You can find me on LinkedIn or you can talk to me on Twitter but here’s a quick overview of the things I do.

Local Government and LocalGov Digital

Sarah Lay

I’m Senior Digital Officer (Digital Team Leader) at Nottinghamshire County Council and co-founder of LocalGov Digital, where I am currently Communications Lead.

At Nottinghamshire County Council my work involves both strategy and delivery of digital services across the website, intranet and a number of other sites and digital channels. This is currently focused on leading on aspects of the Council’s Digital First project which you can read about on this blog. This project includes a new website, delivery of a social media strategy, work across microsites and extranets and delivery of an intranet and employee engagement tools.

I’m a founding member of the digital practitioner network, LocalGov Digital, and my role currently involves managing the daily curation of news for the sector, communications for the group and organising LocalGovCamp and

These roles and my previous experience led to being included in the local government shortlist for the Digital By Default News Digital Leaders 100 Awards in 2014.

I’ve worked in digital for local government for a decade and have experience in content and author management and strategy, training, accessibility, usability, search optimisation, stats analysis, social media, innovation and digital engagement. My focus is currently around systems leadership, service design, user experience and delivery.

I previously worked in the private sector as an online journalist, intranet manager for a regional newspaper group and on niche websites including Hold the Front Page and the BAFTA-winning Headline History.

Awards and qualifications:

  • BA (Hons) Journalism
  • MA Online Communications – dissertation looking at content strategy and digital communications in local government
  • Shortlisted Lifetime Achievement Award Comms2Point0 UnAwards (2015)
  • Shortlisted Best Digital Professional at Comms2Point0 UnAwards (2015)
  • Shortlisted Digital By Default News Digital Leaders 100 Awards (2014)
  • Best Public Sector at UXUK Awards 2015 – Winner –  team award for Nottinghamshire County Council Digital First
  • Digital Team – Winner – Digital Experience UK Awards 2015 – team award for Nottinghamshire County Council Digital Team
  • Shortlisted NextGen Intelligent Communities Award 2015 (Nottinghamshire County Council Digital First)
  • Umbraco Certified Practitioner (Level One)
  • GovDelivery Maximiser Award 2014 – team award for growth and retention of email subscribers
  • Best Collaborative Partnership – Winner – Comms2Point0 UnAwards 2014 – on behalf of LocalGov Digital
  • Digital Excellence – Winner – CIPR LPS 2009 – team award for work on Derbyshire’s Local Elections 2009
  • Best Use of Social Media – shortlisted – CIPR Awards (Midlands Region) 2009 – team award for work on Derbyshire’s Local Elections 2009.

Noble and Wild

With so much music stuff going on, as well as 15 years’ experience of working online it seemed obvious to pull it all together and give it a name. So, Noble and Wild was born. Run with my husband it is a small agency for music promotion and digital PR as well an having an aspiration to release records we love.

We currently provide digital PR support to Chris Helme (The Seahorses, The Yards) and are working with Team Love Records on an album release campaign for a band in early 2016.

We have also put on shows including:

As well as music PR and promotion we have brought together teams and project managed rebranding and digital builds for local businesses (we like to work with Include Creative!). You can find us on Twitter and Facebook.

Louder Than War and music journalism

I am Editor for Louder Than War – one of the fastest growing (and award-winning) music and counter-culture websites in the UK. I work directly with Louder Than War Editor in Chief John Robb and I love being part of the team. I manage the day-to-day running of the site as well as continuing to handle features, interviews and in-depth editorial.

When not helping to manage a virtual team of around 125 contributors around the world, editing content for the site or commissioning features I also write there too!

Louder Than War is now a magazine too and I’m Associate Editor and contributing writer to our print edition too. The magazine is quarterly and produced in association with Vive Le Rock. You can find it in WHSmiths or you can order / subscribe online.


I write fiction under the name Riley Reynolds and I’m currently working on a trilogy. The first in the series, The Winter Passing, is due for release in 2016. You can follow my author account on Twitter or check out my website for latest news about my books.


I live in Derbyshire with my husband and our two sons.

I like black coffee, the west coast of Scotland, being busy, Take That, the works of Joss Whedon, Tim Peaks Diner, taking a lot of photos, Manchester, people who were big in the ’90s, crows, tattoo roulette, gin, music and words.

I am in love with possibilities.