THE average house price was £53,000 and inflation stood at 6.88%.
The year is 1992 and Nigel Smith, pictured, has just become a partner at Swanage law firm Ellis Jones Solicitors.
Aged 28, he became one of the youngest equity partners in the country at the time and took his first step to become managing partner just seven years later.
Now, Nigel is celebrating his 30th anniversary of becoming a partner at the law firm.
His rise from trainee solicitor to managing partner has set in place a meritocratic and supportive culture at Ellis Jones, he said.
“I first started at the firm in 1986 as a trainee solicitor, known as an articled clerk back then,” said Nigel. “I was keen to progress and was given the opportunity to do so. At the tender age of 28, I became one of the youngest equity partners in the country and from day one I was very much part of the management of the firm. I assumed the role of managing partner in 1999 and was allowed to develop into that role.
“I am committed to creating an environment where everyone is encouraged to achieve personal excellence and to giving everyone in the firm the opportunity to further their careers in the same way I was.
“That philosophy is reflected in the fact that more than a third of the partners and half of the associates in the firm started here as trainees. Long may that continue.”
He added: “There have been many changes over the past 30 years but the drive for excellence and commitment to the highest standards remains the secret to our success at Ellis Jones.I feel privileged to have reached this milestone and look forward to more years ahead leading the firm’s team of talented and dedicated lawyers, including many who have also given long and distinguished service.”
Nigel, who is married with three grown up sons, two step daughters and a grandson, qualified as a solicitor in 1988 after joining the firm in 1986.
He is a former president of the Bournemouth & District Law Society and won the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Dorset Legal Awards in 2018.