About Us

We are Friendly Forward-Thinking Fun

Meet the SBA Team

Patricia Marks
Managing Director

Patricia comes from a background in manufacturing and more recently marketing and people development. She started SBA in order to be able to provide individuals with a high quality service that allows them to explore career paths and business opportunities that help them take the next steps.

Toni Millership
Operations Director

Toni has had a successful career in hospitality and training before joining SBA to take over operations and contract management. Toni believes in supporting people to become the best they can be in whatever their chosen career path or business proposition is.

David Marks
Director

David is a master butcher and has successfully worked in the meat industry most of his career. In that time David has developed training for new people into the industry and coached many people to develop their skills within the trade. David currently supports SBA with the operation of Great Bow Wharf and looking for new opportunities.

Adam Watson
Business Advisor

Adam is a business advisor with SBA having many years experience of supporting others to either develop existing businesses or to set up in Business.  Adam works on the NEA programme within Job Centre Plus as well as leading on the Business Development Workshops.  Adam also supports SBA with the business finances. 

Jos Kelly
Business Advisor

Jos has a background of working for large multinational corporations developing their sales function both in terms of processes and personnel. As an advisor Jos is able to translate the key systems and processes deployed within large corporates to work successfully in owner operator businesses.

Amanda Middleton
Associate Trainer

Amanda has developed a comprehensive management background over the last 19 years from the Further Education and Social Care sectors. Amanda has been delivering teaching and training for the last 9 years and uses this experience to develop and deliver one to one mentoring and training as well as delivering group training specifically in leadership, management, team building and customer care.

Lance Cross
Associate Trainer

Lance delivers management and personal skills training, as well as consulting in strategy, Investors in People and change. He also facilitates team events.
At school and university he specialised in languages. Lance has twenty years of experience in training, general management, network development, customer service, Investors in People and continuous improvement.  He has a large kitbag of tools and techniques which he uses to help clients improve their business results. 

Peter Frome
Caretaker

Peter works to support the daily operations at Great Bow Wharf as well as providing key services for our events and office maintenance.

Phil Riste
Business Advisor

Phil describes himself as a hardworking, enthusiastic and determined professional, with over 20 years’ experience of working within recruitment, welfare to work and sales industries. Phil enjoys many sports, including football, especially supporting Manchester United, mountain biking and skittles.  He is a keen music fan with knowledge of a wide range of music, he also enjoys socialising and going to see bands play live and attending festivals.  

Emma Brade

Contracts Co-ordinator

Emma has had a background in the Education and Learning sector, primarily dealing with compliance and risk management. She has joined SBA as the Contracts Co-ordinator. Emma will be in charge of overseeing the contract requirements with stakeholders and ensuring that our clients are supported through their journey with us. 

Tabitha Scott
Workplace Co-ordinator Recruit Princesshay

Tabitha comes to SBA with a background of experience in the Welfare to Work sector having previously worked for Job Centre Plus and the prison service. She now runs our flagship project in Exeter at Recruit Princesshay.

What we do 

SBA provides advice, guidance and support to individuals, micro businesses and start ups as well as those businesses looking to grow. We also support individuals to develop new skills and take the next steps in their careers.

We have provided business advice and support to thousands of businesses and individuals across Somerset and have had the pleasure in watching businesses thrive with the guidance of our excellent specialist business advisors.

SBA is based in Langport at The Great Bow Wharf, located in the heart of the Somerset Levels. SBA was  established in 2010 as a Community Interest Company (CIC) operating on a not-for-profit basis. Being a not-for-profit company means we can offer a high quality service to businesses and individuals either fully funded or at an affordable rate without compromising on the quality of service.

We are a member of the National Enterprise Network (NEN) providing independent and impartial advice as well as delivering high quality training and  business guidance across the region.

If you are considering starting your own business, exploring a new idea or looking for a new direction we have specialist business advisors to support you and help you every step of the way.

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