As part of our 10th anniversary celebrations, we wanted to speak to people across the firm – from those who were here at the beginning of our journey, to those who have joined us in recent years – to get their views on what makes Pannone what it is, and how the legal and Greater Manchester landscape has changed during that time.

In the first of a 10 blog series, we speak to partner, David Walton. He joined the Health, Safety and Regulatory team in March 2023, having worked in the legal sector for 32 years. During that time, he worked alongside Bill Dunkerley, Associate Partner at Pannone, who convinced him that he should come and speak to the firm when, at the end of 2022, he was exploring his vocational future.

“As a former business owner and practicing lawyer, I was in the enviable position of having a good insight into what the final years of my professional working life could and should look like and, upon meeting the senior leadership team at Pannone Corporate, I realised very quickly that I had found what I was searching for.

“I already knew the Pannone Corporate brand symbolised legal acumen and professionalism; lawyers practicing at the top of their game. That was confirmed very soon after joining the firm. However, what equally attracted me to Pannone and, what was confirmed when my feet hit the ground, was the sense of team spirit, bonding and trust that permeates through all parts of the practice. Management styles can differ greatly and are central to a firm’s success. The management style adopted across Pannone (transparent, fair, and one that rewards team players working towards a common goal), is one that I have always tried to emulate myself. Pannone is made up of honest, decent people who care in equal measure about their clients and about each other. In many ways it is an “old school approach”, but, ironically, in 2024, it’s completely in line with what a modern workplace should look like.

“It’s exactly one year since I stepped through the door to start my first day. I expected the transition from a firm I’d worked in for over 30 years, to a firm in which I knew very few people, to be challenging – particularly in light of my age! In truth, it has been rewarding, rather than challenging. I’ve been made to feel welcome by everyone I’ve met and the sense of team and comradeship is constantly in evidence. I’ve embraced bringing my area of specialism and contacts into a full-service commercial law firm and enjoyed working alongside the firm’s myriad of specialists. Bill and I have a vision for the HSR team, which is fully supported and which we are driven to deliver.

“The North West is continuing to grow and present itself as a realistic alternative hub to London. It’s entrepreneurs and internationally recognised sports teams enhance that reputation and, naturally, it is building a legal community to match. Pannone, a relatively small practice in terms of numbers, already punches above its weight in that North West arena. However, my reason for joining is to help those visionary founding partners, and those who have subsequently joined, to expand upon what has evolved and become even more of a player in the North West legal scene.

“If I had to think of one word that sums up Pannone it would be “trustworthy”. If I had to think of a second, it would be “team”!

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