On his passions outside work, travel and what events have inspired him to succeed in life
I am lucky to live in the North Yorkshire Moors and so try to take advantage of the fabulous walking and cycling around the area. Rosedale, Dalby Forest and Roseberry Topping and the Howardian Hills are favourite places to visit and all in areas of outstanding natural beauty. There are some challenging cycle rides with some steep climbs and it certainly provides a good way of keeping fit and getting some fresh country air. My wife and I moved in 2015 from our long term base in Manchester where I had worked for over 20 years, to live in the countryside and to take advantage of what the area has to offer.
I love to travel and I want to get to see as much of the world as possible. I love good food and try out good restaurants as often as I can. There are so many good restaurants close to hand and we are fortunate to have Michelin star restaurants, The Star Inn at Harome and the Black Swan at Oldstead on our doorstep.
Football will always be my favourite sport although my playing days are well behind me. I remain a committed fan and my life in Manchester has left its mark as I continue to follow and support the red half of the city.
I try to vary travel to different places in the world but my favourite place has to be closer to home, and that is Italy. It is a stunningly beautiful country with so much history and quite simply the best food. It’s difficult to beat! We love the Italian Lakes and regions such as Emelia Romagna and Puglia but Tuscany remains the best. Chianti wines and rustic pasta dishes are a big attraction. It is difficult to think of a more stunning iconic landscape than that of Tuscany and it has wonderful cities to visit such as Florence and Sienna. A trip to New York is coming up before Christmas and I do hope to fit in a visit to New Zealand and Australia at some time in the near future.
I seem to have been born with a very ambitious streak which identified itself at the very beginning of my career in law. I have always wanted to progress and be successful and get the best results I could for clients. I was fortunate to meet and work for a very successful lawyer called Peter McCormick who was very dynamic and bright and still has his own firm today. He certainly inspired me and I wanted the sort of success he achieved.
I was lucky to join a great firm in Russell Jones and Walker in 1987 and to have the opportunity to work on challenging cases. I moved my family to Manchester from Leeds in the early part of my career with RJW with the task to develop its criminal and professional disciplinary offering in the north of England. This was a critical move in my working life and provided the foundation for my progress in the firm.
One of my first major cases was representing rank and file police officers arising from the original Hillsborough football tragedy and things turned full circle when I represented over 200 such officers in the renewed investigations and inquests. In a way that case, as tragic and terrible as it was, has defined my career.
Having a family also spurred me on to succeed. It was very important to make sure that the family was provided for. Of course the kids are now adults enjoying busy and successful lives of their own. Having a great family and having such an enjoyable time sharing my life with them remains my most important success.