INDEPENDENT financial planners Beacon Financial marked their recent success in being awarded chartered status with a celebration on Friday. The champagne reception and cake cutting took place at Beacon's offices in Kimbolton, and was attended by Gordon Thorpe, mayor of St Neots. "I can appreciate the hard work and dedication that lies behind this award. It is highly creditable that Beacon is now in a select circle of some 230 practices out of a potential 30,000," he said. "Looking at the requirements to gain chartered status I can see the ongoing requirement of continuing professional development, which is at the heart of every professional. "This award is the result of dedicated teamwork and without the co-operation of all levels, it would not have been achieved. Congratulations and well done to you all." Tony Larkins, managing director of Beacon Financial also paid tribute to the dedication of his staff. "It is a joy to be able to celebrate this success. Gaining chartered status is highly exclusive and I am proud to have a very dedicated team working with me to try and ensure that we offer the best possible advice at all times." Chartered status is only awarded to firms that meet rigorous criteria relating to professionalism and capability. All chartered financial planners commit to the Chartered Insurance Institute's code of ethics and conduct, reinforcing the highest standards of professional practice in their business dealings.