Team Listing

Here at Maples we have a wealth of experienced staff ready to assist you with legal matters.

Anita Toal LLB BA image

Anita Toal LLB BA

Anita has been with the Firm since 1989.  She joined as a Trainee Solicitor, before qualifying in October 1991 and eventually becoming a Partner in the Practice with effect from 1st January 1995.

Between 2004-2022 Anita was the Firm’s Managing Partner and was responsible for first guiding the Firm through Lexcel Accreditation in 2013.

Anita’s work is split between Family Law and Criminal Litigation.

With respect to Family Law, Anita is a Member of Resolution, which is an organisation of Family Lawyers who attempt to resolve family disputes and divorce on a non-confrontational basis.  Having said that, if family disputes do have to be settled by the Court, then Anita has over 33 years experience of advocacy.

Anita has undertaken all types of family work from matters concerning children to complex divorces involving several million pounds’ worth of assets.

So far as Criminal Litigation is concerned, Anita is a Member of the Criminal Litigation Accreditation Scheme. Her experience has involved her undertaking defence work of a wide nature ranging from the most serious crimes to constructing technical defences for motoring matters.

Outside of work, Anita served for 15 years on the Board of Governors at St Johns Primary School and for 12 years on the Board of Governors at Spalding High School.

She is married with two children.

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David Hicken LLB image

David Hicken LLB

David was born and brought up near Grimsby and after obtaining a Law Degree from Sheffield University joined Maples in September 1982 as a Trainee Solicitor.  After qualifying in October 1984 he became a Partner in January 1986.

David specialises in Commercial Property and is well respected for his work on behalf of some of the area’s leading property developers.  The work ranges from the sale and purchase of individual plots to larger estates of 300 plus dwellings and includes complex acquisitions.


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James Turner BA image

James Turner BA

James qualified as a Solicitor in September 1996, having completed his Articles in his hometown of Blackpool.  James joined the Firm in 1997, and became a Partner in January 2001.

James specialises in Commercial Conveyancing (particularly with a Leasehold slant), Business Transfers and Company matters.

Outside of work James likes to travel and is a very keen and enthusiastic skier.

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Jane Mawer LLB image

Jane Mawer LLB

Jane joined Maples in September 2000. In January 2007 she became a Partner of the newly formed Limited Liability Partnership.

Jane is head of our Private Client Department and covers all areas of Wills, Probate and Trust Law.

Outside of work, Jane enjoys spending time with her young family.

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Daven Naghen LLB image

Daven Naghen LLB

Daven was admitted to the Solicitors’ Role in September 2003 and joined Maples in April 2004. With effect from the 1st January 2009 Daven has become a Partner in The Firm.

Daven specialises in Criminal Law, Motoring and Licensing matters.  He is a Member of the Law Society Criminal Litigation Accreditation Scheme and is also a Member of the Boston and Spalding Duty Solicitor Scheme for both the Police Station and the Court.

He has vast experience of all matters of Criminal work including high profile cases involving rape and murder ranging to the bottom end of the scale of seriousness to criminal damage and public order offences.

Daven is also well respected locally for his representation of clients in motoring matters, whether he is trying to prevent a driving ban or to obtain an acquittal.

Since our Firm holds a Criminal Defence Service Contract, Daven can apply for and obtain legal aid for many Criminal Law matters.  However when legal aid is not available, Daven has on many occasions successfully applied to the Court at the end of a case for a Defendant’s Costs Order from Central Funds to have the client’s costs met by the Court/State.

Outside of work Daven is a keen sportsman and is currently working on his golf handicap.

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Gemma Mayer LLB image

Gemma Mayer LLB

Gemma joined Maples Solicitors LLP in 2007 as a Trainee Solicitor, having obtained a First Class law degree at Liverpool John Moores University and commendation on the Legal Practice Course at the BPP Law School.

Gemma qualified as a solicitor with the firm in November 2009 and was made a Partner on 1st January 2015. Gemma currently heads up our Doncaster office but visits the Spalding office regularly and still acts for a number of Spalding clients.

Since qualification Gemma has worked in the firm’s commercial team and has gained a wealth of experience in a wide range of matters from advising on the best type of business media and drafting any required constitutional documentation, to the buying and selling of a business and drafting or reviewing terms and conditions or other commercial contracts, including employment contracts.

Gemma also undertakes a range of commercial property work, which she finds compliments the pure commercial elements of her work.

Outside of work, Gemma enjoys reading and spending time with her young family.

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Chris Ayre (Managing Partner)  image

Chris Ayre (Managing Partner)

Chris is Spalding born and bred and joined Maples as an Office Junior in August 2001 straight from Spalding Grammar School at the age of 17.

Over the years Chris has progressed within the firm, initially taking over the role of IT Manager in 2003 and then together with acting as assistant Legal Cashier from 2005 onwards.

Chris assumed the role of Office Manager in 2013 and then in 2017 stepped up to also become our Senior Legal Cashier.

From 1st January 2021, Chris was made a Partner of the firm in his 20th year after starting with us.

In January 2023 Chris took over from Anita Toal as the firm's Managing Partner and oversees the firm’s compliance for Lexcel, CQS and the like, aswell as all the finances and administration within the firm from preparing Estate Accounts for the Probate Department to dealing with all HR matters including recruitment (and everything in between!). Chris is also the firms COFA (Compliance Officer for Finance and Administration).

Outside of work, Chris combines his love of sport with spending time with his young family. Chris can also turn his hand to most things, from property renovation to building a campervan, he's probably done it!

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Faye Blair LLB image

Faye Blair LLB

Faye joined Maples Solicitors in 2011 as a Newly Qualified Solicitor and on 1st January 2023 was made a Partner in the firm.

Faye works within our Private Client department covering the preparation of Wills and Powers of Attorney, assisting in the administration of estates and advising on inheritance tax and trust documentation where appropriate.  Faye also specialises in matters concerning residential care including how care will be funded, resolving disputes with the Lincolnshire County Council and also applying for and appealing decisions regarding NHS Continuing Healthcare.

In addition, Faye assists the residential conveyancing department.

Outside of work Faye enjoys spending time with her three young sons.

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Jamie Dobbs FCILEx image

Jamie Dobbs FCILEx

Jamie started at Maples in 2006 and moved to the Private Client Department in 2008 where she has gained much experience within this area of law over the years. She commenced her Chartered Legal Executive training in 2013  and during her training she received many distinctions for the examinations that she took. In her last exam she scored the highest mark in the country for an examination. Jamie qualified as a Chartered Legal Executive in 2019.  

On 1st January 2023 Jamie was made Partner. 

Jamie advises clients in relation to Wills and Lasting Powers of Attorney as well as administering estates ranging from small, more simple estates to those that are more complex involving foreign assets, intestacies or high values.

In her free time Jamie enjoys spending time with her partner, family and friends.

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Donna Sandison FCILEx image

Donna Sandison FCILEx

Donna re-joined Maples in early 2018 on her return from Australia and practises as a Licensed Conveyancer (following her recent conversion from a Chartered Legal Executive).

Donna was made a Partner of the firm on the 1st January 2023 and now heads up our Residential Conveyancing department.  She has significant experience dealing with all aspects of Residential Conveyancing work from sales and purchases to transfers of equity and shared ownership.

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Laura Day F. Insta. PA image

Laura Day F. Insta. PA

Laura joined Maples in 2001 and moved to the litigation department where she became a Qualified Specialist Paralegal in Civil Litigation.  More recently Laura has undertaken additional training in support of her joining our Residential Conveyancing Team and in January 2023 also obtained her Qualified Specialist Paralegal qualification in that area of law too. In November 2023 Laura became a Fellow of the Institute of Paralegals.  Laura came to Maples straight from college having been born and educated locally. 

Laura enjoys spending time with her family and two children.  Laura is a member of the PTA at her daughters’ school and accompanies the Spalding Rotary in the annual Sleigh Run around Spalding town. 



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Matthew Day  image

Matthew Day

Matthew started working at Maples in September 2018 shortly after receiving his A-Levels. He has worked in various areas of the firm, including our Family and Criminal Law departments, but has predominantly been working in our Residential and Commercial Property department. Ultimately he will have covered all areas of law the firm offers before focusing on his Commercial Property work.

Matthew is our Apprentice Solicitor. He studies at the University of Law on their Solicitor Apprenticeship scheme which is spread out to incorporate a Law degree, training contract and the solicitors' qualifying exams and he is currently in his fifth and final year. Once he has completed his course in 2024, Matthew will be a fully qualified Solicitor with a significant amount of experience and capabilities.

In August 2023, Matthew graduated from the University of Law with a 2:1 Classification which was very well deserved. His focus now is very much in our Commercial Property department and naturally the Solicitor Qualification Examinations in 2024.

Outside of work Matthew spends a large portion of his time training in the gym and playing a round or two of golf at the weekends.

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LPA and Court of Protection Talk image

LPA and Court of Protection Talk

We are delighted to be attending Glenholme Halmer Court to give a talk on Lasting Powers of Attorney and Court of Protection matters.  The talk will begin at 2.30pm on Friday 24th May. For more information, please contact the home direct on 01775 662222 or

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Jamie Dobbs FCILEx

"I should like to take this opportunity to express my very sincere and grateful thanks for Jamie's unfailing helpfulness and efficiency in all aspects of the handling of my late stepmother's estate. Jamie have always replied to my (many!) queries promptly and comprehensively which has been a enormous help throughout what I know can be a fraught and stressful process. Sadly, it is increasingly rare these days to experience the highs standards of service that Jamie has provided."

Gemma Mayer LLB

"I would highly recommend Maples Solicitors, especially Gemma Mayer, for any conveyancing work. The level of support and professionalism was excellent at all times. I also felt if I needed to ask or clarify anything that it was not an issue. Buying and selling a house is stressful enough, but Gemma helped me through it step by step."

Anita Toal LLB BA

"I think you are brilliant. You can use my comments above. You are efficient, friendly and quite clearly very good at what you do. Mainly you don’t leave people hanging around too long for." "So easy to talk to her and she understood what I wanted. She put me at ease and I cant thank her enough"

James Turner BA

James Turner was extremely helpful with our buying process. Everything went smoothly. We are very happy with the level of professionalism demonstrated by the office. Highly recommended solicitors. Will definitely do business with them again.

Daven Naghen LLB

"Daven provided an excellent service, from attending the first interview with me to the final court appearance. He filled me full of confidence that he would defend me to which he did and come out with an excellent outcome in view of my position that I had put myself in."

Faye Blair LLB

Faye was excellent, sensitive and acted very well to the time constraints we faced. Great service and dealt with compassion at such sad times made the process less painful very professional.

Jamie Dobbs GCILEx

Over the last forty years I have cause to deal with many law firms both in a personal and professional capacity, including some ‘top’ London Companies. In all of those dealings I have never found anyone as proactive and so willing to offer help and advice as Jamie Dobbs. During the last two years Jamie guided my parents through the completion of Lasting Powers of Attorney. Helped myself with the use of the LPA and recently dealing with Probate and Estate Administration following their death.

Mike Pepper MA

Mike Pepper gave us excellent advice. He was always most helpful and accommodating giving lucid explanations every step of the way. Thank you Mike.

Donna Sandison FCILEx

Donna has been helpful and professional every step of the way during the process. Always on hand to answer any queries and totally professional and friendly at all times.