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FoSL's next Fundraising event - 'Speaking Legally' by Richard Griffiths on Fri 23 February - SOLD OUT

This event has now taken place. Many thanks to all those who attended.

Published 1 December 2023

Local resident Richard Griffiths has kindly agreed to give a talk ‘Speaking Legally’ on Friday 23 February 2024 at 7.30 pm in the Reading Room, a light-hearted, anecdotal account of some of his legal experiences.

Drinks will be served after the talk, included in the ticket prices.

Please contact me to order your tickets: £10 FoSL members; £15 non-members.

Rosemary Winson, FOSL Trustee for Membership & Publicity or tel: 01722 325183

If you are not yet a member, Subscriptions start at £10 pa. Please ask me for details or refer to this webpage:

The Friends of St Lawrence Church is a Registered Charity no.1063271


About the Speaker - Richard Griffiths

Richard, the youngest of five children, was born in the Salisbury Cathedral Close in what was then the Bishop’s Palace before it later became the site of the Salisbury Cathedral School.  His father was the Headmaster and Richard greatly enjoyed the freedom of living in the Close.  His father died very suddenly aged only fifty-seven when Richard was at a boarding school on the Somerset Coast. He subsequently moved to St Edward’s School in Oxford where he loved sport, excelling especially at Rugby. 

Selected for a place at Jesus College Oxford he read law (Jurisprudence) and later qualified as a solicitor in London.  Delighted to escape from London, he moved with Sarah his wife to a farm cottage in Sutton Mandeville where the farmer kindly softened the rent by encouraging them to help themselves to free milk from the dairy and eggs from free range chickens.  This “good life” included Richard swapping his TV for half a pig but came to an end following the arrival of their first son Giles when they bought a derelict pair of cottages in Downton in 1976.  Sixteen years later the family moved to Pittsmead and the Stables in Stratford Sub Castle.

After training in the City, Richard worked for a time with a couple of provincial firms and then became a full-time prosecutor for Hampshire Police before setting up his own firm (Richard Griffiths & Co) in Salisbury in October 1979, with three children at home under five.  In 2015 he took over the firm of Brook Oliver and shortly after another firm called Lamb & Smart, both in New Milton.  Richard Griffiths & Co today has forty-seven employees with his younger son (William) his partner and daughter (Rachael) the Practice Manager.

His many varied temporary jobs before becoming a solicitor included working at Souchez Nurseries in Britford Lane and running a Market Stall on Salisbury Market, relief delivery driving for Vanity Fair Cleaners, cleaning out industrial chicken houses, managing the East Beach Café in Bournemouth, a drinks waiter at the Royal Exeter Hotel and even a few stints as a croupier in a London night club!  He also achieved a Private Pilot’s Licence and the D of E Gold Award. These experiences, together with his challenging career in the law have brought him into contact with all manner of humanity.


Richard played rugby for England schoolboys under 19’s, Wilts and Dorset, Hampshire and captained the Greyhounds (Oxford University 2nd XV).  He played for Oxford in the Varsity match in 1969 and against the Springboks earlier that season at Twickenham.  It is believed to be the last time a university side has played an international side, let alone beaten them.  Richard was a fourteen stone prop forward; his opposite number was a Transvaal Police Sergeant who nudged nineteen stone!


One other diversion rates a mention.  Richard joined the Oxford Wine Circle and ended up as President.  He led a team to a blind tasting event against Cambridge laid on by Harvey’s of Bristol.  On winning, he awarded himself a half-blue!


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