution will be paid in the October payroll.

Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons, said the firm’s continued strong performance and ongoing growth is testament to the hard work of everyone in the business – and that he and the rest of the partners are keen to repay that dedication and commitment with timely support around the rising cost of living.

“The increased costs that everyone is facing, and the challenges that this will cause in the months ahead is extremely worrying, and we are acutely aware of the concern this will cause many people within the business,” he said.

“Sintons is the firm it is because of our people, and we genuinely take the view that we are all in it together and will therefore always do whatever we can to support our team. We are well  known for being a responsible and caring business and we want our staff to know we appreciate them and want to help in any way we can.

“We are sure that this payment of £1,000 will go some way to meeting the rising costs and pressures they face in these uncertain times, and will help to alleviate some of the anxieties which many people currently have.

“Our colleagues continue to excel in their efforts and commitment to making Sintons the trusted, first-rate law firm it is, and we are very pleased to be able to provide support in this way.”

Charity Dog Walk in aid of The People’s Kitchen

Dog owners can take part in a charity walk with their canine companions to raise vital funds for the much-loved People’s Kitchen.

The dog walk, organised by law firm Sintons, will follow a 5k circular route along Newcastle Quayside, with a stop-off at the Tyne Bar for refreshments.

The £10 entry fee will include a doggie goodie bag and drink in the bar, with proceeds going to The People’s Kitchen.

The event, on September 29, is the latest fundraising initiative from Sintons to raise money for The People’s Kitchen, which has been chosen by the law firm’s staff as its nominated charity for two years.

The People’s Kitchen, based in Newcastle city centre – close to Sintons’ headquarters, The Cube – supports homeless and vulnerable people living in the city, and helps them to fight hunger and loneliness.

While only shortly into the two-year period of supporting the popular charity, Sintons has already raised hundreds of pounds through an array of initiatives.

David Pritchard, chair of Sintons’ CSR committee, said: “We always try to organise events which are a little bit different, which offer the chance to enjoy a social occasion while raising vital funds for charity.

“Our dog walk is one such event, and the response has been brilliant – while usually people have to leave their pets at home while they go to work events, this time, dogs will be taking centre stage and will even leave with their own goodie bags!

“We know how difficult fundraising is for charities at present, following the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and the ongoing cost of living crisis, so we will always to our utmost to generate financial support for The People’s Kitchen – an excellent organisation, run entirely by volunteers, which we are very proud to have as our nominated charity.

“While places are limited and many have been filled, some still remain, and we’d love to see as many people there as possible – with their beloved companions, of course.”

To sign up for the event, which runs from 5.25pm to 7.30pm on September 29, please email

Trainee group complete Paddle the Bann challenge

An ambitious canoeing challenge set by trainee solicitors from Sintons has raised significant sums for charity after its successful completion.

The 11-strong trainee group took on the Paddle the Bann challenge, a two-day 58km course from Lough Neagh in Ireland to Coleraine on the coast of the Atlantic, last week.

Having been postponed in 2020 amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, the group have now been able to undertake the challenge, and completed it within 48 hours.

It has helped to generate further vital funds for Sintons’ nominated staff charity, The People’s Kitchen, which is the focus of the firm’s fundraising for two years.

Paddle the Bann is the latest gruelling physical challenge to be set by Sintons’ trainee group – which comprises trainee solicitors and solicitor apprentices – and has become a much-anticipated annual event within the firm.

Previous challenges have collectively raised thousands of pounds for an array of much-loved regional charities, and have included the 136-mile Coast to Coast cycle trek from Whitehaven to Tynemouth; the Three Peaks Challenge of scaling Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Mount Snowdon – a combined height of 3,408 metres – and the 140-mile Port2Port expedition, a three-day cycling route from Newcastle to Amsterdam.

Last year, the trainee group completed the St Cuthbert’s Way route, a challenging 32-mile walk over two days from Kirk Yetholm to Holy Island, which was adapted to accommodate the COVID-19 restrictions in place at that time.

Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons, said: “Our trainee group is now renowned for its willingness to take on ambitious and very challenging fundraising initiatives, and this year was no different.

“I know the training and preparation that went into this from all 11 of our participants, and we all send our congratulations to them on the successful completion of yet another trainee challenge, as well as our thanks for the very significant sums they have raised so far for The People’s Kitchen.

“Trainee challenges are a very important part of the development of our trainee group, and play a key role in helping to build strong working relationships within the firm, adding further to the excellent dynamic among our staff for which we are known.

“Many thanks also to everyone who has given so generously to our trainees’ fundraising.”

To add your support to the trainees’ Paddle the Bann challenge, in aid of The People’s Kitchen, please click here.

Trainee scoops prestigious award

A trainee solicitor at Sintons has received a prestigious award in recognition of her academic achievement.

Emily Richardson has received this year’s Northumbria University Master in Law Award Prize, after excelling in both her university degree and Legal Practice Course.

The Northumbria Law Prize is an annual award given to the best performing student who has graduated and begun a training contract the previous year.

Emily, a trainee in Sintons’ real estate team, received the award at the Newcastle Law Society dinner.

It becomes the latest recognition of Emily’s significant academic achievements, having been appointed to the honour roll for three years while she was at Northumbria, and also receiving the Ede and Ravenscroft award for achieving the highest mark in the year for a module.

“This is a fantastic achievement and we are very proud of Emily,” says Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons.

“The Northumbria Law Prize is a prestigious and highly sought-after award, recognising the best in emerging legal talent and their dedication to building their career from the very earliest stages.

“Emily is a very talented young lawyer whose commitment to her work is first-rate. She is a great asset to our team at Sintons and a central part of our vibrant trainee group.

“This award is yet more well-deserved recognition for her outstanding academic achievement. Congratulations, Emily, and all of your colleagues here at Sintons look forward to working with you as you continue to progress.”

Sintons donates £25,000 to Children’s Cancer North

Law firm Sintons has made a significant donation to Children’s Cancer North following two years of fundraising efforts on its behalf as the firm’s nominated staff charity.

Sintons has handed over £25,000 to the much-loved charity, during a period of fundraising which spanned the COVID-19 pandemic, but saw Sintons becoming increasingly inventive in its use of online events and initiatives to ensure it continued to raise much-needed funds.

The pandemic marked an unprecedented period for charities as donations and fundraising opportunities dropped off overnight, but Sintons remained committed to supporting Children’s Cancer North – a charity with over 40 years of heritage in supporting individuals and families across the region affected by childhood cancer.

Events organised by Sintons included online gaming tournaments and quizzes, with in-person events – including a golf day and pool tournament – resuming once restrictions were lifted.

Children’s Cancer North was chosen as the focus of Sintons’ staff fundraising after a firm-wide vote. Over the years, Sintons has raised tens of thousands of pounds for regional good causes through choosing them as its staff charity. Recently, its new staff charity has been unveiled as The People’s Kitchen.

“We are delighted to have been able to make such a significant donation to Children’s Cancer North, much of which was generated during a period in which our many planned events and fundraising opportunities had to be revised,” said David Pritchard, head of Sintons’ CSR committee.

“We realised that the pandemic meant our fundraising was probably more vital then than ever before, so we really thought outside of the box and translated everything we could into online opportunities. That meant we could still offer the excellent events, for which Sintons is known, while generating funds.

“Our staff have been absolutely committed to doing all they can to support Children’s Cancer North, and we must also reiterate our thanks to clients and contemporaries for lending their support to our fundraising efforts. This donation will help this much-loved charity, both in terms of their research as well as their support for families, which make an amazing contribution to the lives of so many people across the North East and Cumbria.”

Emma Carson, Corporate Partnership Coordinator at Children’s Cancer North added “working with Sintons has been an absolute pleasure and we’ve loved seeing the creative approaches they’ve taken to office fundraising. From golf days to bake sales, it’s so amazing to see the whole team get really involved. Here at Children’s Cancer North, we really do appreciate everything they’ve done!

The money raised by Sintons will make a huge difference in helping to make lives better for children with cancer locally, allowing us to fund some amazing projects both on the wards and in the labs. Thank you Sintons!”

Sintons welcomes aspiring legal talent

Law firm Sintons is continuing its commitment to supporting the next generation of legal talent by welcoming three new trainee solicitors and a solicitor apprentice to the firm.

Charles Bell, Lucy Milnthorp and Edward Pattinson all join Sintons on two-year graduate training contracts, rotating between departments across the firm every six months to gain experience of a breadth of areas of law. Sophie Lemon joins Sintons as part of the six-year solicitor apprenticeship programme.

Charles’ first seat will be in dispute resolution; Sophie begins in wills, trusts and estates; Lucy takes her first seat in employment; and Edward joins the family team.

The new round of recruitment builds further on Sintons’ longstanding commitment to offering opportunities to aspiring lawyers – indeed, a number of its current partners began their Sintons career as trainee solicitors.

More recently, Sintons was a founder member of the North East Solicitor Apprenticeship (NESA) programme, to create opportunities for legal apprentices who can qualify as solicitors over a six-year period.

Sintons’ current cohort of trainee solicitors will also be moving seats as their training progresses.

Amy Carlton joins Neurotrauma; Leigh Garbutt moves to corporate; Charlotte Gunn moves to wills, trusts and estates; Ben McMurdo joins commercial and Emily Richardson moves to real estate.

Two of Sintons’ senior solicitor apprentices are also moving to new seats – Leah Greenwell moves to Court of Protection and Saffron Sinclair joins real estate. Senior solicitor apprentice Nathan Johnson remains in real estate and solicitor apprentice Sabrina Jackland stays in Neurotrauma.

Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons, said: “We are very pleased to welcome Charles, Sophie, Lucy and Edward to Sintons and wish them every success in their careers with us.

“We are deeply committed to offering opportunities to aspiring young lawyers and to supporting them through their training to qualify as solicitors.

“We are renowned for the levels of development and progression we offer at Sintons, and we are committed to doing the very best for our people from the first day they join us. Routinely, people enjoy long careers with Sintons, and our trainee solicitors comprise many of the lawyers currently holding senior roles within the firm.

“Our current cohort of trainee solicitors and solicitor apprentices are making excellent progress and we look forward to continuing to support them through their training.”

Sintons’ Annual Golf Day 2022

An annual event which brings together Sintons’ clients and peers from across the country is being held again for 2022.

The Sintons Annual Golf Day is held every year at Close House, which is home to the world’s only two Lee Westwood golf courses and a former host venue of the British Masters.

The event, held on September 8th, sees professional colleagues and clients and Sintons from throughout the UK gather in the North East for a day of golf and social evening, with a prizegiving ceremony for the winners.

The Golf Day is a longstanding date in Sintons’ annual event calendar, and was another much-missed cancellation during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons, says: “The Annual Golf Day is always a fantastic occasion, providing a forum for us to meet clients and peers in an informal setting, while building relationships further.

“It is always an extremely well-attended and much-anticipated occasion, and post-COVID I think that is even more true, with a great amount of interest being seen already.

“We look forward to welcoming clients and colleagues to Close House again this September, and to enjoying a day of sport and socialising, and a bit of healthy competition in there too!

Neurotrauma team expands with new key appointment

The nationally-renowned Neurotrauma department at Sintons is continuing to grow with the appointment of a new specialist to the team.

Jessica Gower joins Sintons with over 12 years’ experience in high value, life-changing injury cases, particularly those involving brain and spinal injuries or polytrauma.

She has a proven track record of securing seven-figure settlements and is committed to securing the best possible support for clients and their families, including access to early intervention and rehabilitation.

Jessica – an APIL accredited senior litigator and mentor – acts for clients from across the UK and has built a strong reputation for her work.

She joins Sintons at a time of progress and growth for the Neurotrauma team, which continues to build its presence nationally through its dedication and unrelenting commitment to securing the very best outcomes for clients.

Through its combination of legal and client service excellence – which is acknowledged by independent legal publications Legal 500 and Chambers – Sintons is regularly appointed in high value and high complexity cases from across the UK. The team also recently won personal injury team at the 2022 Northern Law Awards.

“I am very pleased to join Sintons, whose reputation for its Neurotrauma work is second to none,” says Jessica.

“I am passionate about supporting people after life-changing injury to achieve the best possible access to rehabilitation and bespoke interventions, and to being on their journey with them at every stage.

“This is a commitment shared by Sintons, whose support of clients is unrivalled. I look forward to working with colleagues here as we continue to develop our presence nationally.”

Andrew McGowan, head of Neurotrauma at Sintons, says: “We are absolutely committed to our clients and to achieving the best possible outcomes for them and their families in their unique circumstances, and delivering an unrivalled personal service to them alongside this is paramount. This underpins everything we do.

“Jessica is a highly experienced lawyer in this very specialist area of work, who shares our ethos and commitment to fighting hard for our clients. We are delighted to welcome her to Sintons.

“As our standing nationally continues to grow, we receive new instructions in cases from around the country, often involving significant levels of complexity and value.

“By continuing to strengthen our team with the addition of expertise and experience, we are able to support even more clients from across the country in rebuilding our lives after life-changing injury, being by the sides of them and their families from the earliest stages of their recovery and rehabilitation. We look forward to working with Jessica in our commitment to delivering this.”

Sintons’ Trainees undertake Paddle the Bann challenge 2022

An ambitious fundraising challenge which had to be cancelled due to COVID-19 is now being undertaken by Sintonstrainee group.

Each year, the law firm’s thriving group of young lawyers choose a gruelling physical task for the now-renowned Trainee Challenge, which routinely raises significant sums for Sintons’ nominated charity.

The challenge scheduled for 2020 – Paddle the Bann, a two-day 58km canoeing expedition from Lough Neagh in Ireland to Coleraine on the coast of the Atlantic – had to be postponed after falling victim to pandemic restrictions…read more>>

Sintons take part in Newcastle Quayside Race 2022

A team of runners from Sintons are set to take part in a much-loved Newcastle Quayside Race.

The team will take part in the Quayside 5k, an annual event organised by Gateshead Harriers and Athletics Club which brings together runners from across the region.

 The race begins on Newcastle Quayside by the Millennium Bridge to Newcastle Business Park, then under the Tyne Bridge to cross the iconic Millennium Bridge to finish in Gateshead’s Baltic Square.

 The event – to be held on Wednesday, August 10 – continues to grow in terms of reputation and participation levels each year, with the Quayside 5k 2022 hailed as being the biggest yet.

 Sintons, which pays the team’s entry fee, has supported the event regularly over the years and has a number of keen runners among its staff.

 David Pritchard, head of marketing at Sintons, said the firm is pleased to support the Quayside 5k by entering a team.

 “The Quayside 5k has become a very well known and loved event in Newcastle, attracting runners from across the region. As a business proud to be based in this city, we are always keen to lend our support to events in any way we can,” he said.

 “We have a number of very capable runners in the firm, and health and wellbeing through fitness is a message we are very keen to promote to all of our staff. We are very pleased to support them to take part in an event like this, which is also a great way of strengthening the relationships we have within our team.

 “We wish everyone the best of luck in the Quayside 5k and hope it is another very successful event.”

Private client specialist Ed Liddell joins Sintons

The specialist wills, trusts and estates team at Sintons is continuing to expand through the appointment of a new solicitor to its team.

Ed Liddell, a specialist in a range of private client matters, is relocating back to his native North East to join the award-winning team.

An affiliate member of the Society of Trusts and Estate Practitioners (STEP), Ed advises on matters including the preparation of complex wills, lasting powers of attorney, trusts, and the administration of estates.

He joins Sintons at a time of strong growth for the wills, trusts and probate team, which is receiving increasing numbers of instructions as a result of its national reputation.

“I am delighted to join a private client team which is recognised throughout the UK for its technical expertise and is committed to providing an outstanding level of service to each and every client,” says Ed.

“I look forward to working with my colleagues to build the capability and reputation of Sintons even further on a national basis.”

Paul Nickalls, head of wills, trusts and estates at Sintons – who is regularly named by Legal 500 and Chambers as being one of the leading private client lawyers in the North of England – said: “We are delighted to welcome Ed to our growing team.

“For more than 125 years, Sintons has been entrusted by generations of the same families to help them plan and safeguard for the future, and the number of new clients who are turning to us for advice is growing all the time.

“Our levels of expertise and experience, particularly in high value matters, mean that we are appointed in matters of the highest complexity. When this is combined with the reputation that we have earned in delivering the best possible service to each and every client, the result is that we are the private client advisor of choice for more and more individuals nationally.

“We look forward to working with Ed as we continue to take the department forward, while maintaining our core values of legal and service excellence.”

Debt Recovery for self-employed has never had a more important role to play

The Association of Independent Professionals and the Self Employed (IPSE) has warned of the impact of late payment on the self-employed freelancers across the UK. The IPSE has highlighted that the problem is bigger than ever today and worsening.

Its thought that the average amount owed to them rose in 2022 to circa £5230.00 and unpaid invoices are crippling the finances of many self-employed workers, as much as 1 in 5.

Late payment is challenging for every business and very often self-employed freelancers are reliant on every invoice being paid on time, for their day to day living expenses.

The late payment crisis is so bad for some that they have little or no money to cover basic living expenses and it’s reported that late payment crisis is causing mental health issues for many self-employed people. According to reports from the IPSE, 49% of self-employed freelancers have felt anxiety due to unpaid invoices. Many have also admitted that the situation has affected their productivity and a number also said they have lost sleep worrying over unpaid invoices and questioned their careers.

Restricting the problem of non-payment of invoices has always been a challenge for the self-employed and small businesses. Despite previous government reforms to try to prevent late payment, such as the prompt payment code, the situation appears to be worsening. The average amount owed to self-employed freelancers has climbed to a new high

Latest research from IPSE shows that 35% of self-employed workers have not been paid on time within the last year and nearly 1 in 5 self-employed freelancers say they have waited well over three months to get paid on some jobs.

IPSE is calling upon the government to step up and improve previous reforms by making businesses more accountable for non-payment and penalising them.  In the USA, there is a ‘freelance isn’t free’ law. This was introduced in 2017 and forces companies to pay self-employed workers within 30 days.  The IPSE claims that the UK needs to implement its own version to protect freelancers and self-employed workers.

If you are a small business or self-employed freelancer and have not been paid on time, please contact a member of our dedicated debt recovery team for help. Many clients turn to us to ensure they get paid and whilst there may be a small cost, this is viewed by most as an essential strategy to ensure they get invoices paid on time.

If you have any queries about debt recovery please contact Allison Thompson on 0191 2267878.

Quiz night raises over £1,597 for The People’s Kitchen

A quiz night was held to help boost the fundraising total for the 2022 Sintons’ Trainee Challenge, an annual event which sees the firm’s aspiring lawyers take on an ambitious feat for charity.

The Trainee Challenge Quiz Night was attended by scores of professionals from across the North East, and raised over £1,597 for The People’s Kitchen, Sintons’ newly-nominated staff charity.

The event, held at Shearer’s Bar in Newcastle, is a much-anticipated annual event in support of the firm’s Trainee Challenge, which this year will see the 11-strong group taking on the Paddle the Bann.

The canoeing expedition follows an ambitious 58km route from Lough Neagh in Ireland to Coleraine on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean.

The group, comprising eight trainees and three solicitor apprentices, will take on the two-day challenge in September, with all funds raised going towards The People’s Kitchen.

Sintons’ Trainee Challenge is now a renowned event in the firm’s calendar, with previous escapades including the 136-mile Coast to Coast cycling route from Whitehaven to Tynemouth; the Three Peak challenge of Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Mount Snowdon, and the 140-mile Port2Port cycle from Newcastle to Amsterdam.

Collectively, over the years, the challenges have raised thousands of pounds for local charities to support their work in the North East community.

“Our Trainee Challenge is not only a fantastic challenge for our young lawyers and an excellent means of team-building, but also a very important fundraising initiative,” says Christopher Welch, managing partner of Sintons.

“Through their efforts, we are able to add significantly to the total we are able to donate to our nominated charity, which we have recently named as being The People’s Kitchen for the next two years.

“The Trainee Challenge Quiz Night is a keenly-anticipated occasion and this year was as enjoyable as ever, with a brilliant turnout in team numbers and an excellent total raised. We are very grateful for the support, as ever, and wish our trainees the best of luck with their training as Paddle the Bann draws nearer.”