LOWS ORKNEY - Key Persons


Alistair Bruce

Job Titles:
  • Professional Support
Born in Perth but with strong family connections to Orkney and Shetland, Alistair studied law at Dundee University and trained in Aberdeen before joining Lows in 1982, becoming a partner in 1985. For most of his career he pursued his particular interest in Family Law. Following his retiral as a Director in March 2016 he continued as a Consultant until October 2018 and now supports the solicitors and paralegals in complex conveyancing issues, including corrective conveyancing and crofting matters. Alistair was founding chairman of Family Mediation Orkney (now part of Relationships Scotland) and acted in the high profile "South Ronaldsay" case in 1991. Between 1996 and 1998 Alistair was a member of the ruling Council of the Law Society of Scotland and for several years after that continued to serve as a Complaints Reporting Officer for the Society. Outside work Alistair has been involved in numerous groups in the community over the years. He is a former chairman of Orkney Citizens' Advice Bureau, BB officer, school board/parent council member and a Trustee of a few local charities. Currently he is chairman of Orkney Theatre and Age Scotland Orkney and a member (and past president) of the Rotary Club of Orkney. He is also an elder at St Magnus Cathedral and sings in the choir there. His love of theatre has seen him appear in over 60 local amateur dramatic, operatic and pantomime productions over the years. Alistair is a keen supporter of Orkney Rugby Football Club and for exercise he plays golf, usually badly. He is married to Jane, a recently retired primary school head teacher, and has two grown up sons.

Andrew Bonner

Job Titles:
  • Property Manager
Andrew has extensive experience of valuing and Marketing houses within the unique Orkney Market. Andrew uses his local market knowledge to offer a full service to property purchasers including finding the perfect property and advice on how to offer. This is invaluable to people moving to Orkney and first time buyers. Andrew joined Lows in May 1992 having previously worked with the Bank of Scotland in the local Kirkwall branch as Assistant Manager. He had joined the bank from school and also worked in bank's branches in Haddington and North Berwick, having grown up in the delightful East Lothian village of Gullane. As Property Manager Andrew looks after the Property Shop at 5 Broad Street from where Lows sell more property than any other agent based in Orkney. Every year, Andrew covers thousands of miles the length and breadth of Orkney doing pre-sale valuations, property particulars and accompanied viewings. He makes many trips to the outlying islands during the year and enjoys both the ferry trips and the flights in the 8 seater Loganair planes. Andrew helps selling clients to make sure that their property is presented to the market in the best way possible and he can advise on obtaining Home Reports and arranging advertisements in local press and further afield. For property purchasers, Andrew and his colleagues can help search for their ideal property not only from those being marketed by Lows but also by other agents. Andrew can help advise on how to offer for a property including fixed price properties and at closing dates. Andrew liaises closely with our Conveyancing Solicitors to ensure a smooth "one-stop shop" service. Andrew and his colleagues co-ordinate Low's proactive marketing strategy which includes complementary Rightmove listing, our popular website and social media pages. Andrew is a keen sportsman having played football in the past for Kirkwall Accies, St Andrew's and Deerness however golf is his main passion he is a past Captain of Orkney Golf Club. Andrew also enjoys travelling and has been to many countries including Fiji, Tonga, Australia and New Zealand.

Carole Macnaughton

Job Titles:
  • Associate
  • Solicitor
  • Lows' Court Associate
Carole has a constructive approach to Family Law and has extensive experience in negotiated settlement and agreements. Carole is Lows' Court Associate and she practices exclusively in Civil Litigation. A graduate of Glasgow University Carole trained with a large Lanarkshire firm before marrying and moving to Ayrshire, where she gained considerable experience as the court solicitor in a busy country practice and defended several serious criminal cases, alongside civil court work. A founder member of the Family Law Association, her main practice area now is in Family Law, where she is familiar with the most common problems and solutions encountered in separation and divorce and the law involving complex child and financial issues. She advises in divorce, dissolution of civil partnerships and on co-habitant's rights and obligations. Although Carole has considerable expertise as a litigator, she has extensive experience in negotiated settlement and agreements and promotes the constructive resolution of family disputes. Carole is a registered Civil Legal Aid practitioner. Carole works with her clients to find positive and constructive solutions to often very dificult situations. She is always respectful and non-judgmental of her clients' problems. Carole can advise on pre-nuptial and co-habitee agreements. Carole helps her clients to understand their options and find the best solution for them and their families. Her main interests outside of work are holidays with her family, enjoying the Orkney countryside and wildlife, and cooking.

CATHERINE MARIE SMITH

Job Titles:
  • Director

Catherine Smith

Job Titles:
  • Director
Catherine specialises in Corporate and Commercial Law. Catherine is adept at advising large scale wind turbine projects, and can help every step of the way, from planning and land through to contracts. Catherine grew up in Orkney and after graduating from the University of Edinburgh in 2006 she completed her traineeship with a large commercial/corporate practice in Inverness. During her traineeship Catherine was involved in transactions for both public and private sector clients, including general corporate matters and commercial property conveyances, leases and securities. Catherine joined Lows in 2010. She was appointed as an Associate in March 2012 and became a Director in March 2014. Catherine is helping to develop Lows' services for commercial and corporate clients and in this role she advises many of our clients who are active in the renewable energy sector. Catherine has been heavily involved in several wind turbine projects throughout the County advising both companies and individuals on the corporate and property aspects of their projects. Catherine also handles an extensive range of private client work including residential and rural conveyancing and Wills and Estate Planning. Out of the office Catherine enjoys travel and keeping fit by going to the gym and running.

David Fairnie

Job Titles:
  • Director
  • Solicitor
David has business-friendly, outcomes-based approach to Legal Practice. David has a wealth of court experience and chamber-work experience David is originally from Fife and is a graduate of Dundee University. After qualifying as a Solicitor and working in private practice David came to Orkney in 1994 to take up a Solicitor post at Orkney islands Council. In 1996 he was promoted to become the Council's Chief Legal Officer a post he held until joining Lows in 2000. In this post he was in charge of the legal team providing advice across the full range of the council's services and responsibilities. He represented the Council's interests in a number of significant Court and Tribunal proceedings and played a prominent role in the negotiation of the legal agreements which the Council entered into in 1999 to secure the long term future of the Flotta Oil terminal. He was Clerk of the Area Licensing Board and gained substantial experience in contentious and non-contentious regulatory work across many council functions . During David's time at the Council both the Scotland Act and the Human Rights Act came into force and David was heavily involved in advising the Council in preparing for the challenges presented. He was also a member of the Council's election polling and returning teams in numerous parliamentary and local elections and in the Scottish Parliament referendum. After six challenging but always interesting years at School Place David decided to return to private practice in 2000. Any regrets at leaving behind the council colleagues he had enjoyed working with were very-much tempered by being able to continue his career without leaving Orkney! After joining Lows as an associate David was assumed as a partner (and now director) in 2001. David looks after a varied caseload of work for private and business clients. He handles both chamber and court work. He is experienced in residential and commercial conveyancing and advises on preparation of Wills and Powers Of Attorney. He appears in both criminal and civil court cases and is a registered legal aid practitioner. David has considerable expertise in advising clients on dealing with new legislative requirements for example the 2005 Licensing Act. He has developed a substantial practice in Adult Incapacity Law and has extensive experience in applying for adult guardianship orders. David enjoys being able to act for a diverse clientele and feels that having practised Law, as it were, on two sides of the fence he can bring a breadth of insight and experience in helping clients achieve realistic, workable outcomes when faced with legal challenges. Outside of work David is a Kirkwall resident. He is keen on most sports but especially rugby, golf and ski-ing. He has participated in local amateur dramatic performances and has sung as a member of the St Magnus Festival chorus.

DAVID JOHN MORRIS FAIRNIE

Job Titles:
  • Director
  • SOLICITOR

Duncan Hill - Chairman

Job Titles:
  • Chairman
  • Director
  • Solicitor
Duncan has considerable experience handling the complex and varied needs of Lows' private and business clients. Duncan is adept at managing Trusts and Executries. Duncan Hill is our Chairman and he is heavily involved in Practice Management and forward planning. Duncan was born and raised in Kirkwall and studied law in Aberdeen before returning home to train with T P & J L Low (as it then was). He qualified as a Solicitor in 1984. Alongside his management and practice planning role he deals primarily in private client work with a strong emphasis on Trust and Executry work. Duncan also acts for and advises many business clients. He has acted for a number of voluntary and charitable organisations. Duncan has a strong interest in IT and has been heavily involved in the ongoing development of Lows e-business. Outside work his interests include traditional music and he is a long standing member of Kirkwall City Pipe Band.

DUNCAN MERVIN NORMAN HILL

Job Titles:
  • Director
  • SOLICITOR

Eddie Nicolson

Job Titles:
  • Director
  • Solicitor
Eddie is experienced in the needs of both private and commercial clients. Eddie was born and raised in Kirkwall but has very strong family connections with Westray. After graduating from Aberdeen University he completed his legal traineeship with one of Scotland's four largest commercial firms before returning to Kirkwall to work for the practice of his Aunt, Helen M Nicolson. Eddie became a partner at Lows when the Helen M Nicolson practice merged in 2002. Eddie handles a large range of private client and commercial work. He handles residential and rural conveyancing and has acted in the purchase and sale of large agricultural units. He acts for a number of clients in the construction industry and has expertise in development site acquisition. Eddie also advises on Wills and Estate Planning and preparation of Powers of Attorney. As a Court practitioner he is commissioned as a Procurator Fiscal Depute and in this role he deals with custody cases in Kirkwall Sheriff Court. Eddie is a keen singer and plays pipes in the Kirkwall City Pipe Band.

EDWARD THOMSON COOPER NICOLSON

Job Titles:
  • Director
  • SOLICITOR

EUAIN JAMES PENNY

Job Titles:
  • Director
  • SOLICITOR

Euain Penny


Ian Stout

Job Titles:
  • Tax Manager

Robert Adamson

Job Titles:
  • Financial Advisor
  • Independent Financial Advisor
Robert is proud to offer expert and completely independent financial advice to all his clients. Robert works closely with Lows' specialist tax advisor and solicitors to maximise his clients' wealth management. Robert is originally from Airdrie and attended Bell College in Hamilton. After working in the hospitality industry he started his career in financial services in 1996 initially with Pearl Assurance. After 12 years in a variety of tied advisor posts Robert took up his first post as a fully independent financial advisor when he joined Lows in 2008. Robert has undertaken extensive training whilst at Lows and now holds a Level 4 IFA qualification from the Institute for Financial Services. This allows Robert to provide whole of market advice to Lows' clients. Robert advises clients at all ages and stages of life and he gives unbiased advice on all types of mortgage, investment and protection products available. Robert works closely with our private client Solicitors and our Tax Manager, Ian Stout, to ensure that clients' investment objectives are fully met. Robert is not tied to offering the products of a single company or a restricted stable of companies and he can also advise clients on the full range of products available via National Savings. Robert is in the forefront of financial advisors who are moving away from traditional commission based remuneration to fee based advice. Robert coaches Thorfinn Football Club in Kirkwall and is also a keen amateur chef.

Robert Learmonth

Job Titles:
  • Accountant
Rob has extensive knowledge in advising clients on accounting and tax issues. He has particular interest in helping business clients to asses and set their business and personal goals and help to set up systems to measure and improve the numbers that really matter to you and your business. Rob is a Chartered Certified Accountant who grew up in Orkney before moving to Edinburgh to complete his bachelors degree at Heriot Watt University. He then returned to Orkney to complete his professional accountancy qualification while working for a local accountancy practice. Having worked in general practice in Orkney since 2007 he has gained extensive experience in both tax and accounting matters for businesses of all shapes and sizes and has an in depth understanding of the specific needs, opportunities and challenges that businesses in Orkney have. Rob prides himself in developing lasting relationships with clients and providing them with a specifically tailored service to meet their needs. He enjoys working collaboratively with his clients to become an extension of their business team and provide meaningful information to aid them in growing their businesses and removing their accounting and tax headache. During his career he has covered a wide variety of matters from general accounting and tax compliance work to company voluntary arrangements, financial planning, budgeting, tax disclosures and VAT and tax inspections. Rob is married to Vicki, a primary school teacher, and has two daughters. Outside of work he has a keen interest in football and during his time playing has captained Rendall FC and Harray FC as well as being involved with the development of Orkney FC.

Roy Flett

Job Titles:
  • Director
  • Solicitor
Roy provides a full range of legal services to Lows private and high net worth individuals. Roy has first-class experience in the corporate world, and understands the specific needs of business-people. Roy is a native Orcadian with a long family pedigree in local business - his father (John) having been our senior partner for many years. Roy graduated from The University of Aberdeen in 1986, going on to complete his post-graduate Diploma in Legal Practice there the following year. His two year legal traineeship was spent with a large Edinburgh law firm, offering wide experience including work in the Court of Session. After returning to Orkney Roy became a partner (now Director) of the firm in 1992. Over the years he has gained experience across the full spectrum of legal practice from civil and criminal court work, corporate and commercial deals, property (private and commercial) and wills, executries and estate planning. Roy's current focus is primarily on assisting and advising Lows' many valued private and high net worth clients - an area in which he has specialised. This includes drafting complex wills and offering detailed advice on estate planning, issues relating to care home costs and avoidance of Inheritance tax, as well as a busy caseload of trust and estate work. Roy is also our designated Director responsible for both Financial Services and Client Relations. Unusually for a solicitor, Roy also has high level commercial experience outside legal practice. He was seconded from Lows for over four years to head up a new company backed by many of Scotland's leading business figures. Roy served as Chief Executive of the company whose Board included directors of FT 100 companies and which raised in excess of £2.5M in funding. As Roy says "It was interesting and a real eye-opener to sit on the other side of the table from corporate lawyers and other deal-makers. This was a chance "to see lawyers as others see us" which is something I'll never forget!" Experience of that kind and at that level is very rare for a solicitor; it enables Roy to offer a unique set of skills to help clients achieve their aspirations. Roy is married with three children and lives just outside Kirkwall overlooking Scapa Flow. His interests include music (piano and singing), a variety of sports (black belt in Karate - "although that was a while ago"), astronomy and reading.

ROY JOHN FLETT

Job Titles:
  • Director
  • SOLICITOR