Principal Lawyer – Environment and Litigation
Full-time 37 hours per week
RG10, scp 50-53
£55,838 - £60,005
Our Legal Services Department is recruiting to a number of new roles following a restructure and ongoing investment in the team.
Reading’s Legal Services Team is composed of our highly regarded internal Corporate Legal Team, serving the needs of the Council across a wide range of functions. Reading is also host to the Joint Legal Team, a long-standing shared legal service for all the Berkshire councils and a recognised centre of excellence for childcare, adults and education law.
The purpose of Legal Services is to provide the Council and its partners with the highest quality professional legal advice and representation which allows them to run their organisations well, and to serve our community. Our ambition is to be the best place to practice law in local government; being close to our customers, recruiting the best talent, successfully deploying legal technology and ensuring the continued growth of the business to new customers.
A range of new appointments are on offer which reflect the continued growth and investment in the Legal team by the Council and its partners. We are open to flexible working patterns and can provide a hybrid working environment which utilises the best of both worlds with a mix of office working in central Reading and home-working according to the needs of the Service.
Providing management support to the internal Corporate Legal Team to deliver our ambitious Legal Services Strategy in that area. This role is at the heart of our change agenda to make us the best place to practice law in local government. You will be focussed on the three pillars of our strategy: People, Purpose and Process:
People – delivering a game-changing talent strategy
Purpose – putting customers at the heart of everything we do
Process – maximising the power of the team through technology
You will thrive on change and continuous improvement and be supported by our new Legal Services Manager and Legal Operations Team. You will be one of three Principal Lawyers working closely together to deliver the outcomes required by our internal clients. You will manage the Environment and Litigation Team which currently comprises of Housing, civil and criminal litigation, highways and planning. You will work closely with the Legal Services Manager and the Assistant Director to ensure that stakeholders are fully informed and consulted on our strategy and action plan.
All of our lawyer roles are open to qualified solicitors, barristers and chartered legal executives.
We seek the best talent from the widest pool of people as diversity and inclusion is the key to our success. Reading Borough Council is a Disability Confident Employer and is committed to the recruitment and continued employment of people with disabilities.
About the role
You will manage the Environment and Litigation Team in the Corporate Legal Team to give them the support they need to manage their workloads effectively and deliver on our ambitious strategy.
You’ll be part of a team that relies on each individual to play their part to the best of their ability. As well as the colleagues that you work closely with every day, you’ll also be part of Team Reading, playing your personal part in making Reading a successful and vibrant place. Our vision is to ensure that Reading realises its potential as a great place to live, work and play, and that everyone shares the benefits of this success. Our values and behaviours guide how we will achieve this:
Work Together as one team - champion and inspire a culture which ensures that all employees across the organisation work together to provide excellent outcomes for Reading
Drive Efficiency - create an environment in which resources are used efficiently and employees’ skills are developed and used effectively
Be Ambitious - aspire to deliver excellence and inspire and support others to reach their potential
Make a Difference to Reading - inspire a culture in which the customer is the focus and where change is welcomed as an opportunity
The following experience is required for this role:
- A qualified lawyer who can command the respect of internal clients with extensive knowledge and experience of one or more of the legal areas in the team (housing, litigation, highways or planning)
- Management experience in a legal services setting, preferably in local government
- Experience of manging lawyers and delivering continuous improvements
We offer a supportive environment to grow and develop your career with the opportunity to put your ideas across. Innovation and ambition is strongly encouraged, and you’ll get a great feel for that working in our friendly and collaborative environment. All staff are encouraged to actively participate in the development and implementation of the Legal Services Strategy for us to be the best place to practice law in local government.
A competitive salary alongside a range of benefits including:
- Generous holiday entitlement - 24 days holiday each year plus bank holidays - rising to 32 days after 10 years' service, with the option to buy additional leave
- A wide range of flexible working opportunities
- Modern working environment at the Civic Offices in the heart of Reading
Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS)
- Life Assurance - three times your annual salary (for members of the LGPS)
- On-site day nursery (Kennet Day nursery) rated outstanding by Ofsted, and a salary sacrifice scheme to help lower the cost of your nursery fees
- Season Ticket Loan - to help with the cost of your rail/ bus journey, to & from work
- Lease car salary sacrifice scheme allowing you to lease a brand new, greener car for three years. The monthly fee includes insurance, servicing and road tax
For more information on this position please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Closing Date: 7th Aug
Interview Date: TBC
Please note that the closing date is given as a guide. We reserve the right to close this vacancy once a sufficient number of applications has been received. Therefore, it is strongly advised that you complete and return your application as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.