History

From our foundation in 1818, Russel + Aitken has been associated with new technologies and thriving commerce.
An old painting of one of our founding Partners

Founded in Falkirk in 1818, Russel + Aitken is thought to be the oldest legal firm in Scotland to retain its original name. From the start, we have been associated with new technologies and thriving commerce.

Russel + Aitken in the 1800s

Our expertise in our dealings with the iron foundry industry and, later, in mineral developments, shipping and trading interests, was complemented by substantial experience in banking, particularly a long-standing relationship with the Clydesdale Bank - an association that began as early as 1916.

Expanding out of a strong family tradition, we opened our first Edinburgh office in 1954. Always located in the West End, we moved to Melville Street in 1973, following a merger with Cuthbertson Riddle and Graham. We expanded further in 1978, amalgamating with Alexander Hendry and Son, Denny, and then again in 1999, with Marshall Henderson and Whyte.

1991 saw the opening of our current Edinburgh office in Rutland Square. These refurbished offices, in the heart of Edinburgh’s financial district, mirror our reputation for successfully blending tradition and innovation: the innovation side leading to notable achievements such as being:

  • The first solicitors to open a separate property shop.
  • The first legal firm in the UK to open an office in a hospital (the old Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh)
  • The first legal firm in Scotland to introduce a recognised Design Award
  • A founder member of Worldlink for Law- one of the largest networks of lawyers in the world
  • The first firm ever to win an Innovation Award at the Scottish Legal Awards

Today, our partners and staff are committed to maintaining this balance with a modern and progressive approach to business from our five offices across Central Scotland in Alloa, Falkirk, Denny and Edinburgh.

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