ONE of Southampton’s most prominent law companies is proposing to cut jobs, the Daily Echo can reveal.

Southampton-based BLM, an insurance and dispute resolution firm, has started a consultation process that could mean 29 jobs axed from its volume litigation claims arm at its city office.

The proposed lay-offs would include 19 lawyers and 10 business service colleagues, around a third of the total workforce.

The firm, based in Charlotte Place, is proposing to consolidate its motor centres with the volume work in Southampton transferred to Liverpool and Manchester.

Mike Brown, senior partner at BLM, said: “Southampton is an important location for BLM.

“We are committed to the development of this office which is a strategic site for catastrophic injury and complex large loss work.

“With Government reforms affecting the volume motor space, we propose to consolidate our motor centres, with the volume work in Southampton being transferred to Liverpool and Manchester.

“This is about preparing for what lies ahead and adapting our business model to make sure we’re fit for the future – both for our people and our customers. Regrettably this proposal, post-consultation, could affect the positions of 29 colleagues in the firm.”

The news comes as BLM reported a drop in revenues to £106.7m in 2016/17, down from £107.7m in 2015/16.

BLM will still have a presence in the city if the proposed lay-offs go ahead.

Eight partners, 41 lawyers and 20 business service colleagues will remain in the office.

In response to the news, Royston Smith, Tory MP for Southampton Itchen, said: “It is always disappointing when a business downsizes in Southampton.

“However, BLM know their business and they need to plan for the future.

“I am pleased that BLM are staying in the city and not moving their entire operation elsewhere.”

It follows news that BLM cut 50 roles among its secretarial and direct support staff across the country earlier this summer, with all of those leaving taking voluntary redundancy.

The firm’s managing partner Gary Allison also quit the firm in July, just eight months into a three-year term, while eight partners left the Southampton office last year.

BLM employs 1,500 nationally and has 13 offices across the UK and Ireland.