Partner Practice of
St. James's Place Wealth Management

Nicola J Gillespie Syme BA (Hons), Chartered MCSI, DipPFS,

After graduating from University in Dundee and France with a European Business Law degree, Nicola began her career in Financial Services with PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Nicola relocated to Scotland in 2000 to concentrate on private client investment advice as a stockbroker with Greig Middleton. She attained the Securities Institute Diploma and became a Fellow of the Securities Institute in a role that evolved into investment management and private banking with Barclays Wealth. She completed the CII Diploma in Financial Planning and more recently attained Chartered status via the Securities Institute.

She was delighted to accept an invitation to join St. James's Place Wealth Management in 2009 to enable her to concentrate fully on assisting clients to become financially well-organised in an ever-changing world.

As Director of Gillespie Financial, she has been working in the financial services industry for 20 years, and has embraced being a Partner Practice of St. James's Place as an excellent opportunity to offer both corporate and private clients access to their distinctive, award-winning approach to wealth management.

Gillespie Financial has grown on the simple premise of nurturing long-term trusted relationships based on offering bespoke, honest and proactive wealth advice. Fundamentally, committed to not just offering advice that addresses short-term concerns, but developing forward-thinking strategies to help achieve future objectives and aspirations.

Away from the office Nicola enjoys spending time with her family, and an array of sports including cycling and running - often to be found at the front of the queue to sign up to the latest challenge!

Kathleen Blenkharn-McBride DipFA,

Kathleen joined Gillespie Financial in February 2018 having previously worked for 11 years in a banking environment as a Financial Adviser. She is a fully qualified Financial Adviser who obtained her Level 4 Diploma in Financial Planning in 2011 having previously been a CeMap qualified Mortgage Adviser for 6 years.

Attracted to the core principles of the Practice, Kathleen strives to provide expert holistic advice to clients to meet their financial needs. She is experienced and knowledgeable and provides a tailored service to each client based on their individual requirements. She believes it is important to build strong, long lasting relationships whilst delivering a professional and personalised service.

Lesley Steven,
Practice Manager

Lesley joined Gillespie Financial having previously worked as a Paraplanner and an Advice Support Consultant for FTSE 100 companies.

She has worked in the financial service industry for the last 19 years and has obtained her Level 4 Diploma in Financial Planning. As a Practice Manager Lesley’s role is to ensure that Gillespie Financial runs smoothly and efficiently and her main focus is on the ensuring ongoing development of professional services provided to clients, creating a client proposition unequalled in the wealth management sector.

As a business, the St. James's Place Charitable Foundation is extremely important to the Practice, Lesley and her team are always looking into different challenges to raise funds and supporting the Foundation.

In her spare time Lesley spends time amusing her young son, who keeps her on her toes! She enjoys meeting up with friends, travel and running to keep fit.

Carol Gillespie,
Business Administrator

Carol is a founder member of Gillespie Financial, and has worked for a number of years with the Director to build a bespoke Practice for clients. Her previous background was in the healthcare sector and with the benefit of her maturity and experience Carol understands the importance of good communications, honesty, discretion and confidentiality with clients. Although, Carol announced in June 2017 she was going to retire from her role as Practice Manager, she still plays an active part in providing administrative support to the team.

Outside of her office duties, Carol’s hobbies include, Gym classes, walking, cycling, sewing, cooking and gardening.

Debbie O’Donnell,
Senior Administrator/PA

Before joining Gillespie Financial in September 2014, Debbie worked in an administrative role within financial services where she gained the appropriate skills and experience to excel in her current role.

Debbie is a highly motivated member of the team, who works to a high standard. She is enthusiastic and takes an active role in maintaining and organising an efficient office to a very high standard.

Outside the office, Debbie’s hobbies include walking the family dog, helping her three children with their projects, travelling and socialising.

Rebecca Shirlaw,

Rebecca recently joined the team at Gillespie Financial, having previously worked in financial services where she has mastered excellent administration and customer service skills. Rebecca has won an award for outstanding customer service within St. James’s Place.

Outside the office, Rebecca enjoys walking her dog, yoga and spending time with her family.