Meet Our People

Meet Our People

  • James Waddell
  • Kate Schmit
  • Nick Atkins

James Waddell - Partner

"I read history at Durham and then (like virtually the whole of my year of Durham history graduates) came down to do the CPE and LPC at The College of Law in Guildford.

I got a training contract at Macfarlanes and was seconded to a listed IT company for six months, during which time I qualified into Macfarlanes’ corporate department in 1999. By the time I was about two years PQE I had been working extremely hard, had just got married and my wife and I were thinking about buying a house and starting a family. I knew I didn’t want to live in London long term and I also did not fancy taking up commuting. I also wanted to get on with my life outside work and I wasn’t sure that the path to partnership at a City firm was going to allow much time for that. It just felt like the right time to make a move.

I was on the point of accepting a job in Bristol, when a recruitment consultant suggested that I talk to Stevens & Bolton LLP. I was immediately won over. Stevens & Bolton sounded like exactly the firm I was looking for – one with a real focus on the quality of the team and the quality of the work being done and with a clear plan for the future.

I joined the firm's corporate team in 2001 and felt straight away that I had made the right choice. At first I missed not having some of the comforting infrastructure of a City law firm, but the work I was doing was just as challenging and interesting as what I had been doing in London and the people were great. Also Guildford and the villages around it are a lovely place to live. I became a senior associate in 2003 and was made a partner in 2007, so Stevens & Bolton has definitely delivered on my expectations."


Partner, Stevens & Bolton LLP

James deals with a wide range of corporate matters including public and private mergers and acquisitions, MBOs, fundraisings, corporate reorganisations and joint ventures for businesses and business owners across a number of sectors.


Senior Associate, Stevens & Bolton LLP


Corporate Associate, Stevens & Bolton LLP


Qualified Solicitor, Macfarlanes


BA History, Durham University

Kate Schmit - Partner

“When I decided to relocate from the North I started to consider possible firms to approach that would be a good fit.  As a corporate tax and employee share schemes specialist I initially suspected that I would need to work in London in order to maintain the quality of work I had become used to.  I was however delighted to be proven wrong. 

Stevens & Bolton LLP was looking to add a corporate tax practice to its offering and the firm has been hugely supportive in helping me to establish and build my practice.  My experience of the move has been wholly positive; I get to do quality work with a talented and collegiate team all within a twenty minute drive from home – perfect.”


Partner, Stevens & Bolton LLP

Kate specialises in corporate tax, employee share schemes and employment related taxation with extensive experience of negotiating the documentation relating to corporate and private equity transactions, along with designing and implementing a wide variety of equity incentive arrangements.


Senior Associate, Stevens & Bolton LLP


Qualified Solicitor, Hammonds LLP (now Squire Patton Boggs), Manchester. Became a Senior Associate in 2007


Trainee Solicitor, Hammonds LLP (now Squire Patton Boggs), Manchester, Leeds and London


BA Accounting & Law, The University of Manchester

Nick Atkins - Partner

“I made the move to Stevens & Bolton LLP to build upon my existing corporate experience, working with City quality lawyers and interesting clients but remaining outside London.

I work on all types of mergers and acquisitions, from small business sales to cross border acquisitions to public company work, as well as restructuring and shareholder arrangements.

It is this breadth of quality work that brought me to Stevens & Bolton and I have not been disappointed. Moreover, the firm has a collaborative working environment that supports career development while at the same time encouraging a work-life balance. In short, it’s a great place to work.”


Senior Associate, Stevens & Bolton LLP

Nicholas advises on mergers and acquisitions, shareholder arrangements, reorganisations and general corporate matters. He frequently advises private equity portfolio companies and is a member of the insolvency & restructuring practice group.


Associate, Stevens & Bolton LLP


Qualified Solicitor, Mundays LLP


Trainee Solicitor, Mundays LLP


BA Politics & Spanish, Bristol University

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