ICAEW Southern Annual Dinner

It was great to host my 2nd annual dinner as President of ICAEW Southern.  An awful lot has happened within the Southern District this year and even more within the accounting profession.

I tried to tie a few of the themes together in my speech, which you can find below after a hyperlink to a write up of the event from the Daily Echo:


Hello and welcome to the 2018 ICAEW Southern Annual Dinner, our first under our new identity.

District society annual dinners can be slightly odd things. Each having their own identity: Some can be fairly dry affairs, others steeped in tradition and ritual, others (including our students Society’s dinner) fairly anarchic.

Ours, here tonight, is to: reacquaint ourselves with current and former colleagues and friends, to support our local community and to most importantly celebrate the new members joining our profession – and I’m delighted to have so many of them here.

It has been a challenging year for the profession. We have been in the headlines a lot, and more often than not, for the wrong reasons. Some of our new members may well be wondering whether they have made the right choice!

We can be relatively easy targets for criticism, what we sell it not always particularly glamorous and technology is rapidly changing our profession and the business models of the firms within it.

However, accounting has been and will remain the language of business. Accountants as purveyors of trusted advice continue to inspire confidence within business and the economy. And the accounting profession, despite our occasional shortcomings, remains the competent authority on ethics within business.

It is those fundamental human qualities of language, trust and ethics, the qualities of Chartered Accountants, the qualities of people within this room, which means that, despite the profound changes to come, I feel the profession will remain the back bone of the economy and that our me mbers (new and old)have a bright future ahead.

It’s been a privilege to serve as your president for the last two years and though I’m looking forward to handing over to my Deputy President Martin in May there will unquestionably be things I miss about the role… Not least all of the free dinners…

If anyone is interested or might like to get involved in volunteering with the ICAEW, I can thoroughly recommend it and if you would like to know more please just drop me a line.

All that is left is to say that I hope you enjoy the evening, to thank you to everyone who has helped make this dinner happen (you know who you are) and our event sponsors Kaplan Financial and Southampton Business and our long standing partners CMA Recruitment.

Thank you and have a good evening.