Mark Friend is a Chartered Accountant and member of the ICAEW (Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales). He works with a portfolio of clients on planning and business development, and on helping them to reduce tax and to create and protect wealth.
Mark established the business in 1992 from scratch. Initially working from home, he has successfully built the practice to the business it is today. Mark has experienced all the trials and tribulations of building a successful business and loves nothing better than helping his clients to succeed.
Andrew Grant FCA
Andrew Grant is a Chartered Accountant and fellow of the ICAEW. His portfolio includes growing businesses where he finds business, accounting and tax solutions to ensure they maximise income, protect wealth and reduce tax.
Accounts & Business Support Team
Scott Russell FCCA
Head of Accounts & Business Support
Scott joined the practice in 2009 and qualified in 2010 as a fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants.
In 2016 Scott became Head of Accounts & Business Support with responsibility for dealing with the day-to-day affairs of a portfolio of business clients.
Scott also leads on all the firm’s audits.
Lewis Pyne ACA
Lewis joined our Accounts & Business Support department in June 2016 as a senior. Lewis works primarily on accounts preparation for limited companies.
In August 2019 Lewis completed his studies, passing every exam first time and is a Chartered Accountant ACA.
In 2021 Lewis joined the firm’s management team.
Luke Anderson ACA
Luke joined our Accounts & Business Support Team in August 2012 as a trainee accountant. Luke completed his exams and became a qualified Chartered Accountant and member of the ICAEW in November 2017.
Luke has his own portfolio of business clients specialising in the retail sector. His focus is mainly on larger cases helping them with the production and interpretation of management information.
Luke is also focussing on specialising in VAT handling reviews of clients revenue streams from a VAT perspective and advising on all VAT affairs
Bryony Banham MAAT ACA
Bryony joined the firm in September 2016 as an apprentice working in our Accounts & Business Support department.
Bryony has successfully completed studies and is now AAT and ACA qualified.
Nick joined the practice in September 2018 as an Apprentice Accounts Assistant. Nick is studying to become a Chartered Accountant and is currently attached to the Accounts & Business Support department.
Jack Gray ACA
Jack is a Mathematics & Finance graduate who joined the practice in August 2019 as a trainee accountant in our Accounts & Business Support Department.
Jack successfully gained his ACA qualification in August 2022 and he now coordinates the training in the Firm
Hannah Gass MAAT
Hannah joined the practice in July 2021 and was attached to the Accounts & Business Support department as a trainee accountant, she now carries on this role in the Kings Hill office supporting Darren.
Since starting she has successfully completed her AAT qualification, and is now working towards her ACA qualification.
Lucy is a member of our business support department and joined the firm in August 2021 as an apprentice.
Lucy studied Economics, Geography and Psychology A-level and is now working towards obtaining her AAT Qualification.
Hannah joined Friend & Grant in February 2023 as an apprentice in the Accounts & Business Support department and is working towards her AAT Qualification.
Hannah studied Biology, Maths and Chemistry at A Level, and after a few years caring for family and working in the caring profession, she has decided on a career change to accounting.
George joined Friend & Grant in September 2023 as a Graduate Trainee Accountant in the Accounts & Business Support team.
In July 2023, he graduated from Nottingham Trent University with honours in BA Business and is currently working towards the ACA professional qualification as part of his apprenticeship
Kusmita joined Friend & Grant in October 2023 as a Graduate Trainee Accountant in the Accounts & Business Support team.
She graduated from University of East Anglia with honours in BSc Accounting and Finance and is currently working towards the ACA professional qualification.
Taxation Services Team
Jan Friend CTA
Head of Tax
Jan Friend is a Chartered Tax Adviser and, as head of the Tax Team, is involved with all tax matters, business and personal. Jan looks after a portfolio of high-net-worth clients as well as being our probate services and estate planning expert.
Darren works as a member of our Tax Department, dealing mainly with our smaller clients. He is also responsible for general tax compliance work. His portfolio of clients is largely made up of self-employed and partnership businesses and includes property developers & investors, rental property owners and our high-net-worth clients.
Darren first started working for Mark as a trainee in 2000, when Mark was a sole practitioner. Darren joined the firm’s management team in 2014.
Ashleigh Blundell MATT
Ashleigh is a member of our Tax Department working closely with Darren on our smaller clients. She is both AAT and ATT qualified with over 12 years of experience in Personal Tax specialising in areas such as high-net-worth individuals, non-resident individuals and personal tax planning.
Ashleigh also works closely alongside Jan Friend on Probate and Estate administration cases since passing her exam in 2023.
Ashleigh has her own portfolio of clients within the tax department that she looks after.
Sophie Purdue MAAT ATT
Sophie has been a member of the team since September 2016 and has qualified in both MAAT & ATT whilst working at Friend & Grant.
Sophie looks after her own portfolio of clients within our tax department.
Christie Inns MAAT MATT
Christie joined Friend & Grant in November 2018 as an apprentice.
Christie has successfully completed her AAT & ATT qualification and is currently studying for her CTA and ACA qualifications.
Christie works primarily in corporation tax including assisting the directors on group reconstructions and share option schemes.
Jess joined Friend & Grant in August 2020 as an apprentice.
Jess studied business, finance, and law at A-level and is now working towards her AAT qualification.
Alfie joined Friend and Grant in July 2023 as an apprentice and is working towards his AAT Qualification.
Alfie studied Business Management, Applied Law and Criminology at A Level.
Elena joined the team in November 2023 as a tax semi-senior within the Tax Department. She is situated in our Kings Hill office, supporting Darren, and working closely with Ashleigh.
Elena has previously worked in Personal Tax sector, as well as with share scheme such as EMI and EIS. She has a keen interest in Personal Tax and is currently working towards her ATT qualification
Cloud Accounting & Book-keeping Team
Bradley Medhurst ACA MAAT
Bradley joined our Tax Department in August 2015 from school. In 2016 he moved to the Business Support team and over the years has developed a specialism in Cloud Accounting. He is a Xero Certified Advisor, a QuickBooks ProAdvisor and also a Sage One Certified Advisor.
Bradley has been part of our highly successful development program to train future Chartered Accountants. Initially starting with the AAT he has successfully trained to be a Chartered Accountant and officially became a qualified Chartered Accountant in January 2022.
Bradley also became a manger in the practice in 2022 heading a team which specialises in cloud software and the provision of outsourced bookkeeping and management accounting services.
Jessica Chilmaid FMAAT
Jess joined the firm in May 2021 having worked in an accounting practice since 2013 and completing her AAT qualification in 2017. Jess works in our accounts and business support department as part of a team which specialises in cloud software and the provision of outsourced bookkeeping and management accounting services. Jess regularly visits some of our clients to provide one on one support with bookkeeping and management accounting.
Harry Nash MAAT
Harry joined the practice in April 2021 as a trainee accountant in the Accounts & Business Support Department. Harry has successfully gained his AAT qualification and starts his ACA training in autumn 2021.
Harry is studying to become a Chartered Accountant and is looking to qualify in 2024
Lee joined Friend & Grant in August 2021 as a trainee accountant in our Accounts & Business Support Department.
Lee studied Maths, English Literature, and Design Technology at A-level and has begun his studies towards the AAT qualification.
Payroll Services Team
Paige McNair ACIPP
Paige joined Friend & Grant in October 2016 as an apprentice working in an administrative and communications role. Paige has completed her Level 3 Business & Administration qualification and was nominated for the ‘Apprentice of the Year’ award at the Mid Kent College Student Awards, coming in the top 3 out of 100 students.
Paige joined our payroll department in December 2020 as a payroll administrator.
Gemma Briant ACIPP
Gemma joined our payroll department in February 2021 as a payroll administrator.
Gemma previously worked in sales for a number of years and in recent years for a local bank.
Whilst working at the bank Gemma became interested in pursuing a career in accountancy and started to train for the AAT qualification before joining us in 2021.
Administration Services Team
Julie Edwards is most likely to be the first person you talk to as she is our receptionist. She also acts as PA to Mark and is responsible for company secretarial matters.
Julie joined Friend & Grant in 2004. She really enjoys meeting the clients and getting to know them.
Carol Nicholson FCCA Cert CII(MP)
Carol joined us in April 2019 to manage our internal accounts. She’s a qualified accountant with a wealth of experience working in practice and industry. Carol is with us on Tuesdays & Thursdays and works as an accounts manager in industry the rest of the week.
Carol is also a Xero Certified Advisor and has wide experience of Sage accounts and payroll programs.
Customer Services Officer
Sherrie joined Friend and Grant in April 2021 as our customer service officer.
Sherrie has a wealth of customer service experience that she brings with her to help enhance the service we provide to clients. This includes collecting feedback to ensure we provide high quality service in all dealings with our clients.
Previously Sherrie has worked in a number of customer services roles for a local bank.
Customer Services Officer
Emily is joining our admin team to support Sherrie & Carol with various jobs including onboarding our new clients.
Tom joined Friend & Grant in July 2023 as an apprentice in business administration and is working towards his business administration qualification.
Tom studied business finance and Economics at A-Level.
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