Steve Sampson FCA FCIE DChA - Associate

In addition to overseeing his own portfolio of general clients, Steve is heavily involved in the practice’s charity and not-for-profit division, being both a Fellowship Member of the Association of Charitable Independent Examiners and holding the Diploma in Charity Accounting from ICAEW. Steve originally trained as a Chartered Accountant with Hamilton & Wilton, who amalgamated with Ashdown Hurrey in 1991, so has many years of experience within the profession locally.

As well as working with charities in a professional capacity, Steve is, in a personal capacity, a trustee of a local charity and enjoys the hands-on experience this appointment gives him. Steve has been a fan and season ticket holder with Brighton & Hove Albion for more than forty years, so is well used to dealing with sporting disappointments as well as occasional success! As a supporter, he is also close to becoming a member of the ‘The Ninety-two Club’, having visited the majority of football league grounds. Steve enjoys walking, particularly on the South Downs, with any benefit this might have provided being offset by his enthusiasm for real ale.

Kathryn Baker FCCA - Associate

Kathryn joined Ashdown Hurrey in the late 1990s and successfully completed her qualification as a Certified Accountant in 2000.Kathryn is responsible for her own section of clients and her role as an Associate includes supervising the HR requirements of the Hastings office and running the firm’s Professional Standards Committee.

Growing up living on a farm in Kent, Kathryn was a keen horse rider and has recently returned to this activity following a break of a number of years.  She wishes she had got back into the saddle sooner and is enjoying re-establishing her horsewoman skills.

Simon Lawrence FCCA - Associate

Simon began training as a Certified Accountant during the 1990s and qualified in 2000. Simon works with Mick, looking after a section of clients in addition to his role as a director of Ashdown Hurrey Auditors Ltd..

Simon lives in Battle and loves to get fully involved with the town’s activities, working on committees for the Christmas lights and Medieval Fayre. Simon enjoys the challenge of a long distance walk and has raised money for charities in this respect, even completing the Pevensey to Battle 1066 walk in full Saxon chainmail. Simon is a keen bell ringer and another real ale enthusiast, with an interest in history, including that relating to his own family.

Sam Carter FCCA - Associate

Sam joined Ashdown Hurrey as a trainee in 2005 and with first-time passes of his professional exams, qualified in 2009.

In addition to overseeing his own portfolio of clients, Sam is an enthusiastic networker on the local business scene and hosts the Ashdown Hurrey Last Friday Drinks event.

Sam regularly participates in sporting activities, including playing football, the odd game of tennis and maybe once a year completing a round of golf without losing all his golf balls. Sam is also a fishing enthusiast and runs a local fishing club.

Mick Murduck TEP - Manager

Mick joined Hamilton & Wilton after leaving school and as one of the longest serving members of staff, saw the amalgamation of that practice with Ashdown Hurrey and has seen the profession go from hand-written ledgers to complex computer programs. Mick has taken all the changes in his stride and his extensive knowledge and experience, particularly with regard to tax and trusts, makes him the first point of call with colleagues and clients looking for an explanation of many tricky problems.

Mick lives in Battle, where he maintains a keen interest in his garden. He continues to provide help and advice with his grown-up family’s DIY activities and, as a grandparent, his family takes centre stage.


Marc Ransom - Manager

Marc has been with the practice since 2001 and works with Jeff on the firm’s internal accounting requirements. Marc utilises his extensive experience of running payroll as manager of the practice's payroll section.

He also provides accounting supporting in Jeff’s accounting client base and is a member of the firm’s audit team.

Marc is another participant in local football and he likes to spend time with his son, Harley, making sure that the footballing skills are passed on to the next generation. Marc is the envy of his work colleagues with his unrivalled collection of brightly coloured pullovers.

Martin Copland FCCA - Manager

Martin first came to Ashdown Hurrey whilst undertaking his accounting degree with a year’s placement during his course. Having completed his degree, he returned to the practice and completed his professional qualification as a Certified Accountant in 2012.  Martin, alongside Gemma, provides support to the sections headed by Ann and Jeff, whilst building his own client base and attending local networking events.

Martin describes himself as a music fanatic, the louder and faster the better, his own guitar playing being at a more leisurely pace. If he is not listening to or playing music, he is likely to be watching it live and he does include the odd bit of socialising with his friends, though this has been curtailed with the welcome arrival of his baby daughter.


Gemma Steer FCCA - Manager

Gemma’s first encounter with Ashdown Hurrey was through a school work experience placement and she cannot have been put off the idea of accountancy, as she joined as a trainee in 2006. Gemma initially completed her qualification as a member of the AAT and subsequently completed the ACCA examinations to become a Certified Accountant in 2012.

Gemma, alongside Martin, manages Ann's clients as well as trying to expand her own client base. Gemma helps Louise run the Ashdown Hurrey Women in Business Lunch Club after passing the baton on to her in December 2013.

Gemma describes herself as an armchair sports fan, with a particular interest in football.  She has divided loyalties, having been brought up by an avid Crystal Palace supporter and with her fiancé a loyal Brighton supporter – not a good mix on derby day! Gemma is focused on family and friends, with her own young daughter to keep her busy.

Daniel Swann ACCA - Manager

Daniel joined the practice in 2006 and having completed all the professional exams, is now a fully qualified Certified Accountant. Dan works mainly with Steve’s clients but also gets involved with the bigger section of clients and enjoys the personal contact this involves.

Daniel enjoys fishing, which is undertaken both at home and abroad, and he helps his dad with his business. Daniel is putting himself through a torturous programme of keep-fit and exercise with a varying degree of enthusiasm, depending on the level of strain it puts him under. He is an “early adopter” of all things IT, technical and gadgety, so he can usually be relied on to explain any new wizardry, as he has worked it all out for himself some time before.

Claire Johnson ACA - Senior

Claire joined the practice as a trainee, having previously worked for another practice. Claire completed her training and qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 2016.  Claire’s role is to assist partners, Mark Weeks-Pearson and Stuart Rosling, in particular providing back-up with their new clients.

Outside work, Claire is a volunteer with St John Ambulance, which sees her providing cover at many interesting local events, like the tennis at Eastbourne, sporting events and bonfires.  She also enjoys international travel, musical events and theatre, but especially spending time with family and friends.

Daniel Oliver ACCA - Senior

Dan successfully completed his degree in 2012 and then joined the practice in the same year. He completed his ACCA training and qualified as a Certified Accountant in 2018.  He works predominantly with Ann on her clients but also gets involved with some of the other sections.

Dan enjoys playing music (both piano and guitar) although no recordings have yet turned up in the office.  Dan is another sports enthusiast, particularly F1, but he is also prepared to get out of the armchair to do a bit of running - he achieved the quickest time of the Ashdown Hurrey entrants to his first Hastings Half Marathon.

James Jury MAAT - Trainee Accountant

James was recruited as a trainee in 2011, having previously completed his international baccalaureate.

James has completed this accounting technician training and is now a qualified MAAT.  James will now move forward into training to be a Chartered Accountant.

Outside work, James plays cricket for Rye & Winchelsea and competes at rifle target shooting.

Beth Green - Trainee Accountant

Beth initially went to university with the intention of qualifying as a teacher, but having been exposed to considerable experience in a classroom setting, she decided that it was not for her.  With the benefit of her degree, she decided to pursue a career in finance and having obtained other commercial experience, joined Ashdown Hurrey in 2014.

Beth’s initial role will be to learn the ropes of accounts preparation and in due course, she will start the formal training towards professional qualification.

Beth enjoys local history and learning about the past, as well as a bit of drama at the cinema or on television. Her sporting activities are limited to crazy golf, however, she did perform to a good standard in the firm’s annual crazy golf tournament.

Katie Bennett - Trainee Accountant

Katie first got to know Ashdown Hurrey when she undertook a school work experience placement in the Bexhill office. Having completed her degree, she applied for a trainee position and was pleased to be accepted as a graduate trainee.  Katie has recently started training for her ACCA qualification.

Outside of the office, Katie likes to socialise with friends, going to gigs and events and to keep fit, she attends exercise classes at the gym.

Helen 2016

Helen Harrod - Trainee Accountant

Helen joined the practice as part of the 2016 intake of trainees, having completed her degree at the University of Gloucestershire in Cheltenham.  Helen first got to know Ashdown Hurrey during a work experience placement when she was still at school locally, so the firm was pleased to welcome her back when she completed her educational studies.  Helen achieved a 1st in her degree of Accountancy & Financial Management, so this should give her a strong foundation when the time comes to start the professional exams on her path to qualification.

Outside work, Helen has a keen interest in sport, playing both cricket and netball to a good standard.  Having played age group cricket for Sussex Girls, she now mainly plays in the men's leagues for Crowhurst Park and was the first female cricketer to appear on the team's honours board as a result of her bowling prowess.

Megan 2016

Megan Merner - Trainee Accountant

Megan joined the practice directly from sixth form college, having completed three business-related A’ levels.  Although university was an option, Megan felt that moving straight to a practice based trainee position would be most suitable for her.  Once settled in and having had the chance to get familiar with the work involved, Megan will start undertaking professional exams on the path to full qualification.

Outside of work, Megan enjoys spending time with her new French Bulldog puppy and going to the gym.

Faye 2016

Faye Thompsett - Trainee Accountant

Faye successfully completed her A’ level studies at Bexhill College in 2016 and then joined the firm as a trainee.  Her training plan will see her getting familiar with the working environment and receiving instruction and guidance from her work colleagues.  Faye will then prepare herself for professional exams, which should lead her to achieve her ambition of full qualification as an accountant.

Faye’s hobbies and interests include photography and baking (always popular with work colleagues) as well as spending time with friends and family.


Lorna Piper - Trainee Accountant

Lorna got to know Ashdown Hurrey and the work that the practice does both through her year ten work experience whilst she was at school and with a one-year placement as part of her university degree. Lorna achieved a first class honours degree in mathematical sciences at the University of Bath and is now on the full-time accountancy trainee path.

Away from the office Lorna plays golf, undertakes pole fitness classes and enjoys reading and going to see live music in her spare time.


Kai Mersh - Trainee Accountant

Kai studied IT at Bexhill College and then started an apprentice web developer job locally before deciding to switch to an accounting and finance degree course at Kent University. Kai felt that he was more suited to practice based learning and joined Ashdown Hurrey as a trainee.

Kai’s IT backgroundgave him an interest in coding and creating games and more generally he enjoys socialising and playing a variety of sports, with the occasional day’s fishing.


Liz Furnell - Trainee Accountant

Liz was another trainee who first came to Ashdown Hurrey as part of an internship opportunity whilst she was at college before going on to university to undertake an accounting degree course. Liz achieved a first class honours degree as well as two prizes for high achievement in exams.

Outside work, Liz enjoys keeping fit, particularly through walking and swimming, and enjoys cooking for friends and family.


Nathan Adamson - Trainee Accountant

Having completed his A’ levels in business studies, maths and economics at Bexhill College, Nathan moved straight to Ashdown Hurrey with a view to following a training path to accountancy qualification.

Nathan enjoys playing football with local team, Hollington United, and spending time with friends and family and his pet Springer Spaniel.

Julie Peters - Accounts Assistant

Julie first joined the practice many years ago to fill in a few hours weekly whilst her family was young, having previously worked in a bank. As her family has grown older, her hours have increased and she is a highly regarded part of Ann’s team.

Understandably, her three growing sons place most demands on her outside work time and it is fortunate that she is a cricket enthusiast, as all three are keen players for Crowhurst Park. During the odd moments of personal private time, Julie enjoys cross-stitch.


Oliver Leonard

Oliver works as a ranger at Little Gate Farm where he is based in the office. Oliver is sociable and enjoys the company of others and works well in a team environment. Oliver has a placement with Ashdown Hurrey with a view to developing his experience and he works with Claire carrying out the processing of bookkeeping tasks.

Oliver enjoys playing football for the 1066 Specials football team and is also currently learning to drive. He is interested in music and loves to volunteer on the Conquest Hospital radio.

Heidi Martin - Payroll Division

Heidi spent a number of years doing secretarial and reception duties but also undertook some payroll and internal accounting work as well.

When the practice decided to establish a dedicated payroll division, Heidi was the ideal candidate to specialize in this area.  The introduction of Real Time Information (RTI) and Auto-Enrolment has convinced many employers that a payroll bureau is the best approach.  Heidi enjoys the new challenges of her role in this increasingly important part of the practice's service delivery.

Heidi had previously worked for partners Paul and Jeff at their previous practice. She joined Ashdown Hurrey shortly after them following a brief but exciting period of working in Moscow when her husband’s job took them in that direction. Now with the time demands of her family, when not providing her children with a taxi service, she likes to go horse riding.

jo gore

Jo Gore - Payroll Division

Before joining Ashdown Hurrey, Jo was an executive assistant for a local entrepreneur who had a portfolio of businesses and properties.  Alongside the bookkeeping carried out for these activities, Jo also carried out the bookkeeping for an arable and livestock farm for several years.

Jo is currently studying AAT and juggles this with the care of two young children.  When she has the time, Jo enjoys outdoor activities and vising family and friends.

Sue Lee3

Sue Lee 

Sue has worked as Peter’s personal assistant for more than thirty years, initially at the Bexhill office of Hamilton & Wilton and then when he set up his own practice for twenty-seven years at Silk & Co in Hastings.

Sue points out that she was extremely young when she first started working for Peter and there is really no need to do the maths!

When not at work, Sue enjoys walking, eating out and spending time with friends and family.  Sue enjoys going to the theatre, shopping, attending concerts, fashion and music and admits to an allegiance to Chelsea F.C. which is not always approved of by her work colleagues!  If there is any time left over, Sue enjoys holidays in the sun.

Jools Stebbings - Secretary

Jools originally worked for Hamilton & Wilton and came on board with Ashdown Hurrey when the firms amalgamated.

Jools works in the front office in Hastings with Tracey and is frequently the initial point of contact, with a warm and professional welcome. As well as regular secretarial work, Jools is appreciated for her design and marketing skills.

In her spare time, Jools enjoys travelling around the country in her motorhome and is keen on crochet, reading and cooking.

Tracey Ridley - Secretary

Tracey originally joined the practice as a full-time secretary/receptionist and changed her role to give secretarial support when she reduced her hours to bring up her daughter. With her daughter now grown up, Tracey has increased her hours and has reverted to secretarial and reception duties with Jools.

Outside work, Tracey remains family focused and enjoys spending time with family and friends.

Contact us


Hastings Office
Tel: 01424 720222
Fax: 01424 720888

Bexhill-on-Sea Office
Tel: 01424 730300
Fax: 01424 730086

We offer free initial consultations - to arrange a meeting or to have a chat over the telephone, please contact us.



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