The 2019 leading ladies of Berkshire

PUBLISHED: 14:52 26 March 2019


Berkshire women mean business! Here we turn the spotlight on some of our county’s most successful - and discover what it is that makes them tick

Theresa Fleetwood - Andresa Skin, Health & Laser Clinic

Tell me about your business

Andresa is an exclusive skin health and laser clinic, unique in that we have specialised as a non-injection clinic, providing honest advice to help clients of all ages improve skin health and function. We use the latest science-based technologies and treatments to correct, balance and maintain good skin health, and we specialise in acne, rosacea, skin sensitivity, ageing and sun-damaged skin and hair removal, as well as those lumps, bumps and imperfections that most of us have!

Why Berkshire? What makes the area so right for your line of work?

I love living in Berkshire. I wanted to create a high-end aesthetic clinic in a beautiful, rural setting to offer privacy, discretion and a feeling of relaxation whilst delivering our science-based skin treatments that you would usually associate only with London clinics.

What is the secret of your success?

Having focus, determination and an abundance of positive energy with a personal mantra of never giving up! I also believe in being honest and genuine with a strict ‘no hard-sell policy’ so that we build trust between the team and our clients. I believe every person deserves to receive the best possible standard of service and care at every level.

Lower Wasing Barn, Wasing Lane, near Woolhampton RG7 4LY; 01635 800183;

Sue Watts - Windsor Royal Station

Tell me about your business

Windsor Royal Station is a shopping centre of 40 individual units comprising Fashion and Accessories, Food and Beverage, Beauty, Art and Jewellery. This year the Centre has been open 22 years, having opened on the 18th November 1997. The building originates from the mid-19th century when the railway first came to Windsor. To celebrate Queen Victoria’s diamond jubilee, a waiting room was built specifically for the use of the Royal Family; this is known as All Bar One today. This year we have drawn approximately 11 million visitors to the Centre, and offer a great shopping experience and also a lovely place to meet friends and dine at leisure, or just a quick pit-stop and a coffee.

What does your average day look like?

I don’t have an ‘average’ day as every single day is different; I may be talking to my cleaning team in the morning and attending a meeting in the Castle in the afternoon! In between, who knows what may come my way? My general responsibilities cover Health and Safety, Security and Cleaning, Marketing, Tenant Liaison, Budget Management and all points in between. I have a small management team of three to support me as well as outsourced cleaning, security and M&E.

How do you spend your free time?

Free time, what free time?! I like to travel, I love history or visiting sites, a good book and a cup of coffee. Bliss.

Jubilee Arch, Windsor; 01753 797071

Kerry Fretwell - Penningtons Manches

Tell me about your business

I am a family partner in the Reading office of Penningtons Manches. We also have offices in Basingstoke, Cambridge, Guildford, London, Oxford and San Francisco. The family department has 13 partners and 21 associates in total. I have worked with many of my colleagues for over 25 years. We are very experienced, very collegiate and have excellent support from the rest of the firm if we need input on corporate, property or private client matters.

What does your average day look like?

There is no such thing as an average day and that is one of the best things about my career: every client is different. We spend most of our day providing advice on separation and divorce, negotiating financial settlements, looking at children’s issues, briefing experts such as barristers or accountants, and preparing for court hearings. I also deal with operational matters and keep up to speed with legal developments. The challenge this month is grappling with a brand-new computer system!

How do you spend your free time?

I am lucky enough to play the ukulele with the amazing Sam Brown. We performed a sold-out show at a local theatre in December. I spent the first half dressed as Stan Laurel and the second half as a ‘70s hippy - one of the highlights of my year. For the past four years, I’ve also run a local youth festival and am currently looking for talented teenagers to perform at a gig night.

Apex Plaza, Forbury Road, Reading RG1 1AX; 0118 982 2640

Trudy Durkin - Daniel Department Store

Having joined the family business 37 years ago, Trudy has worked in most of the departments in the store, so understands their visitors and is continually evolving the store in line with the ever-changing face of retail.

What’s the secret to your success?

Hard work, tenacity and gaining valuable experience.

What other women have inspired you, whether in your professional or personal life?

The Queen and Baroness Karren Brady. These two women lead by example and are an inspiration to all. The Queen’s dedication to our country as well as to her family over the years is exemplary, together with the trials and tribulations she has endured in her life. We are very lucky to have such a formidable lady as our Queen.

Any top tips for a successful working relationship?

I believe that the most important aspect of a working relationship is mutual respect. The ability to communicate and accept differences will generate a pleasurable working experience and environment.

Peascod Street, Windsor SL4 1DP; 01753 801000

Kay Dymond - Options Bath & Tile Studio

Tell me about your business

Our business was started by my husband in 2006 who, having had a distinguished career in retail, chose to change direction and start Options Bath & Tile Studio. Our showroom boasts fabulous displays of bathrooms and a wide array of tiles. We have a large portfolio of bathrooms that our team have designed and fitted over the years.

Any top tips for a successful working relationship?

Respect is key in any working relationship and when you are married even more so as you live with that person and work together daily. Steve and I have been together for 20 years, and growing as a couple you learn to work in harmony and have a mutual understanding of how the other person works. I can honestly say that I enjoy working with Steve and look forward to growing our business.

How do you spend your free time?

My two boys fill my free time. If I’m not working I am taking the boys to football, doing the school run and as a family we enjoy bike riding. You will often find us cycling around the Great Park in Windsor on a Sunday afternoon. I am an avid reader of crime novels and enjoy spending time with my husband, relaxing over a glass of red wine.

15 Crossways, Silwood Road, Sunninghill SL5 OPZ; 01344 627500

Heidi Rolfe-Daniel - Heidi

I have run the restaurants in Daniel department store for the last 25 years. They have recently expanded under my name, Heidi, with bakeries in Windsor and Farnham. I am now excited to be working on a new project, bringing friends and family food to the first floor of Daniel under the brand new name of Foggs.

What’s the secret to your success?

My secret is true passion and love for what I do, with a large bucket of stamina thrown in. Luckily that’s not hard when my business is making beautiful cakes!

What other women have inspired you, whether in your professional or personal life?

It has to be my sister, Trudy, who helped show me the way on how to run a successful business whilst maintaining a strong family life. It’s thanks to observing her that I’ve managed to open and run a number of fantastic restaurants whilst also bringing up my six children!

How do you spend your free time?

Free time for me is very rare and therefore precious. Our family holidays are really the only opportunity I have to spend quality time with my husband and children. During term time I particularly enjoy making cakes with our younger children and attending as many sporting events as possible.

120/124 Peascod Street, Windsor, Elphicks Dept Store, 10/13 West Street, Farnham; 01753 801000

Latest from the Berkshire Life