Meet our Patron and Trustees
HospiceCare North Northumberland is governed by a Board of Trustees who are appointed to undertake the role on a voluntary basis. They are recruited from the beneficiary community from a range of professions and bring a range of skills to help manage and lead the direction, policy, and strategy of the organisation. We’re always interested to hear from people who feel they have the skills and energy to contribute to our ongoing success and who wish to put themselves forward as a potential trustee. For an informal conversation about the role, please contact our Chair of Trustees by email: firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are interested in learning more about becoming a Trustee then please scroll to the bottom of this page...
Harriet hails from Scotland but has lived in Northumberland for almost thirty years, bringing up her four children in the countryside where her husband grew up and where they live. Harriet has been involved with her community and with various charities during these years.
During 2019 and 2020 she has been High Sheriff of Northumberland travelling around the county getting to know many parts of it much better and seeing what wonderful work goes on, much of it voluntary. She has long been a supporter of HCNN and was honoured to be asked to be Patron.
Chairperson Board of Trustees
Lucy qualified and worked as a State Registered Nurse in Edinburgh and also worked in the Scottish Borders. Lucy has lived in Northumberland for 34 years bringing up 2 children, and working as a self-employed businesswoman with her husband in the agricultural industry on the family farm, managing the farm diversifications specifically.
Lucy has always enjoyed working as a volunteer with a range of voluntary organisations including The Citizen’s Advice Bureau, Berwick Voluntary Forum, Scottish Children’s Tribunal, and more recently as High Sheriff of Northumberland.
Joint Vice Chair of Trustees & Chair of Clinical Governance Committee
Sue qualified as a pharmacist and worked as a clinical pharmacist in a number of roles in hospitals in Edinburgh, London, and later in North Tyneside Hospital. She also trained with Macmillan as part of their bereavement befriending team in North Tyneside.
When Sue and her husband Scott moved to the Scottish Borders in 2011, she took on the role of clinical pharmacist for Berwick and Alnwick Infirmaries, and Rothbury Hospital. At that time Sue joined Berwickshire
Association for Voluntary Service (BAVS) as a trustee and then as vice-chair. She enjoyed those roles until she retired. Sue enjoys cooking, walking, pilates, theatre, and music. She also enjoys travel both in the UK and Europe, especially Italy.
Sir Alan Craft
Alan was born in Newcastle and qualified in medicine there. He pursued a career working with children and established a regional cancer service for children. In the early days more than 80% of children with cancer died so palliative care was an important part of his work. He has undertaken reviews of children’s and adult palliative care for the Secretary of State for Health. He is President of Together for Short Lives, the national charity for children’s palliative care. He lives in Embleton with is wife who was formerly Chairman of St Oswald’s Hospice in Newcastle. He is also a non executive director of Northumbria NHS Trust and Chairman of Governors of Embleton Primary School.
Debbie is an HR and Organisational Development professional, currently working on a change programme as a People Transformation lead at the Scottish Public Pensions Agency within the Scottish Government. She served as an Army Officer in the Royal Artillery, specialising in air defence and completing tours of Afghanistan and the Falkland Islands, before spending three years working at the North York Moors National Park Authority.
Debbie is from Whitley Bay, and after a lot of travelling in the past years of her career, now lives in Berwick upon Tweed with her partner, Chris, and their three dogs. When they are not busy working on their house renovation, she enjoys walking, trail running, horse riding, and mountain biking, and is probably the local library’s most prolific borrower!
John Cooke MBE
John spent many years in the hospitality industry in training, marketing and operational roles with Scottish and Newcastle Breweries before joining Northumberland Training and Enterprise Council(NTEC) as General Manager of the Enterprise Division. Subsequent to the closure of TEC’s John became Managing Director of Northumberland Guidance Company, Connections, and other companies within the Longhirst Group.
John has performed a number of public service roles including being a Member of the Independent Monitoring Board, HMP Acklington (now HMP Northumberland), Northumbria Police Authority, and as a Pension Scheme Trustee/Director with the Water and Associated Employers Pension Scheme. John has been a Reader in the Church of England for over 39 years currently serving at the church of St Michael and St. Paul Alnwick. In his spare time, John enjoys cooking, walking, and travel, especially to Thailand.
Lesley has over 15 years’ experience in human resources and prior to that as a Director of Development and Communications for a supported housing charity where she helped set up a centre for veterans in Newcastle helping provide housing and employment and training opportunities.
Lesley emigrated with her parents to Canada as a teenager where she completed high school in Toronto and attended University at McMaster and Queens before later moving back to the UK and this inevitably sparked her interest in travel. Lesley has lived in Northumberland for many years with her husband and two dogs, Ted and Skye. Her regular trips to Berwick allows sufficient time to read which is one of her favourite past times.
Elaine graduated as an engineer and then worked for Unilever for 20 years, where she qualified as an accountant. As a Unilever manager, she travelled worldwide on business, living in The Netherlands for 5 years. She has extensive experience in corporate and company accounting, internal risk and audit, leadership, and strategy roles as well as the development of diversity within the workplace.
Elaine now works as a self-employed accountant. She has 3 children and lives with her partner in North Northumberland. This is her first voluntary and trustee role. She enjoys many outdoor activities including swimming, cycling, walking, and sailing.
Alyson was born in Alnwick and has lived and worked in Northumberland as a Registered Mental Health nurse. She started in the NHS in 1986 and Mental health and well-being has always been her priority for patients and staff. She currently works part time in Nortumbria health care as a deputy director after flexi retiring. She has experience of managing a range of acute and community services.
Alyson is from a large family and likes to spend time with her family and friends. She likes trying fresh scones in a local cafe after a walk in our local area, enjoys reading or travelling both abroad or for weekends away in the UK. Alyson is the chair of the Northumbria retirement fellowship which helps retirees from health and social care keep social connections with colleagues during the transition of retiring.
Mark worked as a GP Partner in Derbyshire for 24 years and “retired” with his wife Jacqui to Northumberland in 2017. The retirement was short-lived and Mark joined Alnwick Medical Group as a part-time GP in Northumberland for the next 5 years, before retiring again in the summer of 2023.
Mark continues to work occasionally as a locum GP, and continues to teach General Practice to younger Doctors, and enjoys volunteering to work abroad to mentor and support healthcare systems and clinicians in low-income countries. As a GP, Mark has significant experience with the health needs of a community and recognises the importance of the vital support that HospiceCare provides to people of North Northumberland, especially at times of their greatest personal difficulties.
Every charity has a Board of Trustees – a group of volunteers who ensure that the charity is effective in carrying out its charitable purpose. Trustees have responsibilities for overseeing the work of the charity, ensuring it is financially stable, well run, compliant, and fulfilling the charity objectives HospiceCare North Northumberland Board of Trustees has a wide range of expertise and every Trustee is passionate about the care we provide to our patients and their families.
Training and support are provided, and this is ongoing. There are 6 main elements that trustees must follow:
Follow the rules in the charity’s governing document
Understand the finance
Check that controls and procedures work
Ask difficult questions and challenge assumptions
Follow proper decision-making principles
Our Board of Trustees currently meets 6 times a year for two-hour evening meetings, as well as being a member of at least one subcommittee which also 6 times a year. Usually, membership of a subcommittee involves a trustee’s field of expertise, a particular interest, or skill. Ideally, the minimum term for a Trustee is three years.
What you do as a Trustee
Use your insight and experience to help us achieve our goals and ambitions.
Contribute to strategic thinking and planning particularly regarding the future direction of the Hospice.
Act in the best interests of the Hospice.
Act as an ambassador for the charity.
Attend Board meetings and allocated designated sub-committees.
Work closely with the Chief Executive, and Senior Management Team.
Skills and attributes required to be a Hospice Trustee
Passionate about the work of the Hospice. At HospiceCare North Northumberland the needs of our patients, their families, and their carers always come first and are at the heart of everything we do.
Be committed and ensure you have the time to attend meetings.
Bring specific knowledge and experience.
Can think strategically, critically and maintain confidentiality.
Recruitment to the Board of Trustees
The Hospice usually recruits on an annual basis, but we are always keen to hear from people interested in the role throughout the year. We have a process for the recruitment of trustees ensuring that we can draw on a diverse range of skills, expertise, experience, and backgrounds and that the Board is as representative of the community we serve.If you’re interested in becoming a Trustee, please email a copy of your CV with a covering letter or supporting statement highlighting the value to feel you can bring to the team at the Hospice to: email@example.com