A Deputy District Judge on the North Eastern Circuit and head of Berwins' dispute resolution team, Andrew Mawdsley has a made a career in getting results for businesses and individuals across Yorkshire. Here, we grab a coffee and catch up with Andrew.
Why did you decide on law as a career?
The law was a natural choice for me, I have always been a “rules” person!
Why did you choose dispute resolution as your particular area of focus?
I have a strong sense of justice and fairness, Dispute Resolution allows me to indulge in that.
What's the best part about being a litigator?
Getting a great result for a client – especially when that appears unlikely at the outset. When a client comes in with a difficult situation, it’s satisfying to navigate through the issues. Sometimes that can take a while and require some fortitude from both me and the client – recently we ran a claim all the way to the Court of Appeal to get the right result. Making a difference to someone’s life is a particularly rewarding. I recently dealt with a complex professional negligence case which was very important to the client. Being able to resolve the claim in my client’s favour meant a lot to her and to me.
Congratulations on your appointment as a deputy district judge—how does it feel to hold this role in a courtroom?
It was a huge honour to be chosen from so many applicants. Anyone who’s had dealings with the court knows it’s an important role and being on the ‘other side of the desk’ brings its own rewards and challenges.
If you weren’t in law, what would you be doing?
I’ve never thought about that – probably running a bike shop and trying to become a better triathlete.
What is the best part about working in Yorkshire?
I’m fortunate to work in a beautiful part of the world – Harrogate is a fantastic town with a diverse range of businesses and needs. Add that to Leeds, only a short distance away, with its bustle and exciting opportunities and there is plenty of engaging work for a commercial litigator. The region, with its burgeoning digital sector is on the move and, with big names such as Channel 4 moving here, more will surely follow.
What do you do in your spare time to relax?
I completed Ironman UK last year – my longest ever triathlon. I’m running the London Marathon for Berwins’ current Charity Partner, Henshaws.
What advice do you have for school leavers considering a career in law? Would you recommend your own route into a legal career?
If you have a vision, go for it – don’t let setbacks put you off. There are many routes into the legal profession. Mine – university, training contract, practice – was pretty traditional but I made sure I kept my feet on the ground and that I was involved in as many areas of law as I could be during my training. The diverse skills I picked up along the way have stood me in good stead for a career in the law, where you encounter people from all walks of life.
This interview also appeared in December 2019 edition of the Leeds and Yorkshire Lawyer