Solicitors raise the bar

web page 3 hallidays gaol 1247NEW MOVE: Beechworth solicitors Helen McGowan and Matt Grogan at the door to their new chambers in Old Beechworth Gaol's front wall. PHOTO: Jamie Kronborg

BEECHWORTH solicitors Helen McGowan and Matt Grogan have raised the bar with their chambers’ relocation next week to Old Beechworth Gaol.

The pair and their staff for three years have, as Halliday Solicitors, practiced from Beechworth’s Anglican Church rectory in Ford Street, which the diocese let while its parish priest lived elsewhere.

But with the appointment of a new priest later this month Ms McGowan and Mr Grogan had to find new chambers.

“There’s the obvious elephant on the dance floor – that the lawyers are practicing from the gaol,” Mr Grogan said on Monday.

“As commercial office space ready-made in Beechworth is not that easy to come by, there was a little bit of necessity.”

So when the opportunity presented itself to take space in Old Beechworth Gaol, owned by a consortium led by the Australian Centre for Rural Entrepreneurship and in which there are numerous local investors, they moved.

“We’re pretty inspired by the idea of what’s happening here at the gaol and the opportunity to be first followers – to sign on the line and commit to it – was important,” Mr Grogan said.

“We’re not really first followers in one sense because so much of the community is behind (the gaol project) already with their commitment and money.

“But to make the decision, sign a rental agreement, move in and make this little part of it our own has been important.”

The new chambers are in what is known as ‘the gaoler’s quarters’ on one side of the main gate.

This post is part of the thread: Beechworth old gaol – an ongoing story on this site. View the thread timeline for more context on this post.

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