Top 20 Recommended UK Accountants 2022

Date: 29 Jun 2022

Karen Jones

Today, with the publication of the Top 20 Recommended UK Accountants 2022, Citywealth celebrates the best accountants based in the United Kingdom. They share interesting insights on what led them to become accountants, going through important steps in their career journey and analysing how to always be up to date on current trends and developments in the tax sector.

Our Top 20 Recommended UK Accountants 2022 is based on independent research conducted by Citywealth.

Please be aware that you need to buy a marketing licence and consequently receive Citywealth’s written consent in order to be able to share, mention or quote from this List, as per our Editorial Products – Terms & Conditions.

Congratulations to our Top 20 Recommended UK Accountants 2022!

Arranged in alphabetical order (by forename)

Benjamin Grist, Partner, Dixon Wilson, London

Benjamin Grist, Dixon Wilson

After studying maths at Cambridge, I wanted to use my analytical skills to help people with their financial affairs and I found that the world of private client accountancy and taxation was a perfect fit. I love the fact that every day is different and you feel like you’re making a difference in people’s lives.

Staying on top of the ever-changing landscape of legislation is a tricky job. It requires a great deal of research and reading as well as attending seminars and committees. A lot of the research comes from on-the-job experience of dealing with clients and the issues they face – you tend to find that certain advice comes from experience of having seen the same or similar issues before with other clients.

Catherine Thompson, Partner, Rawlinson & Hunter, London

Catherine Thompson, Rawlinson & Hunter

Following my graduation from University with a degree in English Literature I remember laughing off my now husband’s suggestion of becoming an accountant. However, I always knew I wanted a progressive career, to be challenged, to continue learning and gaining new skills as well as utilising my writing and communication skills. A career in accountancy has given me all of this and more.

Keeping up to date technically is fundamental in my role as an accountant and tax adviser which is achieved through a combination of technical reading and courses. I also need to keep abreast of developments in the industries in which my clients operate, for example the art market which forms a significant proportion of my practice. Regular attendance of industry sector conferences as well as knowledge sharing amongst other professionals is key to ensure I can be helpful to clients.

Claire Collins, Partner, Buzzacott, London

Claire Collins, Buzzacott

Claire joined Buzzacott in 1990 as a junior accountant and has grown to become a Partner in their Corporate & Business Services team. Her focus is on providing business services to both established businesses and start-ups, both domestic and internationally.

Her clients come from different industries and range from entrepreneurs, family-owned businesses, charities, architects and artists to software developers, retailers and restaurants. Claire’s experience working with a plethora of nationalities, cultures and time zones makes her outlook global, offering her domestic but also internationally owned clients support and guidance through local compliance.

David Nelson, Partner, Dixon Wilson, London

David Nelson, Dixon Wilson

David has expertise in helping wealthy families, and their businesses, and Landed Estates concerning tax and other aspects of their financial and business affairs, leading a team which works closely with clients and other professional advisors. His work includes a particular emphasis on the UK aspects of international tax, offshore trusts and the UK resident who has retained a foreign domicile.

He also has considerable experience in acting as a Trustee and Non-Executive Director with clients across a whole spectrum in both the public company and private arena. Sectors include media and information, hotels, insurance and training.

Dipan Shah, Partner, UK Private Business Tax Leader, PwC, London

Dipan Shah, PwC

Dipan is a Chartered Accountant, Chartered Tax Adviser, he leads the UK Private Business Tax practice and the London Private Business practice across all PwC service lines.  He works with his team to advise individuals and families with substantial wealth on all aspects of tax, from transaction-specific advice to managing their overall tax profile, as part of meeting their personal and business objectives.

Dipan’s clients include UK and international families, entrepreneurs and their businesses. Dipan specialises in advising shareholders of privately owned companies on corporate restructuring, refinancing, international expansion, shareholder value realisation and exit planning. A large proportion of Dipan’s clients have a footprint on more than one continent, be it family members, companies or assets. 

Gary Heynes, Partner, Head of Private Client, RSM, Guilford

Gary Heynes, RSM

Gary is the national head of private client, (PCS), a team of over 200 partners and staff across the UK, advising individuals on a range of tax focused issues, while coordinating the breadth of RSM’s services for families and their wealth and business interests.

He is co-leader of RSM’s European PCS practice and on the leadership groups for RSM’s global PCS and Family Office teams. Gary has wide experience of private client tax issues and advises many entrepreneurs, family business owners and trustees both in the UK and offshore on a variety of UK tax matters.

Helen Jones, Partner, BDO, London

Helen Jones, BDO

I have been lucky throughout my working life to have benefited from coaching, mentoring and advocacy. In my twenties, I began temping at a small city firm while planning my next traveling adventure, when two senior people recognised my aptitude for accounting and tax. They not only encouraged me to consider taking a career seriously but also arranged for me to be interviewed for a training contract at one of the top accountancy firms.

To be up to date on current trends and developments in our field we do lots of training and collaborations, here at BDO. I also listen to my contacts in the market. However, you need to immerse yourself in your chosen field and be interested and engaged in the world and people around you. Like most, there are huge demands on my time, so I try to be focused when choosing which articles I read in journals and on LinkedIn; and which podcasts and webinars I listen to. I always read the Weekend Financial Times.

Joss Dalrymple, Partner, Group Head of Client Services, Evelyn Partners, London

Joss Dalrymple, Evelyn Partners

Joss specialises in looking after landed estates, farms, trusts, high-net-worth families and individuals. His role encompasses virtually every aspect of family finances, including tax planning, budgeting and cashflow, school fees planning, deferring income for the younger generation and asset allocation.

He is experienced in acting as executor, helping with pre-nuptial agreements and in disputes between generations. Joss also advises on charitable trusts and giving.

Judy Higgins, Partner, Head Of Tax, Sopher & Co, London

Judy Higgins, Sopher & Co

Working with individuals in the entertainment and sporting sectors, Judy predominately advises musicians, actors and sports personalities and their associated entities. Her industry knowledge and tax expertise allows clients to be proactive in addressing tax and business implications whether relating to intellectual property rights, performance fees or a whole host of other associated issues as a consequence of being in the media spotlight.

Judy joined Sopher + Co in 2010 bringing with her over 30 years of accounting and tax experience. Prior to this she held roles at EY, being a founding member of the EY’s Entertainment and Media Group.

Krista Woodman, Private Client Tax Partner, Ballards LLP, London

Krista Woodman, Ballards LLP

Recognised by the Association of Taxation Technicians (ATT) in 1996 and the Chartered Institute of Tax (CTA) in 1998, Krista can boast more than 25 years of experience in advising in tax. This experience has been attained in a variety of firms including Big 4, trust companies and wealth management firms.

Her unusual and varied background, both inside and outside of the tax world, helps her bring a different perspective and understanding to challenges faced by her clients.

Majid Hussain, Partner, Evelyn Partners, London

Majid Hussain, Evelyn Partners

Interestingly, I actually trained as a barrister and on advice from chambers, I was advised to complete my chartered tax exams and obtain some practical experience with the Big 4 and to return the bar. However, once I started in the city, I really enjoyed what I was doing in advising private clients and as things went so well, the rest is history.

To be up to date on current trends and developments in my field I do a number of things. Obviously I stay abreast of changes to tax laws and HMRC guidance, which we review regularly. I also attend seminars, etc. However, more importantly, I also deliver training and webinars, which forces me to stay completely up to date on trends and developments as well as learning from my clients in terms of what they are seeing and experiencing.

Mark Dawes, Director, Sopher & Co, London

Mark Dawes, Sopher & Co

Having joined the firm in 2017, Mark is a UK tax specialist with over 30 years’ experience. Mark focuses on personal tax compliance from the preparation of self-assessment tax returns, to dealing with HMRC correspondence and enquiries.

He provides more complex advisory aspects of UK taxation for his client portfolio which includes High Net Worth and Ultra-High Net Worth individuals. Mark has particular expertise in the Sports and Cryptocurrency sectors.

Michael Lewis, Partner, Private Client Services, EY Frank Hirth Limited, London

Michael Lewis, EY Frank Hirth Limited

After leaving University and moving into a difficult job market, I found it tough to find a graduate job and decided to temporarily settle upon accountancy. Once introduced to the tax and accounting profession, I quickly realised, however, that I had found my calling. For me, tax and accounting provide an unsurpassed variety of roles including people management, strategic business planning, client problem, maintenance of technical excellence, business development which ensures that no day is ever the same.

Frank Hirth always maintained a highly respected training regime supplemented by regular technical discussion groups. The huge advantage of combining with EY is the additional support provided by the tax risk and quality teams, in both the UK and US, who look to proactively ‘push’ updates and training to you on the latest developments – tailored to the industry and interests of recipients. This is further supplemented by an incredible training portal known as ‘Success Factors’ to create bespoke training programme.

Nicola Roberts, Partner, Head of Private Client Services, Deloitte, London

Nicola Roberts, Deloitte

Nicola is an experienced Private Client Tax Partner advising single family offices, international private clients and families including their trusts and related structures on UK and international tax matters.

Nicola, who has over 20 years’ experience in providing private client tax services, became one of the firm’s youngest partners in 2011. She leads the firm’s relationships with private clients and has been pivotal in the practice’s success in advising international entrepreneurial clients from around the globe.

Nimesh Shah, CEO, Blick Rothenberg, London

Nimesh Shah, Blick Rothenberg

What led me to become an accountant? The short answer is that I didn’t set out to become a tax advisor and wanted to be a train driver!  By chance, I secured a gap year in the Private Client team of a Big 4 accountancy firm, and I enjoyed learning about tax and applying to family and business situations. I have gained a real passion for tax – I am regularly approached to comment on tax matters in the media, and providing my opinion on the future direction of tax policy.

I read about tax every day, and in my spare time and on holiday! I closely follow the development of the UK’s tax agenda and the politics behind changes in the legislation. I am fortunate to work alongside some of the best tax advisors in the country and we enjoy debating tax matters in the office, and predicting future changes – my guesses are almost always wrong!

Oliver Morgan-Crosby, Director, Evelyn Partners, London

Oliver Morgan-Crosby, Evelyn Partners

As a teenager I worked as a bookkeeper and management accountant for my mother in rural Suffolk, helping a range of clients including solicitors, farmers and antique dealers. I loved working directly alongside business owners and feeling truly involved in their families and their businesses. I learned from my mother that the value of good advice was less about completing P&Ls and forecasts, and more about understanding the unique issues of each family and helping them find appropriate solutions.

The entrepreneurial Family Office world is fast evolving. There is a prerequisite to stay technically strong, but moreover the best way to keep up to date in our market is to be humble and agile. Our clients know far more about their business and industry than we do, and last generation’s solutions do not necessarily solve this generation’s problems. Listening and learning from our clients allows us to provide pragmatic, succinct advice to suit our clients’ needs.

Rakesh Dabasia, Partner, Buzzacott, London

Rakesh Dabasia, Buzzacott

Rakesh joined Buzzacott in 2020 and is a Partner in our Private Client team. He works with high-net-worth individuals who are either UK resident or non-UK resident with UK assets, onshore and offshore trustees and their structures, as well as family and private offices.

Rakesh carries out tax advisory and compliance services for clients with complicated financial affairs and multi-jurisdiction assets by providing a family office service. He has over 20 years’ experience in providing tax advisory services to UK residents and non-UK domiciled high-net-worth individuals and his specialist knowledge also includes offshore trust and corporate structures.

Rebecca Durrant, National Head of Private Clients, Crowe, Manchester

Rebecca Durrant, Crowe

What led me to become an accountant? It was more good luck than good management. I left school after my A levels not really knowing what I wanted to do, I looked for some support from my local careers office and they sent me for an interview as a tax junior in a local firm and 30 odd years later, the rest, as they say, is history. What keeps me in tax is the variety. Tax isn’t just about numbers it’s about solving problems and that’s what keeps it interesting.

To be up to date on current trends and developments, aside from formal training courses, we are lucky in Crowe to have more informal training and discussion groups including sessions with tax barristers which ensure we not only stay technically up to date but are aware of current issues and market changes affecting our clients. It goes back to problem solving, good communication within our team means we share ideas and solutions easily and ensure we have the right support for our team and our clients.

Sonya Rees, Partner, Blick Rothenberg, London

Sonya Rees, Blick Rothenberg

When I was at university a good friend of mine who had interned at an accounting firm and so had a bit of insight into the industry said “You like lists. You like numbers. You’ll like lists of numbers – you should apply for ACA training contracts”.  Fortuitously, it turned out that she was right, even if my job is more about people than lists or numbers nowadays, which my 20-year-old self had not anticipated but can be considered a pleasant surprise.

To be up to date on current trends in my field I rely on press releases from my own firm, but also from other co-professionals. These, together with HMRC and conference attendance, all play a part, but speaking with clients and contacts often gives the most interesting insights.

Trevor Warmington, Partner, Rawlinson & Hunter, London

Trevor Warmington, Rawlinson & Hunter

Trevor provides personal UK tax support, mainly to wealthy international individuals, families and Trustees with a UK connection, but also British entrepreneurs or British nationals living abroad or returning to the UK.

He advises individuals coming to settle in the UK for the first time, those who visit regularly as a second residence, and also international students, together with managing their tax compliance reporting in the UK. He endeavours to work alongside UK and international intermediaries and family offices to offer his clients joined-up advice which is tax-efficient within a wider commercial context.

Please be aware that you need to buy a marketing licence and consequently receive Citywealth’s written consent in order to be able to share, mention or quote from this List, as per our Editorial Products – Terms & Conditions.

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