Welcome to Academy Advisory

Financial services
Qualified accountants working as finance directors and auditors

Finance support services

Our specialist team provide services to academy trusts and colleges throughout the United Kingdom

We provide a comprehensive internal audit function that can provide assurance in every area of an academies business, from finance and HR, to educational risk and health and safety compliance. Our reporting dashboards provide the audit committee with a clear view of where risk exists with the organisation, and also where best practice is being demonstrated.

We work with our clients to ensure that risks are identified and sufficiently mitigated, and best practice is identified and effectively shared.

  • Academy Advisory Ltd is a regulated by the ACCA, the world’s largest global body of accountants.
  • We act as internal auditors for over 70 academies across the UK.
  • Our team works as both auditors and finance directors within the sector.
  • We know the challenges you face running your trust because we help to run them too.
  • Each audit visit will be reported formally and summarised for the Trust audit committee.

We provide outsourced financial support services in addition to our outsourced Finance Director service. We can assist in all areas of academy finance, from invoice processing and management accounting, through to month-end procedures, budget preparation and strategic planning.

  • Budget preparation
  • Preparation of Financial Statements
  • Assistance with grant applications
  • Accounting system support & advisory services

We provide a risk focussed and robust audit approach, built on a deep understanding of the academy sector. Unlike other auditors, we are also sector practitioners that work as finance directors and managers within academies and academy trusts. We pride ourselves on in-depth work and transparent reporting, clear identification of risk, and a truly value-added service that shares best practice from our extensive experience from across the academy sector.

  • Deliverables and timescales
  • Information required by the client
  • A summary of audit approach, our risk assessment and proposed response
  • Reporting arrangements
  • Key contacts


Finance Director services

We are experienced sector practitioners and have worked at strategic level, with some of the largest trusts in the UK. Our team have worked closely with the Department for Education and the Education and Skills Funding Agency, leading Principals and Chief Executives. We have first-hand experience as Finance Directors of academy trusts of all sizes and stages of lifecycle, from trust set up all the way through to assisting with recovery.

Our flexible, bespoke consultancy services cover all areas of academy finance, from assistance with grant applications, accountancy software changes, investigations, business planning, budget preparation, due diligence and governance reviews.

Whatever your requirements, we will have the experience to tailor a solution.

  • Business planning
  • Governance reviews
  • Investigations (including follow-up of whistleblowing)
  • Strategic advisory services
  • Recovery and academy turnaround services
  • Consultancy
Meet the team

Our leadership team

Chris Whiting

Chris Whiting FCCA


Ralph Hilton

Ralph Hilton