Access to free legal advice in drop-in session at church

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St George’s Church hall is to host a legal clinic in which two local firms of solicitors have offered their time free of charge to provide legal advice to Waterlooville residents.

Verisona Law and Larcomes LLP have agreed to provide the service on Thursday between 2pm and 4pm.

Staff from both firms will be present to discuss any new legal matters people would like initial advice on and it will be offered on a first come, first served basis.

Andrea Cox, director and head of private client from Verisona Law, said: ‘There’s a common misconception that legal advice is out of reach for a lot of people and this is something that we at Verisona Law are keen to address.

‘St George’s legal clinic sounded a great opportunity for us to get involved and reach out to the local community who need legal assistance.’

Chloe Evans, from Larcomes LLP, said: ‘As a firm we have actively been involved in these types of clinics previously therefore we felt this is a good opportunity to be part of something that will benefit the local community.

‘Larcomes LLP offers a high quality range of services which we would like to offer in a less formal format for those individuals who perhaps would find this preferable to attending one of our offices initially.’

The legal drop-in was the idea of St George’s Church press officer and solicitor Chris Gadd.

He said: ‘The ability of people to be able to access legal advice has taken a battering by the decisions of this and the last government.

‘I also think that sometimes people can feel intimidated at the prospect of going to a solicitor’s office so I hope that running the clinic in a non-formal setting like the church hall will encourage people to come and speak to our professionals.’

St George’s parish priest, Father Mike Sheffield, said: ‘Historically, the church has always been at the heart of the community.

‘I am pleased we can open the doors of our church hall to the residents of the town who wish to receive some legal advice.’