New Tax Solicitor - Jonathan Lea Network

New Tax Solicitor

Our new tax solicitor Philippa Roles officially joined us in February this year after serving our her six months notice period as a partner of a large firm in Reading.

Philippa was recently featured in Platinum Magazine, the South East’s premier business publication where she talked about her high flying legal career, the challenges of balancing the demands of being a partner at a big firm with family life, what it’s been like working with us and how things have changed since she re-located to live on an Isle of Wight vineyard (which is where the Arson Fire chilli brand seen in the photo above comes in).

Philippa’s full story originally appeared here, while we also include it below, as follows:

City law firm & partnership

Dr Philippa Roles began her career working for an international law firm in the City. “I found myself assigned to the tax department for part of my training and discovered I really enjoyed it so when I qualified I chose to specialise in tax.”

When Philippa was expecting her first child she made the decision to move out of London. “I tried commuting for a while when I returned from maternity leave but the journey left me too tired, so I took voluntary redundancy. I was fortunate enough to then be offered an opportunity by a forward-thinking firm in Reading where I spent 10 years building a tax team. I was made a partner and was responsible for running the firm’s corporate social responsibility programme. I also became involved as a non-executive director for different companies which helped me develop a more pragmatic approach to advising clients.

“As my three children grew up they were increasingly missing out on opportunities because I was constrained by the requirement to always be in an office at prescribed times. I was also losing two hours a day to commuting. Unfortunately, due to the supervisory nature of the role it’s not possible to be a law firm partner and not be physically present, so I eventually took the decision to leave the safety of employment and walk off the cliff edge into the world of self-employment.”

Making the leap to self-employment

After doing a lot of research Philippa approached the Jonathan Lea Network.  “Although based in Sussex which is a considerable distance from where I now live on the Isle of Wight, Jonathan has set up his firm so efficiently that it feels as though I am working closely alongside him and the rest of his team, while their comprehensive understanding of how best to market and deliver legal services has led to a constant stream of new instructions.

“The whole team have done so much to support me in starting up, while the work has been wonderfully varied and comes from all around the UK as well as overseas. I have so far assisted clients with IR35 concerns, employee share plans, Enterprise Investment Scheme tax reliefs and corporate restructurings. Although much of my involvement has been focused on corporate tax, the breadth of my previous experience means I can also advise on property taxation (including joint venture structuring and VAT). Similarly there is also the expertise to do more cross border work, such as advising on international group restructuring and repatriation of assets overseas.

Arson Fire

“The volume of UK tax law and regulation increases year on year, and becomes ever more complex and harder to navigate. The demand for advice and assistance from specialist tax solicitors is increasing all the time and working with Jonathan’s team I feel well placed to help do this in a cost effective and value-added way. “Alongside my tax work, not only am I now spending more time with my children while enjoying life in the countryside, I have also founded a company called Arson Fire with my partner and his daughter. Arson Fire is a range of chilli based condiments and liqueurs that we currently make and retail out of Adgestone Vineyard on the Isle of Wight.”

About Jonathan Lea

Jonathan is a specialist business law solicitor who has been practising for over 18 years, starting at the top international City firms before then spending some time at a couple of smaller practices. In 2013 he started working on a self-employed basis as a consultant solicitor, while in 2019 The Jonathan Lea Network became a SRA regulated law firm itself after Jonathan got tired of spending all day referring clients and work to other law firms.

The Jonathan Lea Network is now a full service firm of solicitors that employs senior and junior solicitors, trainee solicitors, paralegals and administration staff who all work from a modern open plan office in Haywards Heath. This close-knit retained team is enhanced by a trusted network of specialist consultant solicitors who work remotely and, where relevant, combine seamlessly with the central team.

If you'd like a competitive quote for any legal work please first send an email to with an introduction and an overview of the issues you’d like our help with, following which someone will liaise to fix a mutually convenient time for a no cost no obligation initial 20 minute call with one of our fee earners.

We are always keen to take on new work and ensure that clients will not only come back to us again, but also recommend us to others too.

Get In Touch

Contact Us

In need of legal advice? We would love to hear from you!