Our History

Hillier Hopkins LLP

Chartered Accountants & Tax Advisers

Call +44 (0)330 024 3200 and discover how we can help you.

In 2023 we celebrated our 90th anniversary.

Our story dates back to 1933 when John Hillier began his practice in Luton. Since then, we have grown to become one of the region’s leading firms of Chartered Accountants, with offices in London, Milton Keynes and Watford and more than 250 people.

Take a look through some memories and photos from our archives.

Click through the decades below to find out more about our journey through the years.

In 1933, our founder John Hillier began his accountancy practice in Luton. Joined by Langford Lewis they opened their accountancy practice under the name Lewis Hillier & Co.

As demand grew, John began commuting one day a week to Hemel Hempstead to take consultations. Hemel Hempstead was a growing new town neighbouring Harpenden and linked via the Harpenden and Hemel Hempstead Railway (the Nicky Line).

By 1938, John had opened temporary offices in the garden of a property in Alexandra Road, Hemel Hempstead.

In the early forties, following steady growth, permanent offices were taken at number 43 Marlowes which they shared with the Hemel Hempstead Building Society.

Leonard Hopkins joined the firm in 1943, later becoming a Partner at the Hemel Hempstead office and driving it’s growth. Langford Lewis and John Hillier remained at the Luton office.

As the practice continued to expand it soon outgrew its Hemel Hempstead office at 43 Marlowes and relocated to Brooklyn House, 68 Marlowes.

By 1950, the firm had acquired a Harrow based practice run by Mr Sargant and was later joined by Kenneth Winward.

Meanwhile in Hemel Hempstead, the Development Corporation compulsorily acquired 68 Marlowes and the office moved to the 19th century Coach House at 79 Marlowes.

In 1952 Langford Lewis departed the firm, resulting in the firm’s name change to Hillier Hopkins & Co. We still have our original brass name plate!

Hillier Hopkins & Co - original name plate

By 1953, the firm was serving an increasing number of Watford and Bushey clients, so an office was opened at 28 Station Road, Watford. Keith Johnson later joined the firm and played a key role in developing the Watford office.

In 1957 The Society of Accountants and Auditors merged with the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and Hillier Hopkins & Co subsequently became Chartered Accountants.

Hemel Hempstead firm A W Angus & Sanderson was acquired in 1958.

In 1961, John Hillier introduced Gordon Hufford who was promptly interviewed and recruited as Managing Clerk of the Hemel Hempstead office and was later to play a major role in the development of the whole firm.

The two decades that followed were a period of strong growth and following a change to the partnership rules, the addition of many new faces to the partnership ranks.

Richard Nice, who became a partner in 1977, opened an office at College Road, Harrow in 1978.

This period ended with the retirement of Len Hopkins in 1979.

1982 saw the addition of the Watford practice of Mr F W Squire and having extended 28 Station Road premises to its limits, moved into new offices at 24/26 St Albans Road to house the growing team.

By 1986 the Watford and Harrow teams had expanded needing more space and moved into larger premises in St Martin’s House, Clarendon Road and Station Road respectively.

Keith Johnson retired from the firm in 1990 following 40 years service including 30 as a partner.

In 1991 the firm parted ways with the Harrow office and also appointed our first female partner Pauline Trabucchi.

1992 saw the retirement of Gordon Hufford after 30 years with the firm.

Hillier Hopkins was one of the first accountancy firms in Hertfordshire to be awarded the IIP accreditation in 1996.

In 1997, following a merger with Gibson Appleby, Hillier Hopkins expanded into an office in Aylesbury.

In 1999 the Hemel Hempstead office was further strengthened when the firm merged with Geo Little Sebire of Harpenden.

In 2003, Hillier Hopkins became a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP)and the following year merged with Burnhams Chartered Accountants who moved into the Watford office.

Joining forces with Badger Hakim of London gave Hillier Hopkins a further office location in the heart of London, 15 new staff members, and Ross Badger and Jonathan Franks as two new Partners.

Lindford & Company became part of the Hillier Hopkins Group in 2010, bringing with it more than 20 years specialist experience serving the entertainment and media sector.

In October 2010, BFS Accountants Ltd trading as Blackstone Franks Smith & Co became part of the Hillier Hopkins Group and moved into the Aylesbury office.

In April 2013 Haysom Silverton became part of the Hillier Hopkins Group, thus establishing Milton Keynes as a strategic location to the firm and continuing to build the depth and breadth of capabilities available to clients of the firm.

In November 2016, Tung Sing & Co Limited joined the firm and were incorporated into our London office.

In 2020, the firm became an independent member of TGS, a global network of professionals across 58 countries.

TGS are signatories to the UNs Global Compact and with our growing commitment to these goals, the Principals commissioned an environmental review and signed an Environmental Policy in 2021. Following this, the firm established it’s Green Team to implement it’s recommendations.

In April this year we merged with Minney & Co, a practice based in Dunstable.

In July we merged with Berkhamsted based Colin Gray & Co and payroll bureau Priority Payroll Services.

We are also incredibly proud that our Silver Investors in People accreditation was upgraded to Gold status this year. This is in recognition of our continuous improvement in key areas such as developing and living the firm’s values, people empowerment, collaborative working and our appraisal system.

In our 90th year we are still forging ahead and looking forward to the next 90 years supporting our people, our clients and our planet.

Hillier Hopkins at 90 Spotify Playlist - featuring the top selling singles from each year since 1952

Listen to the soundtrack of our history.

  1. Open the Spotify App and click on the search tab and then the camera icon.
  2. Scan the Spotify code at the bottom of the image on the left.
  3. Be whisked away on a musical journey through the decades, featuring the biggest selling singles from the last 90 years.