Meet the Founder
Say hello to Jo Maltby...
In a fast-paced world where digital connectivity is paramount, Jo has passionately dedicated herself to enhancing the visibility of local businesses, bringing the charm of community offerings to the forefront of the digital landscape.
Her commitment to local enterprise began in 2013 with the inception of #wetherbyhour and expanded in 2018 with #harrogatehour—innovative internet networking events that foster connections among nearby businesses. These initiatives rapidly evolved into highly attended live events, now celebrated as some of Yorkshire's most established networking gatherings.
In 2015, Jo introduced the Handpicked Local subscription service, ingeniously bridging the gap between traditional high-street commerce and the online marketplace. This venture reflects her understanding of the transformative impact of digital technology on small business visibility, enabling customers to effortlessly discover, locate, and patronize local businesses.
Jo's entrepreneurial spirit and commitment to community shone brightly in her collaboration with Melanie Malcolm, leading to the creation of the Yorkshire Choice Awards—a testament to their shared vision over a cup of Yorkshire tea.
Throughout her journey, Jo has been recognised with several accolades, including Wetherby Townsperson of the Year, the Insight with a Passion Award, and the Stray FM Good Neighbour Local Hero Award. Her involvement extends beyond business; she actively participates in local events such as the Wetherby Lions Senior Citizens Party and has played a pivotal role in organising the Wetherby Christmas Light Switch for many years.
In May 2019, Jo took her commitment to her community a step further by joining the Wetherby Town Council, a role she was honoured to hold, serving until May 2023.
Jo's titles include Director of The Yorkshire Choice Awards, Founder of #wetherbyhour and #harrogatehour, and Owner of Handpicked Local, each reflecting her deep-rooted commitment to supporting and elevating local businesses and communities.