Kevin Hellard, President

Hi everyone. How quickly the last year has gone, as I now find myself writing the first newsletter of my new, additional year as President! And hot off the back of this year’s Annual Conference…

It was my great pleasure to assist the Events Team through compering the plenary sessions at the conference, as well as joining fellow Board members, Neil Bennett and Carrie James (Immediate Past President), and our CEO Michelle Thorp for a panel discussion on leading in challenging times.

With so much activity since the beginning of 2020, I am proud of our members’ work and their response to the challenges that have faced the profession. We aren’t out of the woods yet, and I’m sure that there will be much work for IPs to do to aid the recovery of the economy. The IPA will also continue to work hard in our mission to regulate robustly and support you, our members.

With our long bill of speakers at the conference, I think that the events team and all who assisted in planning the day covered a lot of bases! We had Chris Mullan, Debt Strategy Lead at HMRC, giving an update on preferential status; Tom Poole QC taking us through important legal news in our sponsor Manolete Partners’ law update; a particularly well-received panel discussion on attracting new people to the profession with Matthew Coomber, Director at EY and Board members Louise Brittain and Maurice Moses; and much, much more, including of course, our Chief Inspector David Holland’s popular-as-ever monitoring and inspection update. I particularly enjoyed an illuminating talk from Jim Murphy at Arden Strategies running through the priorities of government, and how they interact with the soft furnishings of Number 10. I was very pleased to hear the excellent feedback and comments received, not just from attendees, but also from their peers who had heard what a successful day it had been. On that note, many thanks indeed to all who provided us with what is always invaluable feedback.

Very well done to our events team and everyone else involved in curating and running the day. We now have a very high bar for next year!

The AGM directly preceded the Annual Conference, and I thank all members who attended or submitted their proxy and approved the IPA’s Annual Report, containing some fantastic commentary on the IPA’s work across regulation, technical matters, stakeholder engagement, students, member support, committee operations and more.

New members were also formally accepted on to the Board at the AGM. I warmly welcome Adrian Hyde, Ken Marland and last but certainly not least, Lloyd Hinton, a past President of the IPA, to the Board. Joel Goschalk and Derek Hyslop stepped down this year – thank you both very much for your great service.

Time and tide wait for no one – now that the Annual Conference is done and dusted, we move on to new matters. With the Breathing Space moratorium having come into force recently, how might this impact the discussions we have with clients on personal debt options?

Now is the perfect time for us to examine the effect of this new legislation on the profession, so why not join us for the next IPA Learning session on the new moratorium, set for a handy lunchtime slot from 12:30-2pm on 27 May. On 8 June we’ll be looking at the new SIP 16 and pre-pack regulations, another development in this bumper period. Find out more about IPA Learning and this year’s other training here.

I hope we will see you there.