Lesley is 56 and retired nearly two years ago after working in HR for over 30 years. She’s divorced with two grown-up children. Whilst they’ve both moved away from home, both are in academia, so Lesley still feels like ‘the bank of mum’ at times!

I met Peter around 10 years ago when I was the Head of HR for a local business. I had previously worked with a financial adviser, but as Peter was running the workplace pension it made sense to work with him instead.

Peter reviewed all of the pensions that I’d built up over the years and, after researching the different options, moved them into one portfolio which is best suited to my needs.

I’m fortunate in that I have a final salary pension and my plan was to keep working into my 60s when I could draw on that pension. However, when the business started to run into difficulties a couple of years ago, I was keen to consider my options.

With Peter’s guidance I decided to hand in my notice. As I’d turned 55, I was able to draw a lump sum from my pension, and this along with my final salary pension, means that I don’t need to go back to work.

Peter has helped me enormously; he’s literally given me the freedom to make life-changing decisions as I’d still be working if it wasn’t for his guidance. Now I do dog-walking, a little property development and voluntary work for the Samaritans, which I couldn’t have done if I was still working full-time. I also get to have more quality time with my children when I go to visit them, or they come to stay.

What I like about Peter is that he’s refreshingly honest and straight down the middle. I can trust him to give me the right advice which has helped me to retire much earlier than I thought I’d be able to.

Lesley, Totnes, Devon

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