New paraplanner forum now live

by admin on 23 March 2016

Back in November we announced that this site would be going into hibernation but that a new forum would be launched in 2016 on the Paraplanners Powwow site.

I’m glad to say that the new forum, called The Big Tent, is now live and available to you all.  To see it simply click here and the first part I’d recommend you look at is the Getting Started Guide.

The forum on this site has been very popular over the last 8 years during a time when the spotlight was not shining on paraplanning.  These days our profession has a much higher profile and The Big Tent should prove to be an active and useful place for paraplanners to ask, answer, share & discuss.

The old forum here will remain as an archive in case you want to come back and visit old discussions.  Thanks to Aegon who have provided support for the archive.


Why and when will be closing down

by Richard Allum on 24 November 2015

It’s been almost eight years since launched as a destination for paraplanners across the UK.

And we think it’s fair to say that, when it launched, served a unique purpose: The one place for paraplanners across the UK to connect.

But since 2008 the web’s changed a lot. And paraplanning’s changed a great deal too.

The influence of sites like Twitter and LinkedIn have offered paraplanners new ways to communicate. Plus the number of events laid on for paraplanners by the IFP, the PFS and the Powwows have given more paraplanners more opportunities to keep in touch with the profession than ever before.

The consequences for the most popular part of – the Forum – has been a steady but marked decline in the number and currency of discussions.

That’s why we’ve decided to call time on – but not on the principle behind its foundation.

The kind folk at Aegon UK have agreed to support the site for the next twelve months but – on 1 December 2016 – will close and a new discussion forum – the ‘Big Tent’ – will be up and running at

Rather than close down, and lose all the discussions from the past 8 years, we wanted to ask a simple ‘Yes/No’ question: ‘Would you like us to archive all the existing discussions in’s forum so it’s still accessible when we close the site?’.

Click the link to let us know what you would like us to do and we’ll bow to the wishes of the majority (plus, you can sign-up for an alert to let you know when the Big Tent is ready for you to register). Here’s the link:

Over the years has proved a great source of ideas, insights and information thanks to the participation of paraplanners. We wanted to give you plenty of notice of our plan, and to thank each and every one of you for contributing to such a successful site over the years.

Thank you!
Richard and Martin


Powwow Down South

by Richard Allum on 18 October 2013

Hot on the heels of this week’s Powwow UpNorth the tribes are heading Down South giving southern paraplanners the chance to meet up, exchange views, learn things, fix things and share things.  The location and date will be chosen by the participants and there’s more info here.


Powwow! Up North

by Richard Allum on 6 September 2013

Hot on the heels of the main Powwow! happening later this month, the first regional event has been launched today.  It will take place in Leeds on 15 October and you can find out more here.


Powwow taking shape

by Richard Allum on 15 August 2013

The first Paraplanners Powwow is taking shape nicely with details announced today of the content, agenda and, most importantly for some, the food!  Sessions include “How do you carry out platform due diligence?”, “What goes into a really good report?” and “How do you build a cash-flow model?”.  There will also be a show & tell session with paraplanners sharing what technology they use and why.

The Powwow itself is expected to cover topics including qualifications, continuing professional development, and paraplanning and professional bodies.  The day will end with a stand up set from Mark Polson addressing questions such as “clean share classes – what the hell?”

Further details can be found on the Powwow site here.


Paraplanner of the Year 2013

by Richard Allum on 6 August 2013

PrintAs you may have seen in Financial Planner Magazine and IFA Online, this year’s Paraplanner of the Year Award will – for the first time – be coordinated by the IFP following the announcement that Martin and I have opted to bow out of front-line Awards coordination to spend more time with the Judging Panel.

Now in its sixth year, the Paraplanner of the Year Award was originally established by members of the independent paraplanning community here at .

From the start, the IFP’s support for the Paraplanner of the Year Award – among the Institute’s many other activities – has been instrumental in helping to raise paraplanning’s profile and its professional standing over recent years.

Intended to recognise exceptional performance among their peers, the Paraplanner of the Year Award not only attracts more and more entries from a greater number of outstanding paraplanners each year, but it also serves as the benchmark for professional conduct and standards against which a growing pool of UK paraplanners are able to aspire.

It has been the Awards’ growing popularity that has led us to conclude that, after five years, it was high time to hand over the task of coordination to the IFP’s dedicated team, allowing us to concentrate on our roles as members of the judging panel.

The awards are now open and you can find out more and enter here.




First ever Paraplanners Powwow announced

by Richard Allum on 20 June 2013

Powwow Landscape Negative

Plans to host a teepee-based powwow event to debate the future of the paraplanning profession will go ahead this September, organisers have announced.

Richard Allum confirmed that the Paraplanners Powwow, which is independent of professional bodies, will take place at Upper Aynho Grounds in Northamptonshire on 19 September 2013.

Up to 60 participants will be able to sign-up to take part in the one-day ‘unconference’, with those attending able to congregate with paraplanning peers to contribute to, and listen and learn from, best practice insights spanning the full spectrum of issues, ideas and innovations in UK paraplanning.

Richard explained: “With paraplanning at a professional crossroads, I thought there was room for a forum in which paraplanners could exchange views and ideas about the future shape of our profession in a way that is independent of the agendas of professional bodies.”

“At the heart of the day is the Powwow itself, which will be conducted under Chatham House Rules, and is designed to give paraplanners that opportunity.”

“But we also wanted to create an event that lets participants get stuck in and design their own day. So we’re creating a series of session formats that will give people the chance to listen, to lead and to take part.”

The not-for-profit event is being backed by Legal and GeneralAXA WealthSeven Investment Managementand Transact.

Powwow organisers hope to allow participants to determine the topics that will feature in sessions during the day through online voting in advance of the event. Two styles of session – ‘Show and Tell’ and ‘Small Hadron Collider’ – will be entirely determined by voting in advance. In addition to the Powwow itself, the event will host up to two Guru Lectures with speakers due to be confirmed closer to the event.

You can follow news about the Powwow at the website, on Twitter at @ParaPowwow. The hashtag for the event is #parapowwow.


IFP Paraplanner Conference 2013

by Richard Allum on 28 March 2013

This year’s conference will take place on Thursday 23 May with a dinner the night before.  The venue is in Kenilworth near Warwick and the content includes many speakers and sessions requested by paraplanners. Full details of the programme are available on the IFP site here and you can also book online.  I hope to see many of you there.


CPD online from Wizard Learning

by admin on 16 March 2013

Wizard Learning has been a supporter of this site for many years, especially with the Paraplanner of the Year, and we are pleased to return the favour with this post from them about the additions to their CPD system.

CPD must be more than just ticking the CPD boxes

The financial news element of our CPD SYSTEM provides advisers with concise and unbiased reporting of financial services related news and regulatory developments.

We research and analyse core information from a variety of sources including HMRC, FSA, ONS, government websites and press reports over the month. We then prepare a succinct online summary of the previous months most relevant finance related news and deliver this to you at the end of the month, together with a 10 question assessment to confirm your understanding. This counts as 1.5 hours of structured CPD each month. [click to continue…]


A new kind of event for paraplanners

by Richard Allum on 28 January 2013

Would a Summer gathering of paraplanners at a teepee-based professional powwow tempt you?

I’m contemplating the creation of a paraplanner-only event where outsourced and in-house paraplanner tribes can mingle and share tales of best practice, swap stories and listen to opinion-leading chiefs.

An informally enlightening and entertaining event where paraplanners can meet with paraplanners and confer about the challenges facing our profession.

An event that is independent of any professional bodies and takes place in the Summer months.

In the countryside.

In a teepee.

(With a feast, of course.)

A Paraplanners Powwow.

Find out more here.