Richard Harding established the firm in Combe Martin, then a small village on the North Devon coast, at the end of the 18th century. He came from a family of landowners and bankers, who built Upcott House, Barnstaple. Much of his early work involved the management of the family properties. In 1988 the Partners gave a large collection of Harding family papers to the North Devon Records Office.
The firm grew steadily during the 19th century and was acquired by Geoffrey Stallard, a London solicitor, just after the second World War. A partnership of the Stallard family ran the firm as a general country practice until their retirement in 1979.
A period of rapid expansion followed. In 1982, the firm acquired the old Bideford practice of T. Oerton & Martin and expanded that practice to cover an area down to Bude. In 1993, the firm acquired the Ilfracombe practice of Rowe Watts & Wood, which had been the leading firm in that town for over 100 years. In 1996 the firm merged with Brewers which had been a leading firm in Barnstaple for over 200 years, with a wide ranging client base. Finally in 2008 we acquired Triggs Read & Dart in Barnstaple. Our growth since then has been organic, with an emphasis on recruiting high quality and dedicated staff with a commitment to living and working in North Devon.
Today the firm is very highly regarded in our local community with a long established, growing client list and offices in Barnstaple, Bideford and Braunton. We have acted for many local families for generations, but value equally new clients with a wide variety of personal and business needs.