Surrey’s leading ladies of 2020

PUBLISHED: 14:37 26 February 2020 | UPDATED: 14:37 26 February 2020

Surrey’s leading ladies of 2020

Surrey’s leading ladies of 2020


Surrey women mean business! Here we turn the spotlight on some of our county’s most successful - and discover what it is that makes them tick

Ruth De Fraga Gomes | Reed's School

Tell us about your role?

I am the foundation manager (pastoral) for the Andrew Reed Foundation at Reed's School. We provide bursaries for children who have lost the support of one or both parents. My work involves identifying children who would benefit. It's often a huge cultural change and can be daunting, so I reassure families about how it works and the benefits. They often find themselves in crisis through no fault of their own and it's rewarding to see the foundation pupils thrive in the school environment, supported by excellent pastoral care and the Reed's community.

Why Surrey?

Reed's is a day/boarding school set in 40acres of beautiful Surrey countryside; for foundation pupils who come from inner cities this offers freedom for them to play sport, run around or just be peaceful whilst walking around the grounds. Surrey has great transport links so foundation pupils can get home at the weekends,important if they have caring responsibilities at home.

What is your motto in life?

Don't judge, listen and make sure you look after yourself. You can't pour from an empty vessel. I live in a semi-rural village in Surrey and enjoy gardening and running in the farmland that surrounds me. This stands me in good stead when dealing with challenging situations: whether supporting a grieving parent, liaising with social services, helping with family conflict or coping with a tearful teenager.

Sandy Lane, Cobham KT11 2ES | T: 01932 869044 |

Ruth De Fraga Gomes | Reed's SchoolRuth De Fraga Gomes | Reed's School

Sarah Guignard | The French Table and The French Tarte

Tell us about your business?

For 19 years my husband and I have been running the French Table Restaurant in Surbiton. Back in 2011 we opened our first Patisserie, The French Tarte next door and then subsequently opened another in Teddington and then, The Tarte in the Park just down the road.

What does your average day look like?

I definitely like to wake up early to either swim, bike or run. My big passion outside of work is Triathlons! This really does set me up for the day. I'm usually at work straight after checking the reservations for the day and checking in with the Tarte Team. The morning goes quickly dealing with anything from recruitment/staff meetings/wine tasting. After a quick lunch at 11.30 its lunch service. I try to be home for a couple of hours in the afternoon to catch up with my boys before returning to the restaurant for the evening service. I have such a great team behind me that I usually can get away earlier now. It does take me a good hour though to calm down before going to bed.

Your motto in life?

Definitely 'honesty is the best policy' and 'work hard and be nice to people'.

85 Maple Road, Surbiton KT6 4AW | T: 020 8399 2365 | |

Sarah Guignard | The French Table and The French TarteSarah Guignard | The French Table and The French Tarte

Dr Kim Prescott | Esher Groves and the PSMD Clinic

Tell us about your business

I practice Aesthetic and Lifestyle Medicine, helping patients with their self-esteem, health, weight and hormonal balance, along with a network of specialists. I also lecture, and work as a trainer in Aesthetic Medicine. I believe in a more natural approach to aesthetics, focusing on skin rejuvenation and regenerative medicine - encouraging the body to maintain its own youthfulness. I am excited to be launching a new skin care range, PSMD Skin Science, and to open the PSMD Clinic with two colleagues.

How do you spend your free time?

I spend much of my time on the side of sports' fields watching my daughter, but also love to write, and to research new developments for lectures and articles. I am also passionate about art and design,and previously designed textiles and a clothing range.

Who or what inspires you?

I have been fortunate to work with awe-inspiring researchers looking for solutions to unmet medical needs. I'm very inspired by my father, who since retiring has been developing a solar-powered hearing aid and low technology aids for health workers. Children with poor hearing in developing countries often miss out on their education, and he has come up with a solution that for a few pounds could change a child's entire future.

Cobham and Esher Groves,Surrey | T: 07787 604569 |

Dr Kim Prescott | Esher Groves and the PSMD ClinicDr Kim Prescott | Esher Groves and the PSMD Clinic

Lynsey Ahmic | Boz's Fruit & Veg Ltd

Tell us about your business

Boz's Fruit & Veg is a multi award-winning wholesale and retail greengrocers. We are a family-run business established in 2014. We started out supplying just a few restaurants with fresh produce and made the deliveries up in our garage! From there we opened two shops, two market stalls and now have around 280 wholesale customers on our books as well as 25 staff. We stock only the finest quality fresh produce and eggs and deliver to businesses within a 25-mile radius of Woking. Our locations are Woking, Horsell and Basingstoke.

How do you spend your free time?

With my children; I have an 11-year-old girl and a six-year-old boy who both play football. They train twice a week then play matches on a Sunday. My husband Boz and I normally spend our Sundays at different football venues! I have a Saturday off and enjoy eating out with friends and family or going to the cinema.

What are your goals for the future?

To maintain our high level of customer service and hopefully keep winning awards! We want to stay at the top of our trade. Our wholesale has grown slowly but surely and we are just about to launch our website. The plan is to eventually integrate online ordering for our wholesale customers.

Our locations are Woking, Horsell and Basingstoke, Surrey | T: 07970 419706 |

Lynsey Ahmic | Boz's Fruit & Veg LtdLynsey Ahmic | Boz's Fruit & Veg Ltd

Beth Dawson | Sutton High School GDST

Tell us about your business

Sutton High is an all-girls school with pupils age three to 18. We are passionate about developing the individuality of our girls, and our community is vibrant and diverse. We are small enough to know and value every girl, but big enough to offer fantastic opportunities.

How do you spend your free time?

I sing! I'm a firm believer in the power of song to uplift spirits - we've introduced whole school singing assemblies as there is evidence that this is beneficial for girls' wellbeing. The sound created by 600 girls is incredible!

What's your motto in life?

Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win, by fearing to attempt.In an all-girls school, I'm struck by the need to instil self-assuredness and self-esteem in the female leaders of the future. It is easy to doubt yourself, but at Sutton we nurture a sense of self and teach girls they can achieve anything through hard work, passion and confidence. We have to teach young women to trust their own judgement and to lead with self-reliance.This creates a dynamism in our student body which is exciting to be part of.

55 Cheam Road, Sutton SM1 2AX | T: 020 8642 0594 |

Beth Dawson | Sutton High School GDSTBeth Dawson | Sutton High School GDST

Nicole Janssen | Parkside School

Any top tips for a successful working relationship?

Investing in your team and playing to their strengths. Taking the time to get to know them, who they are or what they enjoy doing at the weekend helps me to understand how I can best support and motivate them. Creating a sociable and happy environment has helped strengthen working relationships in school. If my staff are happy, inspired and know they are truly valued, this will always be in the best interest of my pupils.

What does your average day look like?

Nothing like the day before! No two days are the same and that's exactly how I like it. I enjoy the unpredictability of working with children. I experience heart-warming and uplifting surprises on a daily basis; from a child reading their first book from cover to cover to a boy who declared with pride that the person who most inspires him is his dad.

What's your motto in life?

Make it happen! Teaching the children to have the courage to take risks and knock down any perceived barriers and that there is great reward in rising to the challenge and the final successes when you persevere.

The Manor, Stoke D'Abernon, Cobham KT11 3PX| T: 01932 862749 |

Nicole Janssen | Parkside SchoolNicole Janssen | Parkside School

Shelley Lance | Feltonfleet Preparatory School

Tell us about your school

Feltonfleet is a special community. We give very high priority to pastoral care and providing a happy, safe and caring environment. Our children live and learn in 25 acres of grounds with exceptional facilities that encourage them to use their imagination, explore and strive to excel. High standards and expectations are grounded in the conviction that academic excellence and enjoyment of childhood go hand in hand.

What does your average day look like?

My day begins at 7am, when I settle my son into Breakfast Club. I then answer emails and set up for the day before welcoming families at the gate. Later, Learning Walks around school help me to understand the learning experience through the children's eyes. Lunch is important - eating and socialising with the pupils and hearing about their days. Meetings will follow, ranging from seeing parents and staff to strategy.

What are your goals?

I am committed to our core belief that 'every individual really matters'. I wish for Feltonfleet to always be a vibrant, exciting experience where pupils leave us happy ,independent, confident, resilient, empathetic, tolerant and emotionally intelligent, equipped to make a real difference in their lives ahead.

Byfleet Road, Cobham, Surrey KT11 1DR | T: 01932 862264 |

Shelley Lance | Feltonfleet Preparatory SchoolShelley Lance | Feltonfleet Preparatory School

Tess Ackland | ON! Juniper

Tell us about your business

ON! Juniper was founded in 2015 to provide fun and innovative bath and body products for children aged 3-15. By using the purest organic and natural ingredients and saying no to synthetic colours, artificial fragrances, preservatives and irritating fillers commonly found in children's products, we are filling a gap in the market. We also recognise our responsibility to develop products that empower children and support them in making positive lifestyle choices when it comes to their body and the environment. This is what we call the shh promise, a concept weaved within our business lines to encourage self-awareness, health and happiness among children.

Who or what inspires you?

Protecting the environment has always played an important role in my life. Becoming a mum reiterated this drive and a desire to improve the world for my children and future generations.

What are your goals for the future?

ON! Juniper is continuing to develop new, innovative formulas to offer more award-worthy products you can trust. We will also continue working with schools and children-based charities to raise funds that support children's empowerment. If you are interested in working with us, please contact us!

Kemp House, 160 City Road, London EC1V 2NX | T: 07739 517877 |

Tess Ackland | ON! JuniperTess Ackland | ON! Juniper

Anna Terry | Aberdour School

Tell us about your business

I am the head of pre-prep at Aberdour School. The Pre-Prep department nurtures 160 young pupils from the age of 2-6. Our unique, Personalised, Achievement, Learning (PAL) ethos of the school embeds a philosophy of free-thinking, encouraging children to take risks and challenge themselves in a learning rich environment, centred around the children's interests. The children's natural curiosity is honed through a combination of aspirational challenges. The use of Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Maths (STEAM), alongside an enriched outdoor learning programme, encourages children to become 'Learning Detectives', 'Curious Cats' and 'Daring Dolphins'.

Who or what inspires you?

The Reggio Emilia Philosophy is an innovative and inspiring approach to early childhood education, which values the child as strong, capable and resilient; rich with wonder and knowledge. The Philosophy rides on the coat-tails of the innate curiosity of children and aims to assist them with understanding their world and who they are in it.

What is your motto?

'Dream Big'. My parents always taught me to dream big, to never reduce your dreams to what you think you can achieve, but to always push beyond these boundaries. It is our job to pass this onto the beautiful young minds we arelucky enough to inspire.

Brighton Road, Burgh Heath, Tadworth KT20 6AJ | T: 01737 354 119 | Aberdour School

Anna Terry | Aberdour SchoolAnna Terry | Aberdour School

Mandira Moitra Sarkar | Mandira's Kitchen

Tell us about you and your family

I live in Guildford with my car mad husband Samin, and She of the Rolling Eyes (aka Mahera who is 17). Besides this, there is also the Mandira's Kitchen Family - the 12 amazing ladies who work here managing all aspects of the shop, kitchen and business - and of course our junior team who help out at events and at the shop.

Tell me about your business?

Mandira's Kitchen is a multi award-winning artisan business based in the Surrey Hills. We produce authentic Indian Freezer Meals that are sold through numerous farm shops and from our own outlet. Online orders are delivered to any UK address by overnight courier. Freshly frozen, to preserve goodness and flavour,our meals live happily in your freezer, ready to be heated from frozen in four minutes for a delicious homemade meal. We also offer bespoke catering, cookery lessons and specially curated events.

What is the secret of your success?

In three years we have become a much loved Surrey business. Most of our publicity is due to the fabulous people who try our food, use our services and then go on to recommend us. We treat every customer as a well-loved guest and nothing is too much trouble. From advice on Bollywood music and Indian cocktails, from draping saris to shopping for bangles, we bring humor, common sense and fairy dust to make every meal memorable. The authentic food is just a bonus!

Silent Pool, Shere Road, Albury GU5 9BW | T: 01483 940789 |

Mandira Moitra Sarkar | Mandira's KitchenMandira Moitra Sarkar | Mandira's Kitchen

Anneve Hutchinson & Emma Tarring | The Marketing Matrix

Tell us about your business

We founded The Marketing Matrix in 2012 to help people create and gow their own businesses. We particularly love helping 'corporate escape artists' build profitable consultancy businesses, that provide them with the freedom and flexibility they need to successfully combine earning a healthy income with family life.

Why Surrey? What makes the area soright for your line of work?

We love our office in a 150-year-old Boathouse, overlooking the River Thames near Walton Bridge. It's an inspiring space and our clients enjoy taking time to gaze at the river before getting down to work with our effective, affordable marketing strategy.

What are your goals for the future?

We know that many would-be 'corporate escape artists' and business owners are overwhelmed by the amount of marketing advice that's out there and struggle to create a clear plan of action to help their business take off. The result is they end up 'spinning their wheels' and getting nowhere. So our goal for this year is help as many business owners as possible achieve their dreams with our 'Create and Grow Your Own Business' programmes. We just love helping businesses come to life! Just email at for a copy of our eGuide 'Five Steps to Freedom'.

Rosewells Boathouse, Walton Marina, Walton-on-Thames KT12 1QW | T: 020 3538 6588 |

Anneve Hutchinson & Emma Tarring | The Marketing MatrixAnneve Hutchinson & Emma Tarring | The Marketing Matrix

Joanna Read | Yvonne Arnaud Theatre

Tell us about your business

The Yvonne Arnaud is a regional theatre with a national reach - our mission is to produce and present vibrant, outstanding, entertaining drama for the many communities of Surrey and the South East. With a thriving studio space, youth theatre and engagement programme, we ar e an artistic resource and a cultural hub, enabling people across the South to experience the thrill of live theatre.

What does your average day look like?

There is no average day! This morning I met with technical staff as we are in the middle of sprucing up our foyer. Then a marketing meeting discussing ideas for our summer festival and the production of A Monster Calls that's coming to us from the Old Vic. I programmed a show in the studio then chatted to some folk having drinks in the cafe about the show this week. In the afternoon I spent time working with the Casting Director on our production of Sheila's Island and looking at casting for next year's panto.

What are your goals for the future?

To rejuvenate the Yvonne Arnaud Theatre! We are a glorious iconic building, set in a beautiful location on the banks of the River Wey but at the moment we are a hidden gem. The team here are on a mission to put the theatre back on the map. We've begun producing our own work, presenting more work for families and younger audiences and introducing some fresh ideas into the programme to complement the old favourites.

Millbrook, Guildford GU1 3UX | T: 01483 440077 |

Joanna Read | Yvonne Arnaud TheatreJoanna Read | Yvonne Arnaud Theatre

Rhiannon Vallis | Bright Blue Wealth

Tell us about your business

Founded in 1999, Bright Blue Wealth focuses on relationships with clients through multiple generations of families to build, maintain, protect and distribute wealth as tax-efficiently as possible. I predominantly work with the over 40's and retired clients, advising on wealth creation, tax mitigation, estate planning and income strategies. We create a strategy together and review things regularly to reflect changing family dynamics and objectives. We also have a team of advisers who cover mortgages and holistic planning. For our private clients, we also look after their accountancy needs and ensure that their Wills are in place and reviewed regularly by our professional partners.

Any top tips for a successful working relationship?

Making sure you fully understand what the client's priorities are; their agenda and concerns are the most important part of the relationship. Agreeing a plan together is key and there is no one size fits all, life changes and so do priorities. I am lucky to have clients with whom I've worked for many years so I really enjoy seeing the results of long-term planning.

What is the secret of your success?

I really enjoy my work. I am genuinely interested in people - their lives, their situations and their families, and get a great deal out of helping them achieve their goals.

11 Windsor Street, Chertsey KT16 8AY | T: 01932 579700 |

Rhiannon Vallis | Bright Blue WealthRhiannon Vallis | Bright Blue Wealth

Grace Brown | Porsche Retail Group

Tell us about you and your family

I am a proud mother to our two beautiful children Holly (9) and Benjamin (4) and have been married to my husband Chris for 15 years. They are my world. Family comes first and I am fortunate to have a workplace that supports that.

Tell us about your business?

I am thrilled to be part of the Porsche Centre Guildford family as the Centre Financial Controller. They say owning a Porsche is an experience like no other, and so is working at Porsche. We have created a culture and team who are passionate about Porsche cars and share the excitement and outstanding experience with our customers. Porsche Centre Guildford is part of Porsche Retail Group, one of the largest Porsche Dealer Groups in the UK with locations also in Reading, West London, Mayfair and Hatfield. We are Porsche specialists offering the full Porsche model range, New and Approved Pre-owned and provide comprehensive Aftersales services.

What is the secret of your success?

You get out what you put in, in life. Being diligent have given me 20 years of progressive career and professional qualifications. Ability to adapt to change. Desire to grow, open to new challenges and learning opportunities. Focusing inf acts and solutions amidst difficult situations. I lead by example and believe in 'behaviour breeds behaviour'. Appreciating that it's people that make an organisation successful.

Woodbridge Meadows, Woodbridge Road, Guildford GU1 1BD | T: 01483 494084 |

Grace Brown | Porsche Retail GroupGrace Brown | Porsche Retail Group

Sylvia La Porte | Artizan Interiors Limited

Any top tips for a successful working relationship?

Be honest, communicate clearly, consider others' points of view and if appropriate, be inclusive in decision making. Colleagues are a great source of learning whether they report into you or you to them. My personal style is open and friendly and it has served me well in building great working relationships, many of which continue beyond my time at any given organisation.

How do you spend your free time?

I love spending time with my family and friends and pursuing my passion for home styling. Artizan Interiors designed my kitchen and it's one of my favourite and most successful spaces in a cottage I recently refurbished - it will be featured on our website soon.

Who or what inspires you?

Successful people with integrity. I'm not impressed by an over inflated title and little to back it up. Genuine leaders motivate and inspire me. I'm very lucky to work with a great team at Artizan Interiors, it's a creative, professional and fun environment- we're about to launch our refurbished second showroom and have employed a third designer to help us create beautiful spaces for the homes of our expanding client base, many of whom come to us via recommendations, something we're very proud of.

115 Guildford Street, Chertsey KT16 9AS | T: 01932 640019 |

Sylvia La Porte | Artizan Interiors LimitedSylvia La Porte | Artizan Interiors Limited

Sue Coleman | Oak Hall Care Home

Tell us about you and your family

I'm married to Mike and between us we have four grown up young adults. My daughter is a sports teacher and still lives with us. We all share our home in Headley Down with Bella our Springer Spaniel and Shadow the cat. We have lived here for15 years and chose this area for the outstanding countryside where we love walking; and yet within 30 minutes we can be walking on our favourite beach at West Wittering. I love gardening, going to the theatre, am a keen tennis player and I enjoy cooking for friends and family.

Tell us about your business

Oak Hall is one of a group of care homes operated by Elizabeth Finn Homes Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the charity Turn2us. Formerly Oak Hall School and then Wispers School, Oak Hall is now a 51-bedded nursing and residential care home set in spectacular grounds in the heart of Haslemere. We have been open for just over a year and serve the local community, caring for residents with a wide variety of needs and challenges, who we are privileged to look after. Providing 'exceptional care for the individual' is at the centre of our ethos, where quality of life is as important as quality of care.

What's your motto in life?

My motto in life is: 'No matter how you feel, get up, dress up, show up and never give up'.

Wispers Lane, Haslemere GU27 1AB | T: 01428 744010 |

Sue Coleman | Oak Hall Care HomeSue Coleman | Oak Hall Care Home

Jane Whittingham | St Hilary's Preparatory School

What does the average day look like?

As a headmistress, every day is vastly different. Nothing beats standing at the gate welcoming the boys and girls into school. The little ones are so keen that they race past me whilst the older ones stop and chat. Many precious moments occur as the pupils trek up the 'Big Red Staircase' to my study, buzzing and proudly sharing excellent work, success or news. Every child is important to me and I am never too busy to stop and listen.

Why Surrey?

With acres of stunning countryside, combined with rich cultural opportunities, Surrey helps enable our pupils to enjoy their childhood with a host of learning experiences right on their door step. Indeed, our school enjoys the best of Surrey, situated in a beautiful, green semi-rural setting whilst only minutes away from the centre of Godalming and the train station with a fast line to London. With London and the coast in such easy reach, there are many opportunities for exciting and original school trips, enriching our pupils' education and wellbeing.

What is the secret of your success?

My personal success has been driven by the inherent belief in hard work, innovation, confidence, risk taking, true grit and resilience whilst finding the time to listen, be considerate and kind. My aim is for our pupils to develop similar values during their time at St Hilary's.

Holloway Hill, Godalming GU7 1RZ | T: 01483 416551 |

Jane Whittingham | St Hilary's Preparatory SchoolJane Whittingham | St Hilary's Preparatory School

Amy Holt | Amiwigs Ltd

Tell us about your business and your background

We make bespoke custom-made wigs & hairpieces for medical hair loss sufferers. All the wigs and hairpieces are customised to each individual using beautiful European hair and fine lace foundations. Our ethos is to create wigs, that don't look like wigs. I worked in the TV and film industry for a number of years as a hair and makeup artist and wigmaker, before I founded the company in 2011. I gained experience across the board having worked on films such as Harry Potter and Thor 2, and television programmes such as Game of Thrones and Mr Selfridge.

Who or what inspires you?

I am very fortunate to have grown up with a mother who is an absolute hero. We lost my father when I was very young and my mother brought five of us up single-handedly. She has a zest for life and is incredibly kind. If I can have the positive effect on people in my life, that my mother has, then I will feel I have achieved something worthy in my lifetime.

What's your motto in life?

I work extremely hard, continually going above and beyond for my clients, however, during these times, I always keep my family at the forefront of my mind. I always make time for them and live by the quote 'you won't wish you had worked more on your deathbed'.

Richmond, SW London TW9 1AA | T: 0203 489 6996 |

Amy Holt | Amiwigs LtdAmy Holt | Amiwigs Ltd

Dr Natalie Geary | Light Touch Clinic

Tell us about your business?

I own the Light Touch Clinic in Weybridge, a cosmetic medicine clinic established in 2009; we offer facial and body rejuvenation. I specialise in injectable treatments and we also offer Laser Hair Removal, Coolsculpting and other non-invasive treatments. I've been doing this for 12 years and absolutely love what I do. I love helping people to become the best they can be by improving their self-confidence.

What does your average day look like?

I start my day with rituals that can help improve my mindset and performance by taking my children to school followed by a vigorous dog walk, or I go to the gym. These activities help me to connect with my environment and ensure I have a positive start to the day. My clinic time is spent seeing my patients, many of whom have been with me for the last decade. I get a huge amount of satisfaction and happiness from my work.

How do you spend your free time?

With two children and two dogs there really isn't much spare time! I can easily spend most of my weekends standing on the sidelines cheering my kids on in their various sporting activities.

50 Church Street, Weybridge KT13 8DS | T: 01932 849552 |

Dr Natalie Geary | Light Touch ClinicDr Natalie Geary | Light Touch Clinic

Victoria Whiteley | Absolute Aesthetics

Tell me about your business

Absolute Aesthetics, established in 2006, is a premium aesthetics clinic. Specialising in the latest aesthetic technology and techniques, from cosmetic injectables and laser to skin rejuvenation treatments. We maintain high professional and safety standards within a CQC registered clinic and work as part of a team of highly skilled and qualified professionals.

Top tips for successful working relationship?

When working with your partner/husband it's not always easy but we have made it work and our top tips are: Have a strong partnership that allows you to enhance each other as a working team. Communication is essential - talking through the difficult decisions, remembering to laugh at the funny things.Ensure you have non-competing skills - I tend to be more personable and Mark is far more an academic which provides a good balance.

How do you spend your free time?

Like most directors or business owners who are passionate about their work 'freetime' is limited. However, as I work alongside my husband, we have the benefits of being able to understand long working hours and sharing the stress and the successes of your own business. We are trying to achieve a better work life balance where we totally switch off and as such enjoy dancing lessons, exercising or strolling into town.

1 Stirling House, Stirling Road, Guildford | T: 0330 058 1850 |

Victoria Whiteley | Absolute AestheticsVictoria Whiteley | Absolute Aesthetics

Sian Gray | The Sculpture Park

Tell us about your family business

The Sculpture Park was founded in 2001 when my father, Eddie Powell bought 10 acres of undeveloped land. Along with my brothers, Charlie and Oscar, and long-serving employee Nick Ruffe, they landscaped the site to create an enchanting and magical land. Sculptures, trees and plants were positioned and The Sculpture Park was born. Now welcoming well over 30,000 visitors a year; Art collectors, families, photographers and schools all come to marvel at and purchase the eclectic mix of art from local, national and globalsculptors. In 2016 I joined the company to manage the office, online marketing and sales. Since my arrival, visitor number and sculpture sales have hit an all-time high and our social media presence is threatening to go viral.

Why Surrey? What makes the area so right for your line of work?

The beautiful Surrey countryside provides our backdrop and the discerning residents know how to appreciate art and culture.

What does your average day look like?

As a mum of two boys, my day is filled with drop offs, pick-ups, homework, clubs, cooking, cleaning, bath time, bed time and of course, coming to work for a rest.

Churt, Near Farnham | T: 01428 605453 |

Sian Gray | The Sculpture ParkSian Gray | The Sculpture Park

Kara Wescombe Blackman | Watts Gallery - Artists' Village

Tell us about the charity you work for?

Watts Gallery - Artists' Village is a dynamic arts charity. Located in the Surrey Hills, dedicated to the art and ideals of the leading nineteenth-century artist George Frederic Watts and his wife, the Arts & Crafts designer, Mary Watts. The Artists' Village consists of a unique campus of listed Arts & Crafts buildings including an historic gallery, the artists' studio home and Watts Chapel. Inspired by our founders' vision to make art accessible to all, we run an ambitious programme of exhibitions, events and community programmes that explore how their art, values and vision continue to have relevance today.

A typical day?

Since 2013 when I started at Watts Gallery Trust, the learning and public programme has increased to include a wide ranges of public and learning programmes, from talks and tours to artist residencies and festivals.

What inspires you?

Mary Watts inspires me and I feel very fortunate to be one of the custodians of her legacy as an artist and educator and to be able to continue to deliver the ethos of 'Art for All' that she and George Watts founded here. They were passionate about the benefits of art and 'making' to wellbeing and economic regeneration.

Down Lane, Guildford GU3 1DQ | T: 01483 810235 |

Kara Wescombe Blackman | Watts Gallery - Artists' VillageKara Wescombe Blackman | Watts Gallery - Artists' Village

Leanne Humphries | Velvet Rooms

Tell us about your business

We are a boutique salon in the heart of Chobham village, specialising in all aspects of hair care. Winners of Loreal's colour trophy young colourist, Loreal ID artist, and we have two (out of 1,000 UK) colour specialists in salon. We love being part of our local community and get involved/host lots of events. I opened the doors in May 2011, and by October 2012 we had to expand into bigger premises. I employ 12 members of staff, giving them all a full education plan when they start (I'm a bit of a geek and love learning/teaching!).

Average day?

I now have a 10 month old, so start early with him. My day is varied, I love cutting, colour and extensions. The days I'm not on the shop floor, I mix it up between baby classes and meetings. My baby comes with me (at 4 months old he came on a course at Ghd!!) training days/team meetings. I am focusing time each week to mentor my staf f to make sure they reach their full potential. I love listening to inspiring podcasts that can also help me with new ideas.

Goals for future?

Be a great mum. Start an online salon business training program. Create another salon space for up and coming hair and beauty talent. And book a holiday!

75 High Street, Chobham | T: 01276 855355 |

Leanne Humphries | Velvet RoomsLeanne Humphries | Velvet Rooms

Tiia Sammallahti | What Charity

Tell us about your business

WhatCharity is a fast-growing matchmaking platform and service for companies to find strategically suitable, impactful and geographically relevant charities to partner with. We offer a democratic and transparent process for companies of all sizes to find greatcharitable partners, from SMEs to household names such as Ericsson and Simplyhealth.

Many businesses aren't fully aware of the potential benefits of pairing up with well-suited charities to give back to society, whilst also enriching their company culture, staff engagement and publicity.

Companies of all sizes can benefit from working with charities, including not so well known local charities. Our matchmaking service saves money and time so that companies can focus on doing good rather than trying to find charities on Google and figure out how to conduct due diligence on them.

Why should Surrey companies engage more with charities?

Currently 70% of the charity sector income is held by only 1.5% of charities.Surrey has so many companies with highly skilled workforces whose contributions to charities can make a huge difference. There is a great need for skills-based volunteering, pro-bono services and people with expertise putting themselves forward as trustees.

Guildford, Surrey | T: 07468 337176 |

Tiia Sammallahti | What CharityTiia Sammallahti | What Charity

Tracey Cullen | Bounce Gym

What does your average day look like?

My average day is not your 'average' 9 to 5. In fact, I wouldn't call my day average at all! Being Freelance, no day or week is ever the same. My day typically begins early with a private yoga session, then teaching group yoga class and then I'm in the gym for some weight training at Bounce. Strength is an integral part of my regime, supporting my yoga practice, giving my practice longevity to continue injury free.

How do you spend your free time?

I love to garden and I'm outside until the light no longer allows me to be there. It's so nurturing on your mind and body and reconnects you back to nature, I recommend it to anyone. My other passion is handstands. I've been training it for five years now. The feeling of being upside down and to find balance is incredible and a fabulous feeling once you have learnt it, which takes many years. I love to share this passion with my students and regularly host handstand workshops at Bounce.

What inspires you?

Potential. The potential of what is possible, not only on the physical level but on the mental level. To go beyond what is 'normal' and to constantly rediscover who you are. To wake up in the morning and feel excited about the potential that your day will bring. Finding something that you feel passionate about inspir es me, it makes me feel alive andgives purpose to my life.

New Malden and Wimbledon Park, One on ones available| T: 07881 611321 |

Tracey Cullen | Bounce GymTracey Cullen | Bounce Gym

Lindi Reynolds | Architectural Interior Design

Tell us about your business

Driven by a passion to create exceptional homes, I set up Lindi Reynolds Architectural Interior Design 14 years ago. We specialise in residential, luxury interiors; delivering outstanding design solutions to enhance everyday living for our clients and add real estate value to their largest assets, their homes. Applying an innovative approach to luxury interiors, our vision is to wow our clients at every stage of the design journey; from the first fact-finding meeting to the little finishing touches that make the ordinary extraordinary. We strive to ensure that our clients find working with us a truly positive experience, and we expect the results to delight them for years to come.

What is your motto in life?

'Follow your bliss and doors will open'. I have found this to be so true and it is a great recipe for happiness too. Furthermore, I expect it for my clients; in seeking design solutions, nothing will do that does not bring joy.

What is the secret to your success?

1. Attention to detail - we don't leave anything to chance, and if it's not quite right we fix it. 2. Adore your clients - what we do is personal, so it's important that the relationship is built on trust and respect. This is our reward. 3. Hard work - there are always many strands to a project, and so it's a dedicated and masterful juggling act that brings everything together on time and within budget.

12 Seymour Road, East Molesey KT8 0PB | T: 07940 572554 |

Lindi Reynolds | Architectural Interior DesignLindi Reynolds | Architectural Interior Design

Rhiannon Ford | Rhiannon Ford Divorce Consultancy

Tell us about your business

I am the owner and founder of Rhiannon Ford Divorce Consultancy. I provide specialist help and support to people before, during and after their divorce. The majority of my clients come to me at the beginning of their divorce journey. Here, I assess their situation, then facilitate putting the right resources, professionals and processes in place, supporting them along the way.

What does your average day look like?

My day will involve a combination of face to face client meetings, email and telephone support. I also work with UK clients worldwide via Skype or Facetime. My diary can change quite quickly if a client contacts me with an urgent request for help.

What are your goals for the future?

This summer will be my 10 year business anniversary which is a lovely feeling. My focus is to make a positive difference to people going through a difficult time and I enjoy finding new ways to provide help. In the next few weeks I'll be launching a series of eBooks, covering different topics in divorce, available to buy from my website. I am also in the process of building a brand-new website.

Walton on Thames, Surrey | T: 07970 231744 or 01932 230094 |

Rhiannon Ford | Rhiannon Ford Divorce ConsultancyRhiannon Ford | Rhiannon Ford Divorce Consultancy


Follow Surrey Life on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

Latest from the Surrey