AN accountants in Old Town is looking ahead with two new recruits since its office manager retired after 25 years at the firm.

Christine Baker retired from Haines Watts in Newport Street, after a quarter of a century as the company’s office manager.

Anna-Marie Healy, coming from a project management and marketing background, is filling the shoes of Christine, after a three-month handover.

“It was quite hard when she left, it was like the matriarch was leaving,” she told the Adver.

“There’s absolutely no way that I could fill her shoes to be honest. She knows every client like the back of her hand.”

Christine is said to be spending more time with her grandchildren and pursing her passion in homeopathy.

“Everyone is really happy that she has some more time for herself,” added Anna-Marie, who said the close-knit team was already like a second-home.

“The team is great, everyone is really friendly, there’s no them and us, everyone is just part of the team.

“It’s really like having an extension to your family.”

The firm has also hired Jas Athwal as an audit and accounts assistant.

Jas said: “I’m thrilled to be part of this team. I’m excited about the potential for my own personal development and hope to soon be studying for my ACCA qualifications.”

Managing partner Mike Lloyd said: “It’s been great to welcome Anna and Jas to the team. They have both slotted into their roles really quickly and bonded easily with their new colleagues.

“We were incredibly sad to see Chris leave us after so many years and I cannot thank her enough for her dedication and support over many years. We wish her a very happy retirement.”

The firm also has new clients Power Tee, a worldwide market leader in automated teeing technology for golf driving ranges, and Recycling Technologies which is developing equipment to recycle plastics currently sent to landfill.

“This is already shaping up to be an exciting year for Haines Watts Swindon,” Mike said.

“We are growing and expanding our client base as well as working in collaboration with other organisations.”