Ben has been a member of BC since March 2013 and he works for RSM, the world’s 7th largest accountancy firm. Ben has lived in Bristol for almost 14 years, having moved for University and never left. His favorite memories are the behind the scenes tours, in particular getting a look behind the gates at the Avon docks and seeing the Bloodhound.
Ben’s work has taken him away from Bristol a lot in the last three years but is looking forward to spending more time with the BJC this year. If he could give one piece of advice to BJC members present and future, it is to take advantage of the behind the scenes events the BJC offers. If he could give a second piece of advice, it would be to try Marshfield’s clotted cream ice-cream with blackberries.
Jill has been a member of BJC since May 2014, she works as a Senior Pensions Consultant for Trigon Pensions Limited and lives in Redland.
Jill joined the BJC to meet other young professionals, to learn more about Bristol and to see some of the sights of the city from a different perspective. Some of my best BJC memories have been doing the tours of the Redcliff caves and the Wills Memorial building at night, the Spring drinks and dinners are also my favourite events. Jill is most looking forward to the Balloon Fiesta.
As a word of advice to BJC members present and future, Jill would recommend to get involved in as much as you can that the BJC has to offer.
Owen has been a member of BJC since February 2015 and previously ran the BJC Investment Forum.
Owen joined the BJC in order to mingle with the future great and good of Bristol. He works for Quilter Cheviot in Queen Square as an Investment Manager, designing, implementing and maintaining investment portfolio mainly for Private Clients. He lives in Brislington and can often be found running to/from work in order to train for the triathlons and running events he takes part in.
He loves Bristol because of the food and festivals – there is always so much to do (and eat). His personal highlights of the BJC have been trips to Hannover and Bordeaux as well as the VIP pod at the balloon fiesta. His advice to fellow BJC members would be to take part in whatever BJC events you can. If you can give back to the BJC by helping to organise events then you get even more out of it.
Rob has been a member of BJC since December 2010, he is a Legal Director at Thrings LLP and he lives in the metropolis of Brislington, having been pulled away from Clifton by his wife.
Rob joined the BJC as a newcomer to Bristol to meet people and learn more about the City, and counts one of his best BJC memories as being when his much derided Heritage & Culture trip to The Bristol Records Office became a rapid sell out event! Rob would recommend taking a role on the committee as it’s an amazing way of creating social and professional links – he has himself had multiple different positions on the committee.
Also, don’t believe anything past President Tom Selway may tell you about his age …
Sam has been a member of BJC since February 2016, she works for the Confederation of Meningitis Organisations (CoMO) as Executive Director, she lives in Dundry. Sam joined the BJC because her other half, a fellow member, kept disappearing off to exciting events and she wanted to join in. She counts one of her best BJC memories as being the last annual dinner, great food, great friends, a lot of fun! Sam is most looking forward to the varied members’ meetings within the upcoming BJC year.
As a word of advice to BJC members present and future, Sam would recommend getting involved with something outside your comfort zone that sounds intriguing!
Hélène has been a member of BJC for a number of years. Hélène joined the BJC because she wanted to find an organisation that she could volunteer with, along with building her confidence in networking and Public speaking. After meeting up with Rob Barnes she made a decision to finally sign up. She works as a Family Law Paralegal for Henriques Griffiths Solicitors and lives in Cribbs Causeway. She was born and bred in Bristol although lived in the Midlands for 6 years, returning to Bristol in 2013 and again in 2016 with a view to wanting to make a change and a difference in her hometown and give back to her community. A key BJC bit of advice is literally get involved in as much as you can. I stepped out of my comfort zone by attending the school interviews which was the very first event I got involved in, then enrolled as a school governor and was co-opted as head of safeguarding and children in care. Attending events to represent BJC as exhibitors at the UWE Equity event lectures where you get to listen to great speakers such as Akala and Afua Hirsch. Being on the committee of the COM gave my confidence more of a boost. Teaming up with two others from BJC, forming our very own BJC team cycling from Bristol to Paris was awesome. Annual dinner, members dinner and the Christmas party are, in my eyes the best events to attend.
I first heard about the BJC through Robert Barnes and have been a member since January 2018. I work as a Commercial Property solicitor at Thrings, based in the firm’s Bristol office and specialise in commercial landlord and tenant, sales and acquisitions and wayleave agreements. Having moved from London and being a newcomer to Bristol I joined the BJC to make new connections and to get to know the city and its businesses. My favourite moments so far have been the monthly meeting at Aerospace Bristol, getting to climb aboard the amazing Concorde Alpha Foxtrot and the member’s dinner in the beautiful Merchant’s Hall. I’m looking forward to attending more BJC events and would welcome a BJC karaoke night!
Holly has been a member of BJC since May 2018. She works on the fundraising team at the Great Western Air Ambulance Charity, Bristol’s local air ambulance. The air ambulance provides advanced emergency care to the most seriously ill and injured people and is despatched an average of 5 times each day. Holly says working in the charity sector can be challenging but equally, knowing your job is helping to keep the helicopter in the air and the crew on their way to the people who need them is very rewarding. She was also lucky enough to get a flight over Bristol earlier this year which is not bad for a work perk!
Holly joined BJC to meet other young professionals and for the varied calendar of speakers and events. Her first event was the Spring Drinks at the beautiful RWA, followed swiftly by the wine tasting at Avery’s – both lovely events and a great opportunity to get to know people. Funnily enough she has hasn’t made it to anything sporty yet…
Miles has been a member of BJC since for several years. It was recommended to him by a former colleague and fellow BJC member Rob Nye as a great way to network and meet other professionals. Miles currently runs the BJC Investment Forum (quick plug – join us for the next forum on the 12th Dec for mince pies and wine!). He works as an Investment Manager at Investec Wealth & Investment in Bath and lives in Westbury Park in Bristol. Miles would encourage new members to go along to as many meetings and events as possible and make the most of the great opportunities available to BJC members (although he regularly fails to take his own advice!). Highlights of the year have included the annual dinner and trip to Pigsty (a great speaker and excellent food!).
Henry has recently joined BJC and is very excited to become a member of this large and diverse business network and being able to contribute to the Chamber’s activities going forward.
Originally from Stratford – Upon- Avon, Henry entered the Wealth Management industry in 2011 after studying Microbiology and Pharmacology at University in Leeds. After graduating, he worked briefly for a stock broking firm for 6 months as an Investment Analyst in Manchester.
Henry has worked for WH Ireland for over 7 years, initially in the firm’s Cardiff office for 2 years where he gained his Professional Investment qualifications, before relocating to Bristol in 2013. He is currently studying for his CISI Level 7 qualifications and is a key member of the Investment and Corporate Broking team based in Bristol.
Living in Westbury Park, Henry loves being in Bristol, where he has acquired a large number of clients and professional contacts. He is now looking forward to forming new relationships as a member of the BJC.
In his spare time, Henry is a keen golfer and member of the Henbury Golf Club, although he also enjoys active sports such as CrossFit and running as well as international travel. Henry recently visited New Zealand where he took part in many extreme sports and he is looking forward to visiting Australia in 2019.
Louise has been a member of the BJC since November 2016. Having just moved from London at the time it was recommended to her by a colleague and fellow BJC member Nick Roberts as a great way to network and meet other professionals in the city. Louise is on the current Council of Management as the chair of Heritage and Culture. She works as a Solicitor at Veale Wasbrough Vizards in Bristol and lives locally in Southville. To get the most out of the BJC Louise would recommend getting involved in opportunities like the School interview scheme or attending the weekly running club. Her highlight of the year so far has been the exchange with JCI Hanover in the summer – a perfect example of the BJC legacy in action!
Ed has been a member of the BJC since May 2013, joining after attending (and enjoying) Spring Drinks at the RWA. He was working at a law firm in North Somerset at the time and joined to make new connections and to explore the parts of Bristol he didn’t see as a student. His BJC highlights include two memorable trips to our twin city Bordeaux, supporting Charlie’s presidential year as Chair of Heritage, Culture & Sport, organising mock school interviews at Merchants’ Academy and being lucky enough to be at our ringside tent at the Balloon Fiesta for the nightglow on a dry evening! Ed works as a corporate lawyer at Royds Withy King in Bath, and has a particular interest in the technology sector. As an out of city member these days he is most likely to be spotted at the key events like the Annual Dinner. His advice would be to get involved with as much as you can (particularly when you first join), as this is the best way to discover everything that BJC membership offers. Ed would also recommend serving on the Council of Management if you get the chance, as it gives you an opportunity to shape the direction of the BJC, and it also means you get to attend the famous end of year celebration dinner!
Having moved from London to the South West last year, I thought that joining the BJC would be a fantastic way to meet like-minded people in the area. When I got to the point of joining, I thought I might as well get stuck in and put myself forward to be part of the Council of Management as Honorary Secretary. It’s been a fantastic year, and I’ve met some wonderful people and made some really good friends. It’s been great to see first-hand the enthusiasm with which CofM approaches their voluntary roles, and I would encourage anyone to get involved with the AGM now just a couple of months away. Some particular highlights for me were the summer boat trip, as well as hearing from Ben Smith at the November session talking us through his 401 consecutive marathons….what a guy! I also really enjoy the lunches with the 39’ers that really bring home the heritage of the BJC and how so many people have got so much from it over the years. I look forward to continuing my membership for many year to come.
Charlie Sayer previously enquired to join about 8 months ago following a very enthusiastic recommendation from my boss Simon Pitchers, who is one of the BJC Honorary Vice-Presidents, unknowingly, the reason he never heard anything back was due to the company email system sucking up all email responses from the BJC. Once again though, Simon cornered him at the Christmas party raving about the amazing times he has had in the BJC, the friends he had made and the opportunities it provided him. Mildly intoxicated, he was ‘in’ from that point and made contact again the next couple days. He has worked and lived in Bristol for just under 5 years for Craddys, a consulting civil and structural engineering firm based in Ham Green. He is due to sit my chartership exam this year in July (4 days after Glasto!). Wish me luck!
It was Valentine’s Day 2014 when this love affair first kicked off, and some five years on the relationship between the BJC and Jack is still well and truly in its honeymoon phase. Fellow member Jonathan Williams (Scouse John) played the role of cupid, selling how great the networking opportunities are to devastating effect; although he is also responsible for meetings being left early to catch the Liverpool game. Jack is a qualified Insolvency Practitioner working for Bishop Fleming, a firm of chartered accountants based on Queen Square. He is currently a Treasurer for the BJC, where, above all else, he enjoys playing with his spreadsheet and withholding expenses from Russ Landau. The Thatcher’s tour and cycle ride is currently Jack’s highlight of the BJC year, although falling from his bicycle and head butting the pavement whilst trying to ‘wheelie’ a curb may just mean he can’t remember much else. His love for Bristol has seen him visit every boozer in the city, a venture that came to an end in December last year.
Catherine has been a member of BJC since April 2017, she works as a Fundraiser for Bath based charity Send a Cow.
Catherine joined the BJC to meet other young professionals, hear inspirational speakers and get involved with a society that’s doing good for Bristol. She says BJC has given her a great opportunity to make new friends and have a nose around the fancy offices of Bristol! Her favourite moment so far with BJC is completing the Bristol to Paris cycle ride with members of the BJC cycling team raising over £9,000 for Above & Beyond.
And even though it’s the same advice everyone gives – get involved. You can never have enough WhatsApp group chats right!?