Ice Bucket Solicitor

The life of a solicitor is one of hard work, dedication and lots of reading. Being a firm that delivers family, employment and business law to name a few we are quite used to getting involved. However, when we accepted a recent ice bucket challenge we did not expect our director, Fiona Read, to be involved with a challenge of such an epic scale.


What Is The Ice Bucket Challenge?

If you do not use Facebook you may have missed this recent trend that took billions of Facebook users by storm. In fact this challenge was one of the largest viral campaigns on social media during July/August of this year.

“The challenge encourages nominated participants to be filmed having a bucket of ice water poured on their heads and then nominating others to do the same. A common stipulation is that nominated participants have 24 hours to comply or forfeit by way of a charitable financial donation” Ice Bucket Challenge on Wikipedia.

Originally the challenge was developed to increase understanding of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclorosis (ALS) more commonly known in the UK as Motor Neurone Disease. However the challenge later became a public endorsement of charitable donations.

Why Was Our Ice Bucket Challenge Epic?

Firstly we must give a huge thank you to Coral Horn from Pink Link who invited Fiona to take part in the challenge. It was Coral who organised the event and it’s her JustGiving page we recommend you donate upon.

Firstly this challenge was epic because instead of the usual bucket of ice cold water this involved 600 gallons of water. In fact the challenge took place at Sandcastle Waterpark Blackpool. To see what happened next please watch the video below.

How Can I Join In/Help Out?

We ask that if you enjoyed this blog and the video above please donate to Coral’s JustGiving page. Simple click the image below:


Alternatively you can donate via text message from your mobile phone. Text “CORA98” followed by the amount you would like to donate to 70070


Trainee Solicitor’s Blog By Jenny McPhee

I joined Ascroft Whiteside in January 2014 to practise Family Law, working under Lauren Riley the family solicitor at the firm.

I have always been interested in Family Law due to its relevance in many aspects of daily life such as children, marriage and separation. I was a little apprehensive that working in this field would be upsetting or emotionally testing. However, I was looking forward to learning new skills and developing my legal knowledge as well as with working closely with clients on a daily basis.

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I was keen to see how court hearings were conducted and how financial settlements, especially in Divorce, were reached. I quickly adapted to Lauren’s style of working and sat in on meetings that she conducted with clients’ including initial interviews. Eventually I was given the opportunity to conduct interviews unassisted and found this very rewarding. I attended court and got to see the workings of a financial hearing in relation to Divorce; on this occasion an FDA was converted to an FDR and a settlement was reached.

I had the opportunity to develop my drafting skills as I drafted instructions to counsel on a few matters; including a somewhat complex cohabitation matter. It was also interesting to see how counsel and solicitors worked together in practice.

Quote From BlogI advanced my interviewing skills and learnt how to gather all the relevant information from a client at the initial interview. On many occasions clients would get emotional and it was essential to support them but also give clear advice and information at the outset. I learnt early on that you had to be somewhat firm but remain empathetic.

As a new trainee based at a desk in the “healthy” office I soon adapted to herbal tea and high protein lunches. I was informed that bread had no nutritional value and that “clean eating” was the way forward. I embraced this concept whole heartedly even joining a local Gym in an attempt to achieve a healthier lifestyle (and to keep up with the talk in our room of bootcamps and squats).

This however has seemed to have an adverse effect turning me into a secret eater (a programme Graeme Booth and myself discuss occasionally with amusement). Vikki buying me chips on “fat Fridays” and donating the occasional chocolate bar has been a welcome relief from the “clean eating.” It seems food has been crucial to this stage of my training!

In conclusion being a family lawyer in training has been satisfyingly, challenging and interesting. As a family lawyer you have the opportunity to help an individual and support them through a difficult and emotional time in their lives. Hopefully resulting in them achieving the outcome they desire.

All in all my time in the family department has been ………… TASTY!!!!

Proud Sponsors of the Eva Vision Awards

EVA Awards, Sponsor Signature 2014Let’s face it, running a business is never easy. From long hours to seemingly impossible tasks a single day can feel like a lot of hard work. This is especially true if you are a young female business owner.

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Add all the usual business issues to a busy personal life and you have, at times, an almost seemingly impossible mountain to climb. Not only do many young female business owners choose to take on this challenge but many succeed.

That is why we are proud sponsors of the Young Entrepreneur at the Eva Vision Awards.

Ascroft Whiteside in Blackpool Sponser Young Entrepreneur of the Year

“Eva, The Enterprise Vision Awards have been created to specifically recognise those ladies in The North West who are inspiring others by successfully running their own businesses or are at the forefront of their profession.” Enterprise Vision Awards

Many of us aspire for improved equality within the UK but there is still a journey to achieving this. Recent statistics show the median hourly earnings of full-time men in 2013 were £13.60 compared with £12.24 for women.

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Even though women make up 51% of the population in the UK there are only 17% of women directors in FTSE 100 companies (March 2013). Within FTSE 250 companies this figure falls to 13%.

EVA programme 2014
It is for these reasons that we believe it is extremely important to celebrate the achievements of young entrepreneurial women within the North West. It is important to recognise their success, their determination to pull their business through economic hardship and to showcase their example to future business leaders.

“Taking the leap into Enterprise can be a daunting prospect for many ladies and we would like to recognise those bright young sparks that have successfully established a business from an early age. This category is open to ladies from 20 to 35 years of age. So if you started your business between this age bracket we want to hear from you.” Enterprise Vision Awards – Young Entrepreneur

EVA Awards, Sponsor Signature 2014The nomination process has now opened so please nominate yourself or anyone you know that qualifies for this award.

142 Years of Trading – One Blog

As a firm of solicitors with 142 years of trading history we know we have the inherent experience to represent our clients to the highest legal level. This history does not mean we are old and stuffy. Quite the contrary. We love social media and now we have added blogging to our repertoir!

Once a month, or maybe a little bit more, we will post an update all about us, recent news and the legal landscape. As you can imagine there are a lot of things that go on here at Ascroft Whiteside in Blackpool. It is a pleasure to work in such a vibrant office and we cannot wait to share just a little of that with you.

It’s not a one way street. Please use this blog to message us. Let us know what you think about the posts we publish and share your views. Contact us on Facebook, Twitter and by email to let us know what you would like to hear about. After all we are writing these posts for you and we would rather write about topics you want to know about.

Please feel free to contribute below in the comments section. Simply say hi or let us know what you would like us to post about in the near future.