City law firm partner, 33, shares romantic tale and upcoming castle wedding with world

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By Katie King on

Former Linklaters managing associate continues the trend for loved up lawyers to declare their nuptials via the press


One of Kirkland & Ellis’ youngest partners has taken to the weekend papers to announce his engagement and upcoming castle wedding to the world.

Emma Thomson, an accountant, and Joel Arnell, a law firm partner at just 33, have followed in the footsteps of Herbert Smith Freehills newly weds Yuji Huang and Stephen Newby, who announced their wedding in The Times (£) just a few weeks ago.

Just like Thomson and Arnell’s whirlwind romance, the pair found themselves in London by chance, having been sent to the capital by their respective employers.

Arnell — who works at the same firm as Legal Cheek’s reigning sexiest City solicitor — wooed Thomson on a group outing to London Zoo, having met the University of Edinburgh grad in a Canary Wharf apartment block where they were both staying. After an understated first date on a speedboat along the Thames, 29 year-old Thomson recalls that she “knew he was different from that moment on”.


Thomson does, however, admit that it wasn’t quite love at first sight between her and her ex-Linklaters lover. The fund controller told The Times that “it takes a lot to get to know” Arnell, and her now fiancé “is an acquired taste”.

The pair — who now live in Chelsea, and spend apparently their time going to pilates classes together — are getting married in the former home of Charles I, Fyvie Castle in Scotland, this September. Thomson will be wearing a Phillip Leply couture wedding dress to the civil ceremony, which will come complete with bagpipes and tartan and, hopefully, “a party atmosphere”.