Geldards trainee honoured with Derby & District Law Society’s Presidential Award

Laura Matthews, trainee solicitor in Geldards Infrastructure and Construction team, was recently honoured by Derby & District Law Society receiving the prestigious ‘Presidential Award’ at the DDLS Annual Awards Dinner at Pride Park Stadium in March.

Derby & District Law Society supports the interests of local legal professionals, promoting Derby as a centre of legal excellence through a range of networking events, training and the annual Awards Dinner. The Awards, a highlight of the year for Derbyshire legal professionals, celebrate individuals and firms making a significant contribution to the industry and advocating for change.

Laura who is Vice President of the Derby Junior Lawyers was presented with the prestigious President’s Award by DDLS President Oliver Maxwell for her efforts and commitments to re-launching the Derby Junior Lawyers Division in 2022.


Laura Matthews receiving award from Oliver Maxwell

Derby Junior Lawyers provide opportunities for young legal professionals to meet colleagues through networking and social events, offering mutual support and career advancement opportunities. They host professional development, training, charity fundraising, social events and networking with other local professionals.

Laura, along with a small group of peers, re-launched the society in April 2022 with a popular event to attract new members. Since then the society has continued to grow from strength to strength establishing a new community of young lawyers in and around Derby.

In giving his speech, President of the DDLS Oliver Maxwell said:

“I have been blown away by Laura’s commitment to the Derbyshire legal scene this year. She was fundamental to the relaunch of the Derby Junior Lawyers and, in addition to juggling work commitments alongside the pressures of the part-time Legal Practice Course, she secured a training contract with one of our larger member firms – Geldards. She helped host DJL events and was responsible, in no small part, for the amazing success of the Summer Soiree, the Ghost Walk and the Winter Party.”

Laura is a trainee solicitor in Geldards’ Infrastructure and Construction team assisting on a variety of non-contentious matters. She works with a range of  clients, including local authorities, developers and consultants.

Commenting on the award, Geldards Partner and Head of Commercial Property Derby Graham Banks said;

“We are extremely proud of Laura’s achievement on being awarded the coveted Presidential Award by Derby & District Law Society. I am delighted that she has been recognised for all the hard work she puts into furthering Derby Junior Lawyers, it is vitally important that the next generation of lawyers are nurtured and encouraged. Well done Laura,  your colleagues at Geldards are thrilled with your success.”

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