A Stratford accountant whose dream was always to be a partner when he hit his early thirties has achieved his goal.

Luke Bryan joined town accountancy practice Leigh Graham Associates as an 18-year-old school leaver in 2007, later qualifying as a fully-fledged chartered accountant.

And now, at the age of 31, he has become the third equity partner in the 14 strong John Street firm.

He joins founders Leigh Day and Graham Beach whose ability to talent spot when they set up the business 14 years ago has paid off.

“It was always my dream to be a partner in my early thirties,” said Luke. “When I went for an interview in my teens at an old school practice in Birmingham they looked at me in horror when I told them. Leigh and Graham have a much more refreshing approach and have always supported me in my ambition.” 

Luke is looking forward to helping the practice offer its strategic business advice and accountancy services to a wider pool of businesses, to add to its existing stable which ranges from large multinational organisations to small local firms.

He says the most satisfying part of his job is making a difference to the lives of the individuals who run the businesses with whom he, Leigh and Graham work.

“Seemingly little things can make a difference. For example, we may save one client £1,000 in tax, which enables him to go on holiday. For another, suddenly their business blossoms and we need to find ways to save tax and grow wealth by perhaps increasing pension contributions, shareholding restructuring or investing in capital equipment.

“We know what we do is great and we’d like to be able to offer our expertise to help people who need it.

“Clients tell us that as well as helping them develop their business and manage their financial affairs they also appreciate how supportive and approachable we are.”

“I’m so pleased to be committed to a firm I value, respect and relate to. It’s another step on the path that I had planned out.”

One of the firm’s two founding partners, Leigh Day, explained: “We knew Luke had something extra about him when we employed him as an 18-year-old audit and accounts junior. He was a young man absolutely dedicated to a life in accountancy. And he has the knack of getting on with everyone in the team and all the clients. 

“And it’s these personal skills combined with our expertise which I think makes us stand out as a firm. We manage to combine expertise in our professional life with approachability. We’re very much looking forward to working alongside Luke as a fellow partner.”

Since joining the firm Luke has married and he and his wife have three young children to prevent him from being bored when he’s not at work. 

  •  Luke Bryan, who has been promoted to equity partner at Stratford accountancy firm Leigh Graham Associates, will work alongside fellow partners Leigh Day and Graham Beach