About us

Lawrence Young Ltd – Basingstoke Accountants

If this is your first time here, chances are you’ve never met me or my team. So before you consider working with us you’re probably wondering if you can trust us to do what you need... Obviously I can’t make your mind up for you, but I can at least give you a few ‘clues’ that might be sufficient to encourage you to at least come for a chat...

Keith Lawrence

Keith Lawrence FCMA, AIMC

First, this is me...
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My Background

I started my first career in the Pharmaceutical Industry, learning many aspects of business (internal control, business planning. financial & reporting, people management, etc) and qualified in 1983 as a Chartered Management Accountant (www.cimaglobal.com) ending up as Head of Finance. In 1986 I hopped Industry to Data Communications where I was involved in setting up a new company (Plessey Telecom Limited) which we subsequently sold to the Telecoms giant, Alcatel – where we grew the company to £125 million turnover. During this time, I developed my strategy skills, becoming a strategy-qualified Fellow of the institute in 1993 subsequently becoming Finance Director, then Director of Management Control.

With Corporate Growth experience, I then moved into Consulting for a few years, helping large companies become larger! However, after a while I got fed up with earning extra profits for large companies and anonymous shareholders, so in 2002 I set up Lawrence Young (named after my 2 grandfathers 😊) to use my skills to help small businesses grow – and working closely with the owner managers to add extra profits to their businesses. It’s more fun and more motivating, and this is where you find me today…

The Company

Today Lawrence Young is still a small company (we’ve never wanted it to become ‘corporate’) with a dedicated customer-service focused team.

Most of our clients are great at their technical skills but have never run a business. There’s nothing I love more than helping them improve their business management abilities to help them develop and grow the business they founded - and in doing so, achieving the goals they originally set for themselves. Along the way, I and my team can assist you in many ways - not just keeping you legally compliant with your Accounts & Tax but supporting you with your internal systems and processes and helping you plan and develop your business to achieve your goals.

And I guess we’re doing something right - this is what some of our customers have to say about us

Meet the team

Linda Lawrence

Linda Lawrence

Business Director

Linda ensures the smooth running of the UK business, being responsible for marketing and all internal administration including all finance and HR matters.

Prior to Lawrence Young, Linda worked in finance and administration roles in a variety of industries including the UK Civil Service, Motor Parts Manufacture, Telecommunications, and Financial Services. Linda has a strong interest in personal development and enjoys reading, aromatherapy, walking and listening to music. Linda is also an active member of a local quilting group, where amongst other things they make ‘Project Linus’ quilts for sick children (https://projectlinusuk.org.uk/).

Simon Duffield

Simon Duffield

Trainee Accountant

Having joined Lawrence Young as a Trainee Accountant after finishing college, Simon assists with clients’ day to day accounts and bookkeeping whist studying towards the ACCA qualification. He previously worked part time in Customer Service roles in retail.

Outside of work, Simon has a strong interest in listening to and making music, as well as sports such as football and rugby.

So, what makes us different?

If you talk to any marketeer, they’ll tell you its important to tell your customers why you’re different. Personally, I’ve never bought into that idea.

We care about our customers and do what we can to help them, and if we’re truly different, you’ll tell that from our actions and the results we achieve for you rather than a few words on our website. So, different or not, what do we do? Here are a few points to ponder:

  • We deal with people, most of whom are running their businesses for the benefit of their families – that shouldn’t be a surprise but is often not as openly recognised as it should be. (Although hopefully they too love what they do 😉). So the starting point in any client relationship has to be Why do you do what you do?’ If we can get to your aims and goals, we’re much better able to help you achieve them. (And for those who’ve never actually clarified their family & business goals, we can help you do that.)
  • We recognise you know your trade or profession, but you’re not a bookkeeper or accountant (and probably wouldn’t want to be one!) That said, we can ‘educate’ you as little or as much as you need in order to better understand your business and get the most out of it for the efforts you put in. There’s nothing worse for me than seeing a client who has worked hard for a year to make a loss! And unfortunately, this is where some new clients are when they first come to us.
  • We recognise that sometimes you may have dealt with other accountants before coming to us. There’s nothing wrong with this – you just didn’t know us. For us, the first task is to find out what you weren’t getting from that relationship that caused you to move. Too often it’s a simple lack of attention… Like any relationship, it’s never going to work out on a once-a-year basis.
  • You can only effectively run your business if you have the right regular management information to hand in order to make decisions. We’ve had business owners come to us who have only ever known their business results 6-9 months after the end of the year concerned. This is totally ineffective – you need to know how you’re doing as you go through the year, not long after it. We can help you easily achieve this.
  • We also recognise that even with the right information to hand, you still sometimes need help in making some of those decisions… There’s nothing wrong with this and this is where our SoundingBoard and BoardView services often help.
  • As the owner of a small business it can be surprisingly lonely. You may have 10, 20, 50 employees around you, but we find what many of our owner-manager clients lack is the ability to chat about issues confidentially and with someone outside of the business.
  • To me, when I’m buying, two of the things that are important are clarity and price. I like to know exactly what’s included and what’s not included, and how much I’ll be paying. I’m guessing that you’re the same, so once we’ve agreed to provide any service to you, we’ll provide a proposal (written in plain English!) confirming what is to be done and when and confirming the price. In most cases (unless there’s a real urgency to get moving) we don’t start until you’re happy that this is what you want and have approved the proposal. This clarity is appreciated by clients and avoids the sort of surprise billing that I’ve been on the wrong end of myself in the past.
  • “Just a question” – Sometimes you’ll have ‘little’ questions. With some accountants every time you call them or drop them an email with a question, a bill comes bouncing back. This is not just frustrating for the client (who will then use Google in the hope of getting a half-right answer) but is inefficient for the accountant. We take the opposite view… if you’ve got a ‘little’ question, drop us an email or give us a call. If we can easily answer it without research there’ll be no chance. If it’s not such a little question and needs research or extra work done we’ll tell you. Fair enough?
  • Cashflow – You may not be aware, but more businesses close due to cashflow issues than due to lack of profits. There, now you know! So, we will encourage you to keep track of you forecast cashflow. It’s not as difficult as many imagine and could easily save your business. And of course, if you don’t feel you want to do it in-house, we can always do it for you.
  • Paying our bills – And on the subject of cashflow I pay many of my bills monthly now; it helps me and there’s less chance of big bills coming along at the wrong time (although I’m not sure if there’s ever a right time for big bills). So, the obvious thing to do here is to offer the same facility to our clients. Rather than pay your bills in one go, we can spread payments – normally over 10 or 12 months – to help ease your cashflow.

Different or not? I don’t know, you tell me, but these are just some of the ways we like to help our clients. If we’re not already talking, maybe we should be… Book a call with me to discuss your business!

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