• Louise O'Toole
  • Solicitor
  • Gatwick and London

Polly Sweeney

Polly Sweeney

I joined Irwin Mitchell as a trainee in 2007, spending seats in Medical Negligence, Public Law and Court of Protection. As a trainee I was able to experience working in the firm’s Newcastle, London and Sheffield offices before qualifying into the Public Law & Human Rights department in the Birmingham office where I specialised in community care and healthcare, court of protection and education law. In 2012, I moved to Bristol to set up a new Public Law & Human Rights team and was promoted to Associate in the same year. All five of the offices I have worked in have had the same friendly, approachable and caring ethos.

Over the next few years I grew the Bristol Public Law & Human Rights team to 12 people and together we have been fortunate to work on a number of important and pioneering cases which have not only been ground breaking in their development of the law, but also have made a profound and lasting impact on the lives of our clients.

Irwin Mitchell is committed to social responsibility and, throughout my time with the firm, I have been supported and encouraged to get involved in initiatives outside of work, including charitable work, pro bono and volunteering. I am also a contributing author to a legal handbook for disabled children and, in September 2015, was appointed a member of the Law Society’s Mental Health and Disability Committee.

I also lead the firm’s IMAble group, which aims to highlights areas where we can provide greater support and assistance to those with disabilities through networking and training events. IMAble is one of a number of networking groups that have been established to support our people and promote diversity.

I became a partner in May 2016. Since then, my role has shifted to have a more national focus. I am now a member of the Public Law Executive and oversee compliance and Legal Aid for the department. Although the role comes with different responsibilities and challenges, the firm provided me with lots of support to make the transition.