History

The firm of RW Sherwin was founded in July 1894 by Robert Walter Sherwin. The original ledger shows his starting capital was £100.00, derived from selling his Clarence Pier Southsea shares for £55.00, withdrawing £25.00 from his Post Office account and borrowing £25.00 from his brother. In those days none of the present safeguards imposed on Solicitors such as keeping client money in a separate account, contributions to the Compensation Fund, compulsory insurance against negligence, etc., applied and therefore the ledger shows not only clients’ money received and paid out but also such items as “Paid Tom and Charles (his 2 eldest sons) School Bill £1-12-2, Coal account 17/2 for house £2, Christmas expenses £3 and childrens clothes £1. He had 13 children and the 2 eldest sons, Thomas Miles and Charles Ernest, both qualified as Solicitors before the start of the First World War.

Thomas later joined his father in the practice which became “RW Sherwin & Son”.

The War years were very difficult for the firm.  Business was almost at a standstill, mainly limited to War Damage Claims and Probate work for people who had been killed. Thomas’ youngest son, Patrick, became articled to him as soon as he was demobilised from the Navy and qualified in 1949 and the firm continued.

In 1953 Pat Sherwin invited Bob Raper to join him in the practice and in 1955 the firms name became “Sherwin Son & Raper” and the first branch office was opened in Havant in 1955.  The former neighbours Messrs Maidment Morgan & Palser merged with the firm and in 1977 Messrs Polden & Co. of Southampton was taken over. The firm then merged with Oliver & Co. to become Sherwin Oliver, in Ryde becoming Sherwin Price Hounslow and now Wilks Price Hounslow.