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ES PSC 2014 May

A contingent from BLS headed up by our President, pictured here during her presentation, attended the annual Presidents and Secretaries Conference in London. The purpose of the conference, which is held at Chancery Lane and attended by presidents and secretaries from around the country as well as other law society officials, is to engage as a collective group to provide regional updates and support to each of the local law societies.


Eileen Schofield, founder and principal at law firm Schofield & Associates, has been appointed president of Birmingham Law Society.

Eileen takes over the role from Martin Allsopp, who stepped down at the Society’s Annual General Meeting on Tuesday 29 April.

Eileen is the principal solicitor at Schofield & Associates, a niche employment law firm based in Knowle, Solihull. Founded in 2009, Eileen and her colleagues advise on contentious and non-contentious employment law issues, acting for employers and individuals, including senior directors.

Eileen said: “Birmingham Law Society is the largest local law society in the UK and I am honoured to be taking the helm.

“I will use my office to champion law firms, particularly those hit by recent government cut backs, continuing the work my predecessor Martin Allsopp began in this field.

“In addition, I aim to ensure the Society has a place at the top table as Birmingham and the region continues to recover from the recession, working closely with the Chamber of Commerce, the Local Enterprise Partnership and Midlands’ MPs.”

Taking over the role of vice president is Mushtaq Khan of Freeth Cartwright LLP, while John Hughes of Shakespeares becomes deputy vice president. Professor Bernadette Griffin of The University of Law and Ann Houghton of Anthony Collins Solicitors remain as joint honorary secretaries.



City of Birmingham Striders is the UK Athletics affiliated running club in Birmingham City Centre.

The club emerged from a Saturday morning running group which trained Yoga Haven staff and members for the 2012 Birmingham half marathon.

At present we have four running sessions per week all led by experienced running leaders. Two sessions are on weekday evenings, the other two are on weekend mornings. We meet at 3 different locations all within the Ladywood constituency in central Birmingham. The club is diverse and inclusive.

Membership of the club includes affiliation to the sport governing body, UK Athletics. This individual membership provides discount off races and various other promotional offers. For the year from April 2014 the cost of membership is £25. We have club vests, t-shirts and hoodies.

Usually we run together in groups at conversational pace. The pace of and distance covered by the groups is determined by the people who are running on that day. Some of our sessions have specific coach-led goals focused on aspects of running technique which are designed to support our participation in races at local, county and national levels. We organise specific programmes throughout the year, including zero to 5k, 5k - 10k, endurance training, and cross country.
Our overall aim is to encourage participation in running at all levels supported by an experienced and qualified coaching team.

The legal profession can be a stressful environment. Deadlines, pressure to meet targets and be out networking leaves us tired and the last thing on your mind is exercising after a hard day. However, exercise has been proven to reduce stress (and waist lines) and improve productivity. Jane Plant, Associate Solicitor at Weightmans and winner of this year’s Associate of the Year award has been running since 2007 and is a coach at City of Birmingham Striders. Jane says “running is a great, social way to keep fit and an excellent stress buster. Whether you walk/run for 30 mins or train for a marathon, the effects are the same and anyone can start running. I couldn’t run for 5 minutes when I first started and within 2 years had run a marathon. Give it a try!”

for more details email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 



Birmingham Law Society hosts networking night

Members of Birmingham Law Society enjoyed an evening of networking at the Radisson Blu Hotel for the final social event in its current presidential calendar.

More than 80 people attended the event, which gave members the opportunity to meet with BLS’s president, Martin Allsopp, before he steps down at the Society’s AGM later this month.

Also in attendance were members of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), who were invited as part of the Society’s aim to network with other professionals in the city.

A cheque for £15,500 was also presented to the president’s nominated charity St Basils on the night.

The event was sponsored by Landmark Information Group and Wesleyan for Lawyers.

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Death Announcement

It is with regret that we announce the sad death of the late Robert (Bob) Garratt DFC LLB who sadly died on 14 March 2014.  His funeral is to take place at Chester Crematorium on 27th March at 2.00 pm.

Bob Garratt was a former past President of Birmingham Law Society in 1978 and was actively involved in the legal affairs of the West Midlands until his retirement from practice at the age of 76.  Bob was awarded the DFC for involvement in dangerous missions during the Burma campaign as a wartime Hurricane pilot with the RAF.

Martin Allsopp