I always find the advice offered by the Armstrong Watson Tax Team to be pragmatic and helpful. The depth of their knowledge impresses, and unlike many advisers, they have the ability to explain their advice to me in language that I can actually understand!
Ian Rodger, Williamson & Henry LLP
Graham Poles, Tax Partner at Armstrong Watson, became involved in the HMRC enquiry into my residency status in April 2011 when it was first listed at the First Tier Tribunal. Graham provided support to us and helped us to build our case in defence of my position. Graham has always been very professional and certainly very knowledgeable in this area. He took the time to understand my position and was always available for me to discuss the case with. The case continued for three years, building toward the tribunal and Graham helped me to set out my witness statement and those of my other witnesses in a coherent fashion so that HMRC withdrew from the hearing just three days before. Since our win, Graham has continued to support us in our case against the Revenue for their administrative mishandling of the case.
Graham has been a great support to myself and my wife during this very testing time and I have considered him someone I could turn to with any issue I face in relation to the enquiry and therefore I would recommend him to anyone because of his professional manner and expert knowledge.
James Watson, Private Client, Dubai
Running a 'family business' carries with it a set of unique challenges and opportunities specific to the balance between 'family' and 'business'. As easy as it may to think that keeping the two distinct from each other is straightforward, the lines can become very blurred and often difficult to manage. As my experience in both business and family life grows the more I come to believe that you cannot "do it on your own" - in either area. The listening ear of other people, the experience of other people and the perspectives of other people are essential to making real and lasting progress.
We have recently embarked on a more strategic business advice approach with David Richmond and the Armstrong team as we recently stepped away from our day to day labours leaving many perceived problems at the office and stepped into an independent and trusted environment where we have been able to speak freely (both jointly as a management team and individually in one to one sessions). The first session was both a relief and a revelation. The relief in taking a positive step to help ourselves - the revelation in how easy it was to open up and talk about issues we had probably thought too sensitive to get out in the open. Then comes the real value - a realistic plan. Having listened, questioned, and challenged we all worked together to agree definite objectives and plans to achieve them - both together and individually. This forward looking, objective based approach is stimulating and allows the principles established at the Blue session to be taken back into the maelstrom of day to day business - where, because of their clarity, they have a chance to take root.
We have wanted to develop ourselves and our business with a fresh approach - going in with an open mind, we have quickly gained a different perspective and we have started to change. There is a fascinating blend of gradual, slow, 'wait and see' adjustment and some decisive, quick, 'take the plunge' change...its exciting to be moving to a new way of thinking, building on all the good things we have and leaving some of the not so good things behind.
Mark Sugden, Managing Director, John W. Laycock Ltd
Our partnership with Armstrong Watson has strengthened the service that as a team, we offer to our mutual clients. We assess the clients’ bookkeeping, training and accounting packages, to provide a comprehensive solution that fits with the clients’ needs and helps ambitious businesses achieve sustainable growth by developing a support unit. We have found working alongside Andrew, the Business Services Manager at Armstrong Watson, rewarding, he is approachable, friendly and able to provide a wealth of information to deliver what the client wants.
Carolyn Roe, Blacksheep Bookkeeping
Rohan and the team at Armstrong Watson have been a valued business partner and a continued part of our growth and development at KMF. They have offered constructive and commercial solutions when needed and are extremely approachable.
Their fee levels are extremely competitive across the key products, and service levels, in my opinion, exceed that of their peer group and that of the Big 4.
Jon Eeles, Finance Director, KMF (Precision Sheet Metal) Limited
One of the major issues of running an SME is that unless you happen to have the need for and the funds to employ a specialist in every field you are somewhat at the mercy of expert consultancy. The issue sometimes is that clearly the third party are being paid for these services and thus the business owner becomes reliant, in the best possible taste, upon opinion and expertise from non-neutral individuals.
For us, trust is everything; genuinely feeling that we are in partnership with our service providers is absolutely paramount. Having had a poor experience previously we were very cautious when appointing our new partner, Armstrong Watson have not disappointed. Their approach is thorough and personable. Im somewhat of a cynic when it comes to slogans but when they say they are “with you”, they really are. They have also given us specific advice upon decision making at crucial points, they have advised as to the pros and cons and highlighted where the balance of risk lies but ultimately have put a definite pin in the map and given us a specific opinion as to what we should or should not do. For example, Nigel Holmes (Tax partner) has been very helpful to us and given us his honest opinion regarding some tax planning we had previously undertaken, he tells it like it is whilst maintaining a thoroughly professional stance.
We are very pleased with their professionalism and expert guidance and will continue to use their services and to recommend them to others.
Greg Cooper, CEO, Search Marketing Group
As we enter our fifth financial year this April, I feel assured that our accounts are in the best shape they have been since our inception. As our company has grown exponentially, we have tried a number of accounting solutions, namely other bookkeepers and other accountancy firms, but none have offered such high levels of proactivity and communication.
Having liaised with a number of Armstrong Watson’s staff within their Kendal and Carlisle offices (namely Richard Andrew, the Payroll team, Steven Metcalf and Emily Taplin), I feel rest assured that the team is built of well trained, personable and competent professionals, allowing great provision across our general accounting needs.
Greg Cooper, CEO, Search Marketing Group
Emily was assigned by Armstrong Watson, our personal and company accountants, to look after my affairs after my husband died. I have been so impressed by her efficiency in providing a valuation of his business interests and checking (and where necessary revising) the probate material. Not only that, she is such a pleasant person to deal with that I have actually looked forward to popping in to finalise the paperwork!
Armstrong Watson have been advising Crewdson & Company Limited since we began in 1991. During that time we have evolved from a consultancy to a business promoting plant for the treatment of dirty waste water.
For the recent past we have been advised by David Threlkeld and his colleagues at the Rosehill office. David has always had a good understanding of our business and our relationship with a Dutch manufacturer.
Armstrong Watson have always been very supportive through the ups and downs of more than 20 years trading and we would warmly recommend them to businesses seeking a financial adviser.
Chris Crewdson, Managing Director, Crewdson and Company Limited
Steve Roberts from Armstrong Watson assisted our parents in making tax efficient Wills. When our mother passed away in 2005 and then our father in 2011, Steve helped us on both occasions with the probate applications, dealing with the HMRC, setting up a trust fund, and more recently, winding up the trust. Steve was compassionate, professional and patient throughout, explaining how things had to be done and why. We felt very much supported by him and he made a difficult time much easier for us. We felt we were dealing with a friend and we would have no hesitation in picking up the phone to seek Steve’s advice in the future.