Meet the Team

David Watson

Chief Executive

Formerly an employee of Harrogate Borough Council with over 26 years of experience in the Sport and Physical Activity industry and a qualified Youth Worker, David became Executive Director of North Yorkshire Sport on July 1st 2006.

Prior to that he had worked with North Yorkshire Sport on a secondment from Harrogate Borough Council where he had gained valuable experience of both Facility Management, working and managing both wet and dry sites, and Sports Development. He also worked for eleven years as a part time Physical Education teacher at a local primary school giving him an insight in to the particular needs of education.

David became Chief Executive of North Yorkshire Sport Ltd on April 1st 2014 when the organisation launched as a company limited by guarantee with charitable status.

David's role is to provide strategic leadership, to manage the financial, human and physical resources assigned to the Partnership and to ensure the sustainability and efficiency of the company.

David represents the Yorkshire and Humber County Sport Partnerships as a member the National CSP Improvement Group, is a member of the Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise North Yorkshire Chief Executives group, one of two Voluntary Sector Representatives on the North Yorkshire County Council Children and Young People Scrutiny Board as well as being a member of a number of strategic groups within the county representing sport and physical activity.

He is Chairman of the Swim North East Board, is a Trustee of Community First Yorkshire and Vice Chair of Governors and Trustee at Harrogate High School.

David is a keen sportsman in his spare time, focusing mostly on the gym, recreational cycling and challenge races such as the Yorkshire Warrior

Damien Smith

Damien Smith

Head of Development

Damien's role at North Yorkshire Sport is Head of Development which he has held since April 2012. His role includes overseeing the work of the development team, delivery against the organisations Primary Role work with Sport England and as the strategic lead for the Satellite Clubs programme, the Schools Facilities Programme across North Yorkshire & County Durham (in collaboration with County Durham Sport) and supports the Safeguarding Officer at North Yorkshire Sport in driving the safeguarding work of the Active Partnership.

Damien's previous roles have included the Partnership Development Manager for the Harrogate School Sports Partnership which he held for 3 years, Delivery Manager for North Yorkshire Sport from 2007-2009, Senior Sports Development Officer for Harrogate Borough Council and Regional Development Officer for British Triathlon for a number of years. Damien graduated from Leeds Metropolitan University in 2001 with an Honours Degree in Physical Education.

He performs a number of voluntary roles outside of his work including a position as Time to Listen Tutor for NYS/CPSU, Safeguarding & Protecting Children Tutor for UK Coaching and a Nominated Clubmark Officer for the English Cricket Board.

Damien is also a Vice Chair and Co-opted Governor at Willow Tree Community Primary School in Harrogate and Vice Chair of Trustees for Harrogate Town FC Community Foundation.

He is a qualified Athletics, Football and Triathlon coach and is a keen novice runner and enjoys skiing whenever he can get chance!

Telephone
Tel: 01423 637652 Mob: 07858919295
George Cull

George Cull

Head of Development

George joined the North Yorkshire Sport team as Delivery Manager in May 2009, having previously spent over two years working with Lancashire County Sports Partnership in the capacity of Partnership Development Officer. Prior to that role he had worked for Hyndburn Borough Council and Leisure in Hyndburn Trust as a Sports Development Officer. This post followed Georges graduation from York St Johns in 2002 with a degree in Leisure and Tourism Management, which he had completed after doing a BTEC in Sports Science at Yorkshire Coast College.

Georges role at North Yorkshire Sport involves overseeing the work of the team, leading on thematic work around children and young people, older people and the great outdoors. He is also driving North Yorkshire Sports fundraising work around supporting mental health through sport.

Outside of work George has signed up to do an Ironman Triathlon in July 2020. He has a strong interest in running and cycling (swimming less so) and still plays the occasional game of football.

Telephone
Mobile 07858 919430
Richard Hall

Richard Hall

Head of Marketing

With a 17 year career in sports development and marketing, Richard joined North Yorkshire Sport in January 2016 in the newly created role of Head of Marketing.

Richard's previous work includes 13 years working for Loughborough University in the Sports Development Centre, initially in sports development roles, before becoming Sport Marketing & Communications Manager for the University from 2008 to 2014. He then worked across commercial and charitable sectors with a digital marketing remit with Zyro, a sports import and distribution company, before taking a role as Education Marketing Manager with English Heritage across the North of England.

His role works across two Active Partnerships, North Yorkshire Sport and Active Humber, and he is responsible for the management and delivery of the joint marketing function across the two charities and managing the marketing team. The role involves planning and delivering multi-channel marketing communications to support objectives in accordance with both CSP's strategies and business plans.

Richard graduated from Loughborough University in 1998 with a degree in English with PE and Sports Management, and is a keen cyclist, former basketball player, and avid rugby union fan.

Telephone
07860 954338
Lucy Playford

Lucy Playford

Marketing Officer

Lucy enjoys a unique position of working across two Active Partnerships, providing both North Yorkshire Sport and Active Humber with a broad range of marketing support.

As a media graduate Lucy's most recent experience is working as a freelance social media manager and digital marketer. Previous experience includes in-house and agency PR roles for brands including Orange and in Events Management for a government organisation. Lucy's role includes planning and creating marketing communications, managing social media, producing digital marketing, event planning and designing marketing materials.

In her free time, Lucy loves getting out and about visiting Yorkshire's great outdoors with her family.

Telephone
07398 147559
Robin Lavin

Robin Lavin

Workforce Development Manager

After graduating from Northumbria University in 2006 with a degree in Sport and Exercise Science Robin started his career in the North East working as a fitness instructor, personal trainer and a community rugby coach for the Rugby Football Union. In 2010 Robin then moved down to York to work for City of York Council as their Young People's Physical Activity Officer helping local clubs to develop their junior sections.

As Workforce Development Manager, Robin supports the volunteering, coaching, clubs and professional workforce to target key demographics of inactives.

In his spare time Robin enjoys running and walking his dog Libby.

Telephone
Mobile 07858 919300
Jane Ratcliffe

Jane Ratcliffe

Development Manager

After graduating from Durham University in 2004 with a degree in Sport in the Community and then from University of Central Lancashire in 2006 with a Masters in Business Management Jane has had development roles at South Lakeland District Council, Tees Valley Sport and the ASA.

Jane started at North Yorkshire Sport in October 2013 and work areas have included driving initial work on the Dame Kelly Holmes Get on Track Programmes across the county, supporting a number of National Governing Bodies and leading on the Satellite Club programme. More recently, Jane's role is supporting the development of the Workforce (coaches, volunteers and professional workforce) and this includes leading on a project to create an online learning platform.

Jane's normal working days are Tuesday to Thursday. In her free time, Jane spends time with her young family, often exploring and playing in parks and walking with their 5 year old collie/springer cross dog. She is also a Peer Mentor for Adoption UK.

Telephone
01423 637668
Mobile
07858 930 245
Sarah Stephenson

Sarah Stephenson

Sport Development Manager

Sarah Graduated from Wolverhampton University in 2001 with a combined degree in Sport and Outdoor Education. Following this she was employed by Middlesbrough Council as a sport Development Officer for 3 years before moving to Tees Valley Sport to work as the lead coordinator for the National charity StreetGames for a further 3 years.

In 2010 Sarah began a role with Northumbria University as their Student Development Manager where she worked for 4 years on their volunteering and internship programme before taking up the role of Sport Development Manager here at North Yorkshire Sport.

Sarah's role at North Yorkshire Sport involves delivering the support that NYS provides to Primary Schools across the County in relation to PE, Sport and Healthy Lifestyles alongside work to support the Swim North East Region

In her spare time Sarah enjoys playing for her local hockey club and when she can she also likes to spend time mountain biking, climbing and camping.

Telephone
Mobile 07858 930050

Laura Young

Sport Development Manager

Having graduated from Leeds Metropolitan University's with a degree in Sport and Exercise Science in 2007, Laura went on to work for Leeds City Council as a Gymnastics Coordinator before moving to British Gymnastics, as a Club Development Coordinator for 3 years.

In 2013 Laura started a role for West Yorkshire Sport as a Development Officer coordinating children & young people projects within multiple districts. Laura was initially seconded to North Yorkshire Sport in 2015 to cover a maternity position. Her current role includes management of the Satellite Clubs Programme for North Yorkshire and is the lead officer for Club Development.

Telephone
01423 637658
Simon Pierce

Simon Pierce

Sport Development Manager

Simon graduated from Swansea Institute of Higher Education with a BA degree in Sport and Recreation Management. After initially working for the Leeds Mental Health Trust as a Health Support Worker and a Fitness Instructor in the cities psychiatric hospitals, he was employed by the Federation of Disability Sports Organisations (FDSO) to develop a Healthy Living Project. That role changed to focus on Disability Sport Development within North Yorkshire.

Simon was employed by North Yorkshire Sport to continue the disability developed work within the county. His role has evolved to include leading on 2 age appropriate programmes including ESCAPE-pain:

- A unique Education & Exercise class to help participants manage symptoms of chronic knee or hip pain caused by Osteoarthritis.

And Strong and Steady:

- A programme designed to encourage people aged 65+ to become more active and reduce the risk of trips and falls.

Simon also takes the lead on reviewing and developing the North Yorkshire Sport Equality policy.

In his spare time Simon plays golf and keeps fit running, cycling and swimming.

Telephone
Mobile 07414 911218
Lucy Psarias

Lucy Psarias

Sport Development Manager

Having graduated with a BA (Hons.) degree in Sports Science and Management, Lucy began her career in sport working for Leeds City Council on community sports development followed by the role of Community Leisure Officer for City of York Council, predominantly working alongside the voluntary sports club sector assisting with club and volunteer development.

Lucy joined the North Yorkshire Sport team in January 2008 and currently takes a lead on the School Games programme organising and coordinating the County Level events in addition to managing the Active Lives survey across the region.

In her spare time, Lucy loves being active and enjoying the great outdoors. She regularly attends the gym and enjoys spending time with her family.

Lucy's working days are Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday

Telephone
Mobile 07715144746
Laura Tiemens

Laura Tiemens

Development Manager - Insight

After graduating from University in Nottingham, Laura went on to complete an MBA in Urban Regeneration at the University of Liverpool in 2004. She spent three years working for a global logistics company, in the performance and planning function of the business, before joining the North Yorkshire Sport team in 2008.

Laura's role ensures we are using 'insight' to improve our understanding of participation in sport & physical activity; what motivates people to take part and equally what barriers exist to prevent different groups from getting involved. This insight helps us to create the right opportunities for more people to take part in sport and physical activity across North Yorkshire.

Laura also ensures that we are consistently evaluating our work, in order to continuously improve our programmes and to demonstrate the impact of our work. She is responsible for our Impact measurement framework and the publication of our annual Impact report, which can be found here.

In her spare time Laura loves being active and getting outdoors; whether on foot, on horseback, by pedal or paddle! She's a keen yogi and an avid Everton fan.

Laura's working days are Monday & Wednesday

Telephone
Mobile 07738109524
Gavin Phillis

Gavin Phillis

Sport Development Manager

Gavin's role is to lead on the support that NYS provides to Primary Schools across the North Yorkshire in relation to PE, Sport and Healthy Lifestyles and lead the implementation of the Action towards Inclusion project. This involves providing mentoring and supporting people who are economically inactive or unemployed, helping them overcome barriers and to move closer to employment, whilst addressing a range of social issues.

After graduating from Leeds University in 2008 with a degree in Sport Development and Physical Education Gavin started his career in the Craven School Sport Partnership as a community sports coach. In 2010 Gavin's role changed to coaching manager where he oversaw the Craven School Sport Partnership coaching programme.

Gavin is a former semi-professional footballer who now spends the a lot of his spare time raising money for Martin House Children's Hospice through running or golf events. Gavin also volunteers at his local swim club and often takes part in open water swimming events.

Telephone
07738109530

Jody Ivel

Sport Development Manager

North Yorkshire Sport

Jody joined North Yorkshire Sport in May 2018 as a Sport Development Manager and currently takes a lead on Youth Engagement particularly the Achieve programme and Get on Track using activity to tackle inequalities and supporting young people experiencing disadvantage.

Jody graduated from Leeds Metropolitan University with a Masters in Sport and Exercise Psychology after completing a degree at Northumbria University in Psychology with Sport and Exercise Science. Starting a career in Sport Development she went on to work for England Netball as a Netball Development officer covering the North Yorkshire County.

Jody is a keen netball player and Coach and holds her A award Netball Umpiring Qualification.

Telephone
01423637665
Amy Garrett

Amy Garrett

Project Development Officer

After graduating from Northumbria University in 2013 with a degree in Business and Marketing, Amy started her career in sport development by coaching a wide variety of sports in Primary Schools in the North East, alongside delivering children's camps at Northumbria University. She completed a 'Masters in Sport International Management' whilst working as a development officer at Northumbria University.

Amy joined North Yorkshire Sport in May 2015 and has taken part in a variety of projects over the years. Amy now delivers on two project; Action Towards Inclusion which involves providing mentoring and supporting people who are economically inactive or unemployed, helping them overcome barriers and to move closer to employment, whilst addressing a range of social issues, and Active Forest, a project aimed at encouraging people to come and be more physically active in forests across the UK. North Yorkshire Sport will be working closely with Dalby Forest in Ryedale to encourage people to participate in a variety of activities creating a 'sporting habit for life'

Amy loves anything outdoors and loves to explore new walks in the Yorkshire dales at the weekend.

Telephone
07746357580

Jane Mosley

Development Officer (ESIF)

After working for many years in the Pharmaceutical Industry Jane changed careers moving into Health and Social Care and the Voluntary Sector. Latterly working for the British Red Cross on a project preventing loneliness and isolation in the elderly. She has an interest in Mental Health and has completed Levels 2&3 in Counselling and Theory.

Jane joined North Yorkshire Sport in May 2017 as Development Officer for the Action towards Inclusion project. This involves providing mentoring and supporting people who are economically inactive or unemployed, helping them overcome barriers and to move closer to employment, whilst addressing a range of social issues.

In her spare time Jane enjoys organising local fundraising events in her Community and is Chairman of her village Parish Council.

In 2015 Jane began the Couch25k running programme and has stuck with it and runs regularly.

Telephone
07858 919293
Kelly Swale

Kelly Swale

Finance Assistant

Kelly joined the North Yorkshire Sport team in February 2012. Prior to this she worked at the Harrogate International Centre and took on various rolesincluding Marketing Assistant, Box Office Assistant and Team Administrator.

Kelly's part-time role involves various financial duties including invoicing, purchase orders, paypal, quickbooks reporting and supporting the Finance Manager.

Kelly also supports the Action Towards Inclusion team.

Telephone
01423 226303

Steph Whincup

Admin Assistant

North Yorkshire Sport

After working for 20+ years at the Harrogate Convention Centre in a variety of roles including Administration and Reception, Stephanie joined North Yorkshire Sport in September 2018 as an Admin Assistant. Stephanie's main role is admin support to the NYS team including organising courses, HR, minting Trustee meetings, School Games, policies and procedures and general administration duties.

In her spare time Stephanie enjoys leisurely bike rides, swimming and spending time with her family.

Telephone
01423 637650

Lynne Wightman

Development Manager

North Yorkshire Sport

Having graduated from Sunderland Polytechnic with an Applied Physics degree Lynne spent a number of years in the South, trying a variety of jobs. Lynne was involved in establishing a brand new Rugby League club in Hampshire during that time. Returning to the North East to bring up a young family, she continued to volunteer in Rugby League which ultimately led to a dramatic career change. Lynne started at what was then Durham Sport in 2003 as Active Sports Rugby League Activator, progressing to a general Partnership Development Manager role, leading first on NGB work and then on children and young people programmes.

Lynne started at North Yorkshire Sport in January 2019 as maternity cover on the Satellite Club programme and now works on the Opening School Facilities programme, a collaborative project managed by North Yorkshire Sport working in partnership with County Durham Sport. Lynne specifically covers the County Durham area, focusing on working with secondary schools to understand how they use their facilities outside of core school time.

Lynne is a born and bred Leeds Rhinos supporter, and also follows the fortunes of Newcastle Thunder. She loves to travel and spend time outdoors (and indoors) with her family and dog. In Lynne's remaining spare time she helps out at events such as the School Games in Northumberland, family muddy obstacle courses and one off fund-raisers which have included a Hadrian's Wall Challenge and a Fire Walk world record attempt at Kingston Park!

Lynne's working days are Monday to Thursday, shared between the NYS and CDS offices.

Telephone
01423 637658

Faye Pashby

Sport Development Manager

North Yorkshire Sport

Faye graduated from Northumbria University with a Sports Management degree in 2003 and then after a year of travelling the world setting up the QM2 children's activity programme, she completed her PGCE in Primary Education.

For the past 15 years, Faye has worked in North and West Yorkshire primary schools as a class teacher, Specialist Leader in Education and in the last six years as senior leader in both Assistant Headteacher and Deputy Headteacher roles. Using her knowledge of school management and building on her passion of sport and physical activity, Faye has joined the North Yorkshire Sport Team to work on the Sport England School Facilities Project, with a focus on the North Yorkshire area of schools.

In her spare time, Faye regularly visits her local gym where she particularly enjoys HIIT classes and Yoga. She also enjoys long walks, spending time with family and is also a committed school governor at a south Leeds primary school.

Faye works Tuesday – Friday.

Telephone
01423 637651