Giffen Couch & Archer opened its office at 42 Dunstable Road, Luton, in 1947 under original partners Edward Giffen, Brian Couch and Harold C H Archer. Giffen Couch was an existing St. Albans firm and Harold Archer a native Lutonian had qualified in 1946 after demobilisation from the Army. After a chance meeting between Messrs Couch and Archer at a Magistrates Court, it was decided Giffen Couch would open a Luton office with Mr Archer being the partner in charge. This relationship continued despite the death of Mr Couch in a road accident in 1951, until the partnership was dissolved by mutual consent in 1955.
Mr Archer acquired Mr Giffen's share and practised on his own account under the name of Giffen Couch & Archer. On 1 January 1962, Mr W. R. Bramley, who had been an articled clerk with the firm, rejoined the firm and became a partner. Stephen Cook became a partner ten years later.
After the retirement of Mr Archer in 1993 and Mr Bramley in 1999, Stephen Cook continued as a sole practitioner, offering general practice services to a solid client base. In early 2005 Stephen made the decision to retire from practice but was faced with the task of finding successors for his very well established and successful business. In October 2005, Stephen entered into partnership with Neil Donald, Emma Halpin and Sarah Cousins (partners of a well established and similar sized practice in Hitchin, Ross Williams). This provided the new Partners with the ideal opportunity to obtain a valuable insight into the running of Giffen Couch & Archer and form good relationships with the existing client base.
In early March 2007 the decision was made to move to the present modern premises and following some re-branding the firm practises under the name GCA.
Stephen continued as a Consultant with the practice until leaving in September 2008 to enjoy his retirement.
GCA is managed by Neil, Emma and Sarah. Strong links are maintained with GCA’s associated practice, Ross Williams.