Two North Devon father and son financial advisers both graduated on the same day – despite earning their qualifications 23 year apart.

Philip and Felix Milton of Barnstaple-based Philip J Milton & Company Plc recently attended the Personal Finance Society graduation ceremony at the Chartered Insurance Institute headquarters.

Owner and founder Philip, 56, was one of the first 100 to qualify as a Chartered Financial Planner when the qualification was introduced but never attended the graduation ceremony until now.

Felix, 23, has just qualified for the gold standard qualification for professional financial planners and financial advisers, so it was decided they should graduate together.

Philip said: “I was invited to attend at the time but simply the opportunity never arose and it slipped off the radar.

“In between times, I went on to achieve one of the first Fellowships of the Society too and when Felix started to do the higher level examinations and then qualified, to encourage him to graduate I said that I’d attend the same ceremony and make a weekend of it.”

Philip started his independent firm in 1985, also aged 23, from his parents’ living room and the firm enjoys a multi-million pound turnover and has grown to 33 staff and managing more than £155million entrusted to it by clients from all over the world.

It is poignant for Philip, who has just celebrated 40 years’ full-time work in the world of finance, that Felix is 23 now and qualifying.

He added: “It is very humbling to think that 33 years ago I set up on my own and since then, clients have been so supportive of our business and the degree of professional and caring service that we afford.

“It gives my wife Helen and I great pride that Felix wanted to join the firm and that he has qualified swiftly too.

“With the safety of the firm’s establishment and dad’s knowledge and experience behind him, he has already joined the advisory team and is building great rapport with so many new clients who welcome his approach and youth.”

Felix joined the family firm at 18 and after studying as an accountant has added an impressive portfolio of qualifications and does not intend to stop there.

The firm has also recently been awarded the prestigious Corporate Chartered Financial Planners title.