Imagine a friendly and efficient bookkeeping / accounting service that is cheaper than an in-house team and smarter than a one man band.

Bean counters – a mildly derogatory, idiomatic term used to describe the irritating precision of accountants and bookkeepers. That’ll be us then!

We could be your super efficient accounts department…

Imagine an accounting service that is more capable than most, less costly to run than a dedicated in-house team, and one that speaks the kind of plain English that you’ll readily understand.


…or we could rip through
your bookeeping a few times a year!

We’re equally happy interacting with corporate business systems and in-house accounts assistants, as we are sorting out jumbled piles of receipts and invoices and cutting through the paper trail of nastiness that the Tax and VAT people demand.

We are fully accredited by the AAT and we’ve been in business for over 20 years – so we must be doing something right!

The Team

We currently have six people in the team: Kate Graham, Ashley Jayne, and Richard Peel are the directors, and Phoebe Hughes, Ryan Cotton-Shutt and Louise Willett complete the team.

Kate Graham

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Kate started the business in London in the 90s, shortly before moving west with her young family. Prior to that she worked as a nurse and in retail. The commercial highlight of this period was doubling the turnover of the highly successful ice-cream parlour in Harrods. In her spare time she enjoys hammering bits of metal, she calls it silversmithing.

Ashley Jayne

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Ash is a Penzance lad. He started out working in a builders merchant before joining the Backroom in 2014. Since then he has been smashing his way through AAT and ATT exams so that he can specialise in the delights of tax and is now fully qualified. Outside work he is passionate about old VW buses and runs the local VW club which, it would seem, mostly involves partying.

Phoebe Hughes

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Leaving university with a degree in Environmental Resource Management Phoebe chased the dream and travelled the world surfing, but in 2015 she settled down to develop a career in accounting and is now studying AAT exams and working with us. Surfing is a big part of her life - she and her partner still regularly travel the world to attend surfing competitions. To be fair we hardly ever see her!

Ryan Cotton-Shutt

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Ryan completed a degree in Business Management in 2012. He then moved to London to seek his fortune - managing betting shops! Eventually he and his wife decided to move back to Cornwall to raise a family. He joined us after various management positions in retail and is currently working his way through the AAT exams. In his spare time he plays basketball and enjoys walking.

Louise Willett

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Graduating with a degree in Event Management Louise started her career in the banking sector. During holiday travels to far flung corners of the globe she then decided to change careers and started studying to become an accountant. She joins us after a near death experience temping in a public sector accounts department! In her free time she enjoys travelling, yoga and likes to play badminton!

Richard Peel

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Rick joined the company in 2009 following the sale of his design / web development company, Designamite. He has been the FD and MD of several creative businesses and brings marketing and systems expertise to the Backroom, as well as a practical understanding of what fiscal reporting directors need to manage their businesses. Rick lives for windsurfing, if it's windy he'll be at a ‘board’ meeting!

Our Clients and Specialisms

Our clients typically work in the creative sector, although we have businesses of all shapes on our books. They vary in size from individual artists, and makers to London based businesses with up to thirty members of staff.



  • Creative businesses
  • Artists, actors and directors
  • Holiday letting / Airbnb
  • Small businesses & sole traders


First and foremost we always communicate in plain English – there is no accountants technobabble here!
Along with the usual accounting and bookkeeping services, we do everything we can to help your business run smoothly.

General Bookkeeping including:

  • Bank and credit card reconciliations
  • Supplier bill processing and / or payment
  • Sales invoicing and debtor management
  • Project profitability and management reporting
  • VAT Returns
  • Payroll management
  • Workplace Pension administration
  • Preparation of books for 3rd Party Accountants

Accountancy Services including:

  • Management accounts and business performance reporting
  • Self Assessment, Partnership, and Corporation Tax Returns
  • Annual Accounts

Other Services include:

  • Project management systems
  • Database systems development
  • Marketing advice and business mentoring
  • Training clients how to bookkeep and use software

Contact Us

Much of our work comes from London and the big cities, we also have a growing local client base in West Cornwall.
You’d be welcome to visit our offices in Penzance – just drop by and say ‘hello’.

Tel 01736 364 330

Feel free to give us a call, email us at, or fill out the form below.

Contact Us



Address and opening hours

31 & 32 Causewayhead, Penzance, Cornwall TR18 2SP

9am to 5.00pm, Monday to Friday.

Working with us

We are currently looking for an experienced and qualified accounts technician to start July / August 2020.

Accounts Technician (part time or full time)

Join our expanding bookkeeping and accounting business. Good rates of pay, central Penzance location. Excellent career prospects. Experience and AAT qualifications necessary. We like perfectionists!

Job Description

Duties will include: 

  • Using QuickBooks and Xero for general bookkeeping
  • VAT return preparation
  • Payroll processing
  • Creating management accounts
  • Preparation of year end accounts for Sole Traders and Limited Companies
  • Preparation of Self Assessment Tax Returns
  • Completion of Limited Company accounts and Corporation Tax Returns for Micro-entities
  • Liaising with clients and HMRC

Personal Attributes

A friendly attitude and a good sense of humour will go a long way with us. The ideal candidate will be an organised self-starter, who is also articulate, efficient, adaptable, accurate, and dependable.


QuickBooks / Xero / Sage (or similar), Microsoft Excel, Word and Outlook. Filemaker Pro and good IT skills (Windows 10) will be helpful. Good keyboard skills and tidy handwriting essential.


Qualified to Level 4 AAT standard. Degree and A’ Levels helpful, 5 GCSEs including English Language and Maths essential. Equivalent qualifications or higher are welcomed.


The office has one flights of stairs and several steps.


Depending on experience and qualifications: £21,000 to £26,000 per annum, pro rata based on hours worked.

Full-time position, but part-time considered. Monday to Friday, 9am to 5:30pm, flexitime available. As workload dictates, further paid hours may be required from time to time.


Pro-rata statutory entitlement, 20 days, plus bank holidays, plus a loyalty scheme for continued service after year 1.


Please only apply with a letter of application and your CV by email to stating where you heard about the job… we like to know what advertising avenues work for us.

No recruitment agencies please.