In Manchester, it isn’t just the on-set of late afternoon darkness and the arrival of the illuminated bearded zippy look-a-like santa (http://www.manchester.gov.uk/news/article/6715/season%E2%80%99s_tweetings_as_santa_comes_back_to_town) that signifies the descent towards Christmas.
Within the legal community there is often an increased level of black tie awards and firm functions providing an opportunity to revel in achievements from throughout the year. The festive period is also marked by the ever-growing Christmas markets (some bars now having upper floors) which continue to attract the crowds.
For me, one of the main attractions of working in Manchester (aside from it being close to where I live) has always been the strength of its professional community and their desire to interact and connect with each other to make Manchester and the North West a strong national and international player.
The dark nights provide great cover to get out with clients or colleagues and to bond over a Gluhwein – an opportunity to communicate in a more relaxed and less constrained environment. Adding a personal dimension and letting people have the chance to meet and talk in a fun environment is often the best device to cement developing relationships. Even in the toughest of times, people buy people and these nights, whilst they can take their toll and must of course be done responsibly, are invaluable and well worth the investment of time. Above all else they can prove to be fun and even lawyers are entitled to have fun!