Commercial property lawyer Oliver Bagnall has been promoted to a director at WHN Solicitors – just seven years after joining as a trainee.

Oliver, who is 33-years-old and lives in Ramsbottom, beganhis career at the firm in 2012, quickly working his way up the ranks from trainee to become a qualified solicitor in 2014, an associate last year, and now a director.

His rapid promotion reflects WHN’s ambitious growth strategy as well as the firm’s commitment to promote its own people to the most senior levels of management. These attributes helped the firm scoop the ‘legal services’ accolade at the Red Rose Awards earlier this year, after also demonstrating powerful top line expansion and impressive business development activity.

Based at WHN’s Blackburn office, Oliver has seen fee income of its commercial property team more than double since his arrival, while the team’s staff numbers have also doubled in the same period.

Oliver’s main area of expertise is commercial property law, with a primary focus on property development work for housing developers.

His new remit will see him continue growing the department and WHN’s presence in the area, while supporting local SMEs and working with housing developers.

Oliver, who is originally from Leeds, said: “It’s been richly rewarding to play a part in doubling the commercial property department’s size since I joined, with significant growth and year-on-year expansion. Working alongside my fellow director Nicola Phelps, I am confident we will generate ongoing and sustainable success, while continuing to provide an excellent service for our clients.”

Michael Shroot, head of WHN’s commercial team, added: “Internal promotion is a great way of addressing succession issues, because the next generation of leaders are already in senior roles. Oliver is a great example of this and it’s difficult to overstate the scale of his achievement in moving up from trainee to director in seven years.

“I have every confidence that our Blackburn commercial property team will carry on expanding under Oliver’s direction. Just as importantly, we are keen to develop other trainees into skilled professional solicitors who are also able to help build our brand.”

Oliver joined WHN from the General Medical Council where he had worked as a paralegal. Previously, he had taken a BA degree in ancient history at Newcastle University, before completing an MA in politics at Manchester University. Oliver then went on to take the GDL law conversion course and Legal Practice Course (LPC) at the University of Law in Manchester.