Category Archives: Local News




Chris Beard, Tax Manager at KSK Luton has run more than 100 marathons, and there is no sign of him stopping.

After successfully winning entrees to both London & Chicago 2020 Marathons, he was not going to let the current emergency measures slow him down.

The London Marathon was due to take place yesterday, Sunday 26th April, but for obvious reasons had been postponed.

This did not stop Chris who is raising money for Medical Detection Dogs “because these dogs are life savers”!

With the help and encouragement of neighbours, Chris set off yesterday morning to run 26.2 miles locally whilst maintain safe distancing measures, and 4 hours 4 minutes later successfully added another marathon to his tally, a fantastic achievement!




Here is Chris’s story:

“The postponement of the London Marathon to 4 October has meant what was originally a single challenge has turned into a marathon double.  I had also been successful in the ballot for a place at the Chicago Marathon on 11 October, so now it’s a case of finishing London, jumping on a plane and running Chicago!  Easier said than done!

As many of you may know, I have run over 100 marathons in my lifetime so most people will think what I am doing will be a piece of cake, but I have not actually ran a full marathon since April 2019.  Since June 2019 I focused on a personal challenge of running 52 official half marathon races within 52 weeks.  And whilst I managed 44 of these, the outbreak of COVID-19 will probably mean that I won’t be able to complete this challenge.


So, it is now time to get down to some serious training as your body soon forgets how to run a marathon when it’s been a while without doing one.

So why this wonderful charity??  Well, I just happened to be flicking through a local free newspaper when I came across a two-page spread about Medical Detection Dogs.  I firstly hadn’t realised that its main headquarters are literally on my doorsteps based on the outskirts of Milton Keynes and then I read exactly what they do there.

The charity trains up dogs to detect diseases such as cancer, Parkinson’s, malaria and bacterial infections.  The aim being to discover the diseases earlier thus saving more lives.

STOP PRESS: They are now trying to train dogs to detect whether someone has COVID-19, this could be a massive breakthrough and once trained, dogs could also be used to identify travelers entering the country infected with the virus or be deployed in other public spaces.

They also have Medical-alert assistance dogs trained up to detect minute changes in one person’s body odour.  This helps individuals with life threatening conditions to manage their day to day life.

Finally, there are the blood sugar detection dogs for adults and children living with unstable Type 1 Diabetes.  These sufferers do not get a warning if they have a dangerously low blood sugar level, so the dogs are trained to sense changes in the patient’s breath and alert them to test their blood.

Dogs are just the most amazing animals and they just to do this for their love of human interaction, not actually realising what lives they are saving every day!

This charity has no government funding and relies purely on you, me and the public’s generosity.  It needs over £2 million + a year to train and maintain these wonderful dogs. Please support this great charity.

Donating through JustGiving is simple, fast and totally secure. Your details are safe with JustGiving – they’ll never sell them on or send unwanted emails. Once you donate, they’ll send your money directly to the charity. So it’s the most efficient way to donate – saving time and cutting costs for the charity.”

“You can donate to the charity via  my Just Giving page here

Please donate if you can, it really is a good cause.




Marathon Man Chris Beard completes his 100th Marathon to join the 100 Marathon Club

Marathon Man Chris Beard completes his 100th Marathon to join the 100 Marathon Club

Chris Beard Celebrates 100th Marathon

On 30th August 2018 Chris Beard, Tax Manager at Keens Shay Keens Ltd completed 26.2 mile course in the Once Upon a Run in Surrey to achieve the impressive goal of completing 100 marathons.

Chris’s journey of more than 3.3 million strides began back in September 2008 in the Nottinghamshire Robin Hood marathon.  That Sunday Chris joined 1,128 other finishers to complete his inaugural marathon in 04:28:37.

Just over 10 years later Chris, most appropriately wearing bib number 100 lined up at 9:30am on Thursday morning with the aim to fulfil his goal of completing 100 marathons.  Just less than 4 ¾ hours later Chris crossed the finish line to achieve his goal.

Congratulations to Chris for this fantastic achievement.

Further information about Chris’s epic marathon journey can be found here:-


Whilst we are on the theme of marathons why not try our marathon trivia quiz:

  1. The modern day marathon distance is now established at 26.2 miles.  When was this distance first established?
    1. 1908,
    2. 1912,
    3. 1904
  2. The marathon distance prior to this had generally been set at around 25 miles since the modern Olympic Games in Athens in 1896.  It was agreed to increase the distance to 26 miles, but this was extended to 26.2 miles; why was this?
    1. Roadworks
    2. A measuring error was made.
    3. So that the royal children could watch the start of race from their Nursery.
  3. What marathon has the largest number of competitors?
    1. London
    2. New York
    3. Beijing
  4. How many calories are burnt running a marathon?
    1. 866
    2. 1,320
    3. 2,620
  5. What is the slowest time for an Olympic marathoner?
    1. 4 hours 55 minutes
    2. 8 hours 12 minutes
    3. Over 54 years.
  6. How many strides will a runner make during a marathon?
    1. 24,000
    2. 26,000
    3. 33,000
  7. When was the first marathon run?
    1. 490 B. C.
    2. 240 B. C.
    3. 130 B. C.
  8. In which city was the earliest modern day marathon run and in what year?
    1. London, 1908
    2. Boston 1897
    3. New York 1912
  9. Where is the highest marathon (on Earth) held?
    1. Nepal
    2. Bhutan
    3. Tajikistan
  10. Who ran the first marathon in space?
    1. Buzz Lightyear
    2. Flash Gordon
    3. Tim Peake
  11. Where is the lowest marathon held?
    1. Death Valley
    2. Jordan Valley
    3. Lake Eyre
  12. What is thought to be the strangest marathon?
    1. Man versus horse
    2. Man versus dog
    3. Man versus robot

Found out how well you did here:-

Marathon Trivia Quiz Answers


Tax Manager conquers London’s Hottest Marathon


Tax Manager conquers London’s Hottest Marathon

Chris Beard, Tax Manager at KSK Luton was pounding the streets of London yesterday in what turned out to be London’s hottest ever marathon.

Together with more than 40,000 fellow competitors, Chris took a steady pace to ensure he was not beat by the record 24.1C (75.3F) temperatures recorded in St. James Park. The course temperatures were probably even hotter as the London streets would have absorbed all that heat.

It cannot be all bad, as it was reported that with all the road closures leading to far less traffic on the capitals roads, it was reported that air pollution dropped by an impressive 89% in places. Perhaps we should all start running to work in future.

Despite warnings from the race organisers not wear costumes because of the extreme weather conditions there were still many colourful racers on show.

Chris however, proved that you do not have to draw attention to yourself to get noticed as he was caught by the TV cameras featuring the record breaking event. Chris’s snippet of fame can be viewed here:

CB London 2018 video

Mo Farah competed in his first marathon, finishing in third place, beating the 33 year old British record set by Steve Jones. Mo’s finish time was two hours six minutes and 21 seconds. The race was won by Kenyan Eliud Kipchoge.

Chris has set his sight on his own personal record as completing the London Marathon now brings his total marathon’s run to an impressive Ninety Four!

Chris is aiming to complete 100 marathons before the end of this year!

This means that Chris has already run a total of two thousand, four hundred and fifty three point 4 miles. With only  a further one hundred and fifty six point six miles to go Chris is taking it all in his stride.

Chris Beard London 2018


Leading firm of Chartered Accountants celebrates 70 years of support

Leading firm of Chartered Accountants celebrates 70 years of support

Keens Shay Keens Ltd celebrates 70 years of support for Bedfordshire Chamber of Commerce


Bedfordshire based chartered accountants, Keens Shay Keens Ltd were invited to ZSL Whipsnade Zoo last week to celebrate the Bedfordshire Chamber of Commerce 140th Year Anniversary and to be presented with a commemorative certificate confirming Chamber support since at least 1948.

The longest recorded supporters Vauxhall Motors were in attendance with one of their vintage models taking centre stage next to a brand new Vauxhall Astra which has been gifted to the Chamber for a whole years use.

The Sun shone and a balmy breeze swept from the downs to make perfect backdrop for some fizz and canapés as we heard congratulations from Adam Marshal, director general of the British Chamber of Commerce.

We also heard from Professor David Field, Zoological director at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo. David explained the great things that Whipsnade was achieving for Bedfordshire and around the world.  David was particular looking forward to the Bank Holiday Weekend and was hoping to exceed the 39,000 visitors who enjoyed the Whipsnade experience on the previous bank holiday.

Jeremy Brockis, Bedfordshire Chamber of Commerce chairman, urged businesses to engage and support, throughout the local business community and in particular through the Bedfordshire Chamber of Commerce.

Leading firm of Chartered Accountants celebrates 70 years of support

The presentation

Jeremy Brockis presents certificate to Paul Southward

Graham Boughton and Paul Southward were in attendance representing Keens Shay Keens Ltd and were treated to a very enjoyable and informative guided tour around some of Whipsnade’s favourite inhabitants.

Graham Boughton

Graham Boughton

Some of the attractions:

Keens Shay Keens Ltd are proud to be recognized as such a long standing supporter of the Bedfordshire Chamber of Commerce and maintain a strong commitment to the Bedfordshire business, economic and social community. Managing Director Paul Howkins said “we are proud to have been able to help and assist so many local businesses, from foundation, through growth and succession; we have played our part in helping many of the regions leading businesses.  We aim to continue the tradition of providing high calibre professional services to the many owner managed businesses of the region”.

Paul Howkins

Paul Howkins

Taxman targeting Bedfordshire landlords and property owners

Following much publicity from HM Revenue & Customs over the last year or so aimed at landlords and property investors who may not have declared and paid the appropriate tax, the campaign has reached a local level.

As well as scrutinising records of transactions in property, the Taxman is contacting Bedfordshire estate agents and letting agencies demanding that they hand over details of their customers and the properties that they manage.  By law, these bodies have no option but to comply with the Taxman’s demands.

The Taxman is also writing directly to people he believes may have sold property and not made the appropriate declarations and where applicable paid the correct tax liability.

For the majority of landlords and property owners this should not be of any concern as they will have ensured that their income and capital gains have all been dealt with correctly.

However, there are a number of situations where problems can arise and these include:-

  • The Taxman can misinterpret the information he receives leading to enquiries that can be time consuming and stressful to satisfactorily resolve.
  • Some landlords incorrectly believe that where there is no profit from their letting e.g. where expenses exceed income, they do not have to declare their letting activities to the Taxman.
  • If you have or are about to sell a property which you believe is your main residence and therefore any gain arising will be exempt from capital gains tax are you certain that the exemption will apply?  This  is particularly relevant where more than one property is owned simultaneously or where the period of ownership or personal residence is short.

We can help give peace of mind if you are affected by any of the above situations or have any concerns about your tax affairs:

  •  We can help deal with the Taxman’s enquiries assisting to quickly resolve any queries and ensuring that you pay no more than the correct amount of tax.
  •  We can assist with the preparation of tax returns for property letting and advise you on what expenses can be correctly claimed against letting income.  If you need to inform the Taxman of previously unreported lettings we can ensure that this is done efficiently and without fuss.
  •  If you have sold or are about to sell a property and you believe that any gain should be exempt from tax we can advise on what records should be kept and what actions you can take in support of a claim for exemption.
  • If you believe that you may have not made the correct declaration to the Taxman we can assist you with any disclosure and ensure that where penalties may be imposed these are kept to a minimum.

Contact Paul Southward for further information

Taxman launches another unpaid tax disclosure scheme

HMRC has launched the “Second Incomes Campaign”. This is latest of many such campaigns aimed at encouraging taxpayers to pay the correct amount of tax on previously undisclosed income sources.

Under the terms of these schemes, taxpayers who make qualifying voluntary disclosures are offered more favourable terms of settlement than would normally apply if HMRC discover a discrepancy.

HMRC is constantly stepping up its efforts to target tax evasion and with the use of sophisticated digital intelligence systems aims to identify taxpayers who may not have declared all their income.

Legislation allows HMRC to go back up to 20 years and in more serious cases a criminal investigation may be carried out.

The maximum penalties chargeable can be up to 100% of the undeclared tax liability and up to 200% for offshore related income.

If you believe that you may have undeclared income, we can help ensure that any resulting liabilities are kept to a minimum. We can advise you of the terms of all the current disclosure facilities and determine whether or not you may qualify. We can accurately calculate your income and ensure that any allowable deductions are included. In the case of incomplete records we can assist in preparing reconstructed accounts for acceptance by HMRC. We will calculate the interest charges due and ensure that any penalties are kept to a minimum.

Contact Paul Southward if you would like to discuss any aspect concerning your tax obligations and liabilities.
Call 01582 651000.