Our 150th anniversary celebrations continue in Leeds

We've reached the Yorkshire leg of the portrait tour, with our 150th anniversary celebrations taking place in Leeds. To commemorate the occasion, the firm have taken a unique approach by commissioning a series of 10 client portraits and presented the aptly named ‘Face Forward’ project at a special event held at The Tetley, Leeds.

Attending the event, alongside 100 guests, was award-winning artist, Helen Perkins, responsible for capturing the 10 family business leaders in oil, and who documented her experience of sharing each portrait subject’s story and their relationship with the firm over the years.

Featured as part of the project was Beryl Gatenby, director of fit-out and construction specialists Simpson (York) Ltd. Andrew Gatenby, Simpson’s Contracts Director – and Beryl’s son – spoke about his mother’s experience of the portrait painting experience and how Armstrong Watson have assisted in their development of the business during the 24 years the family have operated.

Commenting at the event, Andrew said,

“At Simpson we cherish relationships and are passionate about our team, clients and the environment and we think these are the same values that Armstrong Watson share and our synergies work as a business”

Also captured in oils are Skipton’s William Whitaker from 130 year old confectionary manufacturer, Whitakers Chocolate, and Mark Sugden of Keighley’s steel dynasty, John W Laycock, alongside 8 other portrait subjects across the firm’s North of England and Scottish regions.

Explaining the reasoning behind the project, Paul Dickson, Armstrong Watson Managing Partner, said:

“The accomplishments we’ve achieved are a result of working with generations of clients with successful businesses. We have helped those clients become successful, so we thought let’s tell their story, which, in turn, also tells a story about ‘why Armstrong Watson?”

The Leeds event at the iconic Tetley building is one of 9 locations on the 150th portrait tour, encompassing the firm’s 16 office regions and showcases the portraits, the history of the firm and celebrates the longevity of family business.

Commenting on the Leeds event, Matt Osborne, Partner at the Leeds office said,

“It was great to see so many clients and friends of Armstrong Watson, not only turn out to the event, but really embrace what we were trying to do with the Face Forward project. We took an alternative, creative approach to mark the occasion, so to hear such glowing feedback is really pleasing.

Although the event was a celebration of the past 150 years, our focus is very much on the future, in terms of continuing to help our clients to grow and be successful, but also in terms of really cementing Armstrong Watson’s position as the go-to advisor to owner managed businesses in Leeds, Yorkshire and the North.”

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