Senior Partner Practice of
St. James's Place Wealth Management

Philip Mitchelmore, Finance Director

I have been working in financial services since 1991 and pride myself in offering all the continuity, flexibility and the personal touches you would expect from a smaller company that complement my extensive knowledge in Inheritance Tax and holistic planning. Our emphasis is on Building and developing personal relationships together with being a trusted source of advice.

The core of our business is based in Hertfordshire but our clients are spread far and wide.

Working as a Partner Practice of St. James's Place Wealth Management provides all our clients with the reassurance that we are regulated and able to provide a bespoke solution for all of your needs. This also ensures that you can be confident in our advice to you with the support of a highly respected organisation.

Leigh Barnett, Managing Director

I have over 15 years’ experience working in financial services, first working in Bancassurance and then running a successful practice as a Stockbroker and Financial Adviser.

I then joined GQ Wealth Management in 2010 and in 2014 I became a director and then more recently in 2017, the managing director. During this time, in 2016 I also achieved Chartered Financial Planner Status.

Since GQ Wealth Management becoming a Partner Practice of St. James’s Place Wealth Management, I have recognised that I am able to provide my clients with a greater level of service and the best advice through the products and support services available to the St. James’s Place Partners.

I’ve always had my clients’ best interests at heart and aim to provide them with the finest service through innovation to meet their needs in designing a successful financial strategy for their future.

My aim is to increase my clients’ net asset value through a total return investment strategy. Often, by the use of sensible tax planning, I am able to help achieve this goal whilst also reducing their overall liability to Income Tax and Inheritance Tax.

Outside of work I live in Hertfordshire with my wife Debbie and two children Fynn and Niamh. I enjoy running, cycling and swimming, which I sometimes incorporate all of these to compete in triathlon events.

Debbie Claridge, Senior Administrator

I have been with GQ Wealth Management for nearly four years now.

I have worked in the Financial Services Industry for most of my working life which is over 40 years, including the City of London and the West End. I now work locally which is great for me as I have three children living at home although they are now young adults

I work within the team as a business administrator. I enjoy the variety of skills and jobs that this role entails and feel that my work is of importance in helping the team run as smoothly and efficiently as possible.

I enjoy the challenges that each day brings and work hard to achieve them.

In my spare time I enjoy doing yoga, crosswords and love the theatre and cinema.

Louise Peacock, Client Relationship Manager

I have worked in the financial services industry for way too many years that I want to admit to!

I am one of those strange people that love administration, organising and keeping the team in check! I have a strong commitment to Customer Services and feel that efficient administration is an important part of the client’s process with the company and advisers.

The 12 years previous to me starting at GQ Wealth Management were spent working in London for a consultancy company as a senior benefits administrator. After being made redundant form my last post I opted to work closer to home with a more intimate company.

I joined GQ Wealth Management in June 2015, I started off as a PA/Administrator to Leigh and have since progressed to Practice Manager. My role is to ensure that the office runs smoothly and that we keep to timeframes and we meet compliance standards that we are governed by. Most importantly my role is to ensure our clients are happy and kept informed.

When I’m not in the office I can be found either walking my dog Kizzy, running with Harlow Running club or spending time with my family, friends and godchildren. I like to travel and have been very lucky in the places I have visited but have many more countries on my bucket list.

Linsey Wigan, Practice Manager

I have spent the last 9 years working in the Financial Sector and I have discovered that I am a bit of a geek!

I have been working with GQ Wealth Management since October 2015. My role within the GQ Wealth team is to carry out the research on our clients’ pensions and investments and to help navigate our way through the complexities of the ever changing pension simplification rules!

I love being immersed in pensions and investments and enjoy working as part of a team on our clients planning needs and knowing that we all strive to offer the best service to our clients. I have achieved my Level 4 Diploma in Regulated Financial Planning and I am currently working towards my Chartered Qualification.

When I am not in the office I am most likely to be found at home with my partner Adrian, step-daughter Tilly, 6 dogs, 4 chickens, 3 ducks and 18 Angora goats, and yes, we do live on a farm!

Geoff Johnson, Adviser

I joined St James’s Place Wealth Management in 1994, having initially worked for Hill Samuel Financial Services after arriving in the UK from South Africa in 1990.

Whilst in South Africa I spent several years as Chairman of the Wits Business School Association. I worked for the Natie Kirch Group of Companies for 14 years (which included 3 years in New York) and also spent some time with both Standard Bank and the SA Perm.

I pride myself on my willingness to meet my clients personally without any obligation in order to identify the primary areas where their financial situation could be significantly improved. I focus on the investment and protection needs of my client.

I am very successful in addressing the financial requirement of foreign nationals, and particularly South Africans, living and working in the UK.

I am the Founder and Tournament Director of the annual Nedbank South African Golf Day, now in its 19th year. It has grown to become the largest golf event of its kind in Europe with the primary aim of raising funds for children in South Africa. Almost 400 golfers play each year with 650 attending the Celebrity Gala Dinner in the evening.

Ross Nash, Academy Partner/Trainee Adviser

In April 2019, I took the decision to career change after reaching the milestone of 30 years of age.

I joined GQ Wealth Management in April 2019, having owned a boutique recruitment agency for the previous 3.5 years. I spent the 6 years before that in various business development positions with start-ups through to multi-billion-dollar turnover businesses. I’ve always had a keen interest in developing and growing client relationships, so matching this up with my geeky curiosity in financial services and investing was an easy decision and transition. At present, I am enrolled on St. James’s Place’s next generation academy, which is an award-winning training programme to develop the best advisors in the industry.

I live in Stebbing, Essex, with three girls/women; my daughters Ava and Mia and my wife, Amy. When I am not studying, in the office, at home with the girls or at client meetings you can usually find me at Bishops Stortford Golf Club where I maintain a 5 handicap. We also love to travel as a family, whether in the UK or overseas.

Kristy Boccia, Trainee Paraplanner

I have worked in financial services for just under 4 years. In May 2019 I joined GQ Wealth Management as a Trainee Paraplanner, I am enrolled on the
St. James’s Place Paraplanning Academy and am currently undertaking my exams for my Financial Planning Diploma. I am thoroughly enjoying my new challenge and gaining a much wider understanding in financial planning.

Prior to this role I worked for the St. James’s Place Administration Centre for the written communication team. Here I gained a great insight into the Financial Investment world and knew that I wanted to learn and be more involved within this sector.

When I’m not busy with work or studying you’ll find me spending time with my two children, family and friends. I spend a lot of my weekends at the football pitch, cheering on my daughter who is a massive football enthusiast.

Emma Fisk, Senior Administrator

I have been at GQ Wealth Management since May 2019. Finance is most certainly a far cry from my previous career in the Airline Industry, where I was lucky enough to work for the likes of British Airways and easyJet, two fabulous companies which allowed me to chat to my heart’s content, one of my strongest talents, as I am sure the team will agree! However, since having my daughter in 2018 I decided that I wanted to be a lot closer to home, although some days I would disagree with that statement and I’d like nothing more than to be 37,000ft up in the air!

This is an exciting new challenge for me to get my teeth stuck into, I have real a passion for people and all things related to Customer Service. I pride myself on being a part of a driven team who all strive for the same outcome and that is to ensure that our client’s expectations are not only met, but exceeded beyond expectations.

When I am not working, you can find me anywhere near a shopping centre or at our favourite spot, Hatfield Forest feeding the ducks a 5-course meal of whatever Isla deems suitable!

Fabian Bullen, Adviser

I was born and brought up in North London, during my youth I developed a passion for the countryside and, simply vowed that one day I would exchange my view of chimney pots for views of trees and fields. As I really did not want to "work for someone" I began this quest, whilst training as an accountant, by aiming one day to be my own boss.

I believe that I achieved this aim by building my own financial services Practice which has now merged into GQ Wealth Management Ltd. Also, I am now fortunate to live in the countryside alongside a large farm in North Essex with my wife and our ever-expanding extended family.

My career has spanned four decades having previously trained in accountancy with Thornton Baker. I also spent many years in senior financial sales management. Eventually, in 1992, I became a Partner at St. James's Place which allowed me to build my own (totally introduced) client Practice of executive, professional, corporate and retired people. These included various Company Executives, Solicitors, Accountants, Forex Dealers, IT specialists, Hoteliers, Entrepreneurs, Real Estate Developers, TV Game Show Winners, Lottery Winners and Classical Musicians. As a Fellow of the former Life Insurance Association, now the Personal Finance Society, I served on its Ethics Committee.

Matthew Turner, Adviser

With a father who worked as an adviser for thirty years it was little surprise that I joined the financial service industry. I first provided investment and financial planning advice to clients in the early nineties with a large insurance company.

Over the years I have gained experience working with banks, insurance companies and the independent sector as a trusted adviser, mortgage adviser and stockbroker and this has given me a real insight and understanding of the different and sometimes complicated areas of my profession.

I enjoy meeting with business owners and families to help them to realise and develop their goals, dreams and aspirations and at the heart of my service is a strong relationship based on communication to ensure that clients are kept well informed of issues that may affect their financial circumstances.

Away from work, I live in Essex with my wife Michelle and two children Ethan and Imogen. My spare time is spent mostly ferrying them around the various clubs and activities that they are involved in with some time left for me to try and keep fit.

John West, Adviser

I joined GQ Wealth Management Ltd team in 2019 as an adviser, having been in Financial Services since 2000.

Over the last 19 years’ I have gained experience by working for multiple companies through the joys of redundancies.

Starting in a similar firm to GQ Wealth Management Ltd back in the early 2000’s is where I initially learnt my trade. Since then I have worked for major high street Banks and a Swedish Bank, with job roles ranging from administration, management, high-net-worth mortgage advising, personal and corporate banking, credit analysis and holistic financial planning.

Throughout this time, from the different companies and roles, I have gained knowledge from many areas of financial services and I feel that has made me a knowledgeable and rounded adviser, able to discuss with clients many aspects of their financial needs.

Being an adviser at GQ Wealth Management Ltd, an appointed representative of St. James's Place, enables me to pull all the above together and provide clients with a complete service, through the extensive product range available and all wrapped with the reassurance and confidence provided by St. James's Place.

In such a complex and highly regulated industry, I pride myself on providing a first class, honest and trustworthy service to all my clients with the aim of working with them to establish the desired solutions and advice required for now and the future.

Therefore, despite my name there is nothing fishy about my approach, no bear fighting and the only net involved is the knowledge that you will be caught by an adviser, Practice and firm where only “the best will do”.

Away from work, I live near Harpenden, Herts and have been married to Charlotte since 2004. I have 2 children; Sean and Renee, who are both at secondary school and take up a lot of our time being their taxi service. I have a passion for cars and I am an avid watcher and follower of Formula 1.

My dream car is a Lamborghini (Dad’s fault for putting a poster on my wall at the age of 5) however my fear is if I do ever manage to achieve the goal of owning one, by the time it happens, I may be unable to get in one!!

I enjoy a game of golf as and when I can and still play a bit of football. I am also an active and keen DIY’er so will often be found with a power tool in hand working on something house related at the weekend, so if I have any cuts or bruises on my hands that will be why.