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Thursfields helps former rugby star to expand coffee shop brand into Birmingham


A former professional rugby player is expanding his Worcester-based speciality coffee shop into Birmingham, with help from Thursfields Solicitors.

Sam Smith, the ex-Worcester Warriors and England under-20s winger, launched Wayland’s Yard in Foregate Street, Worcester in October 2016 after an injury forced his early retirement from rugby.

The leading Midlands law firm has now helped him with the acquisition and lease of premises in Bull Street, Birmingham city centre where the second Wayland’s Yard is due to open in March.

The commercial property team, led by Katie Williams, and senior associate Tim Edwards, from the corporate and commercial team, both based at Thursfields’ Worcester office, assisted on the deal.

Mr Smith said:

“The support from Thursfields in the last six to eight months has been invaluable, and I’d recommend their services without hesitation.

“Tim’s always on hand to give sound and pragmatic advice on business-related matters, and the commercial property team were fantastic in helping us to secure the new premises in the centre of Birmingham’s business district.”

Recalling his launch into business, Mr Smith added: “Having to stop playing rugby was devastating as I hoped to play for another nine or 10 years, but I’m really pleased with how Wayland’s has progressed this year.

“My dream was to create a venue that champions speciality coffee, supports local suppliers and serves up great food in a unique and exciting space.

“We’ve become established in Worcester since opening in October 2016 and we saw a real opportunity to continue to share our passion for proper coffee and food by launching into the busy city centre of Birmingham.”

Mr Edwards of Thursfields said:

“When a business is growing, it can be a challenging moment to sign a lease in a new city, so we were delighted to make this as easy as possible for Sam and Wayland’s Yard.”

Katie Williams of Thursfields added:

“Wayland’s Yard has quickly become a popular and well-known coffee shop in Worcester, and it’s been a pleasure for the team to help Sam find a great venue for his second branch in Birmingham.”