Please note that our offices will close for Christmas at 5.30pm on Friday 20th December, and re-open at 9am on 30th December

Accountancy services

If you’re looking for a typical accountant, you won’t find one here at Optimum. Because we’re not typical accountants; we’re accountants who listen to the issues you need help with in your business life, personal life and family life and we match our services to suit your needs. If you run a business, you may need help with developing and growing your enterprise or you may need support with payroll. Perhaps you want to start a business, sell a business or buy a business. From our Swindon office, we help clients throughout the UK. For a chat about our accountancy services and how we can help you, please get in touch.

Meet the accountancy team

Michael Blaken

Accounts Director

Michael is Accounts Director, looking after all our clients’ accountancy needs

Michael Blaken

Accounts Director

Michael is Accounts Director, looking after all our clients’ accountancy needs, overseeing the inhouse accountancy team, and Optimum’s own business development.

He began his accountancy career in Gloucestershire and is passionate about helping clients to improve and develop their businesses, with careful accounting.

His spare time is taken up with family activities, but he does get away to play for his local football club, rarely missing matches (he decided not to play on his wedding day and when his son was being born!)

Jon Lacey

Finance Director

Jon is Finance Director and Head of Finance and Administration, whose role invol

Jon Lacey

Finance Director

Jon is Finance Director and Head of Finance and Administration, whose role involves overseeing the ethical and quality standards of our group companies while maintaining a portfolio of corporate clients.

Jon’s career in finance has ranged from setting up a drop-in desk for small businesses to advising on multi-million pound contract negotiations. His passion is working with SMEs to help them achieve their goals.

In his spare time, Jon loves the mental and physical challenge of archery and he once assisted TV celebrity Noel Edmonds with a charity stunt.

Richard Mathews

CEO

Richard is Optimum’s founder and CEO, taking a strategic approach to the compa

Richard Mathews

CEO

Richard is Optimum’s founder and CEO, taking a strategic approach to the company’s development and working closely with the department heads to ensure the legal and accountancy divisions work together seamlessly.

Richard began his career with HMRC, has worked with ‘Big four’ accountancy firms and before setting up Optimum ran a successful mid-tier accountancy practice.

Away from the office Richard is a passionate rugby supporter, having been a season ticket holder with Gloucester Rugby for more than 20 years. He admits IT is not his strong point and claims a dinosaur would be more helpful!

Rob Stokes

Head of Audit

Rob is Head of Audit, helping his clients to grow and meet their needs, whilst h

Rob Stokes

Head of Audit

Rob is Head of Audit, helping his clients to grow and meet their needs, whilst helping to nurture and develop Optimum and its staff.

He has worked in finance for more than 20 years, and provides advisory and compliance services to a range of clients, from sole traders to international businesses and Academy Trusts.

Away from the office, Rob is a rugby enthusiast and plays second row for the Old Cryptians RFC 2V and 3XV team. He is sometimes known as The Tardis given his ability, whilst being 6’ 5”, to appear unexpectedly at people’s sides without them knowing.

Mandy Gibson

Tax Supervisor

Mandy is our Tax Supervisor, whose responsibility is dealing with our clients’

Mandy Gibson

Tax Supervisor

Mandy is our Tax Supervisor, whose responsibility is dealing with our clients’ personal tax compliance.

Mandy began her career 30 years ago with HMRC, then entered private practice and has worked with a number of local and national top ten firms in Swindon.

In her spare time she loves cooking and taking her Labrador for long walks, and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. At Optimum, she sits next to Alison Griffiths (wills and probate) and they are cheerfully known as the death and taxes team!

Tracey Alexander

Accounts Senior

Tracey is Accounts Senior, and her role entails preparing annual accounts for ou

Tracey Alexander

Accounts Senior

Tracey is Accounts Senior, and her role entails preparing annual accounts for our clients, supporting the team, reviewing some of the team’s work and occasional bookkeeping and VAT.

Tracey has spent all her career in accounts, since starting as an office junior in 1997. She is AAT qualified and is working towards her ACCA qualification.

Away from the office, she loves spending time with her family, going to the gym with her son and socialising. Fun fact about Tracey: she was once Carnival Queen for Bodmin, Padstow and Redruth.

Megan Williams

Accounts Senior

As Accounts Senior, Megan’s role involves preparing yearend accounts for a wid

Megan Williams

Accounts Senior

As Accounts Senior, Megan’s role involves preparing yearend accounts for a wide range of clients, supporting junior staff and reviewing their work.

Megan began her accountancy career as a trainee in 2012, working her way up Accounts Senior and joining Optimum when she moved from Jersey.

She loves motorsports, and often pops back to Jersey to attend rallies. Her childhood ambition was to be the first woman Red Arrows pilot – but she’s happily settled with accountancy as a close second!

Sam Goldfinch

Accounts Assistant

Sam is Accounts Assistant, helping with preparation of yearend accounts, along w

Sam Goldfinch

Accounts Assistant

Sam is Accounts Assistant, helping with preparation of yearend accounts, along with some VAT, bookkeeping and payroll.

He joined Optimum in July 2017, straight from studying accountancy at college. His interest in accountancy came from helping his Mum with the books for her business, during his school holidays.

Sam is a keen sports fan and, when not watching Bath rugby, can usually be found at either Arsenal or Swindon. Fun fact about Sam: when he was young his ambition was to grow up to become Tarzan!

Claire Presdee

Bookkeeper

Claire is our Bookkeeper, who is responsible for liaising with clients and proce

Claire Presdee

Bookkeeper

Claire is our Bookkeeper, who is responsible for liaising with clients and processing their records on a monthly or quarterly basis in preparation for yearend accounts or VAT returns.

She has spent most of her career working in accounts, mainly in a private practice with a short spell in industry.

She loves going to the gym, socialising with friends and taking her dog for long walks. She hates planes but ironically is a roller coaster enthusiast.

Tracey Heath

Practice Manager

Tracey is Optimum’s Practice Manager, who deals with everything from managing

Tracey Heath

Practice Manager

Tracey is Optimum’s Practice Manager, who deals with everything from managing our client database to making sure we don’t run out of tea and coffee.

She has worked for most of her career in secretarial and admin roles, although briefly ran a pub with her partner but (in her words) “saw sense” and returned to office work.

In her spare time, she enjoys socialising, cycling, going to the gym (she’s run Swindon Half Marathon more than once) and has recently taken up tap-dancing.

Helen Slater

Receptionist

Helen is our Receptionist, dealing with our incoming calls and offering a warm w

Helen Slater

Receptionist

Helen is our Receptionist, dealing with our incoming calls and offering a warm welcome to all the visitors and clients who come to our Swindon offices.

She is an experienced receptionist and has also had the role of company secretary with a previous employer.

In her spare time, Helen likes cycling and walking, and her super power is that she can touch her nose with her tongue.

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