Firm History

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The firm of Fieldings was established in 1871 by Matthew Fielding, a former Mayor of Bolton. In 1887 he was joined by George Fernihough and the firm became know as Fielding & Fernihough.

Matthew's son Edgar joined the firm in 1915 following the death of his father, and remained with the firm until 1958. He still visited the offices until shortly before his death in 1962.

In 1960 the firm took over H. Fairbrother and Son of 9 Fold Street following the death of Kenneth Fairbrother (a sole practitioner who was also the Coroner) and was then known as Fieldings & Fernihough and H. Fairbrother & Son. After the move to Silverwell House on 18th September 1968, and the amalgamation with A. Halstead & Hull in December of that year the opportunity was taken to shorten the firm's name to Fieldings.

On 1st May 1988, the firm amalgamated with an even older Bolton firm, Broadbents of Mawdsley Street, Bolton. The founder of Broadbents, Frederic Broadbent, was admitted as a solicitor during 1837 and was followed in the practice by his son Frederic William Broadbent in 1893.

On 1st May 1995 Fieldings merged with Porter Hope and Knipe of Bolton and became Fieldings Porter. Porter Hope and Knipe had been established in 1937 by the late Philip Porter O.B.E., father of David Porter, previously Senior Partner and now a Consultant at Fieldings Porter.

In September 2011 the firm merged with its neighbouring practice Cumming, Hodkinson, Dickinson and welcomed Roger Gillies and Robert Cumming as consultants.

In October 2012 the firm merged with Manchester City Centre firm Lomax Geddes and Co based in the Royal Exchange and both Peter Brennand and Ian Brown became consultants, Ian in addition to his sitting as a Deputy District Judge (Civil). In 2013 the Manchester office relocated to its current site on the first floor of 86 King Street.

Fieldings Porter has its head office in Bolton with 7 Partners, 8 Consultant Solicitors, 5 Associate Solicitors, a further 19 Assistant Solicitors, 7 further case workers including Legal Executives and Licensed Conveyancers, and 13 support staff, including 2 apprentices who have or are studying NVQ Levels 2 and 3 in Business Administration and 2 who were apprentices but have now progressed to paralegal support. It is a recognised practice for the training of solicitors and we currently have 1 Trainee Solicitor.

In 2004 - 2005, Edward Nally, now a consultant was President of the Law Society of England and Wales. He was President of the Bolton Incorporated Law Society in 2007. He is currently a member of the Legal Services Board and a solicitor member of the QC Selection Panel.

John Birtwell, Senior Partner, was, in 2009 the President of the Bolton Incorporated Law Society.

The firm is an accredited Investor in People and in 2012 achieved the much coveted Silver Award. The firm has the Lexcel quality assurance standard accreditation from the Law Society, and has done so for over 15 years. In October 2012 the Criminal Department was awarded a category 1 in an obligatory Peer Review at the request of the Legal Services Commission. See here for more information.


The firm offers advice and guidance in commercial property and company law, also with specialists in employment law, residential conveyancing, wills, trusts, probate, charity law, civil and commercial litigation and dispute resolution, personal injury including clinical negligence, housing issues, criminal law, family law and the law relating to children.

Among the staff and partners there are members of the Solicitors Family Law Association, the Children Panel, the Solicitors Association of Higher Court Advocates, the Solicitors for the Elderly, the Society of Trusts and Estates Practitioners and a Deputy District Judge (Civil), and a Clerk to the Commissioner of Taxes.

The firm has public funding franchises for Family Law and Housing Law. It also holds a Criminal Defence Service contract for Criminal Law.

The firm celebrated its 145th anniversary in 2016. For further details, follow the links - Firm News, Community.

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