People: Manchester Youth Zone; Bexley Beaumont; Roxtec; Weightmans; Praetura Ventures; Slater Heelis

Heather Etheridge

Manchester Youth Zone (MYZ), part of the OnSide Network of Youth Zones, has announced the appointment of Heather Etheridge as its new CEO.

Heather arrives in the role after nearly five years at The Big Life Group, where as a director, she provided strategic leadership within health and wellbeing services. As part of her role, Heather was the strategic safeguarding lead for all children’s services, with responsibility in ensuring an effective and high quality delivery.

Heather, who was born and raised in Greater Manchester, has committed her career to the wellbeing and development of young people across the community. With her previous roles giving her extensive strategic experience across the city region, Heather brings a wealth of knowledge that will make a meaningful difference at MYZ.

Heather Etheridge said: “I am honoured to become the chief executive of this brilliant place for young people in North Manchester. It is a vital service that’s embedded in the community and does amazing work in presenting and creating opportunities for young people, whatever their background.

“My passion has always been rooted in creating equity for our young people and families. I understand the challenges they face today and I am dedicated to crafting innovative solutions that empower them to thrive. MYZ presents the best place possible to achieve this. I can’t wait to get started.”

Chair of the Board of Trustees, Dr Jo Jolliffe, said: “Heather brings with her a raft of experience that will only add to our impact and the difference we can make to young people in North Manchester.”


Sharaz Hussain

Boutique Manchester law firm, Bexley Beaumont, has made a ‘pivotal’ appointment to its management team after recruiting Sharaz Hussain as Head of Finance.

He joins having spent more than a decadein key roles with well known brands in a range of business sectors and industries, retail, media and professional services.

Chief executive, Karen Bexley, said his arrival was a ‘coup’: “When we launched, we were convinced that by having a clear vision, talented people and very capable support, we would have the best possible chance of success. Within the last year alone, both we and our clients have seen the benefits of the decision to stick to that strategy.

“Sharaz is evidence of our desire to have real strength in depth in our management team. His experience complements our existing skills and makes us even more robust as a business.”

Mr Hussain’s new post is the latest in a career which has seen him work for a range of international and UK-based companies, including the likes of STA Travel, the N Brown Group and Deloitte. He will work alongside Senior Compliance Executive, Harry Monaghan.

Over the past year, Bexley Beaumont appointed 21 partners across a breadth of specialisms and now has 53 partners.


Eston Dalby

Cable and pipe seal manufacturer Roxtec has strengthened its Power and Process division team in the UK with two new appointments as it continues on its growth journey.

Eston Dalby has joined Bury-based Roxtec UK as External Sales Manager, covering the south of England, while Wilfred Ballo has taken up an Internal Technical Sales role.

Roxtec UK Managing Director, Clive Sharp, said: “As these latest appointments highlight, we continue to invest in our people in response to the increasing needs of our customers and to help them meet the challenges they face.”

Wilfred Ballo

Eston Dalby was business development manager for a workplace solutions company in his previous position. His role at Roxtec will centre on supporting and building and developing working relationships with its customers. He said: “I’m looking forward to this new role, working closely with customers and giving them total confidence that we are there for them throughout their project and beyond.”

Wilfred Ballo’s background is in engineering. His new role will see him supporting the division’s external sales team to help them deliver projects, come up with technical solutions for customers and seek out future business opportunities. He said: “The role is really hands-on and as an engineer that technical and problem-solving side of it is what really attracted me to Roxtec. It is all about supporting the team.”


David Lewis

Liverpool-based national law firm, Weightmans, has elected a new senior partner, Peter Wake, after David Lewis retires following six years in the position.

Peter joined the firm in 2001 as a trainee solicitor. Based in the Liverpool office, he became a partner in 2011, an equity partner in 2016, and was head of local government litigation for many years. After being elected by equity partners, Peter began a three-year term from April 1.

The news comes as David retires from the equity partnership after almost 40 years at Weightmans, although he will remain with the firm as a consultant, to service long standing clients and to continue to contribute to the ongoing success of the regulatory department, which was his vision some 20 years ago.

John Schorah, managing partner at Weightmans, said: “David’s contribution to Weightmans over the last 40 years has been immeasurable – and his professionalism and dedication to the firm’s continued success is an example to us all. I want to thank him personally for what has been an outstanding tenure here at Weightmans, and I am delighted that he will continue as a consultant for the firm.

“Like David, Peter is also Weightmans through-and-through, and I know he will work hard to implement the firm’s culture and values as we continue our aim to be a Top 30 law firm.”


Colin Greene, left, and Mark Roberts

Praetura Ventures has named Mark Roberts as its latest operational partner following the announcement of its fund management role for the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund II – Equity North West (£100m).

The role will see Mark support Praetura’s growing portfolio of early stage businesses, from customer success to business strategy, and recruitment to C-suite hires.

Mark will join Praetura’s seven other operational partners, including former Dr Marten’s chief human resources officer, Helen Verwoert, former AO Group CEO Steve Caunce, and former general counsel and company secretary for JD, Siobhan Almond.

Mark founded the online craft beer store Beer Hawk in 2012, which successfully exited to AB InBev. In 2019, he became Global CEO of the PerfectDraft business, which has become a leading direct-to-consumer player for AB InBev, before leaving in 2022.

He said: “The Praetura team has such a great reputation across the whole of the North because of their ‘more than money’ attitude, and this is what drew me to the operational partner programme. I’m excited to share my network, knowledge and experience with some great businesses that are putting an entrepreneurial stamp on the region.”

Colin Greene, partner (portfolio) at Praetura Ventures, said: “Mark possesses all the qualities we look for in an operational partner, with an outstanding CV and scaling journey with Beer Hawk. He’s also incredibly passionate and enthusiastic about giving back to the ecosystem and supporting the next generation of early stage businesses with ‘more than money’, which is the reason we launched the operational partner programme.”


From top left: Alexandra Goldrein, Awais Alam, Andrew Scott, Charlotte Kennedy, Hannah Costley. Bottom left: Mark Warburton, Paige Wood, Rebecca Lang, Rebecca Muirhead, Sally Tomlinson

Manchester-based law firm, Slater Heelis, has made 10 promotions at the firm which sees seven of its team promoted to Associate Partner and a further three achieving Associate Solicitor status.

The family team has appointed Andrew Scott as Associate Solicitor while Alexandra Goldrein, Rebecca Muirhead and Rebecca Lang assume the role of Associate Partner. In addition, Hannah Costley in Crime and Regulatory and Paige Wood in Court of Protection are both now Associate Solicitors.

Finally, Sally Tomlinson in Employment and HR, Charlotte Kennedy in Court of Protection, Awais Alam in Property and Mark Warburton in the Corporate team are all promoted to Associate Partners.

Chris Bishop, Managing Partner at Slater Heelis, said: “They really do excel in their field and embrace the Slater Heelis working ethos and I am extremely proud of each of their journeys so far with us. They are all intrinsic to the ongoing success of the firm and we look forward to seeing how they continue to thrive whilst also working with their individual teams to nurture more up and coming talent of the future that we have here at Slater Heelis.”

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