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Law firm Lester Aldridge announced new head of charities

By Karolina Skinner
6 May 2021
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Senior associate Lisa Watson-Cook joins full-service law firm Lester Aldridge as the new head of charities & social enterprise.

Lisa Watson-Cook joins law firm Lester Aldridge as the new head of charities & social enterprise.

Watson-Cook advises charities, social enterprises, voluntary organisations and associations on all aspects of charity law. She aims to support trustees and charity professionals to advance their strategic objectives with minimal risk.

Watson-Cook’s background is as in-house counsel for a ‘top ten’ charity. In addition to providing a broad range of legal, regulatory and constitutional advice to the national umbrella body, she was responsible for the charity’s constituent parts. This role gave her unique insight, versatility and knowledge of the charity sector.

Watson-Cook takes over from Geoff Trobridge, who is retiring after being a partner and leading the charities team at LA for 11 years.

As a specialist in charity law, Trobridge was a regular member of working parties on new charity legislation and regulatory policy for the Charity Law Association. He has been regularly ranked in independent legal directories Chambers and The Legal 500 for his work with charities. A client testimonial published in The Legal 500 2021 said of Trobridge: “Their charity specialist lawyer was by far the best that we met, so we decided to go with them. It was a very easy decision. We have had fabulous and faultless service from them.”

Reflecting on his career, Trobridge said: “I find it hard to believe that I started work when a fax machine was a novelty to be viewed with suspicion and any urgent message had to be sent by telex – about once a month normally. I have loved the variety of work that the charity sector involves. It has been really good to be part of LA for the last ten years or so – if there is a tinge of regret about retirement, it is that the plans for the future look so exciting”

Matthew Barrow, the managing partner at Lester Aldridge, said: “I am delighted to welcome Lisa to Lester Aldridge. Her extensive experience in the sector means we can continue to offer our charity clients the well-established offering established by Geoff and the team over the years. I would like to say a fond farewell to Geoff on behalf of the firm and wish him all the best on his retirement.”

Charity clients of the firm include voluntary organisations, charities, social enterprises, almshouses, clubs and associations of all sizes, and all parts of the country, with a particular specialism in the healthcare sector. During the past year, the charity team has strengthened its relationships with clients, supporting them through the challenges brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic.