Management Team

Dave Townsend - Managing Director

Dave set the company up in 2003, based on his frustrations that companies offering outsourced HR/Employment Law and Health  Safety services where intent on tying companies into very long term agreements whilst providing impersonal support that came from sitting very high on a fence (!).  It was time for change and Dave understood that if a client is happy with the support they receive there would be no need for 5 year agreements with early termination penalty clauses – just good HONEST advice on a one to one basis when it is needed the most, thus the name Honest Employment Law Practice (HELP).

20 years later HELP has continued to grow organically with 75% of new work by way of referral, a fact that he recognises is as a direct result of the hard work of his team that substantiate the monthly retainer principle.

Hobbies/Interests: Rugby and Golf (Dave is always up for a round – on and off the course!), Music (a Big Elvis Presley Fan), Films (a Big John Wayne fan).

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Emma Quirke - HR Services Manager

She started working at HELP in 2007 some 13 years ago after completing her degree in Human Resource Management at Aston University. She followed this up by completing a post graduate diploma in personnel management.

‘My main focus is to ensure that our consultants are delivering high standards of service to our customers and that we are adopting a personal approach, enabling much more HONEST conversations and advice. Our consultants are encouraged to take a commercial view of HR situations and not just read a law book to the client.’

Hobbies/Interests: Outside of work, Emma enjoys a game of netball when she can fit this in between looking after her little girl, husband and dog.

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Karen Townsend - Company Secretary and Office Manager

Karen has been with Honest Employment Law Practice since its inception in 2003, Karen has a strong background in Customer Service having worked for BP Oil and Diners Club. Karen is responsible for accounts, assisting creation of contracts of employment and general office duties. Although married to the MD Karen is in an intrinsic part to the day to day operation of HELP and a key member of the team.

Karen says “it is wonderful to be part of such a fantastic and friendly team that we have here at HELP as well as dealing with our fantastic clients as their first port of call”.

Hobbies/Interests: Always up for a bit of retail therapy /Yoga and also enjoys walking the dog & drinking gin.

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Carol Farrow – Tribunals Manager

Carol has been with Honest Employment Law Practice for 12 years after many years in the HR and Employment Law industry. As well as day to day HR advice for our clients Carol co-ordinates tribunal cases from start to finish – from the initial ET3 response, pre-claim conciliation with ACAS, creation of bundles and witness statements right the way through to supporting our legal team in tribunal courts.

Carol says “the best part of my job is dealing with the variety of clients, who I like to see as friends who need my help. It has also been a pleasure working with my incredible colleagues who are my second family and who I love to bits!”.

Hobbies/Interests: Shoes (Carol is the Imelda Marcos of Staffordshire), Gin and Tonic but mostly my family and looking after my beautiful grandchildren.

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Kevin Wilford – Lead Solicitor

Kevin is HELP’s lead Solicitor, with hands-on involvement in all the firm’s work. Highly enthusiastic, motivated and pragmatic, Kevin is capable, versatile and commercial with excellent interpersonal and communication skills. With over 30 years’ legal experience, Kevin presents and defends cases at Employment Tribunals in a wide variety of claims, regularly handles Grievance, Disciplinary and Appeal hearings, carries out Mediation work, advises on Settlement Agreements and provides proactive advice on a range of employment and commercial issues. Kevin’s clients appreciate his practical no-nonsense advice, his friendly approach and the flexibility that comes with working with a dynamic and approachable HELP team. He has a 2:1 (honours) law degree from Sheffield University.

Hobbies/Interests: Kevin is married (to Juliet) and has three children he also has the fortune (?) to support Newcastle United as well as the England Rugby team.

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Clark Hunter - Head of Health and Safety

Health and Safety and HR are often intertwined and Clark often links between the two sides of the business. HELP always tries to go the extra mile for clients and set itself aside from call centre based businesses which offer general or generic advice, and as such we all take a pride in being different.

Clark says “the thing that really dives me is doing the right thing by the client. The whole basis of the business being 'Honest' sits really well with me. I have been working in and around health and safety for approaching 10 years and have specialised in SME focussed support - I am not impressed with corporate jargon, and as an SME ourselves, I understand that all businesses are slightly different. I like to get to know the clients individually. Prior to this I have worked in business development roles, which does give me a good commercial understanding, and is actually really helpful when dealing with health and safety issues, believe it or not!”.

Hobbies/Interests: For me it's 3 x G's - Guitar, Gym and (sometimes) Golf - the golf has had to take a back seat since we have had our 2 boys, and a round normally involves a pub rather than a golf course.

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Teddy – Morale Booster

Teddy is 10 years old – he has no qualifications whatsoever. However, whenever he visits the office morale goes up tenfold, Teddy brings a ray of sunshine to the HELP office and has to say hello to everyone individually before lying down and starting on his chew.

Hobbies/Interests: Walking, eating and sleeping!

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