An organisation which brings together business women from a range of sectors has launched two new groups in Cumbria.

The Women In Business Network (WIBN) has extended its support to the women of Cumbria with the new groups at the Rheged Centre in Penrith.

For women owning small or medium sized businesses, the self-employed, or those working as professional service providers, the WIBN offers a system of mutual support, business referrals and collaborations.

Established in 2005, the network has groups spread all across the UK.

The launch event saw more than 50 local business women in attendance, and a third group will be opening in Ambleside on June 24.

It will be based at the Kelsick Grammar School, which has recently been renovated.

WIBN Cumbria owner, Rachel Gilbert said: "I am passionate about supporting and connecting women in Cumbria.

"Post-COVID many people have moved, or moved back, to Cumbria to take advantage of the amazing lifestyle opportunities.

"There is a real buzz in the area with lots of exciting businesses and entrepreneurs."

Ms Gilbert has an extensive 25-year background in corporate business, including time as global retail director for high street brands like Oasis, Warehouse, and Monsoon.

The monthly meeting of the groups takes place at Penrith's Rheged Centre, a venue which Ms Gilbert takes great pride in associating with.

She said: "We have taken the best bits of WIBN and combined them with things that make this unique county so special."

WIBN, although a membership group, encourages women to attend and experience the ethos of "women supporting women", and the group promises "no pushy sales" for first time attendees.

These meetings, which include networking, spotlight speakers and business topics, plus food, take place on the fourth Tuesday of each month.

Women interested in signing up for updates or for more information can visit the group's website.