Miles travelled: 356Hot topics: ESG, community spirit, the weatherFavourite meal: Goats cheese and beetroot gnocchi. (yum!)

Exeter is known for its stunning cathedral, countryside and Coldplay’s Chris Martin (to name a few). Therefore, Alex and I ventured down to the beautiful city earlier this month to see it for ourselves, writes Katie Gilfillan.

We managed to squeeze in plenty of meetings and cups of tea over our two days, kicking off the tour with P1 Investment Management, JLT Investment Management, Hawksmoor, Redmayne Bentley and Charles Stanley.

Discussing a variety of topics, we discovered the main trends people have been seeing are the increasing use of ethical/ ESG funds in portfolios. As well as the horrendous downpour outside.

A nice change of pace from the tubes of London, we were able to walk to almost every meeting. Unfortunately for us, the rain and our distinct lack of umbrellas did not help.

That being said, by wandering through the town we noticed for a small area there seemed to be a lot of competition nearby. However, we were assured that there is no bad blood and it is all friendly competition.

In fact Bill Keen, investment manager at Redmayne Bentley told us,

‘Exeter is a great location with Dartmoor and the coast close at hand. The best thing about working in Exeter is the friendly business environment.’

James Clark, senior fund analyst at Hawksmoor agreed.

‘The best thing about working in Exeter is that most people know most people, either from having worked together at previous firms or from attending fund manager meetings (or both!). Mostly based in the Southernhay area of the city, it’s a good community.’

It’s great to see community spirit being the main driver in the South West.

Clark was very enthusiastic when talking about his favourite thing about Exeter.

‘It’s got to be going to the mighty Exeter Chiefs for a Premiership or European rugby match. The Chiefs are flying high at the top of the Premiership, and a visit to Sandy Park is always a great match day experience.’

We then spent our final morning talking with wealth managers from Brewin Dolphin, Arbuthnot Latham and Investec before hopping on a train back to London.