Appointments, promotions and achievements in Cumbria's business community this month.

*Corporate Tax Partner Becky Bowness has taken on the role of Head of Tax at Armstrong Watson LLP and leads the firm’s tax service lines across all 18 offices throughout the North of England and Scotland.

Becky’s promotion follows a significant and continuing growth period for the Armstrong Watson tax team. Becky, who was born Dalston and went to Caldew School, said: “I am looking forward to leading, working with and growing our

very experienced tax team to support the ambitions and goals of our fantastic clients.

“For businesses and individuals proactive tax planning has never been more important, nor as topical, as each day we hear from our clients and the media how the decisions made now around tax will have an impact on all of us.

“As Head of Tax, it’s my role to ensure that we effectively and proactively advise our clients on all opportunities and provide pragmatic, commercial solutions to all issues they face. We see ourselves as an integral part of the business planning and personal wealth management process whatever the phase of the business lifecycle or personal ambitions.”

Based in Carlisle, Becky previously headed up the Corporate Tax Team at Armstrong Watson having spent six years with PwC’s International and M&A tax teams in both their London and New York offices, and prior to that spent 12 years with a Cumbrian firm advising clients across the North of England.


*Joy Yates has been appointed Regional Editor for Newsquest Cumbria.

Joy oversees titles including the Carlisle-based News & Star, The Mail in South Cumbria, The Cumberland News, The Whitehaven News, the Times & Star, Westmorland Gazette as well as Northumberland’s Hexham Courant.

She also co-hosts the successful in-Cumbria networking events in Carlisle and will be supporting the soon-to-be-launched events in Kendal.

Joy said: “I am honoured to be leading the Newsquest editorial teams across Cumbria. It makes me proud every day to work alongside our award-winning journalists and sales teams who care so much about the areas they serve.”

Joy was formerly a Regional Director and Editorial Director of JPIMedia’s North East portfolio.

She is on the Society of Editors board of directors and is a former chair of the society’s North East branch.

Joy is also a member of the Defence and Security Media Advisory committee.

An award-winning journalist, Joy is an industry adviser for Sunderland University on behalf of the National Council for the Training of Journalists.


*Anna Brozyna has qualified as a Chartered Accountant after successfully completing a series of professional exams, alongside more than three years of on-the-job training at accountancy firm, Lamont Pridmore.

Anna works across the award-winning firm’s South Cumbria offices in Kendal, Barrow and Carnforth. Prior to joining the firm in 2021, she worked with a wide range of clients in other north-west firms, including one of the ‘big 4’ national accountancy practices in Manchester where she worked in audit risk and compliance.

Anna, who is originally from Poland, also has a law degree. She said: “I’m delighted to have qualified as a Chartered Accountant. It’s been a long journey and a lot of hard work, but I’ve really enjoyed learning more about the profession and how I can support our clients with their own business challenges.”

Karl Burrell, Managing Director of Lamont Pridmore South Cumbria, said: “Anna’s deserves this recognition as a qualified Chartered Accountant after years of study. Her skills and experience will benefit our wider team and ensure we can continue to offer pro-active, forward-thinking advice to our clients.”


*A Cumbrian wealth management company is celebrating adding three more qualified financial planners to its team - Cameron Thornton, Alice Wilkinson and Graham Lappin.

Financial Management Bureau, in Kendal, has been training up the new staff throughout 2022.

Cameron has been working in financial services since he left education but was attracted to the opportunity to train as a financial planner and be supported through his professional exams, which he passed with flying colours.

“I’m ploughing on this year with further exams which is the next challenge, but I’m working with clients and creating plans with them to achieve their short and long-term goals and it’s so rewarding,” he said.

Alice was already working in general insurance when she decided to switch paths to financial planning. Alice is the fourth female financial planner at FMB, which is making efforts to encourage more women into the sector.

“I’m proud to be part of a forward thinking and inclusive financial planning firm,” said Alice.

“Day to day I particularly enjoy using our cash flow forecasting tool to help clients visualise what their personal and financial future may hold through careful planning.”

For Graham, working at FMB is a new challenge after he moved to the area following a global career working for large investment firms.


*Alexander Mansfield has been appointed as finance director at Kendal law firm, Harrison Drury.

He will act as a strategic advisor to the firm’s board while taking overall responsibility for the firm’s financial functions. He takes over from Rob Salter who is retiring after 13 years in the role, a period in which the firm has grown to more 130 employees and six North West offices.

Alexander spent almost 15 years as FD at Merseyside-based law firm Jackson Lees and later FD of its parent company MAPD, helping guide it through a series of mergers and acquisitions. Before this he worked as an audit manager for big four accountancy firms EY and Grant Thornton.


*Emma Browning, founder and Managing Director of Meraki HR Solutions, has expanded into Cumbria. Emma, who launched the business in Oxfordshire in 2014, has opened an office in the Kendal Business Hub at South Lakeland House.

“My biggest concern moving to the Lake District was that I’m a southerner and whether I would be accepted, but everybody I have met within the local business community has been incredibly supportive and welcoming and I am really excited about the future,” said Emma, who lives in Crook.

“My husband Mike and I have loved coming to the Lake District for more than 25 years. We are keen fellwalkers and it has been our dream to live and work in this area.”

Before setting up the company, Emma’s roles included HR Manager for Porsche Cars Great Britain Ltd, where she completed her Masters degree in the Management of Innovation and Change and HR Director for Harley-Davidson Europe, Middle East and Africa.


*Rosie Groves has been appointed as Natterjack Marketing’s Senior Digital Marketing Executive. The firm, set up by Lindsay Gray in 2018, is based out of t of Eagle Labs at The Bus Station in Whitehaven,C

*Director Rebecca Graves celebrated 15 years working in NRL’s Egremont Recruitment branch last month. She joined the specialist engineering recruitment organisation as a Recruitment Consultant with a focus on innovation within the nuclear sector, before progressing through to Branch Director in 2016. Cumbrian born, Rebecca has a passion for collaborating with local and global engineering companies to identify their current and future recruitment and workforce needs, whilst ensuring local people can benefit from the sector’s vast resource opportunities.