Meet the Team
Charles de Lastic
What do you do?
My Purpose – I inspire, help and coach people to live happier more effective lives.
I use this purpose statement to help ensure I make the right decisions and take the right actions.
Putting it up here encourages me and everyone I engage with to hold me accountable for this statement. It took a while for me to pluck up the courage to place such a bold statement on this and other websites but now it’s done it pushes me to achieve my purpose.
- Why inspire? – It reminds me to set and achieve high standards.
- Why help? – It reminds me to be active and “hands on.”
- Why coach? – It’s effective in helping people to succeed
- Why happier? – It’s a fundamental driver for everyone.
- Why effective? – Being effective produces great results.
My name is Charles de Lastic, and at the time of updating this in 2018, I am 62 years old. I live in the sleepy village of Wheathampstead in Hertfordshire, England with my wife and long-term partner of 23 years Heather. Heather and I met at Salsa dancing classes, and she is, without a doubt, one of the most organised people in the world – we make a great team. Our daughter, Kirsten, is a primary school teacher who lives with her boyfriend Sam who is a PE teacher.
My father died when I was very young. My mother Rita (87 this year) is living on the Gold Coast in Australia and playing a lot of golf. My two brothers – Robert lives in Australia in the same town as my mother, and Peter lives in Atlanta, Georgia, USA.
I love to ski (downhill on snow), any form of water sport (especially kite surfing) take lots of interesting holidays (as you can tell by the tan in the photo above) and have meals out with friends.
At age 18 I started work in the equities department for the Queens Bank Coutts and Co in the city of London. After a few years, I decided I preferred working more with people and joined Sainsbury’s, rising to become a deputy store manager. This role gave me a solid foundation in business operations, systems and team management.
I “semi-retired at 31” to run my own business – a bar and restaurant on the Greek island of Lefkas. For seven years most of my summer days were spent windsurfing and evenings working in the bar. In the winters I indulged my passion for skiing and worked as a holiday rep in the French Alps for Thomsons and Inghams.
Eventually, I decided I was getting a bit long in the tooth for that hedonistic lifestyle, so I returned to the UK and trained to become a financial adviser with Lloyds Bank and then Barclays Bank. At Barclays, I worked mainly with business owners as clients.
About 17 years ago we set up Bluebond as a separate consultancy business as a specialist in Inheritance Tax and Estate planning. We help the wealthy retired, investment property owners and business owners with their tax planning
Why I set up Bluebond Tax Planning
After a few years working as a financial adviser mainly with business owners and professionals like doctors, dentists, accountants etc I found the most value I was bringing to clients was in the area of Inheritance tax advice as the savings when done properly can be huge. I felt there was a gap in the market as solicitors understand the legal side, accountants understand the tax side, and financial advisers understand financial products but almost no one has trained in all 3 areas in depth. I decided to train myself across all 3 areas and have spent the last 16 years advising clients in this specialist area.
My specialist knowledge across legal advice, tax advice and the financial products which impact on IHT is what makes Bluebond such a valuable resource to people with Inheritance tax problems.
My perspective is to help clients legally mitigate all taxes as I see no point in avoiding inheritance tax only to pay more income tax or Capital gains tax. Due to the complexity of Tax planning, I often find that just a few slight changes to the way people hold and deal with their assets can save considerable amounts in Tax over the years.
As Heather and I have also invested in our own property portfolio since 2005 I am also able to help Landlords in their tax planning in this as invariably professional landlords also have a large IHT problem as well.
Enjoy the journey
Heather de Lastic
Heather has worked in the company since 1999. As well as working with our clients she is the Finance and Operations Manager and so manages the accounts and all the operations for the company. It is often remarked on by our suppliers, that she is amazingly organised with a huge capacity for just getting things done. She ensures that everything involved in running a busy company runs smoothly, to ensure our client team is able to concentrate on high levels of client service.
Heather’s Mum continues to be one of the people closest to her and she enjoys very strong family relationships. She is fond of travel and shopping in all its many forms – she has a reputation for finding the best bargains out there.
She lives with Charles at their home in Wheathampstead.
Caryn previously worked for IBM, Lloyds Bank and a specialist Trust provider. This experience has given her a wide knowledge of companies and systems management. She worked with us for many years rising to become our Office Manager.
She left to work in her own business and has decided to return to work with us in 2016 on a part-time basis. Once again she proved we made the right decision to rehire her as she is now an intrinsic part of our team. Caryn has an amazing eye for detail and ensures that all our client cases are implemented to an excellent level.
She helps ensure all our clients get the high level of quality service they would expect. She and her team make sure the administration of plans are kept up to date and processed smoothly.
She lives in Harpenden with her partner Luke.
Sarah joined us in September 2017 after a successful career in the city. Having worked for UBS, HSBC and Kleinwort Hambros, she brings both a keen interest and a broad knowledge of financial matters to the firm.
After spending a number of years raising her young family she decided to start work again but wanted a role that would challenge her and where she could work locally. We were delighted to engage someone with her level of intelligence and knowledge.
She works as a Customer Relationship Manager dealing mainly with new client onboarding and also manages our website.
She lives in Harpenden with her three children and husband Graeme.
I have always had a fascination with understanding how people think and how this drives their behaviour. How can two people view the same event and have totally different responses to it?
This intrigue led me to study Psychology at university, and I graduated with a desire to continuously study and learn about the human mind and behaviour.
This lead me to a career in HR where I became particularly interested in people’s behaviour and how this impacted on their work and their colleagues around them. I then trained as a Neuro-linguistic Program practitioner.
I left my career in HR to focus my time on starting and raising my young family. Having three boys in four years really put my NLP skills to the test!! My passion for NLP continued, and I began to work for myself coaching individuals. I was amazed at just how many clients I was seeing that were struggling with certain issues that were either driven by their work life or having a significant impact on their performance at work.
My understanding of psychology and NLP help me with my work as the business development and client systems development manager at Bluebond.
Sona joined us in October 2018 after a successful full-time career with Aviva during which time she passed 5 financial advice exams. She has a keen interest in the financial services industry and is always looking for ways to streamline our processes for maximum effectiveness. She works as a Customer New Business Manager, making sure all our customers receive the best quality of service possible.
Sona’s in-depth level of knowledge of personal financial plans gained from her years of experience working in this area means that most of her work is in the area of researching and implementing new financial plans for clients.
She lives in Hemel Hempstead with her two children and husband.