Alan Wintersgill retires after 50 years in accountancy

A leading light in Yorkshire’s business world has called time on an illustrious career spanning fifty years in accountancy.

Alan Wintersgill has stepped down as a consultant with top ten UK accountancy and business advisory firm Azets in Bradford exactly half a century after he qualified as a chartered accountant in 1974.

He opened his own accountancy practice Wintersgill & Co in 1986 – later becoming Naylor Wintersgill – in Bradford city centre. He became chairman in 2012, before the firm merged with Azets in April 2023.

Alan leaves the business in good shape in the safe hands of office managing partner Victoria Wainwright, who was the first apprentice he employed at the firm in 1991. Victoria became managing partner of Naylor Wintersgill in 2012.

Based at Carlton House in Grammar School Street, the practice continues to grow with the addition of 15 new team members over the past year taking its headcount to more than 70.

It has also expanded its service offering in Bradford with the appointment of financial planner Matt Knott in wealth management.

Victoria, who became office managing partner in 2023 following the merger with Azets, said: “Alan’s contribution to business and the community over so many years has been inspirational.

“He is a respected and well known figure in the Bradford community who has made an immeasurable difference in support of hundreds of valued clients and the many colleagues who have had the privilege of working alongside him.

“Alan will be sorely missed on a personal and professional level, and we wish him the long and happy retirement that he richly deserves.”

Alan qualified with a local Bradford firm in 1974 before going on to work at PwC in Leeds. He then moved into industry where he spent eight years as finance director with a manufacturing company prior to starting Naylor Wintersgill.

Over the years, whilst other firms moved out of the city, Naylor Wintersgill stayed committed to the Bradford business community and experienced year on year growth.

Alan was a great mentor for his employees and the business also became an Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) accredited training office with more than 50 apprentices passing through its doors to start their accountancy careers.

Alan has held a number of professional roles. They have included two terms as president of the Bradford Society of Chartered Accountants, president of the West Yorkshire Society of Chartered Accountants and West Yorkshire council member at the Chartered Accountants of England and Wales from 2007-2011.

His commitment to the community has included president and treasurer roles at Rotary and involvement in five charitable trusts.

Alan also established a group of ambassadors for the Marie Curie Bradford Hospice in 2008, bringing together a development board of prominent business leaders. He has chaired the board since its inception, which reached reach a £1m fundraising milestone earlier this year.

Alan said: “I am grateful for the opportunity to have worked with so many wonderful businesses and colleagues, while also being able to contribute to the vibrant community that we have in Bradford.

“Many things have changed over fifty years but the value of human interaction and personal service is as important as ever. I am looking forward to retirement although I shall miss my clients and colleagues but I intend to remain busy.”

Alan was awarded the British Empire Medal in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for ‘services to charity and the community of Bingley’ in 2014.

Azets also has offices in Leeds and York in Yorkshire where it employs 334 people.