What is your role within RG?
Tell me about your career to date…
Having trained and qualified with Ryecroft Glenton, I was promoted to partner at the tender age of 28. In those early days, as well as building my client responsibilities and being heavily involved in business development, I also took an interest in the running of the business leading to my appointment as Managing Partner.
My interest in the world of pensions and investments enticed me into taking my IFA exams which led to my involvement in our wealth management division, Portland Financial Management Ltd.
My external board appointments have included a number of trusteeships of charitable organisations and a nine year term as a non-executive director of the Port of Tyne Authority where I was chairman of the Audit Committee.
What does your current role involve?
My current role is challenging, very interesting and full of variety. My time is split broadly half and half between client work and the firm’s own business matters. I am extremely fortunate to have a very competent team supporting me and helping to keep my feet on the ground in both areas!
I particularly enjoy building long term relationships with clients and positioning myself as their first port of call; as their trusted adviser in all matters connected with their business and personal financial circumstances.
What makes RG different?
Our focus on building long term, trusted relationships firmly underpinned with relevant, accurate technical advice. This is achieved with a sharp focus on maintaining a responsive and attentive, technically proficient team of professional staff and partners.
My 3 most notable achievements to date would be…
Qualifying as a Chartered Accountant and being appointed a partner in Ryecroft Glenton at the age of 28.
Walking all three of my daughters down three very different aisles.
Buying a 300 year old pile of Northumbrian stone in the form of a derelict farm house 30 years ago and turning it into the wonderful home we enjoy as a family to this day!
Tell us about your day so far..
Up early at 6am and after a quick walk with our 3 bearded collie dogs, they go back to bed and I get ready for the day ahead. I clear my emails from my home office and head into town for a catch up with my PA, Fiona. As this is being written in the early days of the Coronavirus epidemic, the day is dominated with meetings to develop our own policy, providing guidance to our staff and, sadly, making decisions about cancelling RG events.
Fortunately, even in these difficult times, client matters continue to demand my attention. Firstly a discussion with our tax team about a fee proposal and this is followed just before lunch with an update from a senior tax manager on a long running tax enquiry involving one of my clients.
With a long afternoon ahead, I slip out of the office for a brief gym session over lunch and then, back at the office, a conference call is arranged with a client prospect in London looking for us to provide payroll services. My colleague, Michael Parry, who works closely with me on a number of our London based clients also joins me for another conference call with the MD of a London based Executive Search firm who is currently seconded to his recently established New York office.
Our monthly Practice Management meeting rounds the day off, starting at 5pm, then home to relax by 8.30pm!
What do you enjoy outside of work?
All manner of sport but particularly sailing and skiing. In the summer, our gaff-rigged Drascombe Longboat with its maroon sails can be seen heading up the Northumberland coast to the Farne Islands or moored in Craster Harbour while the crew are taking refreshments in the local hostelry!
My long term passion for the Northumbrian countryside extends to managing in my spare time a small hill farm in Redesdale which also gives me the excuse to be able to enjoy a couple of mart days at Hexham when selling stock.
And finally, leave us with one interesting fact about yourself…
Over the last 25 years I have logged over 6,000 nautical miles sailing many different types of yachts (including some ancient schooners) off the coasts of 18 different countries around the world as far east as Thailand and Australia and as far north as the challenging, icy waters of the North Atlantic above the north coast of Iceland.