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Willans are with you for the journey

08 February 2017

It is hard to miss the fleet of smart, bright red coaches of Marchants around town, but, like many businesses, mechanic Roy Marchant founded the Cheltenham family business from small beginnings, with just one bus in 1948.

He started by providing transport for workers, did the school bus run and took sports clubs and groups on local trips (doing all of the driving himself!). A year earlier, another sole trader, solicitor Alec Willans hung up his brass plate in Cheltenham, and on this day 68 years ago, he acted for Roy Marchant in a case in front of the Western Traffic Commissioners.

Today, Marchants and Willans are both well known, thriving businesses in the town. Roy Marchant’s sons, Roger and Richard, run this established Gloucestershire company which employs around 90 people spread across two depots and a sales office, and has a fleet of about 45 coaches. Marchants is Gloucestershire’s leading coach operator of private hires, day excursions, UK and continental holidays. The company still provides school transport and educational trips, and runs regular bus services in and around Cheltenham and the North Cotswolds.

Steering a similar course of growth in the field of law, Willans has grown significantly in 70 years with a number of mergers up to the early 2000s. We now employ around 80 people operating from our four buildings in Imperial Square. Keeping pace with ever-changing needs, our firm’s highly regarded lawyers are now more specialist and advise national as well as local businesses, charities & not-for-profit organisations, international corporations and individuals, never losing sight of the core principles on which the firm was founded – our customer service.

Bridget Redmond, our managing partner, said:

“We are delighted to call this iconic local family business a client, and it’s great that we were there with them at the start. Both businesses have stood the test of time and have had to adapt and evolve their services over the years but neither have lost sight of their heritage.

“We pride ourselves on our reputation for taking good care of our clients and for treating people as individuals. Each client’s needs are unique and we tailor our legal advice to suit.”

Commenting on his relationship with us, Roger Marchant, said:

“We have a long history with the firm and a good rapport with the lawyers. They provide us with sound advice and we know and trust them.”

We go that extra mile to help people with their legal needs in every aspect of their lives, whether it be business or personal. Our firm is celebrating 70 years in business this year.

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