About Us

Solicitors in Westminster, London

Our History

The "Lee Bolton" part of the firm of Lee Bolton Monier-Williams or LBMW celebrates its 165th anniversary in 2020, both of its existence and residence in The Sanctuary. 

It was in 1855 that John Benjamin Lee and Thomas Bolton entered into partnership, having their professional chambers in the then newly-completed Sanctuary, the work of Sir George Gilbert Scott. Members of the Lee and Bolton families remained in the firm until the end of the Second World War, after which time the firm was carried on by their successors, but many of their descendants remain loyal clients to this day.

At the time of its centenary in 1955, the firm had but four partners. Over the succeeding period, the firm has expanded through amalgamation and organic growth, and seen the establishment (and subsequent closure) of various branch offices, largely connected with the firm's ecclesiastical practice.  For many years, the firm also included a parliamentary agency, which was responsible for much work in connection with ports and harbours, local authorities, and railways; but the nature of the promotion of and opposition to private bills in Parliament changed greatly towards the end of the twentieth century, and that part of the practice was hived off in 2007. 

The firms with which Lee Bolton & Lee merged over the years since its centenary included Crawley Arnold; Ellis & Ellis; Rees & Freres; Ouvry & Co; and Evan Davies & Co. The partners and staff of these firms enhanced the range of areas of the firm's practice, and their clients remain largely with us to this day. 

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The most recent merger also brought about a change in the name, style and title of the practice to the current name of LBMW.  The firm of Brown Cooper Monier-Williams joined Lee Bolton & Lee at the beginning of 2008, moving into The Sanctuary from their previous offices in Lincoln's Inn Fields and bringing their experience in intellectual property, trademarks and copyright, with particular reference to the wine and spirits trade, as well as a general practice, to add to LB&L's ecclesiastical, education and charity specialisms.  Areas common to both parts of the firm which have benefitted from the growth engendered by the merger include commercial law, real estate and private clients' affairs of all descriptions.  BCMW was itself the result of a 2002 merger of the firms of Brown Cooper & Co and Monier-Willams & Boxall.  The latter can trace its ancestry even further back than Lee Bolton & Lee, having commenced practice towards the end of the eighteenth century.  Brown Cooper was a more recent creation, having been set up in the early 1980s by two former partners in Denton Hall, specialising predominantly in film work.  The partners and staff of BCMW rapidly settled down in their new home and the merger has been a very harmonious and successful one. 

The most recent change to the firm involved the adoption of limited liability partnership status from April 2020.  We now have the letters "LLP" after our name to prove it. Although this change in status is significant in many respects, it does not change the long and close connections which the firm, under its various guises, has had with its clients down the generations, nor the high standard of advice and service given to our clients. 

 

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