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Our History

1844 - 1933

John Becke (1816-1896) and Henry Becke founded their legal practice in Northampton in 1844.

J Becke was later joined by his son, Charles Cecil Becke in 1863, the firm from that point being known as Becke & Son.

In 1867 J Becke agreed to go into partnership with Thomas Green and the firm (carrying on business at premises in the Market Square, Northampton) was then known as Becke and Green.

C Becke took over the reins from his father in 1883 on the latter’s retirement. In 1903, on the admission of John Faulkner Stops to the partnership, the firm became Becke, Green & Stops (C Becke retiring three years later, in 1906). The practice was then joined by Edmund Burton in 1919 and thereafter incorporated the firm of Stops & Burton.

In 1933, Harold Snell sold his practice (formerly Burton & Snell) to the firm.

1933 - 1988

Arthur Herbert (Jimmy) Wild (1884-1957) commenced practice as a solicitor on his own account in Cambridge in 1933. 
Roy Barker Hewitson joined the firm (known as A H Wild) on qualification in 1937 and became a partner in 1946 after distinguished war service. 
Peter Gordon Shaw was admitted to the partnership in 1955 and the firm was known from then until 1989 as Wild Hewitson & Shaw, by which date it had some 20 partners.  The firm had offices in Saffron Walden (Essex) and Bishops Stortford (Hertfordshire) as well as in Cambridge, where it took new office premises at Shakespeare House, 42 Newmarket Road in 1988.

1934 - 1989

John Stops died in 1944 and the business was carried on by Charles E Burton, who had been articled to Mr Green in 1908.
Thomas Gammage, joined the firm in 1938, and the practice was amalgamated with Mr Gammage’s firm of Groves & Gammage. 
After the Second World War Charles Mumby joined the partnership.  On 1st January 1969, Becke, Green & Stops (also practicing as Stops & Burton at Daventry) amalgamated with another Northampton legal practice, Phipps & Troup, and became Becke, Phipps & Co, which carried on business at 3 Spencer Parade and 7 & 8 The Parade, Market Square, Northampton. A month later, another firm,  Hensman Jackson & Chamberlain was absorbed. The firm by 1989 consisted of some 11 partners and by that time was long established in its premises at 7 Spencer Parade, Northampton. 

1989 - to date

The firms Becke Phipps & Co and Wild Hewitson & Shaw merged in 1989 to form Hewitson Becke & Shaw, a name which was abbreviated to Hewitsons in 2003. 
The Newmarket (Suffolk) practice of Ennions was absorbed and an office was opened in Peterborough (Cambridgeshire).  By 2009 the several branch offices had been closed.
In July 2015 Hewitsons merged with City firm Moorhead James LLP.

As of May 2018 the firm changed its name to Hewitsons LLP, continuing to operate from four offices in Cambridge, London, Northampton, and Milton Keynes (Buckinghamshire). 

Since the 1989 merger the following have occupied the position of Senior Partner:

  • Peter Shaw,

  • Keith Davidson,

  • Ian Barnett,

  • Alan Brett,

  • Peter Gutteridge,

  • Charles Hewitson, and

  • Clare Colacicchi (current)

The following have taken the post of Managing Partner: 

  • David Hollest, 

  • Alan Brett,

  • John Dix, and

  • Colin Jones (current).