Rollits celebrates 175 years in business

In 1841 the first edition of Punch magazine was published, Robert Peel became Prime Minister, and the Penny Black stamp was replaced by the Penny Red.

In Hull, a young Solicitor called John Rollit began practising law with his Partner William Dryden - their firm was called Dryden Sons & Rollit.

In due course, John Rollit set up his own practice at 62 Whitefriargate and soon after welcomed his two sons Albert and Arthur to the Partnership (now called Rollit & Sons). Both were eminent and colourful characters of their time, particularly Sir Albert who later became an MP.

Thomas Farrell joined in 1879 and the firm's other "named partner", Dick Bladon became a partner in 1934. The firm remained as Rollit Farrell and Bladon until shortened to Rollits in 2001.

Over time Rollits has occupied various premises within a stone's throw of each other in Hull's old town …Cogan House and Cogan Chambers from 1878 to 1981; Elsworth House; Alfred Gelder Street in the late 1960's; King William House in Market Place from 1981 to 1991; Lowgate House from 1988 to 1991; Wilberforce Court on High Street from 1991 to 2016 and now from its brand new premises at Citadel House at the other end of the High Street.

Ralph Gilbert, Managing Partner said "On 9 June 1841, John Rollit was admitted as an attorney of the Court of Queen's Bench and also a solicitor of the High Court of Chancery. His portrait is displayed in our reception at Citadel House today.

"The firm has developed and changed in untold ways over the last 175 years. It has practised from various offices in the Old Town in Hull but also in London, Beverley, Hornsea, Helmsley and, from 1990, in York. There have been in the region of 80 partners and hundreds of staff who have made the firm it is today.

"Today's society, the legal profession and the firm itself would be most alien to John Rollit as he embarked on his legal career but we are rightly proud that we are the same firm (albeit possibly in the style of "Trigger's broom") that started life 175 years ago and we will be both commemorating and celebrating this "significant" birthday over the next 12 months.

"Rollits continues to provide commercial legal services from its bases at Citadel House, High Street and Rowntree Wharf, York and is proud to be celebrating 175 years in business in Yorkshire."

Posted on: 17/06/2016

This article is for general guidance only. It provides useful information in a concise form. Action should not be taken without obtaining specific legal advice.

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