CEO's welcome: An exceptional sense of duty

26 September 2022

We were both deeply saddened by the death of Her Majesty The Queen. She has been an integral part of the context and fabric of life in the United Kingdom for more than seven decades and has served with a sense of duty and dedication that is truly exceptional.

All at ATT and CIOT send our heartfelt sympathy to the Royal Family. Our presidents have signed the book of condolence on behalf of the two organisations.

We were also deeply saddened by the news of the death of Robin Williamson CTA (Fellow). Robin was an early LITRG volunteer, playing an instrumental role in setting up the charity Tax Help for Older People in 2001 after which he went on to become LITRG’s first Technical Director, serving in the role from 2003 to 2018. Robin will be hugely missed by all, but his legacy lives on. A fuller tribute can be found on page 39.

September certainly felt like the start of a new school year, with meetings and events filling up our calendars. At the ATT Prize Winners lunch, we celebrated with 28 students who had won prizes in the last few sittings of the examinations. It was lovely to meet with them and their families and we wish them every success in their career.

It was equally great to be able to hold the CIOT parliamentary reception in September, after two years when Covid closed Parliament to outside events, and after having to postpone it from the initial date in June due to train and tube strikes. It was held on the first day back after the summer recess which was also, as it happened, the day of the announcement of the new Conservative leader, who would be appointed as Prime Minister the next day. Quite a day to be in Parliament!

We were joined in the Churchill Room of the House of Commons by MPs and peers from government and opposition, including the event’s parliamentary sponsor Craig Mackinlay CTA. It was warming to hear the Financial Secretary to the Treasury, Lucy Frazer, praising the work of Tax Aid and Tax Help for Older People, as well as paying tribute to our contribution to the tax policy process. It is good to know the work of our technical teams is valued. By the end of the week, Lucy had been reshuffled to a new position at the Department for Transport (we wish her well) but we look forward to continuing our constructive relationship with ministers and officials alike under the new administration.

CPD events have started up after the summer break. On 22 September, the ATT and CIOT technical teams presented a free webinar to update attendees on the latest information on MTD for Income Tax Self-Assessment (MTD for ITSA) ahead of it coming into effect in April 2024. This was well attended and there were many questions which we will continue to feed back to HMRC.

On 11 October, ATT Fellows can join a free webinar where they can meet other ATT Fellows and join in the discussion on a number of topics. The main session will cover ‘The many tentacles of the Trust Registration Service – not just a problem for trust advisers’ and will be presented by Helen Thornley. If you are an ATT Fellow, look out for your invitation and details of how to register.

November is an opportunity to welcome you back to our first in-person Scottish branch conference for three years at the Stirling Court Hotel. Set over two days (4 to 5 November), the conference offers the opportunity to hear from a range of quality speakers and to network with fellow tax professionals from around the UK.

Also returning in November is the Joint AAT/ATT Sharpen Your Tax skills series. This year, Rebecca Benneyworth will update us on the recent legislation and take us through some practical examples. We have three dates for this which are 7, 9 and 25 November.

For more CPD and professional skills updates, we would recommend that you look at your local branch programme, where branches are offering free and low cost CPD on a variety of subjects. Some meetings are resuming face to face, and others are online, so there is something for everyone.