The Team

Managing Director

Pennine Events was formed in 2002 by managing director and sports enthusiast Mark Sandamas in Preston, Lancashire, the heart of England’s Northwest. Mark has worked in event management and marketing for over 20 years, with experience in the public, private and voluntary sectors .

He has led the growth of the company that now stages events throughout the UK and Europe.

Mark’s determination to succeed can be seen in his sporting achievements: he twice cycled the 256-kilometre Tour of Flanders sportive, rode Ride London in 3hr 47min and cycled Land’s End to John o’ Groats – 1000 miles in 10 days!

He has also competed in a pair of running shoes: Mark won the tough Hendon Brook half marathon, took second place in the Snowdonia marathon (the toughest in Europe), and ran the Three Peaks fell race in 3hr 13min.


Senior Operations Manager

Kirsty joined the team in 2010 and became full-time in June 2013 as a project manager after graduating from the UK Centre for Events Management with an honours degree in Event Management (2:1) from Leeds Metropolitan University, Kirsty is our Senior Operations Manager, a position she was promoted to in March 2015. In this role she manages the Operations department in the planning and delivery of all the company events (both our own events and contracted events).


Since 2011 Kirsty has been our lead on major, complex events such as Tour de Yorkshire, Stage 1 Finish Settle, Harrogate Big Bike Bash, the London to Brighton Night Ride, Pedal for Scotland, Great Notts Bike Ride, University of Lancaster War of the Roses, Great Manchester Cycle, Leicester Castle Classic, Leicester Sky Ride and the Wiggle North Series Events. She has a wealth of experience and knowledge of planning and implementing all aspects of the events from safety and site management through to traffic management and road closures.

Kirsty also has significant experience of working with various event stakeholders such as sponsors, local authority's, highways, police, traffic management contractors, suppliers and client liaison within the planning process of events. She regularly attends and presents to safety advisory group and EPOG meetings and works in multi- agency event control rooms for mass participation events.

Furthermore, Kirsty is very experienced at managing sites with attendances of over 10,000 people. She has demonstrated her ability to plan and make decisions based on developing circumstances in many events including National Championships, Nights of Neon and Pedal for Scotland and has good problem solving skills.

Kirsty led the process of continual development of our new event documentation including Event Safety Management Plans, Traffic Management Plans, Production Plans and Risk Assessments and has also recently completed the NEBOSH general certificate course.


Kirsty is also a bit of a daredevil, having scuba-dived in Thailand, Mexico, Egypt, with her favourite being exploring the shipwrecks off the coast of Malta.

Head of Consultancy

With over 38 years of event, major project management, and health & safety experience gained in the public sector, Graham brings a wealth of skill and knowledge to the company. Graham’s primary role in our previous major events has been as either the Event Director or Safety Director. He has worked in key roles on the British National Championships in Pendle in 2010, the Tour de France in Kent in 2007 and in Yorkshire in 2014 and the recent highly successful Tour of Yorkshire in 2015. He has considerable experience in delivering complex crowd management operations also

Graham, a Magistrate for 17 years, has cycled all over the world, from the USA, Nicaragua, and Peru in the west to Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos in the east – and many other countries in between.

Marketing, Sales & Event Support Officer

Qualified in Business Administration L4, Nilma grew up in the great sporting nation of Kenya. Nilma is our digital marketing and social media guru. She manages all our online platforms including social media, websites and participant entry systems, for both our own events and for our clients. She also looks after all our participant enquiries, ensuring participants know all there is to know about their event. She manages sponsor and exhibitor liaisons for all our events.

Nilma has the aptitude to be fast-tracked in our growing company with her ambitious and industrious nature.

To support our permanent staff we have a dedicated team of over 50 freelancers who help us plan projects, and deliver and run the events.

Bringing their qualifications and experiences to work, our freelance team play a key part in our robust planning processes. Their skills ensure we always provide the right people for every position. From escorting the Queen to organising Australia's largest tuna festival, there's little our freelancers haven't achieved.

The freelance team is part of our ‘family’, and is regarded as an integral part of what Pennine Events offer.

This team includes

  • Health & Safety Managers
  • Event Control Managers
  • Traffic Management Experts
  • Crowd Management
  • Security Experts
  • Event Managers
  • Drivers
  • Cyclists
  • Route Managers
  • Site Managers



We’re expanding, so if you’ve got verve, fresh ideas, and love to get involved in high-pressure, high-octane events, call us now.