Get to know the people behind Stratford Solicitors and how their legal expertise can help you.

Nicholas Stratford
Nicholas StratfordDirector
Nick is a solicitor and a registered trusts and estate practitioner. He has vast experience in both contentious and non-contentious law. Nick was for a number of years a part-time university lecturer updating solicitors and trainee solicitors in relation to the law. The law is Nick’s hobby as well as his career and he is happy to see clients by arrangement on both evenings and weekends.
Lauren Sumner
Lauren SumnerDirector
Lauren joined Stratford Solicitors as a Trainee Solicitor in 2007 and has mainly undertaken Conveyancing work since this time. Lauren qualified as a Solicitor in 2011 and is now a Director at Stratford Solicitors. Lauren has a good relationship with many key third parties involved in the conveyancing process which allows her to maintain our service levels with clients, and to improve our standards and practices. Lauren aims to provide a friendly, yet professional approach with clients colleagues and all third parties to provide a smooth turnaround of transactions.
Simon Heapy
Simon HeapyConsultant Solicitor
Simon is a specialist in mental capacity work in the Court of Protection and also in contentious probate matters.

Listed as an individual leading lawyer in property and affairs Court of Protection Work in both the Legal 500 (“an excellent practitioner” and “highly competent at advising on intricate and complex trusts and Court of Protection matters”) and in the Chambers and Partners directory “it is hard to find anybody else with such enthusiasm” (2016 edition) and “He is great – he cares about the clients, he understands the law, and he has a firm hand when needed, which is critical in this area” (2018 edition).

Simon was a founding executive committee member of the Court of Protection Practitioners’ Association (COPPA) and has completed a Judicial Work Shadowing Scheme with the (then) Senior Judge Lush in the Court of Protection. Simon also assisted the OPG in writing their Practice Note SD14 on Family Care Payments.

Outside of the law Simon is a music lover and is “a decent guitarist, a reasonable drummer and below average keyboard player”. Simon loves most sports but particularly football and cricket. He is a lifelong supporter of Macclesfield Town FC.

Karen Leadbetter
Karen LeadbetterSolicitor
Karen specialises in family law, including divorce and complexed financial issues, particularly high net worth cases, Pre-Nuptial Agreements & cohabitation disputes. As well as arrangements for children. With over 20 years’ experience, Karen was noted in the Legal 500 as ‘fights hard for her clients’ and as having ‘exceptionally strong negotiation skills backed up with years of experience in handling difficult proceedings’
Angela Nekooie
Angela NekooieConsultant Solicitor
A solicitor who qualified in 2002 but has worked in the legal sector since 1980. Angela employs a proactive and solution-focused approach and is passionate about delivering outstanding client care. For the last 22 years Angela has specialised in both residential and commercial matters including buying, selling, leasehold matters, re-mortgages, equity releases and secured lending/bridging loans.
Darren Crowther
Darren CrowtherConsultant Legal Executive
Darren works as a Consultant Lawyer for Stratford Solicitors, specialising in litigation. After completing his Law Degree, he then went on to qualify as a Chartered Legal Executive Lawyer in 2018. Darren takes a particular interest in Litigation, and provides legal advice on Lasting Power of Attorneys and Wills.
Alice Brown
Alice BrownLicensed Conveyancer
Alice joined Stratford Solicitors in May 2018 and is a qualified Licensed Conveyancer. Alice deals with all types of residential property transactions including re-mortgages, sales and purchases of freehold and leasehold properties, new build, right to buy and shared ownership.
Ashleigh Irwin
Ashleigh IrwinSolicitor
Ashleigh joined Stratford Solicitors in January 2020, and is a Solicitor at the firm. Ashleigh specialises in private client work and motoring offences, and she is currently working towards becoming a registered Trusts and Estates Practitioner.
Helen Shepherd
Helen ShepherdParalegal
Helen joined Stratfords in April 2022.

Having worked in the Conveyancing industry for 12 years, she has experience with dealing with many cases – sales, purchases, transfers and re-mortgages. She prides herself on having a friendly, empathetic approach and progresses all matters in a timely manner.

Ellie Russell
Ellie RussellChartered Legal Executive
Ellie has worked in conveyancing since 2018 following the completion of her law degree.

She joined Stratford Solicitors in September 2020 and is a Chartered Legal Executive. Ellie deals with a wide range of residential property matters including sales, purchases, remortgages and transfers.

James Scowen
James ScowenParalegal
James recently joined the Stratford’s Conveyancing Team dealing with all aspects and complexities of residential conveyancing. He builds a good relationship with clients, agents and solicitors to ensure a smooth and expeditious transaction.

When James isn’t in the office working on your matter, you can find him in the fairway of Davenport Golf Course.

Andrea Goodwin
Andrea GoodwinParalegal
Andrea joined Stratfords Solicitors in 2016 having had 30+ years’ experience in conveyancing.

Andrea specialises in most residential property matters including, sales, purchases, re-mortgages, transfers of equity, adverse possession and lost deeds. She also specialises in lease extensions.

Andrea strives to provide clients with a professional and efficient service in a supportive and friendly manner