By Philip H Yates, Consultant: Mortgages & Equity Release This week I have been advising a couple of first-time buyers who did not have the funds available for a substantial deposit. One of the couple’s parents was willing to help financially, however they did not have access to the liquid funds (cash or savings which do not have a long lock up period – not the money for Christmas drinks), like a lot of people, their main asset is their home. When advising on matters such as this ..
Coming soon – Under One Roof09-Dec-2019
Launching January 2020..
By Susan Alexander, Consultant Solicitor, Family Law team and Adele Bebbington Plant, Associate Solicitor, Wills, Trusts & Estates When separating or going through a divorce it is vital that you take advice about your will, family trusts and family home at each stage of the process. If you die without a will in place (called dying intestate), and are still legally married, the intestacy rules (which apply in these circumstances) mean your former partner will automatically be ..
We were delighted to receive colleagues and fellow professionals from across the Cheshire and North Wales Family Law community to a welcome event for Brenda Spain, our new Head of Family Law. The event held in our magnificent boardroom brought together 25 fellow professionals with drinks and Canapés serves throughout the evening. Brenda said: “A huge thank you to everyone who joined us, it was great to meet with so many of the local Family Law fraternity and a delight to be made to ..
Ahead of the General Election Cullimore Dutton Family Solicitor, Susan Alexander, has called upon prospective parliamentary candidates (PPCs) in Chester to commit to supporting reforms to the family justice system, including the introduction of no-fault divorce. The call is part of a countrywide campaign by Resolution, the national family justice body, whose members work to help families to resolve their disputes constructively, keeping the best interests of any children at the forefront...
By Philip H Yates, Consultant: Mortgages & Equity Release With Christmas just around the corner, you may be wondering what gift to buy for your adult children. How about helping them to buy a house – then they can invite you round for Christmas dinner next year! This is currently referred to as the Bank of Mum and Dad! What are your gift options? Sometimes the gift could be helping them with the various fees involved in a property purchase; mortgage fees, conveyancing..
Consultant Solicitor Susan Alexander appointed Chair of Cheshire and North Wales Resolution13-Nov-2019
We are delighted to announce that Cullimore Dutton family lawyer Susan Alexander has been elected to the position of Chair of the Cheshire and North Wales Resolution group. Founded in 1982, Resolution is a community of over 6,500 professionals in family law committed to a non-confrontational approach to resolving family issues. Over 1,200 of these are accredited specialists (including Susan) – recognised for having superior expertise in their given specialism of family law. Res..
Highly experienced divorce lawyer relocates to Cheshire to head our expanding Family Law Department. Family Law specialist, Brenda Spain, a family lawyer with 25 years’ experience in complex family matters, has joined Cullimore Dutton and will Head our Family Law team. Brenda has relocated back to the region where she first practiced following her graduation from the University of Liverpool and Chester Law School. The move comes after a successful career in Worcester where she playe..
The new Tenant Fees Act28-Oct-2019
By John Arnold, Partner and Head of Commercial Litigation On 1 June this year, a new act came into force that has a profound effect on the rental market. It’s relevant not just for landlords and tenants, but for agencies that, to date, have made a very nice living out of charging tenancy fees and administration costs for rentals. These fees have affected both tenants and landlords, who have had to fork out hundreds if not thousands of pounds in fees and agency costs. Now, under the..
Probate Fee Rise Scrapped23-Oct-2019
By Gillian Knowles, Head of Wills, Trusts & Estates The Government has announced it has scrapped proposed reforms to increase probate fees. Under the proposals, probate fees would have been assessed on a sliding scale, depending on the size of the estate. This could have meant a fee increase for some families of over 3,000%. The government had stated the main aim behind the proposal was to help fund the court system, however many described the suggested fee increase as disp..
By John Arnold, Partner and Head of Commercial Litigation The importance of Prior Registration of property interests The case of Birchen House Limited Cullimore Dutton have recently been involved in a number of claims arising from the administration of a company called Birchen House Limited, which has highlighted the importance of prior registration in property transactions. Prior registration protects the interests e.g. the deposits of prospective purchasers should any issues ..
By Philip H Yates, Consultant: Mortgages & Equity Release Divorce rates are dropping for all age groups – except one... “The Silver Separators” Between 2012 and 2013, overall divorce rates fell by 2.9%, but the average age of divorce has increased year-on-year since 1985, rising by nine years for both men and women. Divorce in the over 50s, known as “The Silver Separators”, is on the rise, contradicting the decline in younger age groups. Increases in life expectancy (a 5..
Are you due a Pension Review?25-Sep-2019
By Gary Shield, Independent Financial Adviser We are increasingly receiving requests from clients to review their pension arrangements. Due to increased job mobility, we now find that many of our clients have accumulated a number of pension plans with different providers. As very few employers now offer a defined benefit pension arrangement, in many cases these plans tend to be personal pension arrangements in which the employer had previously contributed. Before we provide advice a..
Cheshire Ploughing Match 201923-Sep-2019
Cheshire Ploughing Match – Wednesday 25th September 2019 We are delighted to be sponsoring the Tractor Class again at this years Cheshire Ploughing Match to be held at Doddington Park Farm, Doddington, Nantwich, CW5 7PG. We have a long and proud history of supporting the agricultural sector and are looking forward to attending the show with members of our Agricultural and Wills, Trusts & Estates teams. Wishing all in attendance a great day, we look forward to see you th..
Trust Issues on Divorce18-Sep-2019
By Susan Alexander, Consultant Solicitor, Family and Mediation Many families use trusts as part of their financial and tax planning, this article addresses some key questions relating to trusts should couples be faced with divorce. Q. What happens with monies and assets held on trust when spouses divorce? A. There are four ways that a court may consider dipping in to trust assets to achieve justice between the parties on divorce. i) Where the court finds that the trust f..
Giving to charity16-Sep-2019
By Gillian Knowles, Head of Wills, Trusts & Estates It seems that people in the UK are very charitable. In fact, last year, just under £3 billion was donated to charity in Wills, which is expected to rise to £3.4 billion by 2022. This figure means that 3.5% of all of the money left in estates is now comprised of charitable giving. What sort of charities benefit? There is certainly no shortage of choice when it comes to picking a charity, but there are four industries that re..
Susan Alexander in our Family Law team has been lobbying Chris Matheson - Chester MP (https://www.facebook.com/ChrisMathesonMP/?__tn__=K-R&eid=ARCuPTdcsJziorFcW4-IRw1S0sOH0GiHNWxoVjc1ApjU6tfSN26KXCVCDm71c6uTW6XJ02aPuGYUGwkY&fref=mentions&__xts__%5B0%5D=68.ARCoaxzh7pBsXsEDly0CWxhtTXlhaCjncbYwM02vIRlQGGgqb3TDULeRkayZbX45mzCkjkl3PpYtxndj_8_TTq9lmLrWxRY4vWehCiO4ZVA8c73r516_kHYAuf2OjaDg2r8gqz4KHuY2HGsRF3hc6LiY1MIZimW-kd7HRukijWgVQHklszhvKWFAP3WVF27qzo-v03HKwAtCnz9nHuXtytKhcuS7zd7Eb6..
By Philip H Yates, Consultant: Mortgages & Equity Release Would you like to own your own holiday home or holiday let? With the summer holidays now over a lot of people are already looking forward to and planning their next adventure. For many people the dream is to own a holiday property, enabling them to go on holiday more frequently, to spend more time with friends and family and maybe even to generate an income from the property in the form of a holiday let. It may be mor..
Pwy Fu Farw Gyntaf? – Scarle v Scarle05-Sep-2019
By Alys Haf, Probate Assistant, Wills, Trusts & Estates Bron i dair blynedd yn ôl bu farw John William Scarle a Marjorie Ann Scarle o hyporthermia yn eu cartref yn Essex. Yn seiliedig ar y dystiolaeth, nid oedd posibl datgan pwy fu farw yn gyntaf. Yn ôl y Ddeddf Cyfraith Eiddo 1925, pan fydd trefn y farwolaeth yn ansicr, crëwyd rhagdybiaeth mai’r person hynaf y bu farw gyntaf. Gofynnwyd i’r Llys ystyried anghydfod ar etifeddiaeth a oedd rhwng y llys-chwiorydd. Os darganfyddwyd mai’r w..
Who Died First? – Scarle v Scarle05-Sep-2019
By Alys Haf, Probate Assistant, Wills, Trusts & Estates Almost three years ago John William Scarle and Marjorie Ann Scarle died together from hypothermia at their Essex home. Based on the evidence it was not possible to establish who had died first. Where the order of death is uncertain Section 184 of the Law of Property Act 1925 creates a presumption that the oldest person died first. The court was asked to consider the inheritance dispute between the two stepsisters. If the wife was ..
Denbigh & Flint Show 201927-Aug-2019
We were delighted to attend this year’s Denbigh & Flint Show, held on The Green, Denbigh on Thursday 15 August. With our long and proud history of supporting the agricultural community, we were pleased to be sponsors again of the Young Handlers Classes (Cattle) having sponsored the same Class at the 2017 and 2018 shows. Judging for the Young Handlers took place during the morning for several age groups, with both Head of Wills Trusts & Estates Gillian Knowles and Partner an..
DIY Wills blamed for High Court disputes20-Aug-2019
By Gillian Knowles, Head of Wills, Trusts & Estates The number of inheritance disputes heard in the High Court increased by over 60% in 2018 and it is claimed the rise is largely caused by DIY Wills. DIY Wills are a fertile ground for disputes and challenges. Whilst a testator may think they are saving themselves a few hundred pounds they are potentially costing their loved ones many thousands. Probate law is complex and DIY Wills can easily contain mistakes which render them voi..
In Sickness and In Wealth14-Aug-2019
By Jessie Hughes, Solicitor, Wills, Trusts & Estates It is difficult and stressful enough having a relative who suffers with dementia but sadly it seems there are unscrupulous individuals who are deliberately taking advantage of a legal loophole. The ‘test’ for having the capacity to marry is much less robust that the legal test for having the capacity to make a will yet marriage automatically revokes a previous will. Without a valid will, the intestacy laws state that the new s..
By Gillian Knowles, Head of Wills, Trusts & Estates The office of tax simplification (OTS) is currently reviewing the UK Inheritance Tax (IHT) regime and has now published the first stage of its review, which focuses on administrative issues, rather than the level of tax itself. As part of the review process the OTS requested feedback from the public and responses from professional bodies. In its findings, the OTS describes IHT as an “almost uniquely unpopular tax” and the level..
By Philip H Yates, Consultant: Mortgages & Equity Release “Why would someone in their seventies, with 100% equity in a £1million property need a £400,000 mortgage?” Later Life Lending Our truly independent mortgage advice has proved invaluable to our clients over many years, especially those who are interested in Later Life Lending. Later Life Lending is borrowing for anyone over the age of 55. Interestingly, the range of finance options available actually increases at this..
By Gillian Knowles , Head of Wills, Trusts & Estates Proposed changes could have far-reaching implications for future estate tax planning. Sweeping reform of inheritance tax has been recommended to cut complexity of the so-called ‘death tax’, but experts are warning that individuals will need to review existing planning if the changes go ahead. Headline recommendations to government from the Office of Tax Simplification (OTS) include changing the rules surrounding gifts of cash, pr..
Rights of Absent Parents05-Aug-2019
By Diana Williams, Partner, Family Law What rights do absent parents have if they come back into a child's life after several years' away? The concept of a traditional family unit has changed, and, in some situations, this can give rise to problems. Figures from 2016 suggest that not only does it have a huge impact on the mental wellbeing of the family unit, but it has a financial impact too. According to the Relationships Foundation’s report ‘The Cost of Family Failure Index’, the..
By Adele Bebbington-Plant, Associate Solicitor, Wills, Trusts & Estates It is common for people to consider how they would like their personal estate and their business to be dealt with after they die. However, it is just as important to make provision for your affairs during your lifetime in the event that you temporarily or permanently lose the ability to make decisions yourself. If you run a business, particularly a farming or agricultural business, it is essential that you..
Agricultural Shows 201922-Jul-2019
We have a long and proud history of supporting the agricultural community throughout our 227 year history. This year will be no different and we are delighted to be supporting the agricultural shows again in 2019. Nantwich Show (31 July 2019) We are delighted to be sponsoring the Red Poll Cattle Class at this year’s Nantwich Show at The Showground in Nantwich on Wednesday 31 July. We have sponsored this category in both 2017 and 2018 and we look forward to an excellent con..
Chester Luncheon Club 201917-Jul-2019
We were delighted to host The Chester Luncheon Club and Garden Party on Tuesday 16 July, when guest enjoyed drinks and a buffet lunch before tackling garden games such as Quoits, Boules and Giant Jenga. The Chester Luncheon Club has been running since 1993 as a monthly networking lunch hosted by Yates & Co Independent Financial Advisers. After our acquisition of Yates & Co in February 2019, we decided that hosting the Luncheon Club in our beautiful, sixteenth century walled g..
By Susan Alexander, Consultant Solicitor, Family and Mediation Parental alienation occurs when one parent attempts to turn their children against the other parent. Sometimes, in the emotional turmoil of separating, an aggrieved parent channels their anger at the other parent by alienating them from their children. When this behaviour develops and persists, it is very damaging to the children's long-term health and emotional well-being and can have a negative impact on the children for..
Are you due a refund from your LPA/EPA10-Jul-2019
By Adele Bebbington-Plant, Associate Solicitor, Wills, Trusts & Estates Are you due a refund for Power of Attorney registration fees? The Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) is refunding part of the registration fees to those who registered their powers of attorney (both Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs) and Enduring Powers of Attorney (EPAs)) between 1 April 2013 and 31 March 2017. Why? The Ministry of Justice sets the OPG’s fees. Following review, the Ministry of Justice fo..
Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Bill09-Jul-2019
Susan Alexander, Consultant Solicitor in our Family Law team, has continued her correspondence with City of Chester MP Chris Matheson, requesting his support for the Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Bill which will reform current divorce laws. Susan's letter is below. For more information about our Family Law services..
Agents Lunch & Garden Party08-Jul-2019
It was a delight to welcome local estate agents to our Agents Lunch and Garden Party on Thursday 4 July. With glorious weather and excellent company we enjoyed a fantastic buffet lunch followed by a range of garden games. We have had some positive and much appreciated feedback from many, a sample of which is below: “Thank you for your hospitality, it was very generous of you. I very much enjoyed meeting with you, it was also interesting to meet with your colleagues.” Alastair S..
Croquet & Pimm's 201908-Jul-2019
We were delighted to welcome our friends from the Commercial and Agricultural Property world to our third Croquet and Pimm's on the Lawn event last Friday (5 July). The Pimm's flowed and the sun shone as the Croquet got competitive (and at times hostile) with 10 teams battling it out for the Cullimore Dutton Croquet Trophy won last year by Legat Owen. After some exciting matches in the group stages, our two group winners Berrys and Mason Owen met in the final with Mason Owen's ..
Move My Will08-Jul-2019
It’s so simple to transfer your Will You can also choose to move your Property Deeds to us Transfer if FREE and storage is FREE We know from wide experience that clients appreciate ease of access to their Will and value the advice and guidance that is on hand locally. We know too, that circumstances can often change in the blink of an eye and how invaluable it is to be able to make a Codicil or more significant amendments should clients request this at short notice. Our experienced Wi..
Not available in the high street – July 201903-Jul-2019
By Philip H Yates, Consultant: Mortgages & Equity Release As we enter July with the prospect of some great weather, it is time again for me to share a couple of case studies illustrating what services we can offer to our clients. Retired and moving home Eric & Mary are both retired and in their seventies. Eric has difficulty climbing stairs, so they decided to move to a bungalow. Having spoken with their bank and also a local building society (where they have savings), they d..
Afternoon Tea & Garden Party 201902-Jul-2019
Our Wills, Trusts and Estates team were delighted to host their annual Afternoon Tea & Garden Party event last Thursday, 27 June. Afternoon tea was served featuring a wide selection of sandwiches followed by a delightful array of cakes and tarts. This was then followed by a selection of garden games on our lawn including Quoits, Boules, Skittles and Giant Jenga. Feedback from the event has been really positive, a small sample of which is below. "A little note to..
By Adele Bebbington-Plant, Associate Solicitor, Wills, Trusts & Estates Much has been written of late about the cost of full-time care and the long-term financial impact this can have on your estate. The Basic Facts If you live in England and have assets or savings worth more than £23,250 (£50,000 in Wales), you will usually have to pay for your residential care home fees. If your capital falls below these figures, you will usually be required to contribute an amount b..
Quiz Night at CBHCC 201925-Jun-2019
A huge thank you to everyone who attended the Cullimore Dutton Quiz Night at Chester Boughton Hall Cricket Club (20/6), it was a pleasure to catch up with you all. The feedback we have received has been very positive and much appreciated, some examples are below: "Many thanks for inviting us to your Quiz Night. Really very enjoyable and thank you for all your help. 66 books in the bible then!!" J. Jordan "We all had a very enjoyable evening, fab quiz and great people. It w..
Not available in the high street12-Jun-2019
By Philip H Yates, Consultant: Mortgages & Equity Release With interest rates still at an all-time low it’s a great time for you to consider a mortgage review with the potential benefits that a lower interest rate and lower monthly payments can bring. Alternately you could choose to keep the same monthly payment and reduce your mortgage balance much faster. Mortgages for the self-employed Once again, our independence and experience has enabled us to source a competitive mortgag..
A rocky road to freedom of expression05-Jun-2019
By John Arnold, Partner and Head of Commercial Law Two recent tribunal claims highlight the challenge for employers in safely navigating personal expression by employees in the workplace. “These two cases highlight the need for businesses to keep their recruitment and working practices under constant review, as there is growing pressure to keep pace with both the law and changing attitudes across society. There is no special escape clause for those who are ‘old school’ and everyone mus..
National Care Home Open Day at Oak Grange15-May-2019
Join us for National Care Home Open Day at Oak Grange Care Home Friday 28 June, 2pm – 4pm Oak Grange Care Home, Parkgate Road, Mollington, CH1 6NP The friendly Oak Grange team will be on hand to show you around the home and answer any questions you have if you are considering care options for yourself or a loved one. Cullimore Dutton Solicitors are delighted to be supporting this event with Adele Bebbington-Plant, one of our specialist Wills, Trusts & Estates solicitors on h..
By Susan Alexander, Consultant Solicitor, Family and Mediation Pensions are often a very valuable asset in a marriage, sometimes the most valuable asset, exceeding the equity in the family home, so making informed decisions about what to do with them is essential – especially when planning for the future. A decision about how a divorcing couple’s pensions are divided is called a “Pension Sharing Order”. Pension sharing orders have been available for almost 20 years and allow a pensio..
By Gillian Crump, Partner, Commercial Law In a perfect world, you would be able to convert a commercial property from one type of business to another without having to jump through too many hoops or get tangled up in too much red tape. Unfortunately, though, this world is far from perfect, and a change of use can involve a surprising amount of paperwork. Ensuring you comply with building regulations, going through the planning permission minefield, and understanding the various building use..
By Gillian Knowles, Head of Wills, Trusts & Estates The latest case of Guest v Guest is another example of a Proprietary Estoppel claim involving a farm. This case involved the Guest family comprising of mother, father and three children. The dairy farm in question was owned by the mother and father from 1982 onwards, one son worked on the farm throughout this time (receiving little financial reward). Eventually, in 2015, the son was admitted into the farm partnership. Aft..
Proud to continue our sponsorship of CBHCC18-Apr-2019
We are delighted to be main shirt sponsor again for the forthcoming season across all teams playing for Chester Boughton Hall Cricket Club, including men’s, women’s and junior squads. This is our third year of sponsorship with CBHCC and forms part of our long-held commitment to supporting local sports teams; in addition to supporting CBHCC we are also sponsors of Chester Rugby Club and Frodsham Juniors FC. Adele Bebbington-Plant, Solicitor, Cullimore Dutton, Rick Moore 1s..
Splitting possessions on divorce18-Apr-2019
By Susan Alexander, Consultant Solicitor, Family and Mediation What happens to your pets when you divorce? However much you may love them, pets are not treated like children in the family courts. Pets are treated as possessions or chattels and ownership is generally established by who bought or acquired the pet and is able to prove it. If you have the pedigree documents or receipt for purchase, then there is a presumption that you own the pet. The family courts will not make o..
Yates & Co welcome events15-Apr-2019
We were delighted to welcome Yates & Co clients at two welcome events held in our fabulous boardroom last week (Wednesday 10 and Thursday 11 April). It was a pleasure to meet so many new people and welcome them as clients of our firm. The feedback we have received has been very positive and much appreciated, some examples are below: "…thank you for the kind invitation and hospitality on Thursday it was a pleasure meeting with your team again and also the Cullimore Du..
By Gillian Crump, Partner, Commercial Law Property investment is pretty much guaranteed to generate ongoing revenue, so if you’ve got the capital to invest in bricks and mortar, then the advice is to ‘go for it’. If you choose to invest in commercial property rather than domestic stock and then rent it out, then, as with domestic rentals, you have to meet certain obligations to both maintain the condition of the building and to look after the interests of your tenants. From the out..
The Pre-Divorce Checklist04-Mar-2019
By Diana Williams, Partner, Family Law Everybody and every situation is unique, and getting divorced is a big decision which should never be taken lightly. There can be a long or short road to travel before being sure this is what you want and the decision can be triggered by anything from a single act, which is deemed unacceptable by one party, to a change in circumstances or even just a slow growing apart, or an event like the children growing up and leaving home. The first time..
The myth of Common Law Marriage04-Feb-2019
By Susan Alexander , Consultant Solicitor, Family and Mediation ‘It’s only a piece of paper’ ‘What’s the point in getting married- weddings are ridiculously expensive and there’s no need to nowadays.’ We’ve all heard people make these comments. There is a persisting myth that people who live together as if they were married have similar rights to married couples. Unfortunately, it is no more than a myth and is completely untrue. If you live with your partner, even if you have..
We are proud to announce that our firm has acquired long-standing Chester IFA firm, Yates & Co. Founded by Phil Yates in 1994, the independent mortgage, pensions and investments advisers joined our team on Friday 1st February. Philip H Yates, Consultant: Mortgages & Equity Release. Andrew Wright, Managing Director, Cullimore Dutton Yates & Co Principal, Phil Yates, investment adviser, Gareth Williams plus two administrative support staff have moved across to our Whit..
By Susan Alexander, Consultant Solicitor, Family and Mediation While attention is focused on the country’s divorce from the European Union, and what the New Year will bring from the Brexit bargaining table, many families will be facing up to break-up issues closer to home. Too often, the stress of trying to hold it together takes its toll on couples trying to manage one more family Christmas, especially if they know they are likely to be heading for the divorce courts once New Year ar..
We are spreading Christmas joy this festive season with a range of support and sponsorships for Chester-based charities. Firstly, we are delighted to be the official sponsor of one of the most eagerly anticipated and prestigious festive events of the season, the Countess Charity's Christmas Carol Concert at the Duke of Westminster’s Eaton estate. The event, by kind permission of the Duke of Westminster, takes place on Thursday 20 December and includes a carol concert in the pr..
Family Team Pre-Christmas Social05-Dec-2018
It was a delight to welcome friends and associates to our Family Team's Pre-Christmas Social event held in our fabulous boardroom last Thursday (29 November). The feedback we have received has been very positive and much appreciated, some examples are below: "Thanks for the party invite, it was great to meet the Family Team. Tony and I had a great time, hope to see you again soon." Bernice Benton & Tony Elston, www.kitchensbyanthony.co.uk (https://www.kitchensbyanthony.co.uk) ..
As members of Resolution – First for Family Law, we are proud the support the #GoodDivorce Week campaign. Minimising the impact of conflict on children Conflict can have some serious long-term effects on children. Studies have shown that it’s not the separation or divorce proper that has an impact, but rather the conflict stemming from it that often has a detrimental impact on their well-being. Resolution members are committed to reducing conflict, agreeing to a non-confrontational way ..
Personal Injury Trusts – a quick guide14-Nov-2018
By Philip Appleby , Associate Solicitor, Wills, Trusts & Estates Team One of the more structured ways of ensuring a recipient is able to manage their inheritance properly is to put it into a trust. For larger amounts that are bequeathed to younger recipients, this can be a method of ensuring that the money is distributed in such a way that they don’t fritter it away and that it comes to them at a point in their lives when they most need it (for example, when they go to college or..
Civil partnerships for all07-Nov-2018
As has been reported in various media outlets, there is positive change coming for heterosexual couples who do not want to get married – the law is changing to allow such couples to apply for a civil partnership. It has been a while coming, but one of the last areas of inequality in the world of formally recognised partnerships is about to be rectified. The choice to opt for a civil partnership rather than marriage has been closed to heterosexual couples ever since civil partnerships..
Proposed Reforms to Divorce Law24-Oct-2018
Susan Alexander, Consultant Solicitor in our Family Law team, has this week written to City of Chester MP Chris Matheson, inviting him to attend a Parliamentary Brief Organised by Resolution on the Proposed Reforms to Divorce Law. Susan's letter is below. For more information about our Family Law services, please contact a member of the Family Law team on 01244 356 789 or email email@example.com ..
Personal Injury Trusts Q&A18-Oct-2018
Phil Appleby (Associate Solicitor & Trust and Estate Practitioner in our Wills, Trusts & Estates Team) answers some frequently asked questions about Personal Injury Trusts: If I receive compensation for a personal injury claim, might it affect my benefits? Yes. If you receive compensation then it may well reduce your entitlement to certain means-tested benefits if it takes the cash you have at your disposal above £6,000. Your means-tested benefits could stop completely if you have..
A quick guide for first time buyers10-Oct-2018
By Lesley Stuart, Partner, Residential Conveyancing Buying a home is stressful, especially for first-time buyers, so it's wise to do some research to ensure you know exactly what you’re getting yourself into. Conveyancing is the term that refers to the legal process of transferring one person's property (the seller), to another (the buyer). What does the process involve? Put simply; this is what conveyancing looks like from start to finish: Get your mortgage sor..
By Susan Alexander, Consultant Solicitor, Family and Mediation These days more and more people are spending time abroad, whether they’re overseas on business, trying to build a new life in a different country, or just taking a long trip. There are plenty of reasons a parent might want to take their child abroad for an extended period, or even indefinitely. However, if the parents have separated, there's a possibility that this could result in disagreement, especially if one party feel..
Ploughing Match 201827-Sep-2018
We had a great day at this year’s Cheshire Ploughing & Hedgecutting Society Match, held at Woods Tenement Farm, Plumley on Wednesday 26 September. Rachel Phillips and Matt Poulton from our Agricultural Team attended alongside Client Relationship Manager Tim Parker and Marketing Manager Phil Wood. We were delighted to support the event as sponsors of the Vintage Hydraulic Tractor Class. The event programme also featured our advert on its back page. The team spent several hours t..
By John Arnold , Partner, Head of Commercial Litigation Finders Keepers? This issue is a common one. What does the law require you to do when you come across something that isn’t yours? For example, a £20 note on the street? Let’s look at the specifics. Finding Money Finders Keepers? Well, no, not always. You might have heard of the Nicole Bailey case; she kept a £20 note she found on the floor and ended up with a criminal record! Up until this incident, the law surrounding ..
By Susan Alexander , Consultant Solicitor, Family and Mediation As members of Resolution First For Family Law, our family team have been campaigning for many years for the introduction of no-fault divorce. Finally, the Government has listened and announced that it plans to legislate to allow no-fault divorce. Nigel Shepherd, former Chair of Resolution said: “The Government appears to have heeded our calls to make our divorce system fit for the modern age and..
By Gillian Knowles, Head of Wills, Trusts & Estates Reports from the US state that Aretha Franklin died without making a Will leaving an $80 million (£62.4 million) fortune. Despite being ill for several years, Mrs Franklin did not legally record who she wanted to inherit her vast estate. Michigan law dictates that, in these circumstances, the fortune is to be shared between Mrs Franklin’s children equally. The Intestacy Rules do not take in to account the fact that one of the chil..
By Jessie Hughes, Solicitor, Wills, Trusts & Estates Team Laws in England and Wales, in the main, allow you to leave your estate to whomever you choose. Unlike many countries in Europe, if you fall out with your adult child and wish to ensure that they do not get any of your estate, then you are perfectly at liberty to make a will excluding them. While this freedom of choice is wonderful, it can lead to aggrieved relatives who may wish to contest the validity of your will or ..
Cullimore Dutton Sponsors Chester Rugby Club04-Sep-2018
We are delighted to announce a two-year sponsorship deal to support Chester RUFC, one of the region’s most successful rugby union clubs. Our firm will take advertising boards at the Hare Lane ground this season and next, as well as supporting the Club in the production of a member’s handbook and sponsoring weekly players awards across the Club. This sponsorship further extends our connections with the area’s leading sports clubs, having already sponsored Chester Boughton Hall Cricke..
Denbigh & Flint Show 201828-Aug-2018
We were delighted to attend this year’s Denbigh & Flint Show, held on The Green, Denbigh on Thursday 16 August. Having a long and proud history of supporting the agricultural community, we were pleased to be sponsors of the Young Handlers Classes (Cattle) having sponsored the same Class at last year’s event. Judging for the Young Handlers took place during the morning for several age groups, with both Rachel Phillips and Matt Poulton from our agricultural team presenting the rose..
By Gillian Crump , Partner, Commercial Property Team There are so many aspects to consider when looking for new business premises, but one which must not be forgotten is whether the building has planning permission for your proposed use. Of course, not all buildings have planning permission – some may have been constructed or been put to their current purpose many years before planning legislation was first introduced, even these buildings will have an existing use in planning ter..
What makes relationships last?14-Aug-2018
Susan Alexander was proud to be 1 of 10 Family solicitors to participate in Baroness Shackleton’s recent Relationships Project. Baroness Shackleton – the solicitor who acted for Prince Charles and Paul McCartney on their divorces – funded the study which investigated what makes long term relationships thrive. In addition to interviewing 10 family lawyers and mediators and two judges, it conducted research with a sample of couples married for ten years and with couples in relationships of at le..
By John Arnold, Partner and Head of Commercial Litigation Claims for incorrectly handled property rental deposits are soaring and landlords should be alert to the danger and ensure they or their agents are complying with the legal requirements, if they want to avoid high penalties. Under the Housing Act 2004, any deposit must be held by the landlord in a registered deposit protection scheme and the tenant must be given specific details of the deposit protection scheme used and det..
Following on from last week's Supreme Court decision in the Owens vs Owens (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-hereford-worcester-44949856) case Susan Alexander, Consultant Solicitor in our Family Law team, has written to City of Chester MP Chris Matheson. As members of the Resolution Campaign we are requesting Mr Matheson's support in calling for the introduction of 'no fault divorce'. Our letter is below. For more information about our Family Law services, please contac..
By Gillian Knowles, Head of Wills, Trusts & Estates Have you considered who would manage your affairs and make decisions, if you have an illness or accident that leaves you incapable of looking after things yourself? A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) enables you to appoint someone you trust to look after your financial affairs or your health and welfare, with minimum effort, delay and expense. The process of applying has become much simpler since an online system was introduced ..
Nantwich Show 201826-Jul-2018
What a great day we had yesterday at the Nantwich Show 2018. We were proud once again to sponsor the Red Poll Cattle class, a beautiful breed and one which we have now sponsored for several years. The judging took place during the morning for several categories covering Heifers, Bulls and Calves. Rosettes were awarded across the breed, with both Rachel Phillips and Matt Poulton from our Agricultural team making the presentations. Rachel and Matt were joined on the day by Tim Parker, Clien..
By Gillian Knowles Head of Wills, Trusts & Estates High profile inheritance disputes follow celebrities and the super-rich as surely as night follows day, but such challenges are becoming increasingly common, whatever the values involved. Some of the names to have made headlines include the artist Salvador Dali, whose body was exhumed last year for a DNA test after a woman claimed to be his daughter and entitled to a share of his $1bn estate. Former South African President Nels..
By Susan Alexander, Consultant Solicitor, Family and Mediation What does this mean? In the future heterosexual couples may have an alternative to getting married or just living together. Currently over 3 million cohabiting couples have no legal protection if they split or if one of them dies. Having a civil partnership does give more rights for example on your partner’s death. The Supreme Court action was launched by Ms Steinfeld and Mr Keidan, who cohabit and have two children..
Croquet and Pimm's 201811-Jul-2018
What a delight it was to welcome our friends from the Commercial and Agricultural Property world to our second Croquet and Pimm's on the Lawn event last Friday (6 July). The sun shone, the Pimm's flowed and the Croquet got competitive as 12 teams battled for the Cullimore Dutton Croquet Trophy won last year by Kenneymoore Property Consultants. After some titanic matches in the group stages, group winners Carter Jonas and Legat Owen competed in the final with Legat Owen ultimately tri..
Agricultural Shows 201810-Jul-2018
We have a long and proud history of supporting the agricultural community through the generations and 2018 will be no different. We are delighted to be sponsoring the Red Poll Cattle Class at this year’s Nantwich Show at The Showground in Nantwich on Wednesday 25 July. We sponsored the same category in 2017 and we look forward to an excellent contest again this year. We will also be attending the Denbigh and Flint Show on Thursday 16 August where we will be be..
Afternoon Tea 201802-Jul-2018
Our Wills, Trusts and Estates team were delighted to welcome over 40 guests for Afternoon Tea on the Lawn last Thursday, 28 June. The event featured a talk on the history of the firm by former partner Randal Hibbert and included anecdotes from Randal's time as Under Sheriff of Cheshire, a role still held by current Cullimore Dutton Director John Arnold. After the talk, afternoon tea was served featuring a wide selection of sandwiches followed by a delightful array of cakes and tarts...
Agents Lunch on the Lawn 201825-Jun-2018
It was wonderful to welcome our local estate agents to Lunch on the Lawn on Thursday 21 June. The weather was glorious and the company was excellent as we christened our brand new marquee at our first event of the year. We have had some positive and much appreciated feedback from many, a sample of which is below: “Thank you for a lovely lunch, and well done with the weather, if I remember correctly, there were some heavy showers last year. It was really good to catch up with t..
LPAs - Avoid gambling with your pension07-Jun-2018
Probate solicitor Jessie Hughes talks about the benefits of Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPA) and the risks to your pension of not have an LPA in place. Recent reports in the FT Advisor suggest 4 in every 5 retirees with a ‘drawdown’ pension are without a power of attorney – meaning your family members or friends would be forced to apply to court to take control in the event that you became too unwell to look after your affairs yourself. This is an alarming statistic given that the..
By Diana Williams Partner, Family Law Team A new online service (https://www.gov.uk/apply-for-divorce) should cut the stress of applying for a divorce according to the Ministry of Justice, but family law professionals say it’s likely to benefit only those with simple finances who are pursuing the DIY route. The Ministry of Justice announcement (https://www.gov.uk/government/news/fully-digital-divorce-application-launched-to-the-public) of the nationwide scheme for online divorce appl..
Newly qualified solicitor Alice Daniel joins Cullimore Dutton’s Family Law team Alice Daniel, has been admitted to the Roll of Solicitors after completing her training contract here at Cullimore Dutton Solicitors, she has now been formally appointed as an Assistant Solicitor in our Family Law team, headed by renowned divorce lawyer, Jackie Rawcliffe. Alice, who lives in Mold and attended Holywell High School and Mold Alun 6th Form is a former Politics and International Relations grad..
By Sarah MacLeod Solicitor, Wills, Trusts & Estates Recently there has been a significant increase in the number of contentious probate matters. You may be aware of several high-profile cases involving celebrities’ estates which have featured in the media. Contentious probate deals with disputes relating to the terms of a person’s Will or the administration of their estate. This can be a consequence of a beneficiary claiming that they did not receive what they had hoped for either u..
Cullimore Dutton seals ground-breaking sponsorship deal with Chester Boughton Hall Cricket Club23-Apr-2018
We are delighted to announce that our firm has agreed a ground-breaking two-year sponsorship deal with Chester Boughton Hall CC, one of the region’s most successful cricket clubs. In a first for the Club, we have agreed shirt sponsorship across all teams including the senior men, senior women and junior squads this season. Following our debut appearance on the women’s squad shirts in 2017, we have agreed terms to extend our kit sponsorship to the men’s section – including the..
Here at Cullimore Dutton Solicitors we are very proud to be the main Sponsor of Chester Boughton Hall Cricket Club for the 2018 season. We appreciate that some Club members may not be aware of who we are, so we wanted to take this opportunity to introduce ourselves and make you aware of our Chester Boughton Hall Cricket Club Loyalty Scheme. We are one of Chester’s oldest law firms – we celebrated our 225th anniversary last year and we specialise in: Agricultural Law &..
As the Grand National Festival gets underway at Aintree we are celebrating our own very special connection with the world’s greatest steeplechase. The 1928 Grand National was the 87th running of the race. Our very own William Dutton, amateur jockey and at the time trainee solicitor Mason Moore Dutton (our forerunners), recorded his most notable success as he won the race on 100/1 shot Tipperary Tim. Before the race, Dutton, heard a friend call out to him: "Billy boy, y..
Rachel Phillips joins as Head of Commercial Property Department We are pleased to announce the appointment of experienced commercial property solicitor, Rachel Phillips, who joins the practice today [Monday 26 February]. A Fellow of the Agricultural Law Association, Rachel will head our busy Commercial Property department. Rachel, who qualified in 2008 after completing her degree at Durham University with a 2:1(Hons) in Law achieved a Distinction in the Legal Practice ..
Your Will in Your City18-Jan-2018
It’s so simple to transfer your Will You can also choose to move your Property Deeds to us Transfer if FREE and storage is FREE Our experienced Wills, Trusts and Estates team understand the challenges faced when deciding to make a Will. A sympathetic ear, expert advice and gentle guidance through the process helps. The Wills, Trusts and Estates team works closely with our in-house independent financial adviser Gary Shield to offer unrivalled expertise in all aspects of estate planni..
Family Mediation Chester20-Dec-2017
Christmas is around the corner and the streets are busy with shoppers and revellers. In the dark days of January, fractured relationships may break down completely. If your clients find themselves in this situation, mediation is an option which works and will help. Our mediation expert, Susan Alexander is a fully qualified family lawyer mediator, accredited by the Family Mediation Council and authorised by the Ministry of Justice to provide Mediation Information and Assessment Meetings ..
Farming and Divorce19-Dec-2017
When farming spouses separate and divorce, complex problems often arise. A simple uncontested divorce may take 6 months or less but farming divorce cases usually take longer. Often farms are inherited, which may mean that the land and farm buildings are not marital assets and therefore not subject to the ‘sharing principle’. On divorce, both spouses and any children must be treated fairly and should expect to have their reasonable needs met wherever possible. However, it is ver..
Christmas gifts that keep on giving12-Dec-2017
Christmas shopping usually means a visit to the high street or browsing online retailers, but the season of giving can be a good time to make sure you’re maximising your opportunities for inheritance tax reliefs, whether to family, friends or charity, while spreading some seasonal cheer. While larger gifts may be taken into account, anyone can make smaller gifts or gifts out of surplus income without it being taken into account for inheritance tax purposes, as long as certain r..
Celebrating 225 Years Brochure11-Dec-2017
Welcome to our Celebrating 225 Years brochure – a review of 2017, a landmark year in the history of Cullimore Dutton when we marked an extraordinary 225 years of legal practice. Simply click on the preview below to view the document in full screen mode. We hope you enjoy it. As the holiday season approaches, may we also take this opportunity to wish you all a very merry Christmas and every success in 2018. As ever, if there is any matter on which you, your family, friends or business req..
The myth of the common law marriage29-Nov-2017
Cohabitation is the lifestyle of choice for many couples these days as the marriage rate continues to decrease and more children are being born outside marriage. There is a common misconception that cohabiting couples and their children have similar protections to married couples but in England and Wales this is false and there are many pitfalls for the unwary. Cohabiting couples simply do not have the protections available to married couples. It is important to take expert legal advice. ..
Resolution Brexit Briefing23-Oct-2017
As active members of Resolution we would like to share with you the latest Resolution Brexit Briefing. If you require any advice or support in any area of Family Law, please call 01244 356 789 to speak with one of our expert family lawyers. Welcome to the latest edition of our Brexit briefings, where we look at the impact on family law as a result of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. We’ve been clear from the start that Resolution feels that, whatever the drawbacks of the c..
Warning to Rural Property Owners – Their Septic Tank May Block Sale This year’s housing market has been characterised by slumping prices and sluggish sales in many areas, posing a challenge to would-be sellers in Cheshire looking to move on. According to our property law expert, Lesley Stuart, for those who are not connected to mains drainage - an issue in rural Cheshire and North Wales - there’s an added challenge, with many homeowners unaware of stricter rules regarding septi..
Networking on the Lawn06-Sep-2017
Cullimore Dutton Solicitors were delighted to host a networking evening in partnership with Natwest Bank on Tuesday 5 September 2017. The event held on the legendary lawn at our White Friars offices attracted 40 plus attendees from various sectors across the region and featured a presentation from local entrepreneur and business consultant Nick Hodson. Andrew Wright, Managing Director of Cullimore Dutton commented: "We would like to thank all those who attended our Networking on the ..
Anglesey and Denbigh & Flint Shows30-Aug-2017
We were delighted to have representatives at both the Anglesey and Denbigh & Flint shows this August. The Anglesey County Show (15-16 August) was attended by Tania McGee and Matthew Poulton from our Commercial Property Team alongside Alice Daniel from our Wills, Trusts & Estates Team. As part of the show Cullimore Dutton were proud sponsors of the Dairy Cattle Class. Rosettes were awarded with both Tania and Matthew making the presentations. Our overall winner was a ..
Nantwich Show 201727-Jul-2017
A great day was had by all yesterday as we made our annual pilgrimage to the Nantwich Show. Attended by Tania McGee and Matt Poulton from our Commercial Property team alongside Jackie Rawcliffe and Tim Parker from our Family and Residential Conveyancing teams respectively. Marketing Manager Phil Wood was also on hand snapping away on the camera and keeping our Twitter feed well fed. As part of the show Cullimore Dutton were proud to sponsor the Red Poll Cattle class, several fine bea..
Croquet and Pimm's on the Lawn25-Jul-2017
A huge thank you to everyone who attended our Croquet and Pimm's on the Lawn event on Friday 7 July. We hope you had a great afternoon and have a new found love for the sport of croquet. We have had some positive and much appreciated feedback from many, a sample of which is below: “Thank you from myself, Howard and Kathryn for a cracking event last Friday and for the obvious effort that you put in to make it a great success. Of course, the fact that we won was even sweeter! Here’..
Downing Street have announced that for the first time, a female is to become the UK’s top judge with Baroness Hale set to be appointed President of the Supreme Court. This marks a progressive step for the UK judiciary which for a long time has faced accusations of being stuck in the past and criticised for having a lack of diversity (including by Baroness Hale herself!). This appointment marks a step forward in the recognition of family law. Baroness Hale was the first ..
Wimbledon men's semi-finals day24-Jul-2017
A huge thank you to everyone who attended our Family Team's event on Wimbledon men's semi-finals day. We hope you had a great afternoon. Please enjoy our photos from the event (below) and we look forward to catching up with you again soon.
Wills and the Modern World17-Jul-2017
Are we about to see texts, emails and voicemails recognised as valid wills? This is what the Law Commission for England and Wales is considering after reaching the conclusion that the law around wills should be brought into the ‘modern world’. The commission is considering, in exceptional circumstances, where a person makes their wishes known in an email or text, whether these wishes could subsequently be formalised by a court after the person’s death and treated as a valid will. ..
As one of Chester’s oldest family law firms, we will mark an extraordinary 225 years of legal practice by holding a series of special anniversary events and sponsorships over the summer. Partner and commercial litigator, John Arnold, said: “Over the course of more than two centuries this law firm has delivered expert legal advice to some of the region’s leading companies, individuals and organisations. As you would expect of a family solicitors practice with such a long and illu..
Celebrating 225 Years19-Jun-2017
A huge thank you to everyone who joined us to celebrate 225 years of legal practice at White Friars, we hope you had a great evening. Many of you have been in touch to pass on your thanks, a sample of which is below: "A brief note to thank you all for your hospitality at Thursday’s splendid celebration. We did so enjoy meeting you all and especially many of you for the first time where you had previously been a voice on the phone or a signature at the foot of a letter. This note would ..
Lunch on the Lawn12-Jun-2017
A huge thank you to everyone who attended our Lunch on the Lawn on Thursday 8 June. We hope you had a great afternoon despite the inclement weather. We have had some positive and much appreciated feedback from many, a sample of which is below: “I just wanted to say a big thank you for hosting and inviting me to Lunch on the Lawn on Thursday. It was great fun and really nice to meet all of the Conveyancing Team. It was a shame about the weather but lovely to see so many people att..
Cullimore Dutton Quiz Night24-May-2017
A huge thank you to everyone who attended the Cullimore Dutton Quiz Night at Chester Boughton Hall Cricket Club and congratulations to Yates & Co for winning the top prize. We hope you had an great evening, please enjoy our photos from the event (below) and we look forward to catching up with you again in the near future.
Cullimore Dutton Solicitors has agreed a two-year sponsorship deal to support women’s and girls’ cricket development at Chester Boughton Hall Cricket Club. Cheshire’s most successful women’s team last season, Chester Boughton Hall Ladies completed the league and cup double by topping the Cheshire County Cricket Women’s League and securing the women’s T20 divisional knockout trophy. The local women's club of rising England women’s cricket star all-rounder, Sophie Eccleston, ..
Scrapping of Probate Fees21-Apr-2017
On arrival at work this morning, after having spent the past few weeks working diligently to avoid a substantial increase in probate court fees for our clients, our Wills, Trusts and Estates department were pleased to learn that, for the time being, the government have decided to scrap the introduction of a sharp increase in probate fees which were due to be implemented in just over a weeks time, at the start of May 2017. The new fee scheme meant that when personal representatives ..
Partner Presents Award10-Apr-2017
Lesley Stuart, Partner and Cullimore Dutton’s Head of Conveyancing presented an award at the University of Law’s annual Prize Giving Ceremony on Friday 7 April. Recent graduate Hollie Aspinall was the recipient of the award as the student who attained the highest mark in the LPC Private Client examination jointly with Melissa Quayle. LPC student Dominic Riley was also recognised by Cullimore Dutton for attaining the highest score in the Family Law examination. Lesley stated, “As an organ..
We like Hoole06-Mar-2017
…we like Hoole a lot. We like Hoole so much we have a special March offer for our Hoole clients, old and new. Simply instruct us on the conveyance of your property or contact us to create or review your Will during March and we will donate five per cent of our fees to a Hoole based charity or community project. You can even suggest which charity or project you would like us to support. To qualify all you need is a current Hoole postcode or for conveyancing clients, b..
Property Rights for Cohabitants30-Jan-2017
As long ago as July 2007, The Law Commission published its report Cohabitation: the Financial Consequences of Relationship Breakdown. The report recommended developing a legal framework creating and dealing with the property rights of cohabiting partners if their relationship broke down. Ten years on the Government is still considering the proposals. In Scotland the Family Law (Scotland) Act 2006 gives rights to unmarried couples if their relationship breaks down. These are not exa..
Cullimore Dutton Appoints Trainee Solicitors22-Dec-2016
Double promotion confirmed as part of our strategy for growth. Cullimore Dutton Solicitors, has appointed two Trainee Solicitors as we continue to strengthen our Private Client and Commercial Property teams. Alice Daniels, a former Politics and International Relations graduate from Loughborough University and Ross Alexander, an Accountancy and Finance graduate from Lancaster University, have both completed their Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) and Legal Practice Course ..
Frodsham Junior Football Club's U11s Town team is sporting a smart new strip for the 2016-17 season courtesy of brand new sponsors, Cullimore Dutton Solicitors. Cullimore Dutton has a long and happy association with Frodsham JFC, its Managing Director was himself a club player in his youth and is currently a coach with the club. "We are delighted to sponsor the Town Under 11s squad," said MD Andrew Wright. "With a heritage stretching back over 200 years, Culli..
State Pension Increases and Forecast22-Nov-2016
In 2011. the government introduced a guarantee that the State pension will increase each year by whichever is the highest of three measures – increases in average earnings, the rate of inflation, and 2.5% – the so-called ‘triple lock’. However, in the government’s currently straitened financial circumstances, this is seen no longer to be affordable, and it is likely to be replaced. An influential committee of MPs has called on the government to scrap the triple lock ..
Cullimore Duttons's Own Masterchef!02-Nov-2016
MASTERCHEF IN AID OF CLAIRE HOUSE CHILDREN’S HOSPICE HELD AT CHEZ JULES ON FRIDAY 28TH OCTOBER 2016 Masterchef Rhodri Roberts, sponsored by Cullimore Dutton Solicitors Ltd Chester competed in this event at Chez Jules on Friday night winning the dessert category for his Tarte au Chocolat avec crème de Chantilly. Four amateur chefs competed in the competition held in aid of Claire House Children’s Hospice and hosted by Cheshire Resolution and the Cheshire Collaborative Fa..
We are pleased to support the WCNW Chamber’s next event, the Annual Ball on 14th October, by providing their main raffle prize of a Luxury hamper. Proceeds of the raffle are going toward the Hand on Heart charity, whose goal is to prevent the death by cardiac arrest in young children. Good luck to everyone taking part! ..
Trip to Chester Story House22-Sep-2016
On Thursday 22nd September Lesley, Tim, Simon and Sarah Davies were privileged to be able to have a tour round the new theatre complex in Chester to be known as Story House. The project is still very much a building site but the works are now nearing completion and the official opening is scheduled for Spring 2017. Development is far bigger than any of us expected and will house not only a magnificent ultra modern theatre but also cinema, library, function rooms, bars and rest..