About Us

To ensure that the Lower Wensleydale Business Network is capable of delivering the expectations of it members, we believe that a well-managed organisation is required.

To achieve this, we have put together a team of people who have the capability and experience of managing both large and small businesses.  The team has an understanding of the workings of local and national government and a detailed knowledge of a whole range of business sectors.  Above all, the team have a deep interest in the business environment of the Lower Wensleydale area.

Richard Sanderson, Lower Wensleydale Business Network Chairman

The Chairman

Richard Sanderson is a local businessman running a business that has traded since 1879 with Richard being the 6th generation of business owners. Richard is a Leyburn Town Councillor and was part of the group that brought the LEADER investment into the area.

Sharon Watkins - administrator for the Lower Wensleydale Business Network

Our Administrator

Sharon Watkins has had 20 years experience of working with blue chip companies, implementing and supporting business systems on a global basis and now runs her own business providing financial and business services to small businesses across North Yorkshire.

Simon Eastwood - Vice Chair of The Lower Wensleydale Business Network

The Vice Chairman

Simon Eastwood a local businessman and Director of The Jonas Centre. Simon had 20 years in banking, finance and property management and since 2002 has successfully run The Jonas Centre. Simon will also lead our involvement in the business environment project.

David Poole


David Poole A long career in business which since 1981 included being Managing Director of a number of large international companies and latterly the Managing Director and Deputy Chairman of a group of prominent national companies. Since retirement from main line business David has pursued his interested in business economics and business organisation in both the commercial and charitable sectors.

Hannah Russell


Hannah Russell has her own Events Management company set in the Yorkshire Dales. After completing her Events Management and International Events management degree in 2015. Hannah Organises events throughout North Yorkshire and works with existing events to bring them up to a high standard, her experience includes running workshops, organising business days, festivals, and events for the public to attend. Alongside this Hannah runs 2 successful business in the Dales which are ‘Dales Creations’ and ‘Little Alf.’

Alan Betts

Business Research

Allen Betts served more than 30 years in the retail banking and financial services industry holding management positions with FTSE 100 banks and overseas finance companies. Responsibilities have included management of large customer service operations, business transformation, strategy development, managing risk assets, business planning and working closely with strategic business partners. Since his retirement, Allen has supported SME businesses in the Northamptonshire area.

Next Event

Lower Wensleydale Business Network “Traders Ball”

  • 30/09/2017
  • Tennants in Leyburn.

Latest Posts

£1.6m digital project launched to help North Yorkshire businesses

From www.thebusinessdesk.com A £1.6m project to help North Yorkshire businesses improve their use of digital technology is being launched in Scarborough. CU Scarborough, part of the Coventry University Group, is launching a Digital Advantage project which will deliver digital technology workshops and one-to-one support to 150 SMEs across the county. Support will cover the use of … Read more

Grants available for Product Innovation

Grants for up to £20k for capital projects aim to help businesses improve products and processes. For more information see http://www.papi.org.uk/