Meet the Team: Madeline Dykes

Wed 9th Nov 2022

Can you briefly describe what your role involves?

As a Solicitor in the Commercial Property Team, I spend lots of time working with clients in the agricultural sector, particularly in terms of dealing with the sale and purchase of agricultural land and property, as well as freehold and leasehold property and tenancies. Each matter is different with its own unique challenges and so tailoring the advice to help clients develop their businesses, through expansion or acquiring land for example, is an important part of my role. The variety of work means that every day is different and that is what makes my job so enjoyable.

Did you always want to be a lawyer and what inspired you to pursue a legal career in the first place?

Yes, ever since the age of 14 when I was involved in a mock trial competition with my school at Oxford County Court. I loved the whole experience, from researching and preparing the case, to the thrill of presenting in court. Initially, I wanted to train as a Barrister and went on to arrange several work experience placements at the Magistrates’ and County Courts, with local Solicitors, marshalling a Judge and a Mini-Pupillage. I have therefore always been passionate about working in the legal sector.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

I most enjoy helping clients to reach their goals and achieve a successful outcome – completing a matter is the best part of the job for me. It is always rewarding when you receive positive feedback from a happy client having reached completion of their matter and enabling them to move forward with their business. I am also quite methodical, so I enjoy the structure and the analytical aspects of my role.

Can you briefly explain your career path to date?

I studied Law at A Level, relocated to the South West in 2009, and went to the University of Exeter to achieve my LLB Law Degree. I completed my Legal Practice Course at the University of Plymouth and then started my Training Contract at a local Firm, specialising in Property Law. I qualified as a Solicitor in March 2019 and joined Coodes in December 2020.

What, in your opinion, does Coodes do particularly well? Is there anything it does differently from other law firms?

It was fantastic joining Coodes, despite it being during the second Covid lockdown, after hearing lots of good things about the team. I have always admired the Firm and its prominence in the South West. I think the training opportunities are excellent and their support for you is first class. Coodes is a very professional law firm, with great client feedback and high quality case management systems in place, so it ticked all the boxes for me.

What do you enjoy most about living and working in Cornwall?

It has to be the work/life balance and being able to walk to the beach in the evening after work. Cornwall has some of the best coastal walks and beautiful scenery on offer, so we are spoilt for choice. I am also a National Trust member and it is great to be able to visit the historic properties and gardens. Of course, you cannot forget the locally produced food and drink here – we have got some of the best farm shops and amazing seafood on offer!

What skills and character traits do you think are most important for someone doing your job?

I think it is important to prioritise and be analytical, logical, thorough, and accurate, with good attention to detail and the ability to problem solve. Patience is also key!

What have you been most proud of in your career to date?

Achieving my qualification in 2019 and attending the Law Society Admissions Ceremony at Chancery Lane in London is definitely my proudest moment. Being added to the Roll of Solicitors was something I had been working incredibly hard towards and made the six years of studying and training all worthwhile.

What’s your superpower?

Determination and resilience.

How would your colleagues describe you?

Approachable and personable, conscientious, and possibly quiet!

What object would you not want to be without as you go about your daily work and why?

A cup of tea and maybe a few biscuits! And of course, my to-do list which I could not be without.

Wed 9th Nov 2022

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