From gardening to Gavi — meet senior associate Nicola Grant
Old family papers relating to the sale of the family’s smiddy may have inspired her interest in commercial property law — a specialism she qualified in eight years ago — but our newest recruit in Inverness has far more strings to her bow.
After swapping a tenement in Glasgow for suburban Inverness, the graduate of both the universities of Glasgow and Strathclyde’s on a steep learning curve when it comes to the garden — and her qualification in wine tasting (with distinction, no less) — is a great talking point at parties.
We caught up with her to find out more.
What brought you to a law firm?
I grew up in Glasgow and spent much of my youth in the Mitchell Library trawling through old archives — a pastime encouraged by my mum who was a reference librarian.
My grandfather’s family had owned a blacksmiths, or the smiddy as it was affectionately known, in the local area, which was sold sometime during the second world war and a supermarket was subsequently built on the site. During an attic clear-out, I stumbled upon some old papers which included copies of the smiddy’s property deeds, and information about the sale.
I found the drafting fascinating and decided to pursue a career in law. The rest is history!
What hobbies do you have?
We recently swapped tenement living in Glasgow for suburban Inverness, and now have our own garden.
I’m definitely not green-fingered, but have been surprised at how much I enjoy gardening. My planting success has been a bit hit and miss, but there’s something really nice about planting bulbs, and having them actually bloom a few months later.
My top tip to any gardening enthusiasts would be, as well as watching Gardener’s World, and the Beechgrove Garden, to go to your local garden centre to pick plants and bulbs: they’ll have loads of information about what will grow well in the local climate.
What’s your proudest career moment?
When I first qualified in commercial property, I was involved in some short-term lettings at a local shopping centre. I went on a site visit and saw the tenants in situ, operating from busy units and employing staff, and it really brought home how much property is a part of our day-to-day lives.
I still smile when I pass any site I’ve worked on, especially if the transaction had any unusual quirks.
Tell us something surprising that people wouldn’t know about you
A number of years ago, I worked for a licensed delicatessen and I was sent on a course with the Wine and Spirit Education Trust. I gained a qualification in wine tasting — and passed with distinction.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
Value your own worth.