A Cumbrian woman has set up an innovative company which aims to help people eat healthier.

Nicola Myers, 44, began selling veg boxes four years ago and quickly realised there was a gap in the market.

She now travels across the county with her pop-up greengrocers, the Fruit and Veg Box Company, and sets out her stall at locations including Carlisle College, the city’s Cumberland Infirmary, Lakes College at Lillyhall, near Workington, Furness General Hospital in Barrow, Whitehaven's West Cumberland Hospital and Hopes Auction Mart in Wigton.

Her success will see her address a young entrepreneurs camp in Lithuania in August.

The produce she sells is local, bought from a Cumbrian wholesaler, and she will also buy excess produce from allotment-holders near her home in Silloth.

The mother-of-two said: “I sell good quality, local fruit and vegetables. It cuts down on air miles and supports the local economy.

“I still sell the veg boxes but what has really taken off, beyond my expectations really, is the pop-up shop.

“It’s a good way for people who don’t have time to go to the supermarket to pick up something healthy and I’m also very keen on the environmental aspect – my produce is sold as plastic-free as it can be.

“It’s become so popular that I can’t keep up with demand or have the time to go everywhere I’m requested to, so it’s also created a job as well as I have someone who goes to the auction mart for me.”

Nicola has been self-employed for 25 years, working mainly in the equestrian and education sectors.

Her business coach, a Cumbrian now based in Lithuania, put her forward for the conference in August so she could share how her entrepreneurial spirit has shaped her career.

She said: “I’m really excited about going. It is a huge honour but also quite scary. I’ve always been self-employed so it’s second nature to me. I never thought I’d be asked to talk about it.”

Nicola travels across Cumbria with the Fruit and Veg Box Company, selling hundreds of boxes of produce a week.

But what she is most proud of is her weekly visit to Rampside near Barrow, which has no shop or regular bus route.

She attends a weekly coffee morning and sells her fruit and vegetables.

She said: “A woman called and asked me to go, and I really wasn’t sure about it at all. But you need to take the risk. So I turned up and it seemed like there were hundreds of people there.

“There are a lot of pensioners and without a regular bus service or a shop, they don’t really have access to a lot so it’ is a privilege to go every week.”