All of us at Brodies have been deeply saddened by the news of the death of our former partner, colleague and friend David Houldsworth on 2 February 2021.

David's association with Brodies spanned more than 4 decades. He spent almost his whole legal career with the firm, becoming a partner in 1981 and retaining a close association with the firm as a consultant after his formal retirement in 2012.

David was the kind of lawyer who put into practice the role of being a family's "trusted adviser" long before that became the cherished ambition of so many professionals. He did this without it being any kind of plan – he was an adviser (and often was or became a friend), but most of all he was trusted. An exceptional property lawyer in an era in Scotland when property law and practice had a revolution, David turned his mind to the many other things which matter to families – succession, trusts, tax and much else besides. Self-effacing to a fault, his gentle and friendly approach was backed by a depth of ability called upon in a wide range of complex situations.

David was held in the highest regard and with the greatest affection by his colleagues at Brodies. He was supportive of several generations of junior lawyers as they made progress in their careers, generous with his time and with his wisdom. He will be remembered by them not only for his kindness but for his unique humour and sense of fun.

The loss of his counsel will be felt beyond his family and his professional colleagues.