Tick icon
I am the notification bar, pleased to meet you.
Close close icon

Finance Conference 2019
Crieff Hydro Hotel

Event Finished


Tue 12 - Wed 13, Nov from
09:45 to 15:00 (BST)


Crieff Hydro Hotel
Strathearn House, Ferntower Road, Crieff, PH7 3LQ


From £280

About the Conference

SFHA’s Finance Conference is the ‘must-attend’ event for the sectors finance professionals, senior staff and governing body members.

The 2019 conference will support delegates in driving change across the sector through a combination of expert speakers, interactive workshops and networking opportunities.

The programme features the topics deemed most important by frontline finance staff, who often are now also responsible for other functions such as IT, corporate services and human resources.

Over two days we will learn more about current regulation and governance, the political and economic environment, how to maximise your impact, how to manage risk, funding options and the impact of legislative changes on the bottom line - as well as so much more.

If you want to learn more and add value to your organisation, Finance Conference 2019 is not to be missed.


Places at workshops will be allocated on a first come, first served basis and spaces at each session are limited.

Please book your workshop online using the link below.

Book your workshop


Is It for You?

The conference is aimed at all finance directors, managers, officers and other staff who have an interest in housing association and co-operative financial issues, including Chief Executives and Directors. Governing body members, consultants, local and central government and other professionals working on financial issues in the affordable housing sector will also find the conference of interest.


This years conference returns to Crieff Hydro in Perthshire, located just over an hour’s drive from Edinburgh and Glasgow. The hotel combines contemporary and comfortable accommodation with good conference services and excellent leisure facilities. For full details of what the hotel has to offer, visit their website at www.crieffhydro.com

Cost and How to Book

Residential places are now sold out but you can attend as a day delegate for as little as £280 and when you book three places you recieve a fourth day place for free!



Member Price £280

Non-member Price £435

Finance Conference 2019 at Crieff Hydro Hotel

Strathearn House, Ferntower Road, Crieff, PH7 3LQ


  • Driving Icon
  • Walking Icon
  • Public Transport Icon


Main Sponsor


Tea & Coffee Sponsor

Utility Aid

Lanyard Sponsor

CAF Bank

Drinks Sponsor

Thistle Insurance

Lunch Sponsor


Delegate Bag Sponsor

Zurich Logo

Dinner Sponsor



Ian Brennan profile image

Ian Brennan
Scottish Housing Regulator

Ian Brennan is Director of Regulation at the Scottish Housing Regulator. He is a Fellow of the Association of Chartered and Certified Accountants. He also holds a business degree from the University of Strathclyde and an MBA from the University of Glasgow.

Read More

Ian joined the Board of Historic Environment Scotland in a non-executive capacity on 1 November 2016. From November 2013 until July 2016 he was a member of the Board of Glasgow Kelvin College where he chaired the Financial Control Committee.

Previously Ian has held positions in higher education, the NHS and the Accounts Commission. He has also worked for a number of accountancy firms.


Stevie McAvoy  profile image

Stevie McAvoy
Muirhouse Housing Association

Stevie has 30 years’ experience in social housing, working for a variety of organisations in different geographical locations.

Read More

He has been for the past 5 years, CEO of Muirhouse Housing Association in Edinburgh. In this period he has led their successful recovery from high engagement, to now being, amongst the top performing RSL’s in Scotland.

He was also the instrumental force behind the creation in 2018 of ARCHIE, a shared service arrangement involving 8 housing organisations in Edinburgh and is the current chair of ARCHIE.

David Hourston profile image

David Hourston
Brewin Dolphin

David has been with Brewin Dolphin for 19 years. After graduating from university with an MA (Hons) degree, David started in the group’s research department in Edinburgh before relocating to London to head up the unit trust research function

Read More

After 2 years in London, David returned to Edinburgh to take up his current position in 2004 and manages a wide range of charity and corporate mandates. David is a Chartered Fellow of the Securities Institute and was promoted to Divisional Director in 2013. He has two young children and enjoys golf, hill climbing and cycling in his spare time.

Jude Lean profile image

Jude Lean

Jude has over 15 years generalist HR experience in a variety of different sectors spanning manufacturing, public and professional services.  Currently she is a senior consultant working with RSM to deliver strategic and operational HR solutions across Scotland and Northern Ireland.  She works closely with her key stakeholders to understand the business needs and challenges, enabling her to deliver a bespoke service, meeting their requirements at each stage. 

Read More

She has worked across the UK, Europe and USA delivering HR solutions for every element of the employee lifecycle from performance improvement, recruitment and selection through to onboarding and engagement.  Jude is future focused and keen to understand a business’s vision to enable successful implementation of HR operational initiatives that add value and ensure continued engagement from the people within.   

Jude is experienced in recruitment and talent development at all levels of business.  She has advised on people progression to senior management positions, created and delivered on graduate assessment days and worked with middle management to develop leadership capabilities.  

David McKinlay  profile image

David McKinlay

David is a Chartered Tax Adviser working in our Edinburgh office. He has over 15 years VAT experience and previously was a VAT officer with HM Revenue & Customs.

Read More

David has extensive VAT experience working with a variety of clients in the Charity and Not for Profit Sector, in particular RSLs, advising on a broad range of VAT issues in connection with their VAT compliance obligations, VAT planning as well as the effective management of VAT costs. David is a VAT Partial Exemption specialist.  

Colin Brown profile image

Colin Brown

Colin is a Chartered Tax Adviser with over 20 years’ experience in employment tax, tax compliance and advisory work. He spent most of career with PricewaterhouseCoopers before joining RSM through one of their predecessor firms.

Read More

He is responsible for RSM’s employment solutions offering in Scotland, advising on PAYE and employment tax matters. Colin works with a range of not for profit and public sector bodies. He also specialises in dealing with HMRC Investigations and compliance checks.

Richard Murphy profile image

Richard Murphy

Richard Murphy is Associate Director Treasury Solutions at ATFS.

Read More
  • Formerly with Tullett Prebon, CSL and NatWest Bank, founding Director of Murja Ltd (now ATFS Ltd).
  • Specialist in debt funding, interest rate risk management and the use of derivatives.
  • Associate of the Chartered Institute of Bankers, personally authorised and regulated by the FCA.
Alistair Berwick  profile image

Alistair Berwick

Alistair Berwick is Director Treasury Solutions Scotland at ATFS.

Read More
  • Formerly Head of Nationwide’s housing association team in Scotland.
  • Specialised in funding solutions for the social housing market for over 30 years.
  • Extensive experience in the banking and funding sectors specialising in lending and treasury advice to housing associations throughout the U.K. Private Finance Advisor to the Scottish Government.
  • Chartered Banker, personally authorised and regulated by the FCA.


Paul McNeill  profile image

Paul McNeill

Paul is an expert in long term financial planning for housing associations.

Read More

He has been working within the housing sector for nearly 30 years. Paul is a qualified chartered accountant and has an accountancy degree from Glasgow University.

Paul started his career with Deloitte Haskins and Sells before moving to Scottish Homes and then into advisory services with his own firm of consultancy HRC Ltd. Paul has created and/or assessed the long-term strategic plans for the majority of social landlords in Scotland.

His experience also includes providing Independent tenant advice for housing transfers, securing in excess of £600m of Private Finance for social housing projects, options appraisals for the future of non-traditional houses and project managing Large Scale Voluntary Transfers.

Paul assisted in updating the Scottish Housing Regulator’s Business Planning guidance and has recently assisted an Association in appealing against the statutory intervention of the SHR.

Adrian Webster profile image

Adrian Webster

The son of a Yorkshire coal miner, Adrian began his career as a police officer in Bristol. However, unable to contain an entrepreneurial urge and a burning desire to “do something different”, he soon found himself setting up a highly innovative dairy business, before successfully diversifying into a wide range of other areas ranging from frozen food to recruitment and property.

Read More

Armed with a genuine love and proven talent for selling, Adrian entered the IT industry, where he quickly established himself as one of the UK’s top sales professionals. From Corporate Sales Manager of US Robotics, he moved to leading distributor Northamber plc as Group Sales & Training Manager, where he led a team of 150 to phenomenal success, and discovered his ability to inspire others.

Today, Adrian is one of the UK’s most sought-after motivational speakers, specialising in delivering inspirational key messages and practical tools in a humorous, down-to-earth style audiences can easily relate to and remember.

Alan Brown profile image

Alan Brown
Eildon Housing Association

Alan has worked in the Scottish Social Housing sector since 1981 and is currently Director of Finance and Corporate Services with Eildon Housing joining in 2003.

Read More

During his time with Eildon the Association has borrowed over £80m from various sources and different types of loans ranging from  conventional bank loans to bullet point bond loans. The latest borrowing has  been in the form of a private placement for £40m. Alan is a Fellow of the Chartered Management Accountants

John McLaren profile image

John McLaren

John McLaren is a political economist whose work is concentrated on the Scottish economy and finances but also covers a wide range of macro and micro economic issues.

Read More

He has worked as an economist at H.M. Treasury, the Scottish Office, the Centre for Public Policy for Regions at the University of Glasgow and was an Executive Director of Fiscal Affairs Scotland. He is currently working as an economic consultant and runs the website Scottish Trends. He is also a regular commentator on the Scottish economy in the media.

Shirley A Robison profile image

Shirley A Robison
Barrhead Housing Association

Shirley is the Chief Executive of Barrhead Housing Association and during the last 14 years has been keyin turning the organisation into a financial viable and secure community based housing association with turnover of £4.4m and cash reserves of £3.8m, and growth in stock albeit small from 750 units to 935 units.

Read More

We have a small development programme mainly based around delivery of affordable units with individual developers under Section 75 partnership agreements and we aim to deliver 67 new houses over the next two years. We deliver welfare rights services, dedicated IT support in-house, a variety of wider community regeneration projects and our first in-house repairs operative service. 

Shirley was also a Scottish Housing Regulator statutory appointee at Cordale Housing Association and Wishaw + District HA.

Shirley has held posts at Scottish Housing Regulator, Glen Oaks HA and Port of Leith HA.


Piers Williamson profile image

Piers Williamson
The Housing Finance Corporation

Piers has been the Chief Executive of The Housing Finance Corporation (“THFC” – a £7Bn not-for-profit lender to UK Housing Associations) for the last seventeen years, working extensively with government and government agencies and viewed as a sector expert on all aspects of housing finance.

Read More

He has also recently advised the Australian Federal Treasury on setting up an equivalent bond aggregator in Australia.

He has over 35 years of experience of the UK, US and European financial markets specialising in bank treasury risk management, securitisation and the interface between private sector financing and Government.

He holds professional qualifications in both treasury and banking and in addition to his duties at THFC served as a non-executive member of the Homes & Communities Agency’s Regulation Committee for Social Housing between 2012 and 2015.

In addition to his duties at THFC, Piers was recently appointed to the Board of Newbury Building Society.

In 2015 he received a lifetime contribution award at the Housing Association National Accountancy Awards.

Polly Jones profile image

Polly Jones
Scottish Federation of Housing Associations

Polly Jones joined SFHA as Head of Membership and Policy in April 2019. Prior to taking up the role, she was Project Manager for A Menu for Change Project at Oxfam Scotland. Polly has 20 years’ experience working on policy and campaigns for a range of civil society organisations. 

Read More

Prior to her move to Scotland, she lived in London and was Head of Policy and Campaigns at Global Justice Now and spent 10 years working for public sector union UNISON. Polly has been Chair of the Trade Justice Movement and Vice-Chair of War on Want. She is an expert on the delivery of public services, committed to exposing the root causes of poverty – at home and internationally, and has a record of working with others to deliver change.

Stuart Eglinton  profile image

Stuart Eglinton
SE Training

Stuart has worked in social housing for around 20 years and after working for 10 years with the SFHA in a variety of training and consultancy roles he set up his own company SE Training in January 2009. 

Read More

Over the years, Stuart has worked with housing associations and local authorities across Scotland providing training and consultancy advice and assistance – and has a particular interest in Governance, Customer Engagement, Equal Opportunities and Business Planning.

In his spare time Stuart is a very amateur aerialist (trapeze and aerial hoop) and is currently trying to master bouldering (very low climbing) and juggling – but not at the same time!!

Helen Forsyth profile image

Helen Forsyth
Berwickshire Housing Association

Helen Forsyth has been the Chief Executive of Berwickshire Housing Association for over 12 years during which time Helen has inspired staff to become number 9 in the Sunday Times Best Companies not for profit section and developed an  innovation culture of problem solving with the staff. 

Read More

 Berwickshire owns the ground breaking “Fisherman Three” Community Windfarm, near Cockburnspath. This is already producing income to be used to support the building of new homes locally.

Helen joined Berwickshire Housing Association from Places for People in 2007 in which her role was Regeneration Director and previously to this role Helen was the Chief Executive at Edinvar Housing Association. Helen’s background has involved working in the public sector, health and social care and not for profit organisations. Helen is the Chair of Resilient Scotland and was recently appointed to represent the independent sector for the new South of Scotland Economic Partnership, a new initiative which will devise a fresh approach to the economic development of Scotland.

She is passionate about opportunities for those with less access to resources and a strong sense of social justice.

Colin Taylor profile image

Colin Taylor
Scotland Excel

Colin Taylor is Housing Services Manager at Scotland Excel leading a team with responsibility for delivering the Scottish Government funded Procurement Improvement Programme to housing associations. Colin joined Scotland Excel in 2008 providing support to Scotland’s councils before taking this role last April.

Read More

Before joining Scotland Excel , Colin’s previous career was in the private sector working for multinational corporations (Philips & IBM) building up extensive experience in procurement, finance, customer relationships and business operations with roles in both the UK and North America.

Kirsty Wells profile image

Kirsty Wells

Kirsty Wells has a career spanning over 20 years in the social housing sector.  She joined HouseMark in 2012 and has responsibility for strategy and operations within Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland ensuring HouseMark members maximise data insight and analysis for continuous improvement. 

Read More

Kirsty is passionate about tenant participation having spent much of her career as a Development Manager with the Tenants Information Service supporting landlords and tenants in Scotland.  Previously she was a Housing Officer in two local authorities in Scotland.  Kirsty is a Chartered Member of the CIH and was a CIH Scotland board member for eight years from 2010 until 2018.

Conference Exhibitors

Stand Exhibitor Contact


Zurich Logo

Zurich Municipal





Utility Aid

Utility Aid


Thistle Insurance

Thistle Insurance


CAF Bank

CAF Bank






Castleton Technology plc


Capital Document Solutions

Capital Document Solutions


Bank of Scotland Logo

Bank of Scotland


Wylie & Bisset Logo

Wylie & Bisset LLP


Bruce Stevenson Logo

Bruce Stevenson Insurance Brokers


GB Social Housing Logo

GB Social Housing Plc



TIAA Limited


Arthur Online

Arthur Online


Alexander Sloan Logo

Alexander Sloan


Law at Work Logo

Law at Work


Castle Computer Services

Castle Computer Services LTD



Allia C&C



JLT Specialty Ltd


Chiene & Tait Logo

Chiene + Tait





Invu Logo



Highlander International

Highlander International


Designer Software

Designer Software


Workflo Solutions

Workflo Solutions


SDM Logo

SDM Housing Software





Scott Moncrieff logo



Resource Telecom

Resource Telecom


Quinn Internal Audit Logo

Quinn Internal Audit & Business Support Services



Royal Bank of Scotland


Brewin Dolphin

Brewin Dolphin


Pay 360 by Capita

Pay 360 by Capita




Back to Top