As Coodes celebrates it’s 275th anniversary this year, Chairman and Partner Peter Lamble reflects on how the firm has grown beyond all recognition from its humble beginnings.
We have come a very long way from when Edward Coode, the original Coode family member, joined the firm back in the eighteeth century. Yet the core of our values and vision remains the same, our clients are at the heart of everything we do, but their needs are met by the dedication and hard work of our talented staff. Without their combined contributions, Coodes would not be the modern business it is today.
Celebrating our 275th anniversary is something to be incredibly proud of, it’s quite an achievement and we’re in a unique position. It shows that we are doing things right. This milestone demonstrates Coodes’ remarkable resilience and adaptability. To survive this long is a truly monumental achievement by any measure.
In the 275 years that Coodes has been established there have been ten British monarchs and 19 popes. We were founded in the Georgian era, outlasted the rigours of the Victorian age, and saw out the huge social and economic changes of the 20th Century. It has survived while the country endured the massive change brought about by industrialisation, the rise and fall of its empire and the global destruction and disruption occasioned by two world wars. Our story began before the industrial revolution, and we now find ourselves adapting to the huge changes and challenges brought on by another revolution in the global digital era.
Although we were originally founded in 1747, the last 25 years have seen exponential growth in our geographical reach and the development of our team. We employ over 160 people and have played an important role in the key milestones of tens of thousands of families and businesses across the South West region. The number of offices that we operate from has grown in number too, expanding into new communities fuelled by that sense of strong family traditions.
In 2014 we transformed the practice, becoming a limited liability partnership (LLP) and today we have 13 business owners making key decisions on our strategy, helping to plan and shape future growth and leadership.
We have embraced advances in new technology and digital platforms, we offer a much wider range of legal services and expertise and we have some of the best lawyers in the country who are specialists in their field of work.
There have been many challenges over the years, not least a global pandemic which made us reevaluate how we work. Expectations have changed and it’s important that we keep up with that curve. We’ve had to adapt to changes in the speed of delivery, by horse or post boy to instant email, but we strive to continue giving exceptional service.
Technology has transformed how we do business and how we will operate in the future, but it’s the investment in people that will make the real difference – our people will play the most important role in delivering our services. They are the ones who build trust and relationships with clients, who meet customer expectations and who deliver the ‘human touch’
So, what happens to Coodes in the next 25 years? Of course, I would like to see further expansion, but primarily we want to be easy to understand, to know that clients value what we do, a practice that they want to come back to time and again and recommend us to others. Giving clients the care they deserve is of the utmost importance to us.
Clients and staff want to be associated with a law firm to be proud of and fundamentally we stand for helping people – we want to continue helping people. They trust us and our focus is ensuring we have a strong foundation to build on in the future, enabling it to grow further.
Over the last two centuries a lot has changed at Coodes, whether it be the location, the name or how we communicate. One thing has remained the same – the way we serve Cornwall and Devon’s communities. We are still a family firm at heart, and we harness the traditions started in 1747 well into 2022 and beyond. We want to be around for the next 275 years.
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