A FORMER Hartlepool Mail journalist has launched her own communications consultancy.
Leanne English, 31, has set up LEC Consultancy which provides a broad range of communications services to regional businesses and organisations.
Leanne, who is running the business from her home in Peterlee, said: “For the last few years I’ve dreamed about starting my own communications consultancy, but the security of employment and a full-time salary was always the safer option.
“I’d seen so many other people try it and I knew if I didn’t go for it now, I never would.
“So with the help of East Durham Business Service (EDBS) and the support of my friends and family, I launched LEC Consultancy.
“Everyone says securing your first client is the hardest part so to have two lined up within days of launching was such a relief. It’s the perfect platform to take the business forward.”
Leanne has also been helped by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).
Leanne started working as a regional journalist at the Mail’s sister paper, the News Guardian in Whitley Bay before moving to the Hartlepool Mail as business reporter.
This was followed by four years as a press officer at One North East, two years as PR manager at local enterprise partnership Tees Valley Unlimited and one year at a communications agency.
Leanne said: “I knew that after 12 years working as a journalist and public relations professional, I had the skills and expertise to work for myself.
“I know running my business is going to be extremely tough and challenging, but I’m prepared for the hard work and long hours which will be needed to make it a success. It’s just so exciting for me that I’m actually realising my dream.”
Hina Joshi, Leanne’s business advisor at EDBS, said: “I’m really pleased that Leanne has started up her own business in something that has been at the forefront of her career for a long time.
“Leanne is just one example of how you can start your own business no matter what your passion is and I’m positive that LEC Consultancy will be a success.”