Our people – The Astute Team

The Astute team are all highly motivated and committed to what they do. Each member of staff is accredited with the professional qualifications relevant to the areas of specialism they work in. Supporting the continuous professional development of our people is one of the core values of the company.


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Andy firmly believes in the use of pensions as one of the most powerful financial planning tools. His years of experience as a financial planner led him to develop Astute Pensions with the goal of encouraging self invested pensions to meet their true potential. He takes a pragmatic approach to pensions legislation and will consider any possibility on behalf of a pension client, whilst at the same time protecting the Astute Pensions Business from poor investment decisions.

Since joining the profession, Andy has been committed to raising the standards of advice provided within the Financial Service Sector and is a former Chairman and existing committee member of the Personal Finance Society in Manchester. This year he is delighted to take up the prestigious position of President of the East Lancashire Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber is a leading voice on all issues relating to business and Andy looks forward to championing the Chamber’s work which benefits businesses of all sizes and sectors.

Andy also enjoys being involved in the local community and is a Trustee of Knowle Green Village Hall, however his main hobby is his camera. He is a very keen photographer and enjoys trips to Belgium and France amongst others, photographing motor racing as well as the more scenic views of the Lake District and the Ribble Valley. Andy has recently framed some of his favourite pieces and these now have pride of place in our office.

As a founder Director of Astute Pensions and Professional Trustee Jean’s days are filled with many different activities and as Practice Manager, she is in charge of the day to day running of the company. She is in charge of updating the Astute Company accounts and runs the Astute Company Pension Scheme.

Chantal has worked in Financial Services for over 10 years after graduating from University and has mainly worked with personal pensions and brings recent experience in SIPPs and SSASs.

Chantal can also speak French and has spent some time living and studying in France. She enjoys eating out and trying new recipes, and also enjoys watching Formula One.

Tom has worked at Astute since March 2015, as the business development and compliance manager, but has been known to Andy McLaughlin for a number of years. Tom previously worked for the group that owned one of the largest SIPP providers in the UK, as a compliance and training manager, a role he held for 16 years. Tom also serves on the regional Personal Finance Society committee and has done so for the last 17 years. He is currently the education officer for the region.

Tom is both a Chartered Financial Planner and a Certified Financial Planner, and has worked in this profession since the late 80s.

Tom enjoys playing the 5 string banjo when not at work, particularly bluegrass and classical fingerstyle, and has quite a collection of banjos ranging from 1890 to the present day.

Having previously worked as a credit controller within the chilled food industry, Barbara joined Astute Wealth Management in July 2015 as an administrator/accounts clerk. She has built up a great knowledge of accounting software and helps keeping on top of day to day office duties. Barbara currently works three days a week and is often the first person you speak to when you call.

Away from work Barbara is a dedicated season ticket holder for Blackburn Rovers and attends every home game with her youngest son, even throughout their recent dark days. Barbara also enjoys spending time with her family and attending Zumba classes.

Chris joined Astute in October 2016 as Pension Administrator following a 23 year career in Banking.

He has experience of SIPP/SSAS lending as a lender and is putting this knowledge to use for the benefit of both Astute and its clients alike.

Outside of work Chris enjoys various sports but his main passion is football. He is a keen Blackburn Rovers supporter.