Saturday, June 13, 2009

Paul Aplin OBE and Chris Tailby CBE

I'm delighted to note that Paul has been awarded an OBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours list today. He is coming to the end of his tenure as Chairman of the ICAEW Tax Faculty and is the first Chairman of the Faculty to receive such an award. I'm proud to consider Paul a trusted friend and consider the award to be extremely well deserved.

I've known Paul for getting on for 10 years and still recall our first lunch when I asked him to be Vice-Chairman. He was not sure he was upto the task, being (in his mind) just a simple general tax partner in a firm of accountants in Taunton. He was, as ever, being characteristically modest. He proved to be a very supportive and hard working Vice Chairman (whilst I was Chairman) and then moved onto hold the Deputy Chairman role and then for the last two years has been Chairman in his own right.

There will be more fulsome records of his achievements, commitment and dedication in due course. Perhaps the first such occasion will be the Faculty AGM this week. The timing could not have been better.

A couple of years ago Paul won the Tax Personality of the year award. I recall many months beforehand leaning over to the Editor of Taxation magazine (and Chairman of the judging panel) to suggest that Paul be considered for that award. We had just heard that Paul's tireless campaigning on a key issue for the profession had paid off. He had spent much time behind the scenes trying to persuade Lord Carter that the filing deadline for tax returns should not be brought forward to September (as Lord Carter had previously proposed). Many other groups sought to claim credit for Lord Carter's change of heart but I knew it was as much down to Paul as to anyone.

Paul has a relatively quiet manner but he understands people and gets things done. He richly deserves this honour and I'm absolutely delighted for him. I note also that having spent the last two years on the Council of the ICAEW in an ex-officio position he has already been co-opted to remain on Council to assist in (continued) liaison between ICAEW, HMRC and the Treasury.

In scanning the Birthday Honours list I note also that Chris Tailby, the shortly to retire Director of the Anti-Avoidance Group at HMRC, has been awarded a CBE. I've known Chris for some years, dating back to before I was Chairman of the ICAEW Tax Faculty. I well recall a time he responded to one of my emails from a holiday beach on the continent. Clearly a man who works hard. And like Paul, very unassuming and good company.

If you have any knowledge of Paul or Chris please add your comments to this post.

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