Swindon & Wiltshire’s Most Inspiring Women 2024 – As voted by you

By Anita Jaynes on 14 February, 2024

For a third year, we’re celebrating Swindon and Wiltshire’s most inspiring women to mark International Women’s Day, which this year takes place on Friday 8th March.

Every year, this is one of our most read and most popular features. So again, through our magazines, websites and social media channels, we asked our readers to vote for the women who inspire them, creating this list of amazing women in our community. Congratulations ladies!

Abby Lever, Young widow and owner of Swindon’s Luna Beauty and Aesthetics. Abby uses her Instagram account to share her journey as a young, widowed mum, offering uplifting words to those who maybe facing the same situation.

Angela Roberts, Founder, Cotswold Networking.

Angela launched business networking organisation Cotswold Networking in February 2022, as she was desperate to get out and meet people following the covid years of 2000-2021. The group launched in Malmesbury, with a monthly meeting in the town and has since expanded into Cirencester, Cheltenham and Bath. Angela was nominated for this list by her members.

Becca Sadler, Fear Free

Becca works for local charity Fear Free which provides support for those dealing with domestic abuse, sexual violence and stalking. Becca helps to provide Fear Free’s Sexual Violence Therapeutic Service and was nominated for her ‘passion, warmth and kindness.’

Diane Banister, Founder, Intelligent Dialogue

Diane is Founder of sales and service training firm, Intelligent Dialogue. Through her business she helps people build the confidence and skills required to take the action needed to deliver results. She was nominated for being a great ambassador for women, particularly to those looking to build their own businesses.

Emilie Romain, Founder, Ecobubl.

Emilie set up Ecobubl in 2020, a business which designs, supplies and installs renewable energy solutions and air conditioning systems. Emilie was nominated for her success and passion to succeed in what is a very male dominated industry.

Emily Palmer, Project Support Manager, NHS BSW Integrated Care Board, Youth Policy Advisor on the YHA Youth Advisory Team, author and illustrator at Scrambled Heads.

Emily was nominated for her resilience, tenacity and achievements against the odds. At just 25, Emily has set up a charity, written a children’s book about mental health and overcome adversity. Having lost the use of her left leg, she battled four operations and extensive rehabilitation to walk again.

Gemma Moore, Little Pottery Painting Company

Before setting up her new business Little Pottery Painting Company in Royal Wootton Bassett, Gemma was known for running Sage Hair Salon for a number of years.

Gemma was nominated for normalising re-inventing yourself as a business woman, empowering other women and being a cheerleader for body positivity.

Hannah Edwards, Empowered VA Services

Hannah was nominated for her multi-tasking abilities, running a growing virtual assistant and social media management business, studying for a BA Honours degree – which she achieved this year, whilst at the same time acting as carer for her partner.

Janet Shreeve, Shreeve Care Services

Janet was nominated for her service to the care sector, providing an ethical live-in care service, making sure people get the most help when they are at their most vulnerable.

Kirstie Price, volunteer.

Kirstie was nominated for her volunteering work in Warminster, predominantly for local theatre group, Atheneum Masqueraders. Kirstie uses her skills from her day job working in PR, acting as the group’s social media manager, as well as acting as Vice Chair of the group. The group put on three shows a year which entertain nearly 1,000 people each time. Alongside these roles, Kirstie often performs, directs, produces or choreographs the productions.

Laura Dent, Founder, So Fresh & So Clean

So Fresh & So Clean was established in Swindon in 2011 as a carpet cleaning company, and has grown steadily over the years, now offering specialist and bio-hazard cleaning throughout Wiltshire.

Laura was nominated for her ethical business values, having launched charity Fresh & Clean Beginnings. The charity’s mission is to fund and provide specialist cleaning services to people in our local community living in unsafe conditions. This could be due to mental health or mobility limiting conditions.

Louise Carver, Co-Founder, Resolution Space, Louise Carver Consulting and Chair of the Board of Trustees at Sheldon School

Louise runs two successful learning and development businesses, she is the Chair of Governors of a large secondary school, and also finds time to support, coach and encourage other business owners and leaders.

Louise was nominated for providing practical support and a listening ear to many charities, businesses and individuals, inspiring them to succeed.

Sarah Dena, New Wave Learning

Sarah was nominated for her ‘exceptional qualities and contributions to both the community and workplaces’, particularly as an advocate for Swindon business growth service, The Future Smiths.

Sandie Webb, Chippenham Community Hub

Sandie formed the Chippenham Community Hub three years ago in an empty shop unit at Borough Parade. Since opening, the hub has hosted hundreds of health, information, craft, activity and campaign sessions for scores of charities and small businesses. It also host the Town team, which supports businesses in the town. Most recently the hub has mounted an anti-online fraud campaign with Wiltshire Police to help pass on essential information and warnings to small businesses, the elderly and the vulnerable. 

Sherelyn Cowles, Chief Financial Officer, Gooding Accounts

Sherelyn has been CFO at Gooding Accounts for the last 12 months and has been credited with helping the firm to achieve its most successful year in business to date. Alongside this she has driven the firm’s charitable efforts, whilst juggling family life as mum to two children.

Sherelyn’s new role has seen her step out of her comfort zone, undertaking various networking and public speaking tasks and despite nerves she has flourished.

Stacey Wilson, Chief Operations Officer, Infinity Nation

Stacey was nominated by her team for being an inspirational leader, ‘supporting everyone in the company to progress, pushing for excellence, leading from the top by example whilst creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere for all.’

Vicky Hickey and Fiona Oliver, Joint Chief Executives, Wiltshire Community Foundation

Vicky and Fiona were nominated by the Wiltshire Community Foundation team for their exemplary leadership, working tirelessly for the benefit of others.

Vicky Lawrence, Wootton Bassett School of Dance

For over 20 years, Vicky has run Wootton Bassett School of Dance with her partner and mother.

She has been nominated for being a true inspiration to the next generation of dancers, working tirelessly to provide the highest level dance, acro, ballet, modern and tap lessons to all ages of children.

All the women listed above will be profiled in our spring Swindon & Wiltshire magazine and from Monday 4th March, every weekday throughout the month we will be championing each of these fantastic women online and via our social feeds.

We are also hosting a special International Women’s Day event at Walcot House in Bath on the evening of Thursday 7th March from 7-9pm, celebrating all these women and those nominated in our Bath & Somerset list. On the night we will be hosting a guest panel with several of the women in the lists taking part. Find out more about the event and book your tickets here.

Goughs Solicitors are proud sponsors of this feature. Goughs have a strong female team and work with many female business owners across the area. The team are getting behind this feature as it’s a great opportunity to celebrate the achievements of women in our community.