Ipswich accountant David King, who trained as priest, celebrates one year in business with move to new offices

David King in his new Hadleigh office. Picture: JOHN HASCHAK

David King in his new Hadleigh office. Picture: JOHN HASCHAK - Credit: John Haschak

An Ipswich accountant who quit his job in 2013 to follow his calling to become a priest has celebrated his first year running his own practice.

David King was a partner in an Ipswich accountancy firm for seven years but decided he wanted to become an ordained minister in the Church of England.

It’s been a long journey since then, and while his vocation remains, he must still overcome some hurdles if it is to be realised, he says.

In the meantime, he set up Guymer-King in 2013, initially as a mediation consultancy, but a year ago he regained his practising certificate to enable him to branch out into accountancy. He has now moved to new offices in Hadleigh. His love of accountancy was rekindled after joining a Treasury team looking at simplifying tax. “Sometimes things don’t work out as you originally think they will, but then opportunities pop up that you never even thought of. It’s just a case of grabbing them when they do,” he said.

“I have always had a strong faith and it was my parish priest who first suggested I should consider exploring ordination. So after over 30 years in the accountancy profession I decided to do just that.

“Going through the discernment process to become a priest can take a considerable time so in the interim to widen my skill-set I retrained as a mediator in addition to undertaking a variety of consultancy work. Ultimately things have not gone as I expected with the church, but my work as a mediator has continued.”

While working as a mediator he was invited by the Office of Tax Simplification, an office within HM Treasury, to join a small team looking at the current tax regime and how it was affecting small businesses.

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“It was a six-month contract which had me spending one day a week at the Treasury and contributing to the OTS report for the 2016 Budget,” he said.

“Following this I was thrilled to receive a personal letter from the Chancellor thanking me for my efforts which is now framed and proudly hanging in my office.”

The role revived David’s love of accountancy and in summer 2016 he reapplied for his practising certificate and set about building up his own business.

“I want my clients to experience a very personal and approachable service with the focus being on their requirements for the business,” he said.

“In my experience, clients, particularly owner managed ones, like to deal with a senior person within their accountants who really understands their concerns. It gives them reassurance. There is nothing quite like great service and a depth of knowledge to help make tax and accounts less of a chore.”

David remains very active on the local business scene and is a member of the Hadleigh Chamber of Commerce, Ipswich & Orwell Rotary Club and the Ipswich & Suffolk Club as well as being a trustee of the Suffolk Historic Churches Trust, the Choral Foundation of St Mary-le-Tower and churchwarden of his village church.

“It’s been a pretty hectic 12 months,” he said. “From making the decision to get back into the profession, to going out and getting clients, to finding and fitting out my Hadleigh office - and all while still carrying out my mediation work with Albert Square Mediation.