Penny Burgess

Finance Director

Penny is responsible for ensuring that we successfully balance our internal cash requirements with the need to reward and retain our greatest asset – our staff.

Penny started as financial controller in 2010 and was invited to join the board in February 2016. She is now our finance director.

Why did you choose a career in finance?

I was very numerically orientated at school and having done a law degree, I realised it wasn’t for me so went on to study chartered accountancy in London.  I worked for an international law firm before moving back to the West Country when I was pregnant with my daughter. I then worked for another law firm for 10 years before joining Stride Treglown in 2010.

What is your proudest moment?

Being asked to join the board at a time where we were looking to become employee owned so that I could bring a different perspective not solely based on architectural or specialist technical skills.

What advice would you give your 20 year old self?

Don’t take life too seriously. Your priorities will change with time so don’t pigeon hole yourself so much now that you can’t follow your future dreams. The decisions you make now will influence your life but they don’t have to define it. Don’t wait for life to happen, go and grab it yourself.

What is the best book you’ve ever read?

The Harry Potter books. I truly believe that everyone should believe in magic – imagination is the greatest gift we possess because it can lead to endless possibilities. The first book came out the year my son was born and was the first to inspire my dyslexic daughter to pick up a book and read it from choice.

Tell us an interesting fact that nobody knows about you.

I won the ladies downhill slalom when I was 14 years old on my first ever skiing holiday to Austria. I was too young to go into the pub to collect my medal so I had to send in my mum to collect it for me. My biggest regret is that I haven’t kept up skiing even though I really loved it. I can’t stress enough that if you love something then keep up with it!